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Dan Rowbottom Leads a Napa Racing UK 1-2 at Donington Park.

Napa Racing UK have locked out the front row of the opening qualifying session of the BTCC at Donington Park.

Credit: BTCC

Qualifying got underway for the first time this year, surprisingly on time, with drama from the offset.

Nic Hamilton found the limit very quickly, spinning his specially adapted CUPRA Leon on cold tyres.

Hamilton would be seen as a trend setter however, with virtually every single driver having a lap time deleted due to track limit violations thanks to Motorsport UK's new stricter regulations for the 2023 competitive season.

The sharp end of the first part of qualifying was greatly overshadowed by the surprising pace of Power Maxed Racing archaic Astra.

Andrew Watson, championship rookie, was the team's star driver, putting in a stunning performance to comfortably put his machine in 8th.

Credit: Power Maxed Racing

This weekend sees the return of the top ten shootout qualifying format; a fan favourite from previous seasons.

Napa Racing UK lead the charge, with competitive times from both Sutton and Rowbottom early on, giving BMW Fans little to cheer for.

Short lived would be their dominance however, with the ever cunning Jake Hill showing just how dangerous those rear wheel drive BMW's are going to be this season with a blistering fast time to de-throne the Napa Fords.

Credit: NAPA Racing UK

In the closing stages of the session however, the Napa Racing Fords would find that little bit extra. Sutton put an all time best in before a track limit violation dropped him back to 10th and Rowbottom would continue the charge at the front.

It wouldn't be until the final ten seconds of the session before Sutton posted a legal time, locking out the front row with his new teammate Rowbottom alongside him on pole.

Donington has been, and always will be, a real drivers circuit. Sunday's races are only looking more exciting after a fantastic first day of competition.

Make sure to come back here, to Prescott Motorsport, for all the latest updates, live from Donington Park!


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