BRSCC HEADS NORTH ONCE AGAIN AS CADWELL PARK BECKONS


The winding and twisting nature of Lincolnshire’s Cadwell Park circuit, dubbed by some as the “Mini-Nurburgring”, plays host this weekend to our second race meeting in as many weeks courtesy of the BRSCC Northern Centre. While it may only be the sole visit we make this year, the drivers will certainly be making the most of it as a familiar group of championships make another trip north together.

Once again, the BRSCC Mazda MX-5 Championship dominates the entry with a mammoth 55 cars set to contest six races between them across the weekend, at the time of writing this preview. The previous rounds at Pembrey saw two more race winners in 2019 as John Langridge took a brace while double defending champion Will Blackwell-Chambers collected the other. However, a botched gear change for WB-C saw him buzz his engine, forcing him to retire from Race 3 and losing valuable points in the process. With Langridge also making up ground after his non-score in Brands Hatch’s second race, this all played nicely into the hands of Ben Short, the championship leading going in and out of South Wales. He scored two 2nd places and a 4th that weekend, and courtesy of Langridge and Blackwell-Chambers’ own personal dramas, it leaves him a clear 46 points ahead of the rest of the field at least in the standings.

Cadwell Park is a circuit Ben enjoys very much, so he’ll be hoping to sustain his points lead by the end of the weekend. Joe Wiggin, Jason Greatrex, Oliver Allwood, Adam Bessell, Steve Foden, Matt Luff and the returning Brian Trott will also be hoping to give chase, while a pleasant surprise addition to the grid sees another renowned name return. After coming so close to the 2018 title before seeing it cruelly snatched away from him at the final rounds, Samuel Smith has found the lure of the championship just too much to stay away any longer. Whether he’s back in for the season or just a one off remains to be seen, but he will surely be another threat to the front runners, as well as having the chance to square off against his equally impressive brother Tom in the process too.

The Mazda MX-5 Super Series sees Pembrey hat-trick hero Brian Chandler deciding that he enjoy his Welsh return so much, that he fancied another go this weekend at Cadwell. His main rivals from that weekend are also back to try and stop him, especially Alex Miller and Matt Pickford who hounded him all the way both of Sunday’s two races after Chandler had dominated the first encounter the day before. Simon Fleet, a man with three podium finishes already to his name this year, had a very difficult weekend after a first lap incident in Race 1 saw him out on the spot, followed by mechanical dramas and collisions in the other two, but he’ll be hoping to bounce back here. Also watch out for Jo Marshall, Clive Powles, a returning Nick Dunn and SuperCup racer Jack Sycamore, who is electing to make the trek to Cadwell straight after his day of racing at Oulton Park on Saturday is finished! Expect him to turn up on the grid on Sunday morning.

Samuel Watkins had a much better weekend in the BRSCC Fiesta Championship Racing with MRF Tyres at Pembrey in comparison to the Silverstone opener, where a hard collision with the wall in the first race ended his weekend prematurely. In contrast, two wins saw his charge for the championship back on course, even though he was unable to start the final race due to an engine issue. In his place, Fiesta Junior graduate Isaac Smith was dominant in his performance to collect that final win of the weekend, and both will be hoping to do the same again here. Other names to watch out for in a threat for win include James Waite, David Nye, Jamie Going, Ryan Faulconbridge, Zachary Lucas and Alastair Kellett.

Over with their younger counterparts in the BRSCC Fiesta Junior Championship racing with MRF Tyres, points leader Olly Turner had a tale of two fortunes at Pembrey. An engine issue in qualifying saw him fail to set a lap time, forcing his JamSport team to change it overnight. Starting from the back, he fought through to 3rd place in Race 1, before winning race 2 to maintain his place atop the standings in the process. Joel Wren was the Race 1 winner in that instance and both now head to Cadwell as the effective favourites for victory again, but don’t count out Alfie Glenie either as he was also able to collect his first two podium finishes at the same time. Ted Potts and Abby Lock will hope to be in the mix too, while new boy Joseph Loake will be hoping to live up to his incredible debut after securing a front row start in qualifying followed by 2nd place in Race 2.

The Alfa Romeo Championship will certainly see a battle for overall victory all weekend between the two Modified class runners, with Keith Waite’s Alfa 75 squaring off against former champion Graham Seager’s mighty Alfa GTV. James Thwaites will battle it out with double class champ Paul Webster in the Power Trophy category, while once again the Twin Spark Cup will turn out the most popular entry. Once again it will be past TSC champs Andrew Bourke and Tom Hill lining up against each other, with the likes of James Ford, Richard Ford, Simon Cresswell and Martin Jones all hoping for strong results.

A slightly condensed entry will contest the Toyo Tires Porsche Championship this weekend with leading drivers Garry Lawrence and Nick Hull set to be favourites in the Supersport Boxster class. Leigh Bowden and Andrew Porter will attempt to give them the runaround as much as possible, while the 924 class will see Hugh Peart hoping to continue his dominance against the likes of Peter Smith and John Jones all weekend.

Finally, in addition to all of the BRSCC featured content, there’s also a bumper grid from Superkarting-UK making an appearance, with some 40 karts of varying chassis and engine combinations ready to do battle on a circuit that will surely suit them no end with their rapid power to weight ratio. Expect them to be so quick that blink and you’ll almost miss them!

Scott Woodwiss