ACTION PACKED OULTON PARK
The North Western Centre of the BRSCC were in charge at Oulton Park on Saturday, 15th May. Their organisational skills certainly got put to the test as they packed in no less than 12 races – many of which had bumper entries.
The competition out on the track was as close as could be imagined. This was illustrated during the first of four Ma5da MX5 Championship encounters when the two leaders, Jonathan Greensmith and Tom Roche, were so near to each other as they sped under the Warwick Bridge that the valve was ripped from one of Roche’s wheels. The resulting rapidly deflating tyre caused Roche to lose control and run into his rival as they braked for Lodge which allowed local man, Chris Rowlinson from Knutsford, through to take his first ever victory. Greensmith recovered to claim the runner-up spot while Roche pulled off a lap later with his airless rubber down to the rim.
Four races were required because 64 MX5s had qualified in the morning. The competitors were divided into classes A, B, C and D with each class having different opponents on the two occasions they took to the track. This quartet of events had intense dicing right down the order (spectators and marshals didn’t know which way to look to catch all the action!) although Rob Boston and Greensmith both broke clear to take comfortable victories in races 2 and 3. In the final outing Roche was put under pressure by Boston until the former suffered car problems and dropped back to 6th allowing Boston to take his second win of the day.
The two rounds of the Bookatrack.com Caterham Superlight R300 Championship were equally hard fought. First time out, Paul Turley made heavy contact with the barriers on the run down to Hislops, this left his car stranded in the middle of circuit and brought out the red flags. The restart over 10 minutes saw several cars battling frantically for the lead with Paul Brannan eking out a small but decisive advantage in the latter stages.
Brannan was not so fortunate second time around losing control on the exit of Cascades and collecting his team mate James Sharrock. The two made heavy contact with the Lakeside barriers and the Safety Car made an appearance while the wreckage was cleared. Before this interruption Andrew McMillan had built up an impressive margin ahead of the marauding pack. After the Safety Car peeled off he repeated this feat but his overworked tyres began to deteriorate as the contest drew to a close. This allowed Trevor Farrell to reel him in, get better drive out of the final corner and cross the line 0.045 secs ahead!
The Arrowpak International Euro Saloon & Sportscars and Alfashop Alfa Romeos each competed in one round of their series. In the former, the Lotus Exige of Rex Stamp had Dave Cockell in his Ford Escort Cosworth on its tail throughout while Mark Chilton’s Porsche came out on top of a 4-way scrap for third.
With the demise of Shaun Hazlewood, Sam Laird took the Alfa laurels unopposed. Second place for Chris Healey moved him into the lead of the Championship ahead of his daughter Mel.
This weekend’s Avon Tyres Northern FF1600 rounds also counted towards the BRSCC’s National Championship. Jordan Skinner continued his winning ways in the first Post ’89 race although Stuart Gough caught and put the Australian under extreme pressure in the final laps – the cars even interlocked wheels in the breaking area for Hislops on the last tour. Second time out on the track these two protagonists collided at Lodge leaving Chris Chisnall to take the victory.
Both Pre ’90 encounters saw a 3-car battle out in front between Lee Hannan, John Farrell and Nigel Dolan. Hannan was ahead of Farrell by less than 0.2 secs when the red flags came out to call a halt to the first thrash after a car came to rest in a dangerous location. The marshals also had to stop the second race after Barry Thompson went backwards into the Old Hall barriers at a high rate of knots. This crash happened with enough time remaining to permit a restart which was won by Farrell from Hannan – again there were only fractions of a second in it at the line.
The full results can be found at Click Here