Silverline Subaru BMR Racing's Jason Plato will sensationally start his 500th British Touring Car Championship race from pole position after dramatically snatching the top-spot away from Tom Ingram at Knockhill.

Race one was already set to be a momentous occasion for the double champion but his first pole position for Subaru leaves Plato in prime position to remarkably win his 500th race in the series.

In a session which was disrupted by two red flags, it was the Speedworks Motorsport Toyota Avensis of Ingram, who led the order as the clock ticked past the halfway point.

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However, by that time, Plato, who had already nestled himself into contention, stamped his authority by heading to the top just as Ingram suffered a slight off following the first red flag.

Plato initially built upon that advantage but Ingram, along with West Surrey Racing's Sam Tordoff, made life hard for the Subaru driver by usurping his pole-time deep in the session.

But Plato ensured there would be one final sting in the tale and wrestled the top spot away from Ingram by just 0.021s to claim his 49th career BTCC pole.

The second BMW 125i M Sport of Jack Goff was fourth while Subaru's Colin Turkington, who also threatened for pole, completed the top-five in fifth.

Motorbase Performance's Andrew Jordan was sixth ahead of Honda's Matt Neal, Adam Morgan and Rob Austin, placed seventh, eighth and ninth.

Standing in for Kelvin Fletcher, BTCC returnee Dave Newsham produced one of the standout performances of the session to qualifying his Power Maxed Chevrolet in tenth.

Reigning champion Gordon Shedden could only manage eleventh at his home event after the early part of his qualifying assault was scuppered by a turbo boost issue.