ACTION BY THE ANGLE-SEY SIDE
The Bookatrack.com Superlight R300-S Championship joins its fellow Caterham Motorsport brethren this weekend – Photo: SnappyRacers
When you think of Anglesey, some may view it as a beautiful island in the north of Wales, located right on the coast. A location that’s exceptional for tourists and provides some of the most incredible scenery imaginable. That’s probably how the average tourist would describe it. To a motorsport fan, it’s more than that – it’s a challenging circuit planted beside the Irish Sea in what is quite possibly the most beautiful sporting location in all of British motorsport.
We love coming here and thankfully this weekend marks our first visit of 2016 with a sportscar extravaganza! Two days of action are in store on the gruelling International layout for championships dedicated to two of the best loved small sportscars in the UK – the Caterham Seven and the Mazda MX-5.
Starting with Caterhams, their roster of championships kicked off in superb style in their season opener at Brands Hatch with all the typical wheel to wheel, nose to tail action you’d expect from these machines. In the pair of opening Avon Tyres Caterham Roadsport races, it was a win apiece for Daniel Quintero and Rui Ferreira but as always with Caterham racing, they didn’t have it easy for one single second. Both races saw a margin of victory of less than half a second, so expect more of the same here. Drivers who will want to make their mark include Russ Olivant, David Bevan, Rob Watts and Lee Collins, while EVO Magazine’s Dan Prosser returns for his second bite at the Roadsport cherry.
Moving upwards into the Avon Tyres Caterham Tracksport Championship, it’s very much a case of quality over quantity in this field. Anthony Barnes and Alistair Calvert look set to be season long rivals all the way to the end, especially as their duel for the win in Race 2 at Brands Hatch saw Barnes edge Calvert out by 0.032s! With Calvert not able to attend this weekend, it looks on the surface as though Barnes will have it easy. However you shouldn’t count out Damian Milkins, Peter Rimer, Daniel Bremner and more to give them some headaches throughout the weekend.
If quantity and quality is what you’re after in equal measure, then the solution may just be the ITC Compliance Caterham Supersport Championship. At the time of writing this, almost 40 cars were entered for this weekend, although with the amount of interest that number will still be set to rise even further! Considering that the frontrunners pretty much all consist of the same drivers that set last year’s Tracksport division alight, it’s no wonder that the Supersport drivers are already delivering the same incredible displays of racecraft we saw from this bunch in 2015. Henry Heaton, Jack Brown and William Smith were all race winners at Brands Hatch but given the fact that the last Supersport race saw a 9 car train battling for the lead, this trio definitely won’t have it easy. Reigning Tracksport champion Tim Dickens, Chris Hutchinson, Christian Szaruta and Ben Tuck are just a small selection of the multitude of drivers who all have the potential of gaining their moment in the spotlight!
The fastest rung of the Caterham Motorsport ladder is the Bookatrack.com Caterham Superlight R300-S Championship, which has seen a massive influx of new drivers both stepping up from Supersport as well as joining the series externally. After their opening rounds on the GP loop at Brands Hatch, former champion Aaron Head secured a brace of victories, however he was pressed all the way by the likes of the improved Lee Wiggins, Tracksport graduate Jack Sales and notorious Caterham frontrunner Danny Winstanley. A field this big is certain to provide entertainment – just look at the other championships to know that’s a fact.
Alongside them, our pair of ever successful Mazda MX-5 Championships are locked in to do battle across 7 races this weekend, one of which a legacy of the opening rounds at Snetterton. Both have a major incentive thanks to Mazda Europe’s offer of a chance to compete in the Global MX-5 Cup later in the year for whoever his heading both championships by the end of May. In the Mk1 Championship, that looks set to be multiple champion Tom Roche who dominated the season opener and looks likely to continue that form. His nearest challengers from the outset look to be the likes of Oliver Allwood and 2015 points leader Simon Baldwin, although with around 40 drivers once again set to descend onto the Welsh coast there’s always a chance that some will spring a surprise, especially with the chance of a prize drive at stake.
The same will apply for the MX-5 SuperCup for the more contemporary Mk3 model, which is more akin to the Global MX-5 racer the eventual prize winner will get to drive and possibly race. Reigning champion Alan Henderson’s title defence kicked off well with a win and a podium, however there are more drivers snapping at his heels this time around to try and take it from him. James Blake-Baldwin’s victory certainly puts him into the mix, along with the aforementioned Tom Roche (planning to run both MX-5 series this season), while former Porsche champion Jonathan Greensmith scooped a podium. Expect these four, plus Liam Murphy and Jack Harding to also cause problems and make things interesting.
While a typical weekend at the coast may involve trips to the beach, ours involves tearing up the tarmac with some sensational racing in store for all involved!
Weather wise, for the most part it's looking positively incredible! The temperature this weekend is set to reach a high of 22 degrees on the Sunday – just about t-shirt and shorts weather! Although, you shouldn't put your coat away just yet. There is also set to be some rain over the weekend as well, so it's best you take an umbrella as well to be safe. You can see a full breakdown of the forecast courtesy of the Met Office here – ANGLESEY WEATHER.
Also, the final instructions, timetable and entry list for the weekend can be found here – ANGLESEY RACE WEEKEND.