The wait is almost over for Jake Hill as the opening round of the 2023 Kwik Fit British Touring Car Championship takes place at Donington Park this weekend.
After a great deal of anticipation and an incredibly busy off-season period for Jake and the team, all eyes can now be cast on the season itself with another campaign of dramatic wheel-to-wheel action set to get underway. Entering the new campaign in optimistic mood, changes to the Hybrid system and the return of the option tyre have given the teams and drivers additional food for thought during the close season.
After a successful period of pre-season testing and a strong performance in the BTCC season official launch day last week, the preparation is almost complete and the spotlight is on Jake Hill, who cannot wait to get racing again behind the wheel of the WSR-run BMW 330e M Sport.
Jake heads into the season full of confidence off the back of a career best season in 2022 where he finished third in the driver’s championship and won the Goodyear Wingfoot Award, as the series’ top qualifier over the course of the season.
Donington Park has also been a happy hunting ground in the past. During the opening weekend last season Jake achieved pole position during qualifying, setting a new lap record in the process. He also went on to take victory in race three, once again setting a new race lap record. He’ll no doubt be hoping to replicate that form this weekend as he flies the Laser Tools racing flag for the first time competitively.
Commenting before the opening race, Jake said:
“Honestly, I can't wait to get back out there and get the season underway. Everything has gone smoothly in pre-season. It’s my second season in the BMW 330e M Sport and that is the first time in my touring car career that I’ve gone into a season with a year’s worth of knowledge and experience in the car underneath me."
“It is a new chapter for the team and I as we get our Laser Tools Racing journey underway and I hope we can start the season as we mean to go on. Historically, things have gone well for me here at Donington so if everything goes to plan, I’m confident that this weekend will be a successful one.”
Sporting Director of Laser Tools Racing with MB Motorsport, Mark Blundell added:
“It’s almost time to get the season underway at Donington Park. We have big expectations of ourselves this year as we know we have a great team in place, a fast car, fantastic partners and a talented driver in Jake. Everything is in place for us to go out there and be pushing for the Championship this season and hopefully we can kick off the campaign in style this weekend.”
The on track action will begin at 09:30 on Saturday with the first of two free practice sessions, with the second one following at 12:15. Qualifying for the opening race takes place later that afternoon at 15:40.
The first race of the 2023 season takes place on Sunday, with a scheduled start time of 11:30, followed by two further races at 14:40 and 17:25 (BST) respectively.
Live coverage of Saturday’s qualifying session will be available to stream on itv.com/btcc.
On Sunday, fans will be treated to a seven hour plus broadcast as all the racing action takes place live on ITV4 from 10:45.
Live timing is also available for all sessions across the weekend.
Image courtesy of Jakob Ebrey Photography