Double delight for 'fired up' Bushell in Oulton Park qualifying

Team Pyro’s Mike Bushell has taken pole position for both Renault UK Clio Cup rounds at Cheshire’s Oulton Park circuit while young BMR-backed team-mate Senna Proctor celebrated his best qualifying performance in the championship to date with a pair of seconds.
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Bushell, the 2014 Champion, set the pace with a best lap of one minute, 34.328 seconds to guarantee pole for the first of the two races – to be held later today at 4.00pm.

On second best times which dictate race’s two grid Bushell was also ahead of his rivals with a time of 1m34.389s. That race will be held at 1.25pm tomorrow and shown live on ITV4 as part of the channel’s bumper British Touring Car coverage. Notably, Bushell has now set four pole positions in a row…

But while Bushell was happy with his qualifying, 17-year-old Proctor – in his first season of the UK Clio Cup – was ecstatic with his two front row performances.

Third and fourth on both grids will be 4Front Motor Group with WDE Motorsport’s Paul Rivett, the current championship leader, and JamSport’s Ant Whorton-Eales who has won three of the last four rounds. Continuing the symmetry, Ciceley Motorsport’s Max Coates took a pair of fifths.

Sixth for race one was taken by Pyro’s Josh Price; for race two Team Ecomotive with Finesse’s Daniel Rowbottom. Price suffered a crash just after setting his fastest time (his next best putting him only 11th for race two) and there were woes as well for two of the main title protagonists: Team Cooksport’s Lee Pattison, currently third in the standings, was back in tenth and then eighth; Finesse Motorsport’s Paul Streather, fifth overall but feeling unwell this weekend, was 15th and 14th.

Bushell, just six points behind Rivett at the top of the table, commented: “I said coming into the weekend I was fired up after having a win at Thruxton taken away from me and there’s the proof. The car also feels great so we’re in good shape for the races. It’s very good for Senna as well – hopefully I can keep him behind at the start and he can act as a wing man for me.”

Proctor said: “I’m delighted with that. We had a good test on Friday and I really feel in the groove here with the car and on a circuit I really enjoy. I’m not thinking about how the races could pan out – let’s just see. I’m not going to make life easy if I’m right behind him but of course I’m not going to risk anything silly.”

And added Rivett: “Two thirds keep us right in the hunt for podiums and big points which is what it’s all about in this championship. There was a red flag which came out just as we’d started our second run on new tyres and it would have been interesting to see what more we could have got out of the session. But my target this weekend is two podiums, the higher up the better.”

CLICK HERE for full qualifying times plus sector and speed trap data.