Britcar production season finishes going into the night

Light trail (photo by Marc Waller)Brands Hatch saw the final Britcar race of the season last weekend as the Britcar production cup championship had its finale in the form of the annual Brands Hatch ‘Into the night’ race.

The event is a 90 minute race starting at around 5pm and finishing just before the Brands Hatch Curfew at 6:30pm. With darkness now falling at around 4:30 it means it’s completely dark by the time the chequered flag falls.

Sadly the Bubble and Kick team’s BMW M3 was out before the race meeting even begun as it crashed heavily in testing. There were further casualties in qualifying when the Synchro Motorsport Civic suffered terminal driveshaft failure and the Hayes/Thompson Seat Toledo blew it’s engine.

The two qualifying sessions resulted in the Intersport BMW M3 taking pole ahead of the Geoff steel run older BMW M3 on second. The Tom Howard and Mike Moss BMW M3 took third.

Race Winners in Qualifying (photo by Marc Waller)

2013 Champions in the dark (photo by Marc Waller)Back straight light trails (photo by Marc Waller)As the race got underway Tom Howard leapt from his third spot to take the lead as the Symons (Geoff Steel) and Mark Radcliffe (Intersport) M3’s battled over second. Eventually the battle was settled in favour of Ratcliffe and he then set off in pursuit of Howard. By around a quarter of the way through the race Radcliffe was back in the lead. He then pulled away strongly and by the time he handed over to his team mate, Adam Hayes the lead looked unassailable. Symons was doing another solo race and was comfortably in second with Howard handing over to Mike Moss on his pit stop. The two GT academy Nissan 370z cars were back for this race with the Stanislav Aksenov and Florian Strauss car battling team mates Miguel Faisca and Lee Cunningham. The Aksenov/Strauss car eventually won the battle and in fact their team mates were also passed in the closing stages by a charging Richard Bennett in his Porsche 993. Bennett was having perhaps his best race of the season.

Track action (photo by Marc Waller)Finish in the dark (photo by Marc Waller)The championship battle was between the Symons BMW and the Wilds/Wilds/Lawson ING sport BMW but in reality it was pretty one sided with the points lead the ING car had going into the race. Despite only taking second in class 3 it was enough to take the championship. Mike Wilds had a busy race as he also did a stint in Paul Moraviec’s Boxster after handing over his regular BMW to son, Anthony. Ian Lawson did the final stint. Sadly for Mike, it wasn’t to be a double finish as he came to a halt while driving the Porsche with fuel pressure problems.

So the Intersport BMW took an easy win by over 30 seconds from Michael Symons BMW. Tom Howard and Mike Moss made it an all BMW Podium and they also won class 2. Aksenov and Strauss took 4th and the class 3 win. There was only a single class 4 entry at the final event, the Intersport Mini Cooper driven by Chris Knox and Danny Russell. Of course they won their class at this race but they also took their class championship and impressively second in the overall championship thanks to their consistency over the season. The ING Sport BMW had obviously taken the Class 3 championship on top of their overall championship. The Class 2 championship was taken by the Tom Howard and Mike Moss BMW M3. The car was run by various outfits over the season but they were always consistent front runners. The Michael Symons BMW took the Class 1 championship even if they had missed out on the overall title.

Next season Britcar will return to it’s roots with the dropping of the British Endurance name for the Gt runners and the two grid will combine once more. Britcar will be hoping this return to how things used to be will also return the large grids which were a regular site in years gone by. by Marc Waller


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