Hill breaks his duck with an Oulton Park double
INSPIRED driving from Jake Hill saw him bag back-to-back wins in the latest round of the Kwik Fit British Touring Car Championship.
Victory had eluded him in the previous rounds of the competition but he was the star at Oulton Park as he steered his Laser Tools Racing with MB Motorsport BMW up to third in the overall standings.
Heading to Cheshire, Hill had managed three second place finishes in the championship but he wasted no time in showing his intentions. Starting second on the grid, a brilliant start saw his 330e M Sport blast past pole-sitter Ash Sutton around the outside on the run down to turn one and he defended well to keep ahead of the field.
Hill began pulling away as he settled into his stride and finished clear of competition leader Sutton in his Napa Racing UK Ford Focus. Tom Ingram completed the podium in his Hyundai i30N.
Not content with chalking up his first victory of the season, Hill then steered the Bidford-based Beemer to a lights-to-flag success in the second race during which he was never troubled out in front while Sutton edged out Ingram to complete the podium.
Team BMW’s Colin Turkington then came to the fore in a pulsating reverse grid bout as he completed a phenomenal comeback to lead a historic BMW 1-2-3 finish.
After being disqualified from qualifying due to his car failing post-session scrutineering checks, the four-time champion fought his way from the back of the grid in races one and two to put himself in the mix for the finale. Charging up to second early on, the Northern Irishman made a bold move around the outside of team-mate Adam Morgan through turn one following a safety car restart, which also opened the door for Hill to follow and claim second ahead of Morgan.
Hill said: ““It’s been a blinder of a race weekend. To take two wins, three podiums and three fastest laps is brilliant and I can’t say much more than that. This car and the team are true heroes, and we have really turned it around this weekend.
“The car was monstrous – I am not saying that it is going to be rapid everywhere, but it is currently a lovely place to be. I must say a huge thank you to Laser Tools Racing with MB Motorsport, everyone in the team at West Surrey Racing and of course BMW UK for all of their support.
Bidford’s Carstore PowerMaxed drivers had a mixed bag of results but there was success for Andrew Watson in his Vauxhall Astra as he took the weekend’s Jack Sears Trophy after posting three point-scoring finishes.
Aron Taylor-Smith suffered disappointment as, having qualified in a superb eighth position for the opening race, he ended up in the barriers after a dubious move by another driver. He followed this up with 19th in the next race but failed the finish the final round.
Mikey Doble had a solid weekend again securing two top 15 finishes.
Watson said: “I’m delighted to win the Jack Sears Trophy here at Oulton Park, it’s great to be back.
“I had a bit of a scrappy qualifying and made the job a little bit more difficult for myself today, but I’m really happy with how I drove through the pack and scored some nice overall points too.