Currently reading: BTCC 2022: Elated Ingram clinches maiden championship
Hyundai racer beats rivals in four-way title fight with dominant display at Brands Hatch

Tom Ingram has won his maiden BTCC championship with an impressive performance in the final three races at Brands Hatch.

Ingram, racing for Excelr8 Motorsport in a Hyundai i30 N, has been a regular BTCC front-runner in recent years and has got close to the title in six successive seasons, but the big prize had always eluded him, until now. He was third going into the final weekend but a searing pole lap, smashing the previous lap record by 0.7sec, followed by two wins and a fifth place meant the title headed the ex-Ginetta Junior champion’s way.

Afterwards, an emotional Ingram told reporters: “I’ve thought about this moment for literally my entire life. This is what I wanted to do. This is what I wanted to win. Never did I think it was going to come. We’ve had a few years of coming into this weekend and it not quite working out. I cannot put into words how much of a fantastic team I have around me to have made this happen. It’s just incredible.

“I felt like I needed an adult with me [during the race]. Somebody to come in the passenger seat and say: ‘It’s okay, just chill! It will all be fine.’”

Ash Sutton, in his Napa Racing Ford Focus, finished second overall (just 12 points behind) and has arguably earned himself even more plaudits this year despite not winning the championship. This is his first season competing in a front-wheel-drive car, having switched from his championship-winning, rear-driven Infiniti Q50. 

Jake Hill also came agonisingly close on the final weekend, ending a point down on Sutton. 

Btcc 2022 brands hatch finale ingram leads pack

Ingram’s team-mate Daniel Lloyd was leading the last race, with Josh Cook and Rory Butcher rounding out the podium positions but all eyes were on the championship contenders behind. 

In typical BTCC fashion, it all came down to the last lap - Ingram had set himself up nicely with his wins in the first two rounds, but it wasn’t until the final lap of the final race - Sutton, Hill and Ingram running fourth, fifth and sixth respectively - that it was all decided for sure. Hill’s BMW made one last lunge on Sutton, but he couldn’t make it stick, ran wide and allowed Ingram through. It finished Sutton, Ingram, George Gamble (in his impressive rookie season) and Hill. 


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It caps a memorable first season for the BTCC hybrid era. No doubt the organisers will look at the hybrid systems and the rules around them - they’ve been incredibly reliable but the racing has sometimes not been as fraught as in previous years - but one thing is certain to change for 2023, as one famous face will be missing from next year’s grid. 

Jason Plato ends his remarkable BTCC career with more than 600 race starts and two championships. His first season was in 1997 with Renault, when Sutton was just three years old, and when Plato finished an impressive third overall. His 97 victories is a BTCC record and comfortably ahead of arch-rival Matt Neal.

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Peter Cavellini 10 October 2022

I guess it depends on what kind of Motorsport you like, obviously I hear you say, well, yes, some like the thrills of F1 for instance, but Touring cars, Cars that look like what you or I drive down the road every day, this is 17 Laps of swapping paint, rubbing Door Handles, and this was the first season of phev front drive, and what a season it has been , as reported above, so next year wil be a cracker!, as an aside, such a shame auto cross isn't on Tv anymore, it was a laugh!