ALFA ROMEO CHAMPIONSHIP GETS REVVED UP FOR BRANDS HATCH SEASON OPENER
The BRSCC Alfa Romeo Championship is looking forward to a superb weekend’s racing at Brands Hatch on 23/24 March. Our Modified class had few entries in 2018 so it is fantastic to have 4 Modified cars on the grid at Brands, as well as 5 Power Trophy class cars and 7 Twin Spark Cup entries. The Modified entries are impressive. Barry McMahon’s mighty 156 Turbo is back from its Britcar adventures, and we also welcome Richard Thurbin’s impressive Lancia Delta Integrale 16v to the Championship for the first time. Mervyn Miller, who won both races at Anglesey last season, is bringing his mighty 156 over from Ireland and veteran driver Keith Waite, who has raced in the Championship every year since its inception in the early 1980s, has entered his 33, a car that we haven’t seen recently so it will be interesting to see how Keith fares.
The new Alfa MiTO built by Davie Peddie up in Fife for David Faithful’s Alfa Romeo Owners’ Club project group for experienced driver Ben Sharich is a significant new car for the Championship in the Power Trophy class, and we are hoping it will be the forerunner of many more MiTOs and Giuliettas in the Championship. For this meeting it joins Paul Webster’s 156 GTA, overall class winner for the past 2 seasons, Dave Messenger’s similar newly acquired car formerly raced by Roger Evans and Robin Eyre-Maunsell, the lovely 155 of Scott Austin (3rd in the Championship in 2018), and the Fiat Punto Abarth of Gary Miller, making its debut in the Championship. Gary is Mervyn Miler’s son so there is a family dimension to the entry list!
In the ultra-competitive Twin Spark Cup double champion Tom Hill is back in his black and gold 156 which has had a major overhaul over the winter and Tom is sure to be the person to beat for class and overall honours this season. 2017 Champion Andrew Bourke is back in a new 156 after a sabbatical in 2018 and is also sure to be a front runner, as is former entrant Steve O’Brien in the very competitive 147 he has acquired from Jon Billingsley, a car formerly raced by Neil Smith, Adie Hawkins and former Champion Emma Karwacki. The welcome news is that well-known truck racer Andrew Fulcher is planning to do a full season this year in his distinctive Filippo Berio-liveried 147 and he will no doubt be hoping to repeat his double race win at the Brands Festival Italia meeting last August. The respective 156s of Richard Ford, Simon Cresswell and Cip Nistorica have all featured strongly at the front end of the class in recent seasons and are sure to be strongly competitive again this year. Richard, in particular, will be looking to build on last season’s race victories at Snetterton and Rockingham. In truth, all the Twin Spark Cup drivers who have entered this weekend are capable of qualifying at or near the front and winning races.