Lady Luck was not on the side of Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship squad Team ES Racing today at Brands Hatch as a mechanical failure ended Chris James’ qualifying run on his first flying lap.
In the unusual October scorching heat the teams took to the Brands Hatch GP circuit this morning in Free Practice 1, James would complete 10 laps on scrubbed tyres finishing the session in 27th place. Free Practice 2 would see a further 7 laps completed on old tyres.
James headed positively in to qualifying and was half way through his first flying lap when a hub failure would lead to the Chevrolet Lacetti losing a wheel for the second time this year. Talking about the incident James said: “I was happy with the setup and happy with all of the corners up until the accident. I had managed to find a great line through paddock and was positive of a solid lap.”
As the #78 Lacetti headed around the GP loop and on to one of the fastest parts of the circuit the mechanical failure pitched James off the circuit and in to the barrier, at the same time the car would see panel damage as the stray wheel impacted with the side.
Following the recovery of the car to the pitlane it was clear there wasn’t going to be a quick and easy fix, 1 hub failed completely and two studs missing from the opposite side following the incident.
“It’s frustrating to have another mechanical failure, we replaced all of the hubs after Snetterton and have double checked with RML that we aren’t using the wrong torque settings. We’re at a loss to know what is causing the failures.”