Andy Burgess, driving the #57 East Surrey College Peugeot 107 took class pole for Round Three of the 2022 Student Motorsport Challenge with a 2:38.288 which was quick enough to put the #57 car fifth on the overall grid.
Second in class, and 15th overall, was the #65 MET Motorsport Peugeot piloted by Richard Jepp in a car that was completed just hours before the second weekend of the championship after an off-track incident at Oulton Park that wrote off the Greater Brighton Metropolitan College’s original entry.
Third on the class grid for the first of two 20-minute races will be the #9 Coleg Gwent Newport Citroen C1 in which George Jones lapped in 2:55.840 in his first experience at the Norfolk circuit.
Andy Burgess was delighted at taking class pole and believes there is more pace in the car.
“The car was mega,” said Burgess. “I got caught up on two of the laps so my last lap was the quickest. I think the car can go a little bit quicker but that’s for the race, I think.
“On every lap I got caught in traffic so it was difficult to get a clean lap. I’d say there is a little bit more to come as I got caught on the last corner. I want an overall podium today.”
Richard Jepp was quick to thank the MET Motorsport Team for their hard work to get him on the grid.
“They’ve done an amazing job,” said Richard Jepp. I must say a massive thank you to Emma (Norton – Team Principal), Mark and all the students for putting in the work. Its been a busy time for them at college with exams and end-of-year activities so they’ve really squeezed it in.
“The car feels solid and I’m learning the track as well so we’re given the car a good shakedown. I’m looking forward to the race.”
Leon Wilde, Team Principal at West Suffolk College and driver of the team’s #26 Toyota Aygo, is a novice driver and was pleased to have qualified the car for the team’s debit weekend.
“It was amazing and great fun,” said Leon Wilde. “I qualified the car and that was what was on the back of my mind all morning.
“Come race-time, I’m going to need to push myself more in the corners as I found I wasn’t using the whole track. The car seemed to accelerate well and I could get up to speed so it’s the corners I really need to concentrate on.”
Nick van der Veen qualified the #25 SHU Karting Citroen C1 fourth in class but sustained some damage after losing rear-end grip in Turn One.
“I went round Turn One and the car swapped ends on me,” he said. “I managed to get it slowed down to minimise the damage. It was a little bit of a scary moment for me but after that it was fine.
“On the lap where it happened, we were up on time and were finding time on each lap so I’ think we’ll find more time in it yet.”
George Jones, driver and Team Principal of the #9 Coleg Gwent Newport Citroen, was also making his, and his team’s debut, in the Championship and left the qualifying session after having put the car on the grid for Round Three and building his confidence.
“The car felt extremely consistent considering it was only built in about 12 days and having not driven at all in the car,” said Jones.
“After qualifying I feel a lot more confidence in it. I think there is a lot more time we can find in the race but obviously it’s just about making sure we see the chequered flag.
“I didn’t really get a proper clean lap but we kept on dropping lap time so we’re making good progress.”
The lights go out for Race One at 14:50 on Sunday May 22.