AUGHTON racing driving Sean Huyton has been crowned the 2012 Ginetta GT5 Challenge, after securing the point he needed at Donington Park last weekend.
The 22-year-old clinched his first car racing title since graduating from karting four years ago in the first race of the weekend sparking early celebrations for his legion of fans who had travelled to the Leicestershire track.
It marks a great season for Huyton, who was controversially denied the title last year at the last race weekend of the season, finishing in second place.
He now moves up to the Ginetta G50 and G55 championship, which features as part of the British Touring Car race weekends and guarantees him live race coverage on ITV4 for each event.
But first the task of finding sponsors to back him is on Huyton’s mind, as celebrating changes to a focus on the 2013 season.
He said: “I’m so relieved to have finally won the championship, but it’s taking a while to sink in.
“It was fantastic to see so many people come along to Donington Park to watch me claim the title, especially when they gathered on the small hill by the side of the first corner to cheer for me. It’s been nicknamed Huyton Hill.
“The support has been fantastic since I started car racing and this championship is a much for my friends, family and team, as it is for me.
“Matt and the crew from Academy Motorsport provided me with an excellent car last year and this year was exactly the same, but that little bit of luck also came along and I’m now able to call myself a champion!
“Now my search for sponsors is now on the agenda and I will make sure I provide them with as much support, as I will get from them.”
In the end the racing on track was irrelevant as only two races were completed due to major accidents in other races during the weekend.
Huyton secured fourth place in the first race and was controversially disqualified from the second race after an accident involving his championship rival Mike Robinson.
The season ended with him winning ten out of the 19 races, finishing off the podium in only four races.
He added: “In race one I was very nervous until the racing started and then I just went in to racing mode, spending most of the 12 laps in a four way battle for the lead.
“I was desperate to win for the team and my supporters, but a slight problem with the fuel supply near the end meant I was slow out of some corners and in the end settled for fourth and the points I needed for the championship.
“The racer in me was disappointed that I couldn’t push for the win, although knowing I was champion soon eased the frustration.
“In race two I went for a gap to take the lead and Mike pulled in to a corner across me, meaning we both went off before resuming racing.
“Being disqualified when I thought it was just a racing incident is not exactly how I wanted to finish the final race, but being champion is much more important than winning a race I didn’t need to.”
Huyton’s team, Academy Motorsport, were also able to celebrate after being crowned team champions for the first ever time.
Manager, Matt Nicol-Jones, said: “Sean has been brilliant all season and his title is well deserved. To be crowned team champions is the icing on the cake and we’ll remember the occasion for a very long time.
“Now the hard work starts as planning for the 2013 season is already underway, so let’s hope for some more celebrating next year.
Huyton concluded: “I must thank Matt and the team at Academy Motorsport who I’ve been with for my entire car racing career and have helped me progress to where we are now.
“But huge thanks must go to my family and friends, especially my dad, mum, brothers Alex and Danny and grandparents, who have supported me for years, both financially and emotionally.
“It’s been a long road, but hopefully this is the platform I need to progress further in my motorsport career.
“Sponsorship is key, so hopefully the lure of the British Touring Car race weekends will help secure the sponsors to make the next step with me.”
Any sponsors keen to learn more about the opportunities with Huyton in 2013, or if you just want to keep up with his progress, follow him on twitter @seanhuyton or go to www.seanhuyton.co.uk