Following a long eight week break since the last rounds at Croft, the Renault UK Clio Cup returned to action with official testing ahead of the sixth meeting of the season at Knockhill, and it was a familiar name atop the timesheets, Ash Hand.
Picking up where he left off prior to the summer break, having won five of the previous eight races, Hand posted a best time of 57.092s in his Team Pyro fourth-generation Clio to top the timesheets by 0.188s over his team-mate Ashley Sutton.
Paul Rivett was third quickest, 0.451s adrift of Hand – with a similar margin then splitting the next seven cars to hint at a close fought battle for the podium positions, with Dan Holland fourth overall on an impressive day for JamSport Racing.
His team-mate Tom Grundy finished up in sixth, 0.051s adrift of Lee Pattison on his return to the championship, the Team Cooksport man being the only one of the top seven drivers to set his best time in the second session of the day.
Championship leader Ant Whorton-Eales was seventh quickest as his new team Maximum Motorsport made their Clio bow, while his former SV Racing team-mate Jack Mitchell was in hot pursuit on his first day with 20Ten Racing.
Charlie Ladell and Rory Collingbourne completed the top ten, with Mark Howard, George Jackson and Rory Green rounding out the finishers.
Full testing times can be found here.