SILVERSTONE FINALS RACE WEEKEND

Event Complete

Silverstone International Circuit

SILVERSTONE FINALS RACE WEEKEND

7 October 2023 - 8 October 2023

It’s time for the British Racing & Sports Car Club to host the first of its all-important Finals Weekends for the 2023 season, as several of its most popular and best supported championships reach their climax on Silverstone’s International circuit and we discover the provisional fate of each of the titles on the line, all of which will be subject to official confirmation. With a timetable full of one-make sportscar, tin-top and mini-endurance racing on the cards, this is sure to be a dramatic and enthralling two days with plenty of twists and turns in store.


GAZ SHOCKS MAZDA MX-5 CHAMPIONSHIP
The GAZ Shocks Mazda MX-5 Championship heads to Silverstone’s International circuit to conclude what has turned out to be a very competitive 2023 season, which has seen new stars made as well as established names using their time to shine to full effect. The past seven race weekends have all produced fascinating stories of their own, but now is the time to provisionally decide who walks away from this year’s title race as champion.

After Donington Park, Steve Foden’s points lead at the top of the table was cut down to 46 points after he failed to finish from the first race and then couldn’t secure a win from the two on Sunday. In his place on the top step came Adam Sparrow and Luke Pullen, the latter finally clinching two long awaited inaugural wins in fine style. Given that none of the results from this weekend can be used as dropped scores, on paper it looks fairly simple for Steve.

So long as he isn’t outscored by more than the deficit to Sparrow in second (a tie would give Foden the championship on countback of wins), the title can be his. But no dropped scores from this weekend is also a double-edged sword, as one slip-up and even a retirement could change the complexion of the title race substantially. Especially as Sparrow will be on his toes to try and outscore Foden as much as he can, if he can. Sparrow has really stepped up in 2023 to become a title contender and with five wins to date this year, he can be proud of his achievements this season regardless of this weekend’s outcome.

Third place also looks all but set to go the way of exciting young rookie Ted Bradbury, who really has been a revelation ever since he stuck it on pole for his first ever car race at the opening round on the GP circuit in March. To not only score that and seven podiums in your first year of car racing, but to also clinch your first win in the pouring rain at Snetterton too, speaks volumes of just how much potential Ted still has and should he stick around for next year, there’s every chance he could be a favourite to challenge for the title in 2024.

The rest of the top five has changed somewhat and could still do so before the weekend is done. After Jason Greatrex was disqualified from the Donington meeting, Owen Mills has risen up to fourth place as a result. While Owen’s results haven’t been on the level of the title contenders with a sole top five to his name, he has been incredibly solid and consistent in and around the top ten on a regular basis. In fact he’s only finished outside the top ten twice in all those he’s completed this year, something which others have struggled to do at times. He should be proud of making the top five this year, and will look at 2024 as a target to improve further.

As for fifth, Adam Craig is unable to compete this weekend, meaning his P5 is now up for grabs and looks set be clinched by double Donington winner Pullen at least. Now bouncing with even more confidence following his two victories, Luke will be buoyed by his current race winning form and will want to carry this momentum to Silverstone. If he can put on the same kind of performance here, there’s even a chance he could still steal fourth from Mills too should he outscore him by enough points.

Greatrex’s Donington DQ also changes the look of the Masters points table too, with the likable Australian Tim Dore now sitting atop the standings here. He’s almost eighty points ahead of second placed Graham Rumsey with Clive Chisnall nearly twenty points further back in third ahead of Jonathan Fieldsend and Kevin Dengate. Tim’s continued to show great progress in his MX-5 career and if he can provisionally sew up the Masters title this weekend, it will certainly be his crowning achievement to date.


DOWNFORCE RADIO MAZDA MX-5 CLUBMAN CHAMPIONSHIP
Saturday at Silverstone on the International circuit will see the 2023 Downforce Radio Mazda MX-5 Clubman Championship provisionally decided, subject to official confirmation, as Matt Fletcher bids to pick up the title he’s been questing for over the last couple of seasons. Now he has the chance to make it his, but he knows his main rivals will push him right to the end.

