Tom Onslow-Cole has achieved the first HiQ MSA British Touring Car Championship pole position of his career in qualifying at Donington Park. The 20-year-old from New Malden, Surrey set the pole with a best lap of 1m12.140s in his Vauxhall Vectra VXR.
Second fastest with a time of 1m12.219s was the diesel-powered SEAT Leon TDI of Jason Plato who became a father earlier in the week. Third - making it three different makes of car in the top three - was Colin Turkington's Team RAC BMW 320si.
Onslow-Cole said: "I'm back in the rebuilt car I had a big smash in at Brands Hatch in March and it feels just like new. I've clicked with it straight away and of course I'm delighted with the result.
"It was a bit nerve-wracking at the end... I'd got the best out of my tyres so just had to hope nobody would go any quicker. Jason got very close, but I guess I did just enough in the end."
Meanwhile, the two championship leaders Fabrizio Giovanardi and Mat Jackson had far from ideal qualifying sessions. Reigning champion Giovanardi salvaged eighth place near the end of the session after having all his earlier times disallowed when his Vectra failed a ride height check.
Jackson, second in the standings having won last time out at Rockingham, was back in 14th in his BMW.
BTCC qualifying Donington Park, leading times (provisional):
1. Tom Onslow-Cole (GBR), VX Racing/Vauxhall Vectra VXR, 1m12.140s2. Jason Plato (GBR), SEAT Sport UK/SEAT Leon TDI, +0.079s3. Colin Turkington (GBR), Team RAC/BMW 320si, +0.183s4. Darren Turner (GBR), SEAT Sport UK/SEAT Leon TDI, +0.459s5. Gordon Shedden (GBR), Team Halfords/Honda Civic, +0.461s6. Matt Neal (GBR), VX Racing/Vauxhall Vectra VXR, + 0.596s7. Tom Chilton (GBR), Team Halfords/Honda Civic, +0.631s8. Fabrizio Giovanardi (ITA), VX Racing/Vauxhall Vectra VXR, +0.657s9. Matt Allison (GBR), Robertshaw Racing/Chevrolet Lacetti, +0.705s10. Harry Vaulkhard (GBR), Robertshaw Racing/Chevrolet Lacetti, +0.949s