Holland, JamSport eye podium chance after strong qualifying at Thruxton

JamSport Racing’s Dan Holland was the surprise of Thruxton’s Renault UK Clio Cup qualifying session with times that put him third on the starting grid for both of Sunday’s two races at the high-speed Hampshire circuit.
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On his Thruxton debut Holland was beaten only by Ash Hand and Ashley Sutton, both driving for the Pyro squad which has won six of the last seven drivers’ titles.

It was these two that Holland stuck with during qualifying – he cheekily benefited from a slipstream effect off both their cars – to set his times.

He even followed them in and back out of the pit lane as they tried to shake him off the scent and the result was by far the best qualifying performance for him and the growing JamSport squad since they graduated to the Clio Cup together during the second half of 2014’s season.

“I believe I can take the fight to them in tomorrow’s two races,” said Holland. “I don’t think there’s much between us as drivers around here. Staying in the slipstream is what it is all about at Thruxton and it’ll be important not to let them break the tow. Nursing the tyres is important here but the slipstream is more important than that I’d say.

“It feels great to be this high up on a circuit I’ve never really seen before. I did some laps in the official test last month but had to stop early as my neck was still hurting from my Brands Hatch shunt.”

Indeed his performance today comes as a timely boost for all at JamSport. The squad was left with a major repair job on its hands after his unfortunate Brands Hatch collision with team-mate Tom Grundy. At Donington Holland had been on course for a top six finish – maybe even a podium result – but ended up off the track after contact from a rival.

He added: “We’re really starting to progress as a team as we learn more about these cars and of course some of the tactics in qualifying and races – teams like Pyro have years of experience. You look at my team-mate George Jackson as well who’s up in sixth on the grid for one of tomorrow’s two races.

“Of course the races are always very different to qualifying and tomorrow could get pretty tasty. I believe we are capable of being on the podium but let’s see. In the meantime everyone at JamSport should celebrate what we’ve done today.”