Having ensured the championship battle went down to the wire at the final rounds in Brands Hatch following a superb win last time out in Silverstone, Ben Green knew coming into the weekend that his game plan was clear, win each race and hope a bit of luck would fall his way to overhaul points leader Callum Pointon.
Putting himself right in the mix during Friday’s pre-event testing, the Essex driver was more than ready to deliver the goods on Saturday morning when qualifying got underway. Around a dry and sunny Brands Hatch GP circuit, Green was showing the field a clean pair of heels, improving his time with every tour. However it was lap six that would really prove just how ready he was to take the championship battle right down to the wire. Producing a new qualifying track record for the Ginetta GT4 Supercup, Ben went under the 1 minute 30 second mark to secure a pole position start for the first of the weekend’s three races on Saturday afternoon.
Clearly feeling confident at the wheel of his Century Motorsport G55, Ben rocketed off the line to lead the opening lap on Saturday afternoon just as the Safety car was deployed to recover the stricken AM Class driver Jack Minshaw. However racing was back underway just two laps later and Green made good his getaway to maintain his advantage at the head of the field. Untroubled from those behind, the championship protagonist kept his title hopes very much alive by securing a comfortable lights to flag victory.
Compliments of his opening race win, Green lined up on pole position for the second race of the weekend on Sunday morning. Conditions overnight had changed somewhat with the Kent circuit now damp and cloudy for the second encounter of the weekend. Nevertheless, Green was the man with the optimum start once more to lead ahead of George Gamble. However once more his advantage at the front was wiped out with a short Safety Car period on lap three, but as he did in the opening race, Green mastered the restart to resume his lead on lap five. As the race progressed, a hard charging Jack Mitchell was carving his way through the field and with three laps to go, found a way past Green into Paddock Hill bend. Initially maintaining second, Green’s lost momentum saw him slip to third on the final lap and with it, his chances of taking the title fight with Pointon into the final race.
Starting the final race of a fantastic 2017 season for the Jelf Group backed driver from the inside of row two, Green, now without the pressure of trying to win the title was able to enjoy his final race of the year and finish his season in style. Mastering the art of a good start off the tricky Brands Hatch grid, Green was already up to second as they completed the opening tour behind race leader George Gamble. Hustling the Amigos backed driver, this time a Safety Car was just what he needed to remove any margin the leader had on lap eight. When racing resumed just two laps later, Ben was once again on a charge and looking for any way he could to take the lead. However Gamble had it covered as the pair took the chequered flag, separated by a mere three tenths of a second to complete a superb trio of podium finishes from the final weekend of the year.
Ben Green – #22 Century Motorsport Ginetta G55 GT4:
“I’m very happy with how the weekend went. I secured my seventh win and felt I had the potential for even more wins. I never fell out of the top three positions for the entire weekend. I lead the first two races of the weekend and fought hard for the lead of the final race. I also closed the gap to Callum [Pointon] in every race and got my first ever pole position around one of the hardest circuits in the UK. Century Motorsport gave me a great car, especially considering we had no dry running at all during Friday practice! I’d like to thank the team for their support this year as they have been fantastic and always delivered a good car.”
Nathan Freke – Team Principal, Century Motorsport:
“It’s been a roller-coaster weekend to be honest as we came into the event giving it everything we had to ensure Ben could keep the title fight going for as long as possible. Overall, and not just this weekend, but all season he’s done a fantastic job. I think his results speak for themselves really, more wins than any other driver on the grid is credit to the boys and girls in the team who have worked on the car all season and Ben and his family for their 100% commitment throughout. After being out of contention for the title last year, it was great to be coming back to Brands Hatch this weekend fighting for the title again and bringing back some memories of our weekend here back in 2015. Now we focus our attention to 2018, with our championship tilt already starting to fall into place!”