BRSCC SAYS GOODBYE TO ROCKINGHAM AT CLUB’S FINAL MEETING IN CORBY
Emotions ran high at the end of what was our very last race meeting to be held at Rockingham Motor Speedway in Corby, Northamptonshire, as the BRSCC South Eastern Centre oversaw two days of track action that certainly did more than enough to allow the club to give the circuit a fitting send-off of our own.
The race for the title in the BRSCC Mazda MX-5 Championship saw the pendulum swing back and forth between contenders and teammates Will Blackwell-Chambers and Samuel Smith. While Smith was able to the lead of the first Group A race initially, it was John Langridge who would become the fly in Mike Comber Racing’s ointment as he proceeded to take the lead and fend off both Smith and Blackwell-Chambers. The latter eventually made it through to secure his first win since Silverstone, followed by Langridge and Smith respectively. The trio were at it again on Sunday morning in the second Group A race, but it was Smith that came out on top after a frantic last lap battle saw him pull off an audacious pass inside Blackwell-Chambers at the Tarzan Hairpin. He took the win as Langridge followed him through for 2nd place, with WB-C settling for 3rd.
The final race of the group was just like the first two, as all three drivers took turns to lead the race with Blackwell-Chambers finally coming out on top to take his second win of the weekend. Langridge yet again was 2nd with Smith in 3rd, leaving the championship to be settled at the last rounds of the season at Donington Park. It’s certainly going to be a nail biter!
There was action aplenty in the Group B races in the MX-5 Championship too, as the first race was forced to be restarted after a first lap incident. Once the restart was underway, Jack Moody came away with the group win ahead of Bryn Griffiths and championship debutant Rafal Drzaszcz. Their second race was also red flagged after Richard Wootten sadly bit the outside wall heading out of Brook Chicane hard. On this occasion, victory went to Marcus Bailey followed by Jon Pethick and Lewis Cannon. Finally, it was left to Clive Powles to pick up a win after retiring earlier in the day with mechanical issues, taking the chequered flag in the final Group B race from Scott Leach and Bryn Griffiths.
The BRSCC Mazda MX-5 Super Series’ main rivals Jake Bailey and Joshua Jackson were at it again in all three of their races across both days. Bailey proved straight away that he was on the pace around the Corby circuit by taking pole in qualifying and then taking the Race 1 victory with Jackson constantly on his tail throughout; Richard Breland would pick up the final podium place in 3rd. The top two would replicate their positions in the second race, followed by Jeremy Crook taking a superb 3rd place for his troubles, but it was the final encounter where Jackson was finally able to prize the door open and make it past. The lead would change on the run to the chequered flag as Jackson picked up a better exit from the Brook chicane and beat Bailey to the line by 0.069 seconds. Breland also put in a superb charge from the rear of the field to take another 3rd place.
Paul Webster was a runaway winner in the first BRSCC Alfa Romeo Championship race, as he romped to the chequered flag by an unchallenged margin of almost 29 seconds to take the overall and Power Trophy class wins. Fellow classmates Scott Austin and Robin Eyre-Maunsell rounded off the podium in 2nd and 3rd respectively, with Tom Hill taking a Twin Spark Cup victory ahead of Richard Ford and Kristian Leith. There was more of the same from Webster in Race 2 on Sunday, albeit this time by an even bigger margin of 37 seconds, with Austin and Eyre-Maunsell once again completing the podium. Richard Ford took his turn at the top of the Twin Spark Cup podium from Hill and Leith.
Four races awaited the Golfmech Global GT Lights who had made the trip all the way across from their native home in Ireland. Formula Ford star Jake Byrne picked up the first win, before Max Drennan collected the first of two victories in the second race. James Thompson then made it three different winners from three races as he just been Byrne to the win in the third encounter, and Drennan then rounded off a successful weekend with his second victory of the meeting.
After 17 years of competition, we would like to extend a heartfelt thank you to every single person at Rockingham Motor Speedway, both past and present, who have been able to make our race meetings possible at the venue. The cessation of all track and racing activities at the end of the season will see British motorsport lose an important landmark in its history and we wish everyone currently involved with the operations of the circuit the very best of luck with their future endeavours from next year onwards.