Howard, Adam win 2015 British GT title for Aston Martin
Beechdean Aston Martin duo Jonny Adam and Andrew Howard benefited from a British GT finale at Donington Park 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 threat.
But all eyes were on the #007 Aston Martin, as Adam and Howard won the GT3 title after pre-race points leaders Marco Attard and Alexander Sims were taken out before the first hour was up.
Attard had made a strong start in his BMW Z4, moving up from fifth to third in the opening lap. But his luck was 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.
Things would soon 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.
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, he soon made contact with fellow title outsiders in the Triple Eight BMW, effectively taking both out of the championship picture.
With both 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 Adam and Howard brought the car home to seal the title.
Despite a 20-second success penalty, Adam's target of finishing eighth 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 title had already been decided in its 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 Pro-Am GT4 championship honours in their Ginetta after a controversial accident saw themselves and nearest rivals Oz Yusuf and Gavan Kershaw's Lotus facing the wrong way at the Melbourne Loop.
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