CATERHAM COLLECTIVE SET FOR 2018 BRSCC FINALE AT SILVERSTONE
Silverstone is usually a regular venue for our all-important finals weekends at the end of every season, and while we’re not quite done yet at the BRSCC, there’s a number of championships which are all set to be settled this weekend on the International circuit. Predominantly, it’s the Caterham Motorsport roster that makes its final appearance of 2018 with a superb supporting cast set to round off what should be a superb race meeting.
So, there’s six Caterham champions to crown this weekend after Danny Winstanley effectively wrapped up the Avon Tyres Caterham Seven 420R title a round early for the second year in succession. That means that everywhere else, honours are waiting to be claimed by a chosen few. Saturday will decide who becomes champion in both groups of the CarThrottle Caterham Academy, with the Green Group headed up by Justin Heap ahead of Andrew Murgatroyd and Greg Smith; the gap between all three is 14 points before dropped scores. In the White Group, the situation is a little more clear cut as Chris Moore leads Dan Piper by 10 points with Chris having never finished off the podium all season. Whichever way both titles go, there will be two drivers leaving the weekend as champions in their very first season of racing!
Plus, as an added bonus on Sunday, many of the Academy drivers will stick around for a special non-championship, end of season thrash known as the Autumn Trophy. For the first time all season, drivers from both Academy groups will race each other to determine who really is the fastest of them all. With the majority of this year’s Academy taking up the offer, two races will be run as per last year, with both grids based on championship finishing positions. With the gloves off, these two races should be an epic end to another Academy season!
The Draper Tools Caterham Roadsport battle is very close before dropped scores, with last year’s Academy Green Group champion Daniel French leading long time points leader James Murphy but just 7 points. This could have been just a single point had Murphy not incurred penalty points for an incident earlier in the season, but their results have been very similar with a multitude of wins and podiums. Whichever way it goes, both will be deserving champions, but some way, somehow, one of them has to take it. Keep an eye on Caterham CEO Graham MacDonald in these races too, as he looks to consolidate and secure 3rd place in the standings.
There’s four drivers in contention for the ALACO Motorsport Logistics Caterham Seven 270R Championship as Team BRIT driver Jamie Falvey leads Jay McCormack, Gary Smith and Pete Walters with a spread of 16 points between the quartet. Both Falvey and McCormack have had one DNF each but their results have also been incredibly identical. Smith will be fighting hard to disrupt the pair for his own glory, while Walters will need the best weekend possible after a DNF and a top 10 saw him lose valuable points to his rivals.
The most intense title battle of them all could be the Santander Caterham Seven 310R Championship, where there are also four drivers in the running for top honours. Leaving Thruxton, Christian Szaruta holds an 8 point lead before dropped scores over Chris Hutchinson, but that appears to get even smaller when they’re taken into account. Fellow race winners Gordon Sawyer and Lee Bristow are tucked in right behind them with a 17 point gap covering all of them. Given that the 310R races are usually some of the most intense and unpredictable of any Caterham weekend, this title may not be settled until the last corner of the last lap of the very last race!
As mentioned above, the Avon Tyres Caterham Seven 420R Championship is practically done and dusted for Danny Winstanley. His second crown on the bounce, once again secured a round early as it was in 2017, sees him choosing to observe the final rounds from the sidelines to preserve his points total. This means that there should now be a free-for-all for the vice-champion spot, although in reality only two drivers have a real shot at clinching it. William Smith and Sean Byrne are separated by 21 points, so both will be keeping a close eye on each other throughout both races. Expect a host of drivers aiming for personal glory including Jack Brown, John Byrne, Henry Heaton, Stephen Nuttall, Mike Evans and Andres Sinclair to name a few.
Elsewhere on the timetable, we’re close to the end of another season in the BRSCC Fiesta Championship racing with MRF Tyres, as the battle at the top of the overall points will resume between Class C’s Harry Gooding and Class D’s Jamie White. Gooding holds an overall lead of 31 points and will need to make sure he keeps on racking up the wins and podium finishes to stave off White’s efforts. White still leads Class D, however, and his margin over main rival Zachary Lucas is a little more comfortable. Gooding, meanwhile, will have Jam-Sport team boss Jamie Going, Danny Harrison, David Nye and more all chasing him down in their efforts to win a race. Class A will also be another duel between Colin Newbold and Mark Court.
Across the way in the BRSCC Fiesta Junior Championship racing with MRF Tyres, it remains close at the top between points leader James Waite and Magnus Kriklywi with a 32 point margin between the pair on dropped scores. Both drivers shared a win each at Thruxton where they were practically joined at the hip on track in both races, never far away from each other. Isaac Smith will also have a battle on his hands to fend off both Josh Steed and Olly Turner as all three are still in contention to grab 3rd place in the standings. This weekend also sees the debut of brand new FJC driver Ted Potts, son of Alfa and Porsche racer Stephen.
Rounding off the action on Sunday will be some sportscar action in the form of the Sports 2000 Championship, with the final Endurance race of the season that caters to both Duratec and Pinto Championship cars. Top drivers to look out for will include 2017 champion Tom Stoten, Roger Donnan, David Houghton and Peter Williams in the Duratec runners, while Pinto honours look set to be fought between Olivier Kurten, Mike Fry & Chris Snowdon, Mira Feyerabend and more.