Trucking titles won and lost at Brands Hatch
The 2023 British Truck Racing Championship reached a predictably heavyweight conclusion at Brands Hatch last weekend (November 4/5) with ultimately Ryan Smith and Paul Rivett crowned champions of Division 1 and Division 2 respectively.
In front of a huge crowd, the super-sized series took centre stage at the famous Kent venue to conclude what has been another captivating, full-throttle campaign; and as expected there were plenty of thrills and spills across both days.
Ryan Smith cemented his status as one of the championship’s greatest drivers as the Mansfield maestro claimed an unprecedented eighth successive Division 1 title – doing so in style, too, by powering his way to a hat-trick of race wins.
Unbelievably there was nothing to separate Paul Rivett and Adam Bint in the battle for Division 2 honours, with the pair ending the season tied on points. Dramatically, Rivett was crowned champion on count-back, having won more races than Bint over the course of the year.
Smith made history successfully retaining his title for an eighth consecutive year, putting him to within two title triumphs of the all-time record which is held by the legendary Stuart Oliver
Arriving at Brands Hatch holding a commanding advantage in the standings, the Daimler Freightliner driver produced a superlative display to clinch his latest championship in dominant style.
The Division 2 title fight was even closer with the pendulum swinging back-and-forth between the two season-long adversaries. Bint started the weekend with a single point advantage and was poised to extend his lead before a second red flag in the opening encounter voided the race and robbed him of what looked to be a certain victory.
Races two, three and four were packed with action and attrition with Rivett and Bint scoring a win apiece and also clashing on two occasions. That left the duelling duo tied on points and the stage was set for what should have been a ‘winner takes all’ finale.
Unfortunately, it wasn’t to be the dramatic grandstand finale desired. An accident further up the field among the Division 1 runners caused substantial barrier damage forcing the organisers to abandon the race meeting.
That therefore left both drivers still on the same number of points… however, NAPA Racing UK’s Rivett’s sensational tally of 18 race wins to Bint’s six meant that he was declared champion for the first time in his illustrious career.