Jack Goff felt an unfortunate incident in qualifying had denied him a shot at a podium finish on the fourth weekend of the British Touring Car Championship (BTCC) at Oulton Park – a circuit which he compared to Monaco.

The 24-year-old made the comparison between Formula One’s premier circuit and the Cheshire track after the lack of overtaking opportunities hindered his progress through the field, leaving him to settle for finishes of seventh, ninth and eighth in races one, two and three respectively.

Goff pinpointed his struggles in qualifying – which left him eighth on the grid for the opening race – as the reason why he struggled to make up places during the races around a circuit which saw few passes on Sunday.

The Stokenchurch native was looking good for top four spot during qualifying before he was penalised for failing the ride height test, meaning he was stripped of his previous lap times and left with five minutes to post a new time.

“It was annoying because free practice went really well and we were fourth or fifth quickest, so it was looking quite good for qualifying,” he said.

“We were fourth place after our first set of tyres and we were sat in the pit lane waiting for a bit of clear track. We went out on our second set of tyres and got called in for a random ride height check.

“The pressures were too low in the front which meant we failed and that meant every single one of our lap times up to that point was taken away from me. It was annoying because I was P4 and then I dropped down to 27th, and I only had five minutes left to set a time.

“The team said to me ‘right, you’ve got one or two laps to go out there and set a time, off you go’. I was P8 in the end which wasn’t too bad, it could have been a lot worse but it was rather stressful.”

The failed test had left Goff with his “back to the wall” but he managed to qualify for race one in eighth place – despite not pushing his Triple Eight Racing MG6 GT to its limits.

He said: “I left a little bit in the bank because I didn’t want to go out there, make a mistake, run wide and lose my lap time altogether, so I had to be careful.

“At the same time I had to push hard enough to make sure that we were near the sharp end.”

Overtaking was at a premium around Oulton Park and those who had put their cars near the front of the grid reaped the rewards for their flying lap times.

“Oulton Park’s becoming the Monaco of the touring car scene. Qualifying is so, so important and everyone finished where they started the races this weekend, so it was a bit of a pain really,” said Goff.

“We were quick enough. In the last race we were one of the quickest cars out there but we didn’t have a chance to show it because it’s so hard to overtake.

“It could have been a lot better had we qualified where we should have qualified in fourth or fifth, then we’d have been around the top five. We’ve got to take the positives away and those are picking up three more top ten finishes.”

The Wycombe racer’s consistency leaves him eighth in the drivers’ standings overall, following a haul of 24 points on the fourth weekend of the BTCC.

His tally of 104 points is only 17 adrift of the number he picked up when driving for Team HARD in the 2014 season and shows his progress with six rounds of the championship remaining.

The next instalment of which is at Croft in Yorkshire on 27-28 June – a weekend which Goff aims to be picking up his first podium finish since he came second in the final race of the first round at Brands Hatch in April.

He said: “We need to make the next step up now. Top ten is what we achieve regularly and we need to be pushing for a podium now in most races.

“At Croft we need to make sure we do a decent job in qualifying and give ourselves the best possible chance in the races.

“You can only take it as a positive that we’ve almost beaten our score from last year after four weekends, so it’s certainly a positive. We want to be in the top three of the championship so we need to keep pushing.

“We’re not a million miles away and 20 more points puts me into fifth place [in the standings], so we’re not far away. We just need to get rid of the bad luck and make the most of it.”