Photo: PSP Images

Tom Ingram delighted by unexpected success

Tom Ingram admitted he was delighted to come away from the Snetterton weekend with a first win of the BTCC season after the defending champion found himself battling illness across the third meeting of the campaign.

The Bristol Street Motors with EXCELR8 driver had made the trip to Norfolk hopeful of opening his account for the campaign, but hadn’t factored in a suspected virus that would leave him feeling under the weather across the meeting.

Despite being far from 100 per cent, Ingram managed to battle his way to second on the grid in qualifying, and then recovered from a tough opening lap in race one to grab fourth spot on the soft tyre.

Ingram then sprung a surprise by running the hard tyre in race two, where he minimised his losses to finish seventh, which meant he still had the medium tyre available to race three.

Although he missed out on the reverse grid draw, Ingram was able to charge through the pack to secure a win that leaves him as the closest challenger to Ash Sutton in the points.

“Scoring a win was the last thing I expected heading into race day with the way I was feeling, but the adrenaline from being out on-track helped to pull me through,” he said.

“After the first few corners of race one, it would have been easy to let my head drop but I was pleased to battle back to fourth and the Hyundai felt good on the soft tyres. I think we then made the right call to take the hit on the hards in race two and I think we maximised what we could from it with seventh place.

“Even though the reversed grid draw didn’t fall our way, our strategy on saving the medium tyre really paid off. To come from P7 on the grid to take the win is fantastic, even if it took everything I had – and more besides. Hopefully it’s something we can build upon at Thruxton.”