Outsiders Howard and Adam win 2015 British GT title for Aston Martin
The British GT championship concluded this afternoon in dramatic style as the Beechdean Aston Martin duo of Jonny Adam and Andrew Howard benefited from a race full of accidents to take an unlikely championship crown.
The TF Sport Aston Martin of Derek Johnston and Matt Bell won the two-hour race after a textbook drive, their victory never looking like it was under much of a threat.
But all eyes were on the #007 Aston Martin, who won the GT3 championship due to the downfall of favourites Marco Attard and Alexander Sims, the duo in the BMW #1 taken out before the first hour was up.
Four teams - Barwell Motorsport, Beechdean AMR, Oman Racing and Triple Eight Racing - had went into the Donington Park decider with a chance at the GT3 title, two points separating Attard/Sims and Howard/Adam.
Story of the race
Attard made an strong start, piloting his BWM Z4 from fifth to third in the opening lap. But his luck was to be short-lived, as he spun at the entry to the loop section after being hit from behind by Johnston, which meant the championship leaders were faced with the task of fighting back up through the field.
However, it would instead go from bad to worse for the #1 car as Attard made contact with Beechdean's GT4 champion Jamie Chadwick at the Melbourne loop, the damage sustained proving terminal for both drivers, with Chadwick seemingly unable to see the fast approaching GT3 car.
Liam Griffin appeared as though he could give Oman Racing a shot at the title early on. After starting eighth on the grid, he drove well to bring his Aston Martin up to fourth after the first 20 minutes.
However, his #6 car soon made contact with fellow title outsiders in the Triple Eight BMW, effectively taking both out of the championship picture.
With title protagonists being eliminated early, the prospect of a late showdown dissipated and it turned out to be all about the Beechdean Aston Martin as they brought the car home to seal the title.
Despite a 20-second success penalty, Adam's target of finishing eight or higher was easily achieved as he fought his way up the order to finish fifth – pulling off several stunning overtakes in the process.
This completed the Beechdean double as the GT4 championship had already been decided in their favour last time out at Snetterton, with Chadwick and Ross Gunn clinching the title.
The GT4 class at Donington was won by Dan Lloyd and Chris Webster, while Graham Johnson and Mike Robinson took the Pro-Am GT4 championship honours in their Ginetta after a controversial accident saw themselves and nearest rivals Oz Yusuf and Gavan Kershaw's lotus faced the wrong way at the Melbourne Loop.
Chadwick delighted to become first female British GT title holder
Adam ecstatic at first British GT title as Beechdean sweep GT3 and GT4