Tom Ingram produced a fantastic drive to overcome long-time race leader Carl Breeze and secure victory in Round Nine of the Michelin Ginetta GT Supercup at Thruxton.
The reverse grid format put the duo on the third row of the grid at the start and while Breeze burst to the front early on, Ingram slowly picked his way through the field and a great move on the reigning champion on the penultimate lap gave him his second victory of the season
With the top six reversed from the results of Round Eight, Jamie Orton started the race on pole position and a good getaway saw him lead into Allard for the first time. A slow getaway for fellow front-row starter Mark Davies bunched the pack up however and while Reece Somerfield briefly took second, a fast-starting Breeze stormed around the outside of the pack into the Complex to take that second place.
Breeze moved onto his Total Control Racing team-mate’s tail at the front on lap two, and found his way past at the final chicane. As Breeze broke clear, Orton was left to defend from Somerfield behind, with the G50 graduate challenging into the final chicane on lap five, however a lock up caused him to spin, dropping him to seventh.
His mistake moved Carl Boardley up to third, with the former Hot Rod World Champion holding the place for a lap before a moment coming out of Church slowed him up, bunching the pack up behind heading into the final chicane. This gave Ingram the opportunity to slide past Davies into the chicane, while another moment for Boardley coming out of the corner allowed both Ingram and Davies to slide past going down the pit straight.
With Breeze four seconds up the road at this point, he looked on course to repeat Tom Sharp’s feat from 2012 and pick up a hat-trick of wins around the Hampshire circuit. Ingram was soon chasing him down though, quickly dispatching Orton to take second and with clear air in front of him, the KX Akademy star began to go a second a lap quicker than the leader.
Consecutive fastest laps put Ingram onto Breeze’s tail with a handful of laps to go and after a couple of failed attempts, the JHR Developments driver found his way through on the penultimate lap with a great move around the outside heading into the Complex.
With Breeze unable to mount a challenge back, Ingram crossed the line for the win, ensuring he leaves the weekend with a 22 point championship lead over Breeze, while Orton held third for the remainder of the race to take his third podium of the campaign.
Davies took fourth ahead of Boardley, making it three TCR cars in the top four, while Somerfield recovered well from his spin to complete the top six. Pepe Massot took seventh, the Spaniard having enjoyed a great battle during the race with fellow Ginetta Junior graduate Andrew Watson, though late trouble dropped the Irishman to thirteenth.
Matt Nicoll-Jones finished a frustrated eighth ahead of Fergus Walkinshaw and Marcus Hoggarth, while eleventh overall was G50 class winner Sean Huyton, the Academy Motorsport driver completing a hat-trick of wins with another lights to flag win over Dan Norris-Jones.
Full race results can be found here: http://tsl-timing.com/toca/2013/131803g50.pdf