Reigning BTCC champion Tom Ingram will make his Intelligent Money British GT Championship bow at the #DoningtonDecider after teaming up with fellow debutant MKH and former series regular Ron Johnson.
The 30-year-old could retain his tin top title at Brands Hatch this weekend before turning attention to the British GT4 class where he’ll race MKH’s Aston Martin Vantage.
Ingram has been a British Touring Car regular since 2014 but has also found time for occasional sportscar and Citroen C1 appearances with Johnson whom he’s known since racing for Speedworks in the BTCC. They shared a GTC-spec Ferrari 458 in GT Cup two years ago after previously driving a Speedworks-run Toyota GR Supra GT4 in the same series.
“Ron often calls up asking if I fancy racing this or that with him. It could be anything, but on this occasion it was British GT at Donington. And obviously I said yes!” Ingram revealed. “First and foremost we’re there to have fun and stay out of trouble. I know how I’d feel if someone jeopardised my title chances.
“But I am also curious to see how the new generation of GT4 cars perform. I’ve done some GT racing in the past but not at this level so it will be good to gauge myself against the established guys. Having said that, Ron and I won’t test the Aston until the Thursday of the event so we’re also under no illusions. As I said, we’re primarily there to have a good time.”
Ingram might be new to British GT, but Johnson – a GT3 regular in 2011, ’12 and ’13, first aboard Speedworks’ Corvette Z06 and then a BMW Z4 run by Barwell – certainly is not. However, it’s now been a decade since he made his final appearance, coincidentally at the Donington Decider, in 2014.
“I’ve been looking at British GT for a while, and would love to do a full season again after making successful one-off GT Cup appearances over the last few years,” he said. “I feel I perform best at fast, flowing circuits such as Donington. So this is the perfect opportunity to see how I stack up against GT4’s usual suspects.
“I haven’t raced at the top level for a few years and don’t really have a reference point. But I’d like to think I’ve still got the speed to give some of the younger Ams a run for their money, and especially with Tom’s significant driving skills and mentoring to help me. We’ve known each other for about a decade and always enjoy racing together so Donington should be a lot of fun.”
MKH, meanwhile, was founded by Peter Montague, Michael Kirk and 2013 FIA WEC champion Stuart Hall in 2022 – the same year as it won the British Endurance Championship’s GT4 class title. Montague and Hall remain in overall and class championship contention ahead of the series finale at Donington this weekend.
The same car, but a different crew, will then tackle British GT’s closing round at the same circuit one week later.
“Donington’s very much a toe in the water exercise for us,” said Hall, who won two British GT races as a driver in 2009. “MKH aspires to compete in British GT full-time one day but that isn’t necessarily next year. Every aspect of the team has to be ready for that step up and we won’t truly know what to expect until we try it. The finale gives us that opportunity.”
Images: Jakob Ebrey Photography