Newly-crowned British GT champion Flick Haigh said winning the title was not something she expected at all, having only driven the Aston Martin Vantage GT3 for the first time late in 2017.

Haigh, who became the first woman to win the overall championship, said she had targeted this year as a learning year as she adjusted from competing in Europe with an Audi R8 LMS GT3.

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“Winning the title exceeded every expectation! This year was all for me to learn the car – I’d never driven the Aston before, I think November was the first time I actually drove it,” she explained.

Having never driven the Vantage before, Haigh admitted her target for the season was to be somewhere in the middle of the GT3 order as she built up a strong working relationship with new team-mate – and Aston Martin factory driver – Jonny Adam.

“I’d raced in Europe a lot and I knew the standard in British GT is really high so I didn’t know where I’d be – hopefully somewhere in the middle of the field. This certainly wasn’t expected at all,” Haigh said.

“It is just a testament to Jonny and the team that put all the work in. My driving has improved and my confidence in the car has improved – the Aston is such is such a friendly car to drive.”

The former Caterham racer’s season started off in the ideal fashion as she and Jonny took pole position and stormed to victory in the first race of 2018 at Oulton Park, and despite not having a season that entirely went ‘right’ the lowest finishing position for her and Jonny all season was fourth.

She added: “We had a couple of weekends where it didn’t go to plan, but that’s the same for everybody – you never have a season where it all goes right. But we battled through and I’m just immensely proud of everyone and all the support.”

Asked if she would be back to defend her title with the new Vantage next year, Haigh was non-committal: “Quite possibly, who knows!”