Despite two lurid moments in qualifying for the fifth Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship meeting of the season of Croft, Ashley Sutton said that he was “over the moon” to have qualified third on the grid.
The Triple Eight MG driver finished best of the front-wheel drive cars in third spot, surviving an off at the chicane early on to set a time just 0.4s adrift of pole-sitter, Colin Turkington.
Following an interruption to remove the stricken cars of Rob Collard and Matt Neal at the halfway point of the session, Sutton recovered another significant sideways moment heading into the final complex to grab his eventual grid spot on row two.
“I made a mistake on my first lap”, Sutton said after qualifying. “We then put on another new set of tyres and went back out.
“I was on a really good lap, which was two tenths faster than the one that eventually put me third, but I lost the car again at turn 12.
“I had to make quite a big save, which hurt the tyres a little bit, and then the next lap was the one that got me the grid position.”
Despite this, Sutton was left buoyed by his pace in qualifying around a circuit he expected the FWD cars to struggle at.
“If someone would have told me before the weekend that I would qualify third at a predominantly rear-wheel drive track I would definitely have taken it“, Sutton added. “I’m over the moon.”