The Avon Tyres-supported Lotus Cup UK Championship drew to a close over the final weekend of October at Snetterton race circuit and it was Simon Deacon and Andy Napier who took the spoils in the SuperSport and Production classes in an incident-packed season finale.
Third place in the penultimate round of the championship meant that Deacon arrived at the Norfolk venue leading the SuperSport Class by just seven points from Jamie Stanley. With a maximum 51 points available on offer, the title race remained wide open as the top 15 drivers arrived with a shot of 2013 title glory.
Meanwhile, five drivers remained in contention for victory in the Production Class, with Napier heading the field from Andrew Wright by ten points.
Sunday morning’s qualifying session saw Ken Savage take pole position; a commanding performance saw the SuperSport runner seal the front spot by well over six tenths of a second from Rob Fenn. Championship frontrunner, Deacon, lined up in sixth, while Production Class leader, Napier, qualified 17th – fourth fastest of the production class runners.
As Sunday’s two-hour race got underway, a battle emerged at the front between pole-man Savage, Steve Train, Benji Hetherington and Stanley. Train and Hetherington would soon retire from the battle, though, their races ending prematurely under the safety car, which was deployed while marshals recovered Fenn’s stricken Lotus Elise.
These early retirements boosted Deacon and Napier’s title hopes; at the one-hour mark, Deacon placed fourth, nearly five seconds shy of third-placed Stanley. Further down the order, Napier was running in 13th overall, sixth in class, with 60 minutes completed.
With full points awarded at the first hour and 15 bonus points awarded to each driver running at the chequered flag, class leaders Deacon and Napier channelled all their concentration and energy for the second half of the race into making it to the finish without incident.
Outright race victory went to the Yusuf/Kershaw pairing in the Lotus Evora GT4, winning by six-and-a-half seconds from Knight/Balon. Deacon took a comfortable fifth place and, despite being outscored by closest rival Stanley in the final round, Deacon’s performance was enough to secure the 2013 SuperSport Class title by four points.
Meanwhile, in the Production Class, Napier finished 15th on the road, sixth in class, to seal the title by 15 points from Wright.
Avon Tyres Motorsport sends congratulations to Simon Deacon and Andy Napier on their respective titles. They’ve been consistently strong throughout the year and ultimately, it’s that consistency that has paid off.
Avon Tyres last year agreed a three-year deal with the Lotus on Track Racing Drivers’ Club to supply Avon ZZR tyres to its race championships across the UK and Europe.