Seventh pole for Sowery in downpour

Championship leader Toby Sowery secured his seventh pole position of the year in treacherous conditions at Oulton Park for round nine of the championship.

Championship leader Toby Sowery secured his seventh pole position of the year in treacherous conditions at Oulton Park for round nine of the championship. Henry Chart, who is returning for his first rounds since Silverstone, joins Sowery on the front row, 1.5s adrift after an impressive lap from Sowery stretched his margin.

Lee Morgan improved late on to snatch third, dropping Tristan Cliffe to fourth on the grid. Oliver Rae spent the early stages on top of the timing sheets but will start fifth with Mark Harrison completing the top six. 

A morning of torrential rain ensured qualifying was wet for the third weekend in a row. Oliver Rae looked set to follow-up his front-row start at Rockingham with another, instantly setting the pace. But, Sowery made himself space and moved to the familiar surroundings of the top of the timing screens to spoil the all-Enigma Motorsport front-row of Rae and Chart. 

Chart soon dislodged his team-mate to the second row, coming up 0.3s shy of Sowery's time. Cliffe and Morgan both improved in quick succession to demote Rae to fitfth.

The battle to join them in the top six was a close one, but Harrison had the measure of the pack. He spent the early session ahead of Omicron Motorsport team-mate Cliffe and Morgan in third place before they both leapfrogged him, leaving him on the cusp of the top six, but just 0.3s slower than Cliffe in fourth.

Stuart Wiltshire narrowly missed out on the top six and will start seventh ahead of Louis Hamilton-Smith, another making his return this weekend. Jonathan Weston-Taylor beat newcomer Oliver Stirling to ninth and second in the Trophy 01 Class. Nick Robinson, Wiltshire's Gale Force Racing team-mate, completes the grid.

Conditions deteriorated as the session moved into the final two minutes to such that a red flag brought qualifying to an early end, securing Sowery's seventh pole of the year.

Round nine qualifying classification

  1. Toby Sowery - Lanan Racing - 1:48.890s
  2. Henry Chart - Enigma Motorsport - +1.584s
  3. Lee Morgan - Grays Motorsport - +3.141s
  4. Tristan Cliffe - Omicron Motorsport - +3.414s
  5. Oliver Rae - Enigma Motorsport - +3.478s
  6. Mark Harrison - Omicron Motorsport - +3.772s
  7. Stuart Wiltshire - Gale Force Racing - +4.642s
  8. Louis Hamilton-Smith - Jigsaw Engineering - +4.780s
  9. Jonathan Weston-Taylor - Stanwood Engineering - +15.109s
  10. Oliver Stirling - Stanbridge Motorsport - +15.361s
  11. Nick Robinson - Gale Force Racing - +16.275s

 

Round nine of the 2014 championship statrs at 12.30. Follow @F3Cup for live updates.

Photo credit Jonathan Hatfield/JDH Motorsport Photography