TITLE-CHASING TOM INGRAM TRIUMPHS IN FINALE
Tom Ingram cruised to victory in the final BTCC race at Silverstone as the Hyundai man brought the curtain down on a wonderful day of racing at the famous Northamptonshire circuit.
Incredibly, with the season finale to come at Brands Hatch in two weeks’ time, the top three drivers are now separated by just seven points with Ash Sutton (NAPA Racing UK) leading from Jake Hill (ROKiT MB Motorsport) and Ingram (Bristol Street Motors with EXCELR8 TradePriceCars.com), whilst Colin Turkington (Team BMW) remains in contention some 27 points off the summit.
Pole-sitter Josh Cook (Rich Energy BTC Racing) made contact off the line with NAPA Racing UK’s Dan Cammish, as the former squeezed the latter towards the pitwall, with Car Gods with Ciceley Motorsport’s Adam Morgan also briefly caught up in the melee.
There was further drama on the opening lap as Morgan got into Cook at Becketts, which allowed Ingram, Sutton and race one winner Rory Butcher (Toyota GAZOO Racing UK) to nip through.
Hill – one of the stars of the day – was hit pretty hard at Brooklands by Gordon Shedden’s Halfords Racing with Cataclean Honda as a gaggle of cars scrambled for position.
The #24 BMW managed to survive the scare and then Hill immediately set about carving his way back through to fourth at the finish. The same unfortunately couldn’t be said for BMW stablemate Colin Turkington, who could only manage 12th and is now the fourth outside contender for the title.
Cammish and Cook recovered to finish fifth and sixth respectively, whilst Tom Chilton (Bristol Street Motors with EXCELR8 TradePriceCars.com) scored another encouraging result with seventh.
Shedden had to settle for eighth at the finish, ahead of Ollie Jackson (Apec Racing with Beavis Morgan) and Aron Taylor-Smith (Yazoo with Safuu.com Racing).
Tom Ingram said: “We really, really needed a good result to bring us back in because those first two races were good and pointsy but not quite pointsy enough. We knew we needed to get back in because obviously Ash [Sutton] was fast, Jake’s [Hill] been fast all weekend, so it was a really important one to get that one in the last race.
“Ash and I were just chatting then, we said we couldn’t have asked for it to have gone any better, it’s exactly like Moses. The sea parted, and I thought ‘oh, no, surely this isn’t working out for me?’ We needed a bit of luck because we’ve sometimes been on the other side of it. We needed luck to get that move to happen but I’m super, super pleased to get it done because, as I say, it is absolutely on! The three of us. Seven points in it. I’m not going to sleep between now and Brands – let’s get going!”
Ash Sutton said: “It’s like it’s been scripted all year! It couldn’t be tighter, you’ve got a great combination of front-wheel drive cars and rear-wheel drive cars, and Brands Hatch is our home circuit for the team. This is our weakest circuit and we’ve had a mega weekend so I’m looking forward to Brands.
“We’re in a really good place with the car. The second half of the season I’ve really felt at one with it. I’ve been able to tweak it, dial it in, get it right, chip away at it, and it got us into the championship lead. I couldn’t have asked for anything more going into the final rounds.”
Rory Butcher said: “It’s been a fantastic day! After a double victory last year, I’ll take three podiums today so that’s made up for it. I’ve had some really good racing today, me and Jake [Hill] had a great drive in the first two races and then I got tucked up behind Ash [Sutton]. I just didn’t really have the legs on Ash to mount any pressure and also the guy’s fighting for a championship and so is Tom [Ingram] so you’ve got to take that into account, and they drove brilliantly.
“The car’s been amazing today – we proved it there. We suffered a little bit in the final sector earlier today, but we definitely found a little bit more performance there, so it was good.”
2022 Kwik Fit British Touring Car Championship – Race 3 – Silverstone
1. Tom INGRAM (GBR) Bristol Street Motors with EXCELR8 TradePriceCars.com 24 laps
2. Ash SUTTON (GBR) NAPA Racing UK +1.539s
3. Rory BUTCHER (GBR) Toyota GAZOO Racing UK +2.072s
4. Jake HILL (GBR) ROKiT MB Motorsport +2.579s
5. Dan CAMMISH (GBR) NAPA Racing UK +4.724s
6. Josh COOK (GBR) Rich Energy BTC Racing +8.594s
7. Tom CHILTON (GBR) Bristol Street Motors with EXCELR8 TradePriceCars.com +8.924s
8. Gordon SHEDDEN (GBR) Halfords Racing with Cataclean +9.680s
9. Ollie JACKSON (GBR) Apec Racing with Beavis Morgan +13.997s
10. Árón TAYLOR-SMITH (IRL) Yazoo with Safuu.com Racing +14.647s
11. Daniel LLOYD (GBR) Bristol Street Motors with EXCELR8 TradePriceCars.com +14.458s
12. Colin TURKINGTON (GBR) Team BMW +14.881s
13. Stephen JELLEY (GBR) Team BMW +15.002s
14. Bobby THOMPSON (GBR) Autobrite Direct with JourneyHero +15.383s
15. Jason PLATO (GBR) Rich Energy BTC Racing +15.827s
16. George GAMBLE (GBR) Car Gods with Ciceley Motorsport +15.950s
17. Dexter PATTERSON (GBR) Laser Tools Racing +16.533s
18. Daniel ROWBOTTOM (GBR) Halfords Racing with Cataclean +16.965s
19. Jack BUTEL (GBR) Bristol Street Motors with EXCELR8 TradePriceCars.com +17.083s
20. Michael CREES (GBR) CarStore Power Maxed Racing +17.334s
21. Sam OSBORNE (GBR) Apec Racing with Beavis Morgan +17.527s
22. Rick PARFITT (GBR) Uptonsteel with Euro Car Parts Racing +21.079s
23. Jade EDWARDS (GBR) Rich Energy BTC Racing +1 lap
24. Will POWELL (GBR) Autobrite Direct with JourneyHero +3 laps
25. Nic HAMILTON (GBR) Yazoo with Safuu.com Racing +15 laps
26. Adam MORGAN (GBR) Car Gods with Ciceley Motorsport +19 laps
27. Ricky COLLARD (GBR) Toyota GAZOO Racing UK +20 laps
28. Ash HAND (GBR) CarStore Power Maxed Racing +20 laps
29. Aiden MOFFAT (GBR) Laser Tools Racing +24 laps