Tom Ingram showed his strong pace and overtaking skills at the Oulton Park rounds of the 2015 Dunlop MSA British Touring Car Championship last weekend.
The Speedworks Motorsport driver finished the races in 8th, 11th and 9th, and leaves his team’s home race 12th in the championship standings.
“Oulton Park is a circuit I’ve always enjoyed, and I was really looking forward to the weekend,” commented Ingram, who is the second-youngest driver on the grid, at 21 years old. “It’s a proper, demanding drivers’ track and being Speedworks’ home circuit, we always get a strong turnout in terms of friends, family and sponsors. That means there’s an extra incentive to put on a good show for all the boys in the team that work so hard and everybody that comes along to support us.”
On Saturday morning, Ingram found himself second and fourth fastest in the practice sessions, with his Toyota Avensis looking strong at the historic circuit. Qualifying wasn’t quite as successful, but still a very good result, with Tom setting the ninth-best time, placing him ahead of some very talented drivers.
In race one, Ingram was in the middle of a multi-car battle for fifth place, with the Buckinghamshire driver eventually settling for a well-earned 8th place. Unfortunately, through having to defend and attack for most of the race, Ingram was unable to record a fast lap, meaning he had to start race two from 15th position.
Starting mid-pack and with 21kg of success ballast on board, he wasn’t able to finish in the top ten in race two, but he still bagged a points finish from P11.
In the final race of the day, Ingram made up some ground early on in the race but was tagged by a rival driver at Knickerbrook chicane, spinning the Toyota and pushing him back to 13th position. Despite this, he was able to set the third-best lap times and move back up through the field, eventually battling with multiple championship winner Andy Priaulx (West Surrey Racing BMW).
Soon later, he was again pushed onto the grass between Island hairpin and Knickerbrook, but this was no big issue for Ingram, who immediately moved into the top 10. On the final corner, he squeezed past Jeff Smith (Eurotech Racing) to take 9th position.
“Having been fired off the track twice, I think the red mist descended and it was extremely satisfying to out-drag Jeff across the finish line after what had happened earlier. Overall, three good points scores means we can go to Croft in a positive frame of mind and firmly focussed on making further progress. It’s one of my favourite circuits on the calendar, so bring it on!”
Next round of the BTCC for Ingram will be at Croft on June 27/28.