The Mazda MX-5 Championship is bringing forty-four Mk1s to the party!. Photo: Jon Elsey
The BRSCC Midlands Centre returns to Rockingham tomorrow for their third visit of the season having already having run the British GT meeting on 2/3rd May plus a regular ‘club’ meeting two weeks later. The difference this time is that it is just a one-day meeting, so with a dozen races on the schedule the action will be fast and furious!
The first of the twelve races goes off just before lunch and features the ‘new for 2015’ Mk5 Production GTi series. Jason Tingle has been the stand out driver so far with the perfect return of four wins from four. However, the rumours in the GTi paddock are that Simon Hill has finally got to grips with his Mk5 and is ready to make Tingle work harder.
This Rockingham meeting will live long in the memory of all the GQ Caterham Academy drivers as it will be their first ever proper circuit race! All thirty-nine drivers (who are split into White & Green groups) are novice competitors and so far have just competed in a couple of sprints. It will be very interesting to see how the drivers adapt to Rockingham’s unique layout. The Green Group are the first to hit the track and Rob Yates has a one-point lead over Rui Ferreira. The White Group, headed by Andy Perry, will nervously await their turn two hours later.
The GTi Mk5 series’ older brother, the Mk2 Championship which is also backed by Teekay Couplings, is next up. They have produced some impressive grids this season and tomorrow will be no exception with thirty-one Mk2s entered. Championship new-comer Tom Witts is the man who sits at the top of the pack, with Jason Tingle, who is competing in both Mk2s and Mk5s, in close pursuit.
The biggest entry of the raceday will be that of the BRSCC Mazda MX-5 Championship with forty-four of the popular Mk1’s preparing to do battle. With so many cars entered, the drivers will be split into A and B groups with each having two races. There is relegation and promotion between each group which just intensifies the already high level of competition! The consistency of Reigate’s Simon Baldwin has propelled him to the top of the points table, although he hasn’t actually won a race since the opening weekend at Silverstone over Easter. Simon will be determined to put that right but is experienced enough to know that if he keeps picking up points he won’t be too far away when the prizes are handed out come the end of the season.
Making the trip down for an away day from their North East base is the Darlington & District Motor Club’s Northern Saloon & Sports Car Championship. An eclectic twenty-strong field will contest two fifteen minute races with cars such as a Lotus Elise, Ginetta G20, Peugeot 205 and Vauxhall Corsa all on display. The diversity of the championship is illustrated by the joint leaders who are tied on ninety points; Kirk Armitage is in a BMW M3 while Stuart Carr’s campaigns a Caterham CSR.
The weather at Rockingham tomorrow forecasts some heavy rain in the morning, but dry, cloudy and not too warm for the rest of the day. You can see a detailed forecast at Rockingham weather
The timetable, Final Instructions and entry list can be found at Rockingham Raceday