Canning and Hand seal the GT4 BGT title with TF Sport at Donington Park
There were multiple Aston Martin GT4 entries into the British GT Championship this year in the new Vantage, but there could be only one to take the title at the first attempt and that was Tom Canning and Ash Hand in the distinctive TF Sport #97 entry.
“It’s been a hard season, but the TF boys and drivers have done everything we have ever asked of them,” stated GT4 Team Manager Chris Warne. “They have all worked so hard – so it is a fantastic and well-deserved reward.”
After a rough patch at the start of the season at Oulton Park, the rookie pairing hit their stride with consistent and impressive performances throughout the summer. This gave them the cushion they required heading into the season finale at the Donington Decider.
For Tom and Ash, qualifying was both successful and somewhat frustrating due to traffic on the hot laps. Ultimately however, the pairing lined up a strong second – with #95 teammates Josh Price and Patrick Kibble directly behind - with the knowledge that their title rivals in the #57 and #15 were starting third and fifth respectively.
Tom took the start, something of a change to the usual, but it all worked out smoothly as he got down to the racing after the safety car at the start in second position. With points there for the taking, he was unable to resist passing the #29 of Richard Williams for position as his main title rival ran in fifth at that point.
It was a perfect stint from the young racer as he controlled his pace and aggression at the head of the field in what was another flawless drive. With a ten-second success penalty to serve thanks to the Brands Hatch result, it was down to Ash to ensure he brought the car home ahead of the title contenders.
The #15 Multimatic of Seb Priaulx had been very quick all season and soon Ash was under pressure after the second safety car restart. Ultimately, Ash played the long game and conceded the position to run third to the chequered flag. In doing so, he recorded his third podium in the last four rounds to seal a well-deserved – and first GT4 title for TF Sport.
“For TF Sport to get the win in their debut season with the new GT4 is fantastic. It’s been a faultless year and the team have done an incredible job. It’s been a massive effort between me, Ash, TF Sport and Aston Martin, so I’m honoured and delighted. I’d like to say a huge thank you to my family and friends for their support this year and now I look forward to the next chapter!”
“It’s been a fantastic day from start to finish. It started badly (at Oulton) but to finish it here at Donington Park has been brilliant. I’m really looking forward to Las Vegas to celebrate this championship with the team – everyone at TF Sport has earned this with us. They have worked through the night to make this happen, given us a consistent car. Credit to the team for the awesome car, just brilliant.”
TF Sport Director, Tom Ferrier
“They are very young and super-aggressive and yet make very few mistakes. A flawless performance from the pair of them today and I’m delighted for both - superstars of the future. Congratulations.”