Adam/haigh win British GT appeal
Optimum Motorsport’s Flick Haigh and Jonny Adam will take a commanding 27.5-point advantage into the British GT championship decider at Donington Park next weekend, with 37.5 points available, after successfully appealing a 30-second penalty in race one at Snetterton.
Haigh was dealt a drivethrough penalty following contact with Andrew Howard’s Beechdean Aston Martin, which was subsequently converted to the time penalty that demoted the Optimum Aston Martin from fourth to ninth, at a cost of 10 points.
Following the decision of the National Court to reinstate Optimum to fourth place, Haigh and Adam can win the championship by finishing sixth at Donington, regardless of what closest pursuers Jon Minshaw/
Phil Keen (Barwell Motorsport) do.
British GT championship manager Benjamin Franassovici had written to the Motor Sports Association urging it to reach a decision so as not to overshadow the season finale – a point welcomed by Optimum boss Shaun Goff: “The one thing I can’t sit here and accuse is the championship – they’ve been accommodating in trying to get everything sorted. We’ve gone through a messy process which is no detriment to the series, all we wanted was to get a panel of stewards to see the full evidence.”
After the National Court agreed to permit its appeal and evidence was viewed by a new panel at a hearing, the collision was deemed a racing incident and the decision overturned.
This followed clarification regarding a loophole in the MSA’S blue book and the right to appeal drivethrough penalties, including those converted into time penalties. “We’ve had our fair share of those loopholes,” said Franassovici. “It’s not ideal but it’s part of racing and we’ve got to live with it. Those loopholes pop up occasionally, sometimes it’s painful, sometimes not.
“Despite a few bumps, which are not our fault, people are attracted to the format, the competition, the service provided. As far as I’m concerned, we’re doing everything right.”
TF Sport’s Aston Martin pairing Mark Farmer/nicki Thiim are the only other duo in mathematical contention, one point behind Minshaw/keen on 121 points.
Haigh (r) was initially penalised for crash