London’s Old Billingsgate Grand Hall was the scene of the 2018 SRO Motorsports Group Awards on Saturday evening. Among the drivers and manufacturers collecting their well-deserved season trophies were Tristan Vautier (2018 Intercontinental GT Challenge drivers champion), Kenny Habul (Bronze drivers champion) and Chris Reinke representing Audi (Manufacturers champion).
On the banks of the River Thames, not far from the world-famous Shard, Old Billingsgate Grand Hall was the perfect setting for the traditional end-of-season award ceremony. Saturday’s event saw representatives from all SRO organised series attending, and among them were teams and drivers from the world’s only global GT3 championship, the Intercontinental GT Challenge.
The trophies of the Intercontinental GT Challenge have gained iconic status by now. This year, three of the skyblue ceramic globes were handed over to the 2018 champions. Chris Reinke was proud to collect a third consecutive Manufacturers’ Trophy for Audi, after beating Mercedes-AMG in a thrilling finale at the California 8 Hours.
For the first time in the history of the Intercontinental GT Challenge, the Drivers’ title went to a Mercedes-AMG driver however, with Tristan Vautier finishing on top of the points’ standings. The 29-year-old Frenchman took the win in the Suzuka 10 Hours and had a podium scoring finish in all three other rounds.
Australian Kenny Habul became the first Bronze Driver champion of the Intercontinental GT Challenge. Two maximum points scoring rounds (Liqui-Moly Bathurst 12 Hour and Suzuka 10 Hours) helped Habul to his unique trophy.
Tristan Vautier (2018 Intercontinental GT Challenge Drivers’ champion): « This title is probably the most important accomplishment of my career. But although I am the one to receive the trophy, this is a reward for many teams and drivers. I’ve driven for four teams in the 2018 campaign, had eight co-drivers, and I have to thank them all. Just like this would not have been possible without the support of the people at Mercedes-AMG. I am also very happy that my good friend Kenny Habul has taken the Bronze drivers’ title. We both love the trophies, this is by far the most beautiful trophy I have ever received. The biggest stress of the season came when I had to try and take it home in one piece!