CADWELL PARK TAKES COMPETITORS UP NORTH
It’s twisty, technical, challenging and either a driver’s dream or worst nightmare; yet at the same time it’s visually one of best circuit in the UK in terms of location and its presentation. While we may only be making a sole visit this season, the mighty Cadwell Park marks the first race meeting of the season for our Northern Centre as we begin a busy summer of race weekends. With the championships in attendance this weekend, the paddock is full to bursting with top quality racers!
A fine example is our pair of Mazda MX-5 contests, who always put on a great show wherever they touch down. The Mazda MX-5 Championship for the Mk1 generation model once again boasts an impressive 40+ car entry full of the usual suspects vying for victory. Last year’s vice-champion Oliver Allwood has quickly asserted himself once again as a formidable opponent to reigning champ Will Blackwell-Chambers, as both have taken a clean sweep of victories each from the first two meetings at Brands Hatch and Snetterton. Thanks to his slightly better results on the whole, Allwood leads the way, but be on the lookout for the likes of Brian Trott, Mike Comber, Sam Smith, Martin Tolley, Teddy Clark, John Langridge, Stephen Foden and Jason Greatrex to try and rewrite the form book.
Their compatriots over in the new-for-2018 Mazda MX-5 Super Series have also showcasing some great racing in cars identical to those found in the MX-5 SuperCup, who are also out in force this weekend on the TCR UK package once again down at Brands Hatch. Over here in Lincolnshire, it’ll be another chapter written into the ongoing epic between Jake Bailey and Joshua Jackson for bragging rights come the end of the season. So far, Jackson outscores Bailey in terms of victories, but with no points on offer in this series it’s all about how much silverware anyone can take away. A good selection of Snetterton’s competitors are back, while SuperCup familiar Tom Collins also joins the Series for the first time too.
An equally packed grid is also set to feature from the incredible Nankang Tyres BMW Compact Cup. These feisty little rear wheel drive tin-tops really have shown put on quite the display of top class racing which the championship has started to become accustomed with. Reigning champion Steven Dailly couldn’t repeat the dominant display he showed at the Brands Hatch opener last time out at Snetterton, when Matthew Parkes battled his way to a first ever victory. With Ian Jones and Owen Hunter for company too, this quartet looks set to carry on where they left off here at Cadwell. Liam McGill, Mark Skeats and Gordan Macmillan are other names to watch amongst another near-capacity grid, while everyone should also look in their mirrors for the return of last year’s vice-champion Sam Carrington Yates.
But the tin-top action doesn’t stop there – the Fiesta Championship racing with MRF Tyres makes a welcome return to the track after a break of more than two months since their opening rounds back at Brands Hatch in late March. That weekend it was all about Danny Harrison vs Harry Gooding for Class C and overall honours, with the former completing an impressive hat-trick. Both are back in action again, along with defending Class C champ David Nye, Ryan Faulconbridge, Myles Baker and Jamie Going to name a few. John Cooper should be odds on favourite for Class D honours, while Colin Newbold appears as the sole Class A representative. Racing should be fast and frantic here!
Also representing the Ford camp are our sensational stars of the future in the Fiesta Junior Championship racing with MRF Tyres. James Waite picked up an incredible double in the opening two races and has his eyes set on duplicating that feat to firmly lock himself in as championship favourite. Podium contenders Isaac Smith, Josh Steed and Olly Turner will all be out to try and stop him, while Todd Garner, Magnus Kriklywi, Nathanael Hodgkiss and Alfie Glenie will all be keen for more progress. Cadwell also marks the first appearance of the season for Abby Lock too, meaning this weekend’s races should be fierce.
While they may only be the sole single seater championship on the timetable this weekend, they will also be the fastest cars you’ll see on track throughout it too. The lightning fast Speed Group F1000 Championship will literally live up to its name, as the small, lightweight bike-engined Jedi Mk6 formula racers will tear around a circuit of which one example holds the outright 4-wheel lap record! Defending champion Michael Watton had to leave Snetterton with one win and a broken engine, so expect him to quickly bounce back and fend off further advances from Paul Butcher, Dan Clowes and Adam Walker. Plus, keep an eye out for their superb selection of debutants appearing for the first time, as they all cope with getting to grips with these little pocket rockets!
Fresh from an enthralling trip north of the border to Knockhill supporting TCR UK, the Toyo Tires Porsche Championship brings an elegant mix of race-prepared Boxsters and classic 924s to play around Lincolnshire’s meandering turns and elevation changes. Early Race Boxster pacesetter Adam Southgate will be hoping to continue his fine form after clinching 5 wins from 6 races, with James Coleman having secured the other last time out. Drivers such as Jayson Flegg, Kevin Molyneaux and Nick Hull will be out to stop them, while Gavin Johnson should be the man to beat in the 924s against Alastair Kirkham, Hugh Peart and new boy Jason Wood.
Last but certainly not least the Alfa Romeo Championship are here for their third appearance of the season, just over a month since they visited the equally picturesque Anglesey Circuit on the Welsh Coast. At the top of the overall table, the points lead is shared by defending Power Trophy champion Paul Webster and former Twin Spark Cup champ Tom Hill. Both are here to keep up their momentum, with both expected to work hard for their respective victories. Webster will have to deal with the McFie brothers Chris and Simon in their pair of Fiat Punto Abarths in Power Trophy, while Twin Spark will see Hill up against familiar foes Simon Cresswell, Dave Messenger, Michael Tydeman and Richard Ford. Christopher Oxborough will also be the sole Modified class representative.