Coates, starting second on the grid alongside McCarthy in pole, grabbed the lead into the first bend and from there swiftly built an advantage as those behind squabbled over second…
The Team Pyro driver’s winning margin over Rivett at the end was more than two seconds. However it is WDE Motorsport’s Rivett who leaves Brands leading the championship standings, albeit by just three points from Coates…
Rivett put in a strong recovery driver after a collision with team-mate Lee Pattison had sent him off the track. In the closing stages he caught McCarthy and, after several attempts, finally managed to pass the youngster for second spot.
Coates commented: “That was the perfect race as far as I’m concerned – get the lead at the start and drive away from the rest. I felt we could have won yesterday but it didn’t work out so this definitely puts that right. I’m very happy with the speed with we’ve got at this early stage of the season.”
Rivett said: “First yesterday, second today… I can’t complain with that too much and it’s actually the best start to a season I’ve had in a long time. To come away leading the championship with barely any pre-season testing is great.”
McCarthy added: “It’s always difficult getting the car away well off the line here from pole, particularly in the wet and I was down to something like fourth at the first bend. The battle with Rivett near the end was good fun but I’m quite happy with that one.”
Meanwhile Michael Epps, who closed right in on McCarthy at the end, took fourth to complete a strong weekend for him and the Matrix Motorsport team on their debut. Next up was Sam Osborne* who, having held second early on, had fallen down the order with two lurid slides but then recovered strongly to pass Bradley Burns for fifth.
Having pressured McCarthy for second earlier on, Burns took sixth ahead of Pattison and another of Pyro’s young rising stars, Zak Fulk, who set the race’s fastest lap time en route to eighth. Dan Zelos and Daniel Rowbottom completed the top ten.
* After the chequered flag, Osborne was handed a 5-second penalty for exceeding track limits which dropped him to ninth in the final result.
Leading positions (provisional): 2018 Renault UK Clio Cup, Round 2, Brands Hatch
1. Max Coates (Team Pyro), 19 laps in 18m57.675s
2. Paul Rivett (WDE Motorsport), +2.346s
3. Jack McCarthy (Team Pyro), +3.230s
4. Michael Epps (Matrix Motorsport), +3.971s
5. Bradley Burns (Team Pyro), +6.858s
6. Lee Pattison (WDE Motorsport), +7.280s
7. Zak Fulk (Team Pyro), +7.466s
8. Dan Zelos (WDE Motorsport (WDE Motorsport), +7.804s
9. Sam Osborne (WDE Motorsport), +9.606s*
10. Daniel Rowbottom (Team Pyro), +10.780s
Fastest lap: Fulk, 58.834s
Leaders for 1 bonus point: Coates
* Includes 5-sec penalty
CLICK HERE for full result.
CLICK HERE for the points table.