Josh Cook targets a podium finish at the eighth Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship meeting of the season at Rockingham, insisting Power Maxed Racing have great race pace to flaunt.
Last year’s Renault UK Clio Cup vice champion was forced to settle for 12th place after a frenetic qualifying session at the Corby Speedway on Saturday afternoon, admitting to The Checkered Flag that a good time on new tyres did not materialise.
“We did our best time in FP2 on a set of new rubber”, Cook told TCF after qualifying. “We were hoping get a couple of extra tenths but we just couldn’t. Three tenths would have put me third.
“Before the red flag I was in the middle of a really good second sector, so I was a tenth up and it could have moved me a couple of places further forward.
“I’m sure a load of people said that anyway. A bit of a mixed session really with lots of traffic, but it gets like that sometimes.“
The Chevrole Cruze driver’s disappointment from qualifying 12th stems more from his superb pace earlier in the day, having finished a credible third place in first practice before adding fifth spot in the second session of the day.
The race simulation pace was very positive in that the times were set on used Dunlop rubber, Cook indicating that the Chevrolet squad can draw themselves into the fight on Sunday.
The rookie added that race three would be a key, saying: “I’m pretty confident that we’re going to be able to race from there. I know that our race pace is really good.
“On old tyres this morning, we were right at the front still, so I know that the time is in the car. I just don’t think that we’ve quite the found the time on new rubber people expected.”
“Hopefully we can break into the top 10 and want to get that reverse grid and fight for a darn podium!”
Cook can also wrap up the Jack Sears Trophy for rookie drivers this weekend, providing he finishes with a lead of 120 points at the end of the weekend, already 119 ahead prior to Sunday.
Jack Sears Trophy (Cook Needs a 120+ points lead to win):