Jake Packun will start from pole position for the first AirAsia Renault Clio Cup UK race of 2011, after going fastest in qualifying in a close-packed session at the fabulous Brands Hatch Indy circuit in Kent this morning.
Near perfect conditions at Brands Hatch created a fascinating session, which saw less than 1.3 seconds separate the entire field of seventeen cars.
Packun, driving for Get On Track Developments, was just over two hundredths quicker than Total Control Racing’s James Dixon around the 1.2 miles. Packun added, “I struggled a bit in qualifying, but I’ve got a really good team behind me, so we just cracked on and eventually got the lap we wanted.”
Looking ahead to the race the pole sitter commented, “I just need to get off the line well. With times so close, overtaking will be difficult; it’d be nice if the race was a procession with me at the front, but Rivett will be a strong contender, especially given its his home circuit.”
Starting alongside Packun is Margate’s James Dixon who added, “Half of me is disappointed at missing pole after our double pole here last year, but the other half of me is glad to be on the front row.”
Dixon too struggled to find time, adding, “With everything so close, it’s really hard finding any difference and it took me time to get on the quick laps. This was mainly due to understeer from my first set of tyres though. We’ve got a few changes to make and we hope we get in front early and snatch a win.”
Interestingly, an enticing clash looks likely to develop over the course of the season between Total Control Racing and Team Pyro’s pack of drivers. It was two of these teams’ drivers; Nicolas Hamilton (Total Control Racing) and Adam Bonham (Team Pyro) that were black-flagged a few minutes before the session close for exceeding the track limits, leaving them unable to improve on their earlier times.
1. Jake Packun Westbourne Motorsport 52.339
2. James Dixon Total Control Racing 52.360
3. Paul Rivett Team Pyro 52.378
4. Luke Wright JHR Developments 52.403
5. Tom Grice Total Control Racing 52.448
6. Jack Goff Team Pyro 52.498
7. Aron Smith Team Pyro 52.498
8. Matt Alison Scuderia Vittoria 52.510
9. James Colburn Westbourne Motorsport 52.525
10. Adam Bonham Team Pyro 52.612