Josh Cook takes victory in topsy-turvy first race at Brands Hatch

by Stuart Richards
Josh Cook BTCC 2019

BTC Racing driver Josh Cook has taken victory in the first race of the 2019 Kwik Fit British Touring Car Championship following a tyre choice masterclass at Brands Hatch.

With most drivers at the front of the grid selecting wet Dunlops for the race, it was Josh Cook in tenth who was the highest placed slick starter and it was a decision that ultimately gave him victory when the tyres started to come good.

Second went to an ecstatic Jake Hill for Trade Price Cars Racing who replicated his maiden podium at the circuit last year in very similar circumstances. Third went to Tom Chilton who got the start to the new season he was looking for.

With a handful of laps remaining Cook came across stubborn backmarkers who didn’t want to move out of the way. Whilst Rob Collard made his life difficult, all the hard work could have been undone when Cook tapped Nicolas Hamilton whilst trying to get past at Druids.

Jason Plato’s race was dealt a tough blow when he was given a drive-through penalty due to not being correctly placed in his grid box. A switch to slicks started giving him fastest laps but it was too little too late.

Outside the podium positions, the Mercedes Benz duo of Aiden Moffat and Adam Morgan finished fourth and fifth making up for an incredibly disappointing qualifying session yesterday.

Sixth went to the impressive Bobby Thompson who showed great racecraft as he carved his slick-shod Volkswagen CC through the field. Thompson was ahead of Stephen Jelley who put the ride-height faux-pas of qualifying into the history books as he went from dead last on the grid to seventh. Ahead of the works BMW cars.

The highest placed wet Dunlop shod car was Matt Neal in eighth ahead of pole position man Ashley Sutton who had no defence against the slick cars ahead of him.

Tenth went to Rory Butcher who made up for disappointment on the other side of the garage when Sam Tordoff was the first retirement of the race following contact with Jack Goff. It seems that Sam is facing similar luck to what he didn’t enjoy in 2018.

A fantastic start to the 2019 season and with this mixed up grid for race two. We should expect another fantastic half an hour of racing at 14:15.

1stJosh CookHonda Civic Type R21:26.907
2ndJake HillAudi S3 Saloon+2.723
3rdTom ChiltonFord Focus RS+3.850
4thAiden MoffatMercedes Benz A-Class+12.761
5thAdam MorganMercedes Benz A-Class+13.173
6thBobby ThompsonVolkswagen CC+13.263
7thStephen JelleyBMW 125i M Sport+34.256
8thMatt NealHonda Civic Type R+42.490
9thAshley SuttonSubaru Levorg GT+43.252
10thRory ButcherHonda Civic Type R+43.507
11thJack GoffVolkswagen CC+45.600
12thMichael CreesVolkswagen CC+47.672
13thTom IngramToyota Corolla GT+47.761
14thMark BlundellAudi S3 Saloon+48.437
15thAndrew JordanBMW 330i M Sport+50.044
16thDan CammishHonda Civic Type R+50.337
17thSenna ProctorSubaru Levorg GT+51.967
18thMatt SimpsonHonda Civic Type R+53.571
19thColin TurkingtonBMW 330i M Sport+1 Lap
20thNicolas HamiltonFord Focus RS+1 Lap
21stRob CollardVauxhall Astra+1 Lap
22ndTom OliphantBMW 330i M Sport+1 Lap
23rdDaniel RowbottomMercedes Benz A-Class+1 Lap
24thSam OsborneMG6 GT+1 Lap
25thJason PlatoVauxhall Astra+1 Lap
26thCarl BoardleyVolkswagen CC+4 Laps
27thRob SmithMG6 GT+7 Laps
28thOllie JacksonFord Focus RS+9 Laps
29thChris SmileyHonda Civic Type R+10 Laps
30thSam TordoffHonda Civic Type R+22 Laps

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