Michael Caine overhauled Will Burns on the final lap of an enthralling final Michelin Ginetta GT4 Supercup encounter at Thruxton to secure his maiden win in the championship.
Burns himself was chasing a first Supercup victory and looked set to secure the Round Nine honours after leading from the opening corner on lap one, the HHC Motorsport racer taking the lead after slow starts from front-row starters Caine and Tom Oliphant.
Oliphant would be one of two high-profile casualties in the race, the Century Motorsport ace running in a comfortable fourth before an engine failure on lap five. The other retirement was former championship leader Jamie Orton, who suffered a broken suspension on lap two after contact.
Those retirements meant a win would’ve moved Burns into second place in the championship standings, and the second year contender was a man on a mission at the front, but no matter what he did he couldn’t shake off the attentions of Caine.
The former British GT champion had to fend off Carl Breeze in the early stages, but with fresher tyres on his Ginetta G55 GT4 Caine was soon able to start piling the pressure onto Burns. The JHR Developments ace was particularly strong out of the final chicane into Allard, and it was there he finally made his move stick.
After nearly getting his nose down the inside on a few occasions, Caine eventually got down the inside as they crossed the start/finish line for the penultimate time, with Burns unable to fight back later in the lap.
That gave Caine the victory from his third reverse grid pole position in three meetings, with Burns left to settle for a third second place finish of the campaign so far.
“It’s a great win,” said Caine. “We perhaps should have been fighting for the wins in the first two races but a hiccup in qualifying didn’t allow us to do that. We’ve felt quick here all weekend though and the car is definitely on an upwards spiral.”
Breeze meanwhile held a comfortable third throughout to add an eighth podium finish in nine races so far to his double victory earlier in the weekend.
With the dramas for the title contenders, Reece Somerfield slotted into fourth place early on, however following a safety car to recover Oliphant’s stricken car the Brands Hatch race-winner found himself embroiled in a five car scrap for the position.
Mitchell Hale was the fastest of the group, despatching both Bradley Smith and Gaeten Paletou on lap eleven and then Somerfield a lap later to take fourth, before setting the fastest lap of the race as he pulled clear of that group by over seven seconds by the finish – a great drive from fifteenth and last on the grid.
Paletou had held off Smith for fifth at the flag after a great duel, however after having passed Ollie Jackson earlier in the race under yellow flags, the Frenchman was demoted to seventh at the finish behind Smith and Jackson.
Somerfield ended up in eighth ahead of AM class winner Colin White, who had enjoyed a good scrap with Tom Wrigley, half a second separating them at the chequered flag. Osamu Kawashima and Keith White completed the finishers, with their AM class rival Fraser Robertson retiring with gearbox problems.
Full race results can be found here.