Mat Jackson will start his first HiQ MSA British Touring Car Championship race with RML inside the top ten after qualifying tenth on the grid at Thruxton.
Having completed nothing more than a shakedown of his Chevrolet Lacetti ahead of the weekend, Jackson used the two practice sessions to get used to his new surroundings after two seasons running in a rear-wheel drive BMW 320si and then produced an encouraging performance to secure the tenth quickest time in qualifying.
“Today has been about getting back into the groove and adapting to the new car,” he said. “I'd only taken part in a shakedown prior to today's practice and qualifying sessions, so to be lining up on the fifth row of the grid is a great start for our first race in the Lacetti. It's all about gelling with the car.”
With Jason Plato having shown the pace of the Lacetti at Brands Hatch, Jackson will now hope to impress on race day and said he was keen to pick up points.
“I've won at Thruxton in the BTCC before, so I know how to master the circuit – and the Lacetti's engine is fantastic,” he said. “The car is 100 per cent there so the rest is down to me.
“I'm hoping to pick up some good points. It's the last five laps that are most important, not the first five, so I'll be staying out of trouble!”