2018 British GT Champion Jack Mitchell said his final stint at Donington Park was a rollercoaster of emotion as he secured the GT4 title by a single point.
The Century Motorsport BMW M4 GT4 driver was in his first season of driving the German machine – having previously driven Aston Martins in GT3 and GT4 – and he conceded he wasn’t expecting such success.
“I remember at the start of the year thinking we’ll just get some race wins under our belt – that would be nice. Especially with a new car and a new team,” he explained.
“But we’ve worked really well, BMW has given us an amazing car all year and winning the title is definitely unexpected to say the least.”
Partnered with Dean Macdonald for the season-ending ‘Donington Decider’ – having started the season with Aleksander Schjerpen – the pair had an immediate obstacle to overcome having qualified in seventh. Worse still, their nearest rivals – Ben Tuck and Ben Green in the sister BMW – had claimed pole.
However, a great opening stint by Macdonald gave Mitchell a chance of securing the title, but a late drive-through penalty looked to have wrestled the title away from the former Ginetta Supercup racer.
But, an attacking final 15 minutes allowed the 20-year-old to pass the Invictus Games Racing Jaguar F-Type to secure enough points to take the spoils by a single-point over Tuck and Green, and two points from the Tolman Motorsport McLaren 570S pairing of Charlie Fagg and Michael O’Brien.
Mitchell acknowledged there was a lot of pressure for him to deal with in the closing moment.
“It was quite a rollercoaster, from the start I knew I was in a good position and I just had to keep it on the track – which was easy. But then I found out I had the drive-through penalty which threw me a little bit and I didn’t know where that would leave me championship-wise,” he said.
“But it was lucky I wasn’t too far the position I needed to take – the Jag – and I only knew that right before the end. The last couple of laps I was really tense because I wasn’t sure if the McLarens were going to find another place to move up, but I’m over the moon with it.”