It has been a phenomenal year for British sporting talent, especially on the racetrack. You have been voting for the best British motorsport stars of the year and here are some of what the 22 drivers you picked have been up to over the past 11 months.
Scottish driver Shedden took his third British Touring Car Championship title this year in a season that saw the title decided in its final race. The 37 year old driver added his 2016 title victory to his 2012 and 2015 championship wins.
Alex’s season started with confirmation that he would be staying with Williams Martini Racing as their development driver for the 2016 season. This was a commitment that was made alongside his GP2 career, something that has gifted him two wins this year – one at Barcelona and the other at Hockenheim. However in August of this year, Lynn ruled out another season of GP2 after he confirmed that only Formula 1 will do. Since making this statement Canadian Lance Stroll has been confirmed to be racing with the British team next year alongside current Williams driver Valterri Bottas.
“He’s so passionate about being in F1 and I’ve rarely seen that, someone so desperate to be in this sport and prove what he can do. He’s hugely talented, he’s got the speed and he’s got the makings of a great F1 driver.I hope we will see him in F1 one day.” – Claire Williams, Deputy team principal of Williams Martini Racing tells AUTOSPORT.
This year Cal became the first British rider to win a premier class Grand Prix for 35 years in MotoGP, also taking another win later on in the season. With the stunning drives that resulted his victories, one win in wet conditions and the other in the dry, he became the first Briton since the late Barry Sheene in 1979 to win more than one MotoGP race in a season. Crutchlow also became the first Brit to win the Australian GP in October.
Bird has spent this year racing both the FIA World Endurance Championship and the FIA Formula E Championship, representing Ferrari and DS Virgin Racing respectively. He won the Buenos Aires ePrix back in February and was set to take third place in drivers’ championship in Formula E but complications in the final two rounds (including a DNF in the final round of the season) meant he finished his second season in Formula E fourth in the drivers’ standings.
Sam also scored a podium finish at the Marrakesh ePrix last weekend, placing his DS Virgin Racing in second place.
Tordoff was one of eight championship contenders as we approached the final round of the British Touring Car Championship, with it looking like it was going his way with an eleven point lead as the weekend got underway. He finished in tenth after race one, fifth in race two but still had a slight advantage to Shedden going into the season finale. Unfortunately for Sam, it was Shedden who would take home the 2016 BTCC title with just two points in it.
Another BTCC favourite, Mat Jackson took home five wins during his 2016 Touring Car season, one of them being during the nail-biting finale. Taking the win at the final race of the season meant Mat finished the 2016 BTCC third in the drivers’ championship with Motorbase Performance. Jackson’s collection of impressive results also gave Motorbase their most successful BTCC season to date.
Dean is a driver that has taken every one of his motorsport challenges head on. This year he headed across the pond and took part in the IndyCar Championship with Andretti Autosport, winning two races in his rookie year. The possible highlight of his year in motorsport may be his victory at the Freedom 100 back in May when he beat Ed Jones to victory by just 0.0024 of a second. Wow.
Toby competed in the BRDC British F3 Championship this year, finishing third overall in the drivers’ standings after 24 rounds. With five victories to his name, he was put forward as one of the 2016 British Racing Drivers’ Club McLaren Autosport Award Finalists.
Daniel won the British Porsche Carrera Cup this year, leaving it until the last race of the year to secure his championship title.
“To win 12 races at 16 attempts is pretty impressive. I’ve had such a great year and, if anything we’ve had a better year than last year.I’ve only finished lower than second twice in 32 attempts.The statistics are mental and not just for me but the team, the fact that the car has been so reliable.” – Daniel Cammish via http://www.danielcammish.co.uk
For the full list of your best British motorsport stars, head over to my Twitter page (@katyfairman).
Thumbnail image is also provided by Lou Johnson, whom you can follow at @LouJohnsonPhoto on Twitter or find her work via http://loujohnsonphoto.com/