Matt’s sixth win of the season last time out at Donington Park ended a six race winless streak that had seen him chasing the tales of his rivals at Snetterton, Cadwell Park and the first Donington race of the weekend before triumphing. Dropping points to his rivals in such a way means his lead heading back to Silverstone is 23 points, and that’s not a massive margin in context. Especially when none of Saturday’s two races can be used as dropped scores and one mishap from Matt could turn the title picture on its head. Nonetheless, when he’s on form he’s almost untouchable, and he needs that pace to present itself once more to provisionally get the job done.

Jordan Pimley has been the main benefactor on most of the days that Fletcher couldn’t win, as he picked up four wins from this season including three on the bounce from Snetterton and Cadwell. Jordan has really stepped up his game in 2023 and becoming a genuine title contender is something that will surely put him in good stead for next season should he return. Third in points is Jon Pethick, who could still replicate his vice champion status from last year if he scores well and other results go his way too. Having scored a number of podiums throughout the year, he could have even placed a little higher had he turned out at Snetterton, but his results in the other rounds have helped him remain in a current podium position. He’ll be hoping to end 2023 on a high note too.

Fourth place looks relatively set for Jack Warry barring any dramas with an advantage over the current tie for fifth of nearly fourty points, and he’d love to try and throw himself into the mix for a top five finish or even a podium if the pace is there. As for that tie for fifth, that’s between Jamie Turner and Del Paice and both will be hoping to break the deadlock by the end of Saturday. Which of the two drivers that Silverstone will favour more remains to be seen, but this could be an interesting little sub-plot to the main title fight.

Del will also have another battle on his hands over in the Masters ranks as he leads the way there by just seven points over Michael Pearce in second place. Nick Le Doyen is a few points back in third place with Chris Thelwell in fourth, but the main to watch that could shoot up the table further still is fifth placed Jonathan Greensmith. Jonny may have missed the opening two weekends, but since Croft he’s been one of the most consistent and strongest Masters drivers this year. He’s actually won the category more times than anyone else with seven to date and while fifth could even be the best he can manage after this weekend, a couple more wins could put him in prime position to challenge for the honours in 2024.


CLAPHAM NORTH MOT MAZDA MX-5 SUPERCUP
It’s been a year that’s seen more battles, more intensity, more excitement and more competition than ever before and now as Silverstone’s International circuit welcomes the Clapham North MOT Mazda MX-5 SuperCup back to the home of British motorsport for its season finale, there’s three titles on the line to settle provisionally and each of them has its own unique story to tell.

Aidan Hills is on the verge of the Pro Class title that he’s quested for on and off over the past few seasons. Ever since his first year in SuperCup which earned him the Rookie of the Year accolade that season, Aidan has been a constant front-runner in the championship in the seasons he’s competed, and making a full time return in 2023 has unquestionably bore fruit. Ten wins thus far have ensured he’s led the way for just about the entire season to date, but Donington Park last time out was a hiccup he could have done without.

A DNF and subsequent 12th place in race three from Donington saw him take a hit to his lead, now 47 points over teammate James Cossins in second place. While that’s still a healthy lead to hold heading to Silverstone, with no ability to drop any of the scores from this weekend, that means Aidan really cannot afford another weekend like Donington, otherwise his title chances will be up in smoke. That could open the door for Cossins if he did, who was delighted to score a hat-trick of wins to get his victory tally off the mark in 2023 at last. Prior to that, his results have been consistently getting better and more regular as the year has gone on and now a race winner this season, he will wish to end it back on the top step.

Patrick Fletcher has been another superb title contender this year, also managing to reach victory lane with three to his name this year. He’s less than fourty points back from Cossins, but everything could change in a heartbeat if any of the top three has a slip-up or a bad weekend in general. All of them will need to have their wits about them and firmly stay out of trouble. Tom Griffiths looks set to collect fourth place in Pro class after an excellent second year in the championship that’s also included four podium finishes too. Should 2024 also be on the cards, expect him to be on pace from the outset. As for fifth place, outgoing champion Will Blackwell-Chambers will be watching from the sidelines, so Alex Stott looks set to pick up the place in his absence and he’ll be on a high after his first podium at Donington too.

