BTCC

Smith quickest in Brands Hatch practice

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Brett Smith was quickest in free practice ahead of the final British Touring Car Championship round of the season.

Smith’s 1m31.362s around the GP layout of the Brands Hatch circuit was set in the second free practice session, putting him a tenth of a second ahead of team-mate Jack Goff, who finished second.

Gordon Shedden, who needs to take pole, win every race, take every fastest lap, and lead a lap in every race in order to win the championship, was third fastest.

Adam Morgan, who led a Mercedes 1-2 in the first practice session, could only manage fourth fastest, His 1m31.641s lap time was just five hundredths of a second faster than his FP1 time. He led Aiden Moffat in the first practice session, but the Laser Tools driver could only manage 16th fastest in FP2.

Tom Ingram ran into trouble in the first practice. The Speedworks mechanics removed the engine from his Toyota Avensis after he reported strange noises coming from beneath the bonnet. Between the two sessions, the team replaced his clutch. Ingram was top of the order early in the second practice but dropped down to fifth as others found improvements.

Dave Newsham and Jake Hill were sixth and seventh fastest ahead of the first real championship contender.

Ashley Sutton could only manage eighth fastest, nearly four tenths of a second slower than Brett Smith. The championship leader had enjoyed an equally difficult first practice, only managing ninth quickest in the opening session.

Colin Turkington was also further down the order than he would have liked. He was 18th in the timings in FP2, more than seven seconds off the pace.

Jason Plato and Rory Butcher, who had also been at the top of the order early in the second session, rounded out the top 10.

Feature image credit: Caroline Rhea

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