Seventh Heaven For Hand With Knockhill Double


Ash Hand has made it seven wins in the 2015 Renault UK Clio Cup with a lights-to-flag success in Round 12 to complete a double victory at Knockhill.

The result caps off a perfect weekend for the Team Pyro ace, who led the way in Friday practice and then converted a double pole position into the wins and the championship lead.

Hand got the best getaway to lead the field down Duffus Dip for the first time, while a wide moment for Ashley Sutton at Scotsman dropped him to fourth behind Paul Rivett and Ant Whorton-Eales.

As Hand and Rivett broke away at the front, Whorton-Eales was left defending from Sutton and Lee Pattison and eventually lost ground to both of them at Scotsman on lap four.

Rivett meanwhile was slowly edging closer to Hand at the front, getting within seven tenths of a second at one stage, but Hand responded in style by streaking clear to a four second win.

Behind, Rivett held an initial four second advantage over Sutton, but the latter chipped away at it lap after lap and was right on his rear bumper with two laps remaining.

Sutton made a lunge into the hairpin on the penultimate lap, but Rivett stayed ahead despite a slight nudge from behind and would hold him off again a lap later to take second place.

The battle for fourth between Pattison and Whorton-Eales was close fought for the majority of the race and former points leader Whorton-Eales briefly got ahead down the main straight on lap ten.

Pattison had the inside line for the first corner though and regained the spot, maintaining it for the second half of the race to cap off an impressive return to the series.

Charlie Ladell got down the inside of Dan Holland at the hairpin on lap five for an eventual sixth place finish, leaving Holland to defend from a gaggle of Clios behind.

Jack Mitchell led the challenge initially, but was unable to find a way past and eventually lost a spot to George Jackson on lap thirteen, who had earlier passed his team-mate Rory Collingbourne.

Early drama meanwhile for Tom Grundy, Rory Green and Mark Howard removed them from the top ten battle, with all three spinning at the first corner on the opening lap.

It went from bad to worse for Howard, who spun into the gravel and out of the race at the chicane on the same lap, while Green had an off track moment himself on lap three.

Green got back on track and finished twelfth though, albeit a lap down, while a strong recovery for Grundy saw him close onto the back of the pack and finish just 1.3 second shy of the top ten.

Full race results can be found here.