A hard-earned podium at rain-lashed Oulton Park kept Angus ace Sandy Mitchell’s hopes of holding onto his British GT title afloat.
The Letham 21-year-old in the Barwell Motorsport-prepared Lamborghini Huracan GT3 Evo now heads to next month’s Donington Park season showdown as one of four crews who can lift the prestigious crown.
“We achieved what we wanted to do this weekend, and that was to make sure we’re in the fight to win the title in the final round,” said Mitchell.
The Cheshire double-header saw Mitchell and teammate Adam Balon bag vital points in the opening race.
They stormed through to sixth after a grid drop penalty for a late engine change in the Huracan saw them start from tenth on the grid.
But the biggest test came in the second race, held in atrociously wet conditions.
Frustratingly for the #1 car, after saving a set of brand new slick tyres for the 60-minute race having used qualifying tyres in the opener, the plan was wrecked by the foul weather.
Mitchell started from third on the grid and hounded the sister Barwell car of championship leader Dennis Lind from the moment the lights went green.
He completed an audacious overtake 20 minutes into the race, passing the Dane as the pair entered the fast left-hander at Cascades.
The mid-race driver switch saw Balon rejoin in fourth after a delay exiting the pitlane, but he fought back to see the pair finish second.
Mitchell said: “The podium finish in the second race – ahead of two of our main challengers for the title – was crucial.
“It means we head to Donington just 21.5 points behind the leaders, with a maximum of 37.5 available in the final race.”
“Adam drove brilliantly in both races, but especially in race two,” said Lamborghini factory driver Mitchell.
“The whole team did a wonderful job over the weekend, especially given the fact the first race was in warm, dry conditions, then two hours later we were racing in a downpour.”
Twelve months ago, Mitchell headed into the final race of the season at Silverstone knowing a win would clinch the title.
This year there are a few more permutations for the elite series’ Donington decider.
“With four crews all in the mix to win the title, there are going to be a few calculations to be done before we get to Donington,” Mitchell added.
“The bottom line essentially remains the same.
“Adam and I will go there determined to win the race.
“That’s all we can control. Do that, then we’ll see where we end up in the championship.”