The British Touring Car Championship
Rounds 11 and 12
Saturday 30th June '01
The Peugeot 406 Coupè Race Team were quickest today in the first test session at Donington Park as preparations got underway for this weekend's BTCC race. Soper recorded a lap time of 1:44.087 putting him in the lead, ahead of Vauxhall ace Yvan Muller.
The www.theAA.com BTCC Touring class qualifying session saw 406 Coupè drivers Eaves, Soper and Slight take 5th, 6th and 7th respectively for tomorrows round eleven. Consistently finding time Soper improved from 6th to 5th, Eaves took 6th and Slight held onto 7th.
After qualifying 7th for both the SPRINT and FEATURE race, World Superbike ace Aaron Slight, who joins the team for the first time this weekend commented, "After changes were made to the set-up from this mornings free practice, we have progressed well with my car and I am happy to be up with my team-mates. I'm looking forward to tomorrow and a good result."
Eaves commented, "We've made a significant improvement to the car, as I have been suffering quite a lot of steering problems but, this is now much improved and I am much happier with the cars set-up. I am also pleased that both Steve and myself have qualified within 0.8 of one second of pole position. We are optimistic that we can give them a run for their money."
Soper commented, "I put in a good lap time in this morning's free practice but unfortunately my qualifying was cut short with a clutch problem that my team will be working on tonight to rectify."
Peugeot Motorsport Director, Mick Linford commented, "We are making progress all the time -this just proves that. It's unfortunate that Steve had problems with his clutch but that will be sorted for tomorrow's races. Aaron has adapted incredibly well and we can expect a very strong performance from him."
Team Manager-VLR, Vic Lee commented, "We have found some time again with the qualifying times which is positive, however Steve suffered a clutch problem which was a continuation from this morning, this cut qualifying short for Steve. Dan also went well, and we are very pleased with Aaron's progress. He put in some credible times - the more laps he puts in the more confident he becomes."
James Thompson in The Egg Sport Vauxhall was quickest in qualifying, so will start from the front in both the SPRINT and FEATURE race tomorrow.
Sunday 1st July: SPRINT race at: 1.10pm with the FEATURE race at 3.45pm.
SPRINT RACE Position, Driver, Car, Time 1 James Thompson (Egg Sport Vauxhall Astra Coupe) 1m42.611s 2 Yvan Muller (Vauxhall Astra Coupe) 1m42.813s 3 Phil Bennett (Vauxhall Astra Coupe) 1m42.992s 4 Jason Plato (Vauxhall Astra Coupe) 1m43.131s 5 Dan Eaves (Peugeot 406 Coupe) 1m43.595s 6 Steve Soper (Peugeot 406 Coupe) 1m43.889s 7 Aaron Slight (Peugeot 406 Coupe) 1m45.121s 8 Kurt Luby (ABG Motorsport Lexus IS200) 1m46.986s 9 Tim Harvey (JSM Alfa Romeo 147) 7m59.981s
FEATURE RACE Position, Driver, Car, Time 1 James Thompson 1m42.686s 2 Jason Plato 1m42.944s 3 Yvan Muller 1m42.973s 4 Phil Bennett 1m43.108s 5 Steve Soper 1m43.196s 6 Dan Eaves 1m43.485s 7 Aaron Slight 1m44.399s 8 Kurt Luby 1m45.944s 9 Tim Harvey 3m57.289s
-Peugeot Sport UK