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Wycombe racer aiming for a place on Touring Cars grid
1:01pm Wednesday 16th October 2013 in Sport
TOM Ingram hopes to follow up his best ever season by securing a British Touring Cars drive next year.
The 20-year-old has won three car championships in the past four years and his latest triumph came on the back of an unprecedented 22 consecutive podiums with 11 victories thrown in as well.
However, Ingram is not in a reflective mood.
He said: “Everyone asks what I’m going to do and I want to do British Touring Cars. That is the plan and there is no Plan B.
“People say that’s dangerous, but it focuses your attention.
“We’ve now had four years of support racing. The consistency has been fantastic and it will be difficult to take that momentum on, but we’re only going to do it if we’re in a top team capable of being at the front and in contention.
“I don’t want to go in at a lower end team and struggle all year.”
Making the leap won’t be easy though. Ingram says funding one Touring Car season is the equivalent of four Supercup campaigns, but he is unequivocal.
He said: “It’s a different ball game and will be a bit of a culture shock, but Touring Cars is what first got me interested in motor-racing, it’s proper racing. It’s exciting racing.”
Ingram is now gearing up for a winter of sponsorship hunting, but his cv could be his passport after a scintillating 2013 that ended with a landslide championship victory.
Ingram said: “To wrap it up with 11 wins and 22 consecutive podiums was a staggering way to do it.
“The expectation was to win the championship, but I never expected to do it the way we did.
“It was a difficult start to the year, we had a fourth place and fifth place in the first two races, but I’ve been on the podium every single race I’ve been in since March.
“In the past I’ve always come away thinking I could have done this better or should have done that differently.
“But this has certainly been the best years racing I’ve had.”
A crash at Brands Hatch on the final weekend ended his season a few races early, but Ingram’s consistency up to that point was more than enough.
He said: “Whereas some people will only go for race wins, I’ll try and think things out. I won’t make a rash decision or just go for something because it’s there.
“They might win three races and not finish one, but I’ll finish seven races in second and that’s more points than them. That’s what I did in 2010, 2011 and this year, and it’s worked.
“There have been people who have been quick, but they’ve not been able to keep it on the island.
“We’ve been quick and consistent, and that consistency has come from thinking things out.
“I could have won another three or four more races this year, but the chances are I wouldn’t have had those 22 consecutive podiums.
“I might have won 14 races but I might have had two DNFs.”
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