Subaru top Scots Touring Car grid

Plato and Sutton put BMWs behind them at Knockhill.

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Subaru driver Ashley Sutton is in a prime position to continue his relentless march to the top of the British Touring Car Championship – but he will have to overcome his team-mate.

Jason Plato took pole position for the seventh meeting of the season at Knockhill in Scotland, setting a last-minute fastest time in his Subaru Levorg on a track that started wet but dried out through the half-hour session.

Plato will be hoping to convert the 50th top starting spot of his BTCC career into his first victory of 2017, at the same circuit where he enjoyed his only success in 2016. This year he has been overshadowed by Sutton, who will start alongside on the front row and will be looking to cut back the 11-point gap to current championship leader Gordon Shedden.

The Scotsman, carrying a maximum 75kg success ballast in his Halfords Yuasa Honda Civic Type-R, will have it all to do to maintain his championship advantage on his home track, after only qualifying ninth.

BMW second row

The second row will be filled by the two title contenders between Shedden and Sutton, West Surrey Racing BMW drivers Rob Collard and Colin Turkington, respectively four and two points back in the championship chase. The qualifying performance was particularly welcome for Collard who spent much of the session in the pitman diagnosing an engine issue on his BMW 125i.

The first of three 24-lap races is due off the grid at 11.50 on Sunday. Check back to The Car Expert for a full round-up of the day’s action.

Sutton spun his Subaru on his way to second grid spot. Photo: Andrew Charman

BTCC Knockhill Audi
Incidents such as this twice caused the session to be stopped. Photo: Andrew Charman

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Andrew Charman
Andrew Charman
Andrew is a road test editor for The Car Expert. He is a member of the Guild of Motoring Writers, and has been testing and writing about new cars for more than 20 years. Today he is well known to senior personnel at the major car manufacturers and attends many new model launches each year.

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