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Jake Hill scores British Touring Car Championship win at Donington Park after exclusion in race one


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Jake Hill bounced back from exclusion in race one to score a dominant British Touring Car Championship win at Donington Park on Sunday.

The Platt's Heath charger, 28, finished third in the opening encounter but was thrown out of the results after failing the post-race ride-height check.

Jake Hill scored his fourth BTCC win at Donington on Sunday. Pictures: Jakob Ebrey Photography
Jake Hill scored his fourth BTCC win at Donington on Sunday. Pictures: Jakob Ebrey Photography

He put in a storming drive in race two, climbing from 28th to ninth, and then benefited from the reversed-grid draw which put him on pole position for the last race.

The former Ginetta ace went on to enjoy a comfortable drive at the front, beating reigning champion Ash Sutton by 2.1 seconds.

Hill, who was driving a West Surrey Racing-run ROKiT MB Motorsport BMW 330e for the first time, had scored his maiden BTCC pole position in Saturday's qualifying session and now sits sixth in the standings.

“I can’t describe how much of a crazy day it’s been,” Hill said.

"From lining up for my first pole position to then starting from the very back of the grid and then going all the way back to pole, I’ve experienced everything.

Hill was excluded from the first encounter but dominated the last race of the day
Hill was excluded from the first encounter but dominated the last race of the day

"The car has felt fantastic all day and I’ve been so dialled in with it.

"If we can continue this momentum throughout the rest of the season then we’ll be in a great place.”

Hill was driving a rear-wheel-drive touring car for the first time since 2013, when he piloted a Rob Austin Racing-run Audi A4 on the Brands Hatch Grand Prix circuit.

He failed the ride-height test in race one after striking a tyre stack at the final chicane, damaging the right-front corner of the car.

The Donington event marked the start of the championship's new hybrid era, with a power boost system replacing the success ballast seen in previous years.

Dan Cammish endured a tough weekend in his Motorbase-run NAPA Racing UK Ford Focus
Dan Cammish endured a tough weekend in his Motorbase-run NAPA Racing UK Ford Focus

Hill added: "We knew the performance was there and we knew what we had to do to go and get the result.

"As a team I think we went through every emotion possible today and it all came good in the end.

"The last race felt very reminiscent of Croft last year – it was the sort of race you dream of where everything was just right and went exactly how you wanted it to."

Wrotham-based Motorbase Performance – Hill's former team – are running four entries in the championship this year, with Sutton joining reigning Porsche Carrera Cup GB champion Dan Cammish under the NAPA Racing UK banner.

Sutton enjoyed the team's best results and sits third in the standings, while Cammish suffered a large fire during qualifying and struggled on Sunday – despite a huge effort from the team's mechanics overnight.

Michael Crees returned to the BTCC at the weekend
Michael Crees returned to the BTCC at the weekend

Meanwhile, Ollie Jackson and Sam Osborne failed to score any points in their Motorbase-run Apec Racing with Beavis Morgan machines after both were hit with throttle-related problems.

Detling Aerodrome-based Team Hard ran six cars at Donington – three Infiniti Q50s and a trio of Cupra Leons.

Lead driver Jack Goff pulled out of the championship before the opening event, but Essex racer Bobby Thompson, 25, enjoyed a strong weekend in his Cupra and is 10th in the standings.

Broadstairs-based Vauxhall Astra driver Michael Crees returned to the series at the weekend, taking 14th, 15th, and 16th-placed finishes across the three races for the CarStore Power Maxed Racing squad.

The next BTCC round will be held at Brands Hatch on May 14-15. Click here for more details.

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