Pole positions for Coates & McCarthy in close fought Brands Hatch qualifying

Team Pyro pair Max Coates and Jack McCarthy took a pole position apiece in qualifying for the Renault UK Clio Cup’s opening two rounds of 2018 at Brands Hatch as WDE Motorsport’s Sam Osborne and Paul Rivett also starred.
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Coates set the outright pace with a best lap of 51.901 seconds to guarantee himself pole for the first of the two races – decided by each a driver’s fastest time.

It was just enough – 0.041s to be exact – to keep McCarthy back in second as Osborne, Rivett, Westbourne Motorsport’s James Dorlin and WDE’s Lee Pattison rounded out the top six.

That is how they will line up at the head of the grid when the race gets under way at 16:25 today…

And it will be the same six drivers towards the front for race two tomorrow, albeit in a slightly different order.

For, on second fastest times which decide that grid, it will be McCarthy on pole (51.946s) ahead of Coates, Dorlin, Osborne, Pattison and Rivett.

Notably 17-year-old McCarthy becomes the youngest driver in history to qualify on pole for a Clio Cup race.

Meanwhile third and fourth for the two races mark the best qualifying performances of Osborne’s career so far. Rivett’s qualifying form was also impressive given it was the first time he had properly sampled the new slick dry weather tyre developed for 2018’s championship by Michelin.

Coates enthused: “It’s a great way to officially start the new season but of course there are no points for pole position – they come in the race and given how close the times are behind I know I’m going to made to work very hard from pole.”

Former karting star McCarthy said: “P2 and P1 at my home circuit and the new youngest driver on pole record… I’m pleased with that but none of it counts for points. It’s going to be a tough couple of races.”

Leading grid positions, Race 1, Brands Hatch Indy
1. Max Coates (Team Pyro), 51.901s / Avg. 83.78mph
2. Jack McCarthy (Team Pyro), +0.041s
3. Sam Osborne (WDE Motorsport), +0.096s
4. Paul Rivett (WDE Motorsport), +0.122s
5. James Dorlin (Westbourne Motorsport), +0.137s
6. Lee Pattison (WDE Motorsport), +0.166s
7. James Colburn (Westbourne Motorsport), +0.215s
8. Michael Epps (Matrix Motorsport), +0.305s
9. Daniel Rowbottom (Team Pyro), +0.317s
10. Bradley Burns (Team Pyro), +0.335s

Leading grid positions, Race 2, Brands Hatch Indy
1. Jack McCarthy (Team Pyro), 51.946s
2. Max Coates (Team Pyro), +0.022s
3. James Dorlin (Westbourne Motorsport), +0.109s
4. Sam Osborne (WDE Motorsport), +0.113s
5. Lee Pattison (WDE Motorsport), +0.143s
6. Paul Rivett (WDE Motorsport), +0.217s
7. James Colburn (Westbourne Motorsport), +0.215s
8. Daniel Rowbottom (Team Pyro), +0.293s
9. Michael Epps (Matrix Motorsport), +0.323s
10. Bradley Burns (Team Pyro), +0.344s

CLICK HERE for full times.