Double joy for Butcher after BTCC finale

Rory Butcher lifted silverware at Brands Hatch last weekend. Pic: Jakob Ebrey
Rory Butcher lifted silverware at Brands Hatch last weekend. Pic: Jakob Ebrey

Kirkcaldy racer Rory Butcher made it a double celebration last weekend as he clinched two titles at the British Touring Car Championship finale at Brands Hatch.

The 32-year-old sprayed the champagne after lifting both the 2019 Independent Drivers title and the coveted Jack Sears Trophy.

Rory led the first of the three races after a restart in wet conditions, but ended up fifth at the flag.

In the second race, ninth was the best he could achieve on a damp and greasy track, but it all came together in the thrilling final race of the season.

As others around him slipped across the Brands Hatch track, Rory put in a superb drive to keep winner Jason Plato in sight and finish less than a second behind.

The result meant Rory lifted the Independent Drivers Championship by just two points and ended the season in fifth place overall.

He also won the coveted Jack Sears Trophy – awarded to the Independent driver who achieves the greatest improvement from their respective grid positions over the entire season – by a comfortable margin while his Cobra Sport AmD AutoAid/RCIB Insurance team lifted the award in the Independent Team standings.

Rory said: “I think being the chaser for the Independent title was the best thing for me coming into the weekend, as every race I just pushed hard to get as much as I could from it.

“I knew in race three that Josh would drive his socks off in the early laps to get to me and I had to drive at 100 per cent from the start. That was the hardest I’ve driven the car all year – it was to the maximum.

“To come away from the weekend with the Independent title and the Jack Sears Trophy for me personally, and to finish in the top five overall, is absolutely fantastic and I think it will take some time to sink in.

“It’s hard to believe what we have achieved.

“For the team to also win the Independent Teams’ title and finish third overall is brilliant, and you can see in the eyes of the guys in the team just how much it means to them.

“I’m so pleased to be part of this team and to have had this opportunity, and I’m also happy for all of my sponsors and for the team sponsors who have made it possible.”

In Germany, Kirkcaldy-born racer Peter Dumbreck put in a strong drive to finish ninth in the VLN Endurance series in Germany driving his BMW M6 GT3.