Defending British Touring Car champion Colin Turkington has secured a first pole position for the new BMW 330i M Sport after coming out on top in an incident packed qualifying at Donington Park.

The Team BMW driver endured a trying opening weekend last time out at Brands Hatch but will start tomorrow's opening race from pole position after setting a time almost 0.7s quicker than anyone else.

With the track conditions the best they had been all day, Turkington managed to set a series of quick laps on the dry track early in the 30-minute shootout as the rain continued to threaten to disrupt the order.

Indeed, Turkington's choice to stay out and put the hammer down early in the session paid dividends as a series of red flags and intermittent drizzle meant no one could get close to the three champion's 1 minute 09.871s lap at the top of the timesheets.

Although the conditions did allow the times to briefly improve at the mid-part of the session, two further red flags within the final five minutes of the session deprived anyone of setting a personal best.

Despite carrying the maximum 54 kilos of success ballast, championship leader Josh Cook joins Turkington on the front row in second, with the Subaru Levorg of Ashley Sutton taking advantage of the conditions in third.

BTC Racing's Chris Smiley joins Sutton on the second row in fourth, while AmD Tuning's Sam Tordoff completed the remainder of the top-five in fifth.

Team Toyota GB's Tom Ingram will start tomorrow's first race from sixth on the grid, ahead of factory Honda duo Dan Cammish and Matt Neal in seventh and eighth.

Tom Oliphant was the next best placed BMW runner in ninth position, while his West Surrey Racing stablemate Andrew Jordan found himself caught out by the conditions in 16th.

Power Maxed Racing's Rob Collard posted his best qualifying effort in the Vauxhall Astra so far this season in tenth. His team mate Jason Plato will start directly behind in twelfth position.

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