After a lengthy and determined campaign, Ian Loggie was duly rewarded with the British GT crown at Donington on Sunday, but not before he’d added a touch of drama, crisis and spice to the day.

Whilst the story of the season starts in the depth of winter, the story of the weekend unfolded with a sudden downpour just minutes into the GT3 qualifying session. For some, the threat of rain launched them straight onto a timed lap, but for the championship frontrunners, the urgency was compromised by the struggle to find tyre temperature: It was a decision that there and then could have cost Loggie dearly. All he had to do to claim the title was to finish Sunday’s race in the top five, but a sudden drenching of the East Midlands track made the Mercedes-AMG gripless, resulting in a lowly ‘Am’ qualifying of twelfth from fifteen. Jules Gounon, Loggie’s pro-partner for the weekend, was able to salvage a few grid places, but starting in P10, the danger was not just the overtakes to be made but the encounters to be avoided.

Sunday brought out the sun and the crowds, but for Loggie, the hope of measured progress was soon ended as he and title rival Adam Balon were forced to take to the turn 1 gravel as Morgan Tillbrook’s McLaren made contact with Darren Leung’s BMW. Balon recovered well, but Loggie, recognising the danger of potential contact with the slower GT4 cars opted to resume in last. To then compound his misery, only a handful of laps later, having started to make his way through the GT4 pack, he lost traction coming out of the final corner and span across the pit entry.

For many, this would have signalled defeat, but Loggie has invested more into this year than others will spend in a lifetime. He knows he’s quick, he knows his driving partner is blisteringly quick, and he knows that this car is supremely well balanced, and so he just reset and put the focus onto the job in hand. By the time of the driver changeovers (an hour later), Loggie had worked his way into P7.

Time in the pits in British GT is not only down to crew performance but also success penalties. Second place at Brands Hatch (the previous round) meant that the Balon / Mitchell car was required to stop for an additional 15 seconds; Balon entered the pit lane exactly 15 seconds before Loggie …

If the tension in the RAM Racing and Barwell garages wasn’t already at boiling point, the fact that the two were side-by-side saw Loggie park immediately in front of the Lamborghini. Refuelling over, tyres changed, and Mitchell and Gounon installed, the car controllers focused intently on the radio message countdown. With a scream of the V10, Mitchell pulled-out of the box and moved past the rear of the Mercedes. In the RAM Racing box, the controller still held the lollipop over Gounon’s bonnet, but the Frenchman knew that if Mitchell could go, he could go too. Momentarily, the pair were side by side as the pit exit narrowed, but Gounon held firm and Mitchell was forced to yield. All he had to do now was stay ahead of the Huracan and the title would be Loggie’s: Gounon, instead, continued to march on and finished in P2, just half a second behind the winning BMW that was ironically partly to blame for all that first corner trouble.

Loggie, captured on the grid before the start of the race

But as much as this was a brilliant comeback race for Loggie, the rest of his season had been a masterclass in supremacy. Sharing the pro-driver duties with Gounon was Callum MacLeod, and whilst the right choice of professional is a key component to any campaign, the professionals themselves will tell you that it’s the amateur driver that makes the difference. The pro’s, in like-for-like machinery are always going to be mere fractions apart, and so winning or losing is most often down to their partners.

Speaking to Loggie at GT Cup’s pre-season test, I was amazed to learn that since 2021’s ‘Donington Decider’, he’d taken part in almost 70 days of racing at circuits right around the world. It sounds obsessional, and it probably is, but he wanted to  arrive at Oulton Park at the top of his form, and build from there. It was a marked difference to the Loggie I’d previously known; he was sharp, cool, measured and relaxed.

It’s quite telling that taking British GT’s success penalty system (designed to prevent total dominance over the course of a season) into account, Loggie podiumed in six of the nine outings, and was only once outside the top six (Silverstone), when he was caught-up in a coming together between the 2 Seas and Team Abba Mercedes’.

By the time the flag fell at Donington, he was 33.5 points ahead of Balon & Mitchell in P2; it was the largest winning margin in recent times.

Loggie finished in P2 at the first race of the Easter double-header, then went one better in the afternoon.

Here are a few of our favourite images of Loggie and his RAM Racing Mercedes-AMG GT3, taken throughout the 2022 season:

All images in this article are by Howard FieldingPete Walker and Steve Hindle