Josh Coggan beats the returning Martin Depper to pole at Brands Hatch
Josh Coggan secured his third pole position of the year for DW Racing. The Golf Mk7 driver won last time out at Croft and will hope to continue his momentum at Brands as he closes in two points to the VW Racing Cup championship lead.
As the temperatures rose at Brands Hatch as did the engine noise, with Martin Depper soon setting the pace. Depper initially set a lap almost two seconds quicker than the opposition, but it didn’t take long for the field to catch him up, with Josh Coggan clocking a 1min 38.387 to better the former-BTCC driver.
Depper would close the gap to under four tenths before the halfway stage, as drivers came into the pits to change tyres. Coggan and Depper though would not head back out, choosing to keep his tyres fresh ahead of the races tomorrow. It proved to be an inspired decision, with the opposition failing to lower their benchmark and locking out the front row.
One of the exceptions to this was Ru Clark. The JW Bird Motorsports driver left the pits five minutes after the green flag, choosing to set sighting laps on a rubbered-in track. With clear tarmac in front of him, Clark continued to improve, jumping into third, ahead of championship leader Owen Walton. The Audi TT driver had been another to benefit from the clear track during the middle of qualifying, pulling in before the flag. Despite this, he still lines up fourth.
The highest placed driver to run the traditional two stint strategy was fifth placed Rob Allum. The Nottinghamshire driver was 1.475 seconds behind the polesitter, completing eleven laps compared to Coggan’s six. The Allumy Motorsport driver heads the third row from Tony Prendergast as Russell Joyce is the highest placed Hankook Trophy driver in seventh.
In a 16 strong field, title contender Mark Wakefield lines up at the halfway point, with the Cheshire driver lining up ahead of qualifying ace Simon Walton. Rounding out the top ten will be his SlideSport teammate Mark Steel.
It’s an all-Hankook Trophy sixth row with Jack Depper eleventh, despite never having driven the GP loop before, from Richard Gilbert in the Golf.
Sadly for Jeff Clark, his session quickly came to an end as he pulled off on the Cooper Straight after completing just two laps. Lewis Smith would also fail to complete the twenty minutes, but still lines up 13th with Clark 15th. Both were split by Jeff Alden as Michael Jones concludes the grid.
Speaking about the race tomorrow, Josh Coggan said; “The hot weather will affect me a little. I’ve still got 16Kg in it. Obviously if we get the race win, we’ll have to carry 60. We run the ballast on the back and we do save the front tyres, so I’m not too worried about that.”