Tom Ingram’s title aspirations in the 2012 Michelin Ginetta GT Supercup have suffered a set-back after a hefty start-line shunt at Knockhill left him hospitalised.
A clutch problem at the start of the third race left Ingram stranded on the grid, leading to an estimated 95mph impact from behind.
“I pulled up to my grid position, the five-second board appeared, the red lights came on and I picked the revs up, but then when the lights went out and I released the clutch there was this almighty bang, and although the engine was still running, the car didn’t go anywhere,” Ingram related.
“I was sat there with nothing to do but look in my mirrors, brace myself and wait for the inevitable ‘thud’. That pushed me to the left of the track, where I was hit again. The car was a real mess and I was lucky it didn’t catch fire, because it squashed the fuel tank, too. I tried to climb out, but my legs couldn’t support my weight and I fell over.”
Swiftly airlifted to hospital, Ingram was later discharged with two badly bruised and swollen legs, perforated ligaments and damaged tendons, with his JHR Development’s Ginetta G55 in even worse condition.
The weekend had begun well for Ingram, the SKYCIG-backed driver putting himself third on the grid. In torrential rain in the opening race, Ingram ran third for the majority of the race, before passing Nathan Freke with four laps to go. Over four seconds behind leader Carl Breeze, Ingram’s chances of victory looked slim, but he gave it a go, setting three consecutive fastest laps as he closed down the leader, the KX Akademy protégé falling agonisingly short as he crossed the line half a second adrift.
The second race proved to be more processional, the BRDC Rising Star running second throughout, proving unable to mount a move on Breeze in the lead, the result nevertheless giving Ingram his fourteenth podium of the season.
The race three disappointment leaves Ingram 114 points behind in the championship battle and so despite being on a pair of crutches with strict instructions to rest, Ingram still has a clear intention to heal up and re-ignite his title bid at Rockingham in a month’s time.