UK: TCR Rockingham qualifying report

CLIO CUP ROOKIES STAR FOR TCR IN ROCKINGHAM QUALIFYING First year ELF Renault Clio Cup racers Sam Tordoff and Daniel Lloyd each have a fantastic opportunity to challenge for the podium during the 17th and 18th rounds of the season at Rockingham...

CLIO CUP ROOKIES STAR FOR TCR IN ROCKINGHAM QUALIFYING

First year ELF Renault Clio Cup racers Sam Tordoff and Daniel Lloyd each have a fantastic opportunity to challenge for the podium during the 17th and 18th rounds of the season at Rockingham tomorrow, Sunday, 20th September, after starring in qualifying at the Northamptonshire track.

The Total Control Racing pairing, currently eighth and 10th in the driver standings, were on the pace throughout this afternoon's 30-minute session to determine the grid for Sunday's two encounters with Tordoff posting the third fastest time of 1m30.412 seconds (77.24mph) and Lloyd just 0.010 seconds adrift with the fourth best time for round 17.

Fellow TCR runner Alex MacDowall, who is battling to take the championship fight to the final event of the season at Brands Hatch in October, was sixth quickest with a lap of 1m30.473 seconds (77.19mph) while team-mate Mike Robinson was 12th fastest.

After the session though, championship officials excluded second-placed qualifier Dave Newsham from the final timesheets so this means Tordoff will begin the first of Sunday's races from second place on the grid, Lloyd will line-up a season-best third, MacDowall will be fifth on the grid and Robinson will start in 11th position.

For round 18, which will be screened live on Freeview, digital satellite and cable channel ITV4, Tordoff will again line-up on the front row alongside championship leader Philip Glew, with MacDowall an improved fourth, Lloyd sixth and Robinson 14th.

"Our two young rookies have done extremely well, an excellent job", said TCR team principal Lee Brookes, "It's great to see Sam consistently up there and Daniel achieved his best ever qualifying result so we're delighted for him, it could have been a front row -- that'll definitely come for him.

"Alex struggled a little bit, he said the car felt fine but there's something he wasn't quite happy with as he couldn't quite get the time he wanted. Mike struggled too and it's such a shame as he's got the ability to be right at the front, as he proved at Silverstone. Three cars in the top six is good though and we should be able to fight for the podium."

Breeze maintains third in G50 Cup standings TCR's Carl Breeze raced to fourth place in Saturday afternoon's 23rd round of the Michelin Ginetta G50 Cup to maintain his solid grip on third position in the driver standings while team-mate Fulvio Mussi, driving the yourracingcar.com entered G50, shadowed him home in fifth position.

Lining up third on the grid after posting a qualifying time of 1m23.570 seconds (83.56mph), Breeze wasn't able to make the best of getaways and slipped behind the extremely fast-starting Benji Hetherington on the run through Turn 1.

Seeing off the challenge of Tom Sharp, Breeze held on to fourth and took the chequered flag 1.6 seconds ahead of Mussi who had a good run from sixth on the grid -- his qualifying best a time of 1m24.082 seconds (83.06mph), just 0.001 seconds shy of fifth spot. Danish racer Joachim Ritter, meanwhile, came home in the top 10 -- his 14th such result of the season -- from 11th on the grid.

Reflecting on the first of the G50 Cup's three races this weekend, Brookes said: "We've been there or thereabouts with the pace but qualifying wasn't what we wanted, we had a small problem at just a couple of corners but it really cost us.

"Carl didn't make the best of starts to the race but at least a top four brings good points and keeps him comfortably third in the championship. Fulvio had a cracking start but he was boxed in a bit which was a shame as his pace was good and Joachim was in the top 10 again too so, all round, it's not been a bad day."

TCR will be back in action at Rockingham tomorrow, Sunday, 20th September, with an extremely busy four race programme. Rounds 17 and 18 of the ELF Renault Clio Cup will take place at 10.00 and 15.15 respectively while rounds 24 and 25 of the Michelin Ginetta G50 Cup will be held at 10.35 and 15.55. Live television coverage will be screened on ITV4 -- check listings for more details.

-credit: totalcontrolracing.com

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Series General
Drivers Carl Breeze , Philip Glew , Alex MacDowall , Sam Tordoff , Dave Newsham , Daniel Lloyd