Over in the Club class, Robert Way has been the driver to beat for most of the season, but at Donington Park he had to share the honours with Wilbur Tiley who picked up two class wins for his troubles. Going to Silverstone, Robert is ahead of second placed Kamal Kalsi by sixty points which is the most comfortable lead across all three class leaders this weekend, while Bruce Robinson and Chris Ginn will be ready to settle what’s felt like a season long tussle over the final podium spot. Tiley also goes to Silverstone in P5 as mentioned, but he could spoil the party once again with more wins.

However, the closest battle will be over in the Masters category where the scene is thick with tension. Nick Rutter currently has the lead in the standings here, but only by a single solitary point over Rob Boston Racing teammate George Grant. The Clapham North man has been on a real charge in recent weekends, including a hat-trick at Cadwell Park and consistently outsourcing Nick at Donington too. If George does the same again here at Silverstone, he could become Masters champion after several years of trying, but he must be on his a-game from the word go. Except joyous celebrations if he does indeed achieve it! Robinson and Ginn also have third in Masters to debate too here, while former champ Martin Tolley is assured P5 whatever happens.


AIRTEC MOTORSPORT FIESTA ST240 CHAMPIONSHIP
In what could turn out to be the closest and most intense battle for the title this weekend at Silverstone on the International circuit, the AIRTEC Motorsport Fiesta ST240 Championship is set to feature a highly-charged contest for the Pro class title between Albert Webster and Alastair Kellett and just two races left to provisionally settle it.

It’s been a real back and forth since the beginning of the season as both Kellett and Webster have dueled at the top of the standings, with Kellett initially taking the advantage before it swung in Webster’s favour at Oulton Park when Albert took his first victory. This then set off the power struggle at the top of the table between both drivers. Silverstone National produced two wins for Webster, before both drivers retired from Croft’s first race and then Kellett charged from the back of the grid to win race two. But, dropping more points to Webster in race three put Albert eight points in front as Silverstone approaches.

Albert could win the title at his first attempt in senior racing after graduating from Fiesta Juniors, while Alastair has been searching for his second Fiesta crown after missing out on it over the last two seasons. Third time lucky could be the charm for Kellett, but Webster will have the motivation to keep and hold the points lead and take another title for an FJC graduate.

It’s looking equally close for the final step on the overall and Pro class standings, held by outgoing Civic Cup champion Matt Luff who would be very happy after his first season in Fiestas to come away with a championship podium, provided he can hold back both John Cooper and Simon Horrobin. Both were on great form last time at Croft, with Cooper collected a race win and Horrobin never off the podium all weekend either. Between the three of them, there’s a margin of 18 points covering the three drivers and with no dropped scores useable from this weekend, any poor result from any of them could spell the end of their chances.

While Pro class is a close affair, the battle for the Club class honours looks a little more straightforward. Morgan Kidd has been on fine form all season and heads to Silverstone with an advantage of 56 points over second placed Connor Blackburn. There’s even a chance that should Morgan ensure she’s still at least 51 points ahead by the conclusion of race one, that she could provisionally secure the class honours before the final race of the season. Blackburn will need to race as hard as he can, especially with third placed Caitlin May only four points behind him and both will want to pick up that runner up spot if possible. Marco Ricci and Archie Johnson complete the top five, both hoping for a solid end to their year.


VINYL DETAIL FIESTA ST150 CHALLENGE

It’s been quite the season for the Vinyl Detail Fiesta ST150 Challenge in its new guise this year, running as an ST150-only championship for the very first time and enjoying some superb racing across the campaign. Now, however, it all comes to a close this weekend at the Silverstone International circuit with two more races to provisionally decide who walks away from 2023 as the champion.

With Croft in the rear view mirror and the contenders firmly fixed on Silverstone this weekend, the championship lands at the home of British motorsport with Sam Beckett in control at the top of the standings. He takes a lead of 38 points into the final two races ahead of teammate Dan Robinson, and looking at various permutations, there’s a possibility that Sam could clinch the provisional title by the end of the first race.The team will be getting their abacuses out to work it out on the fly, but that’s how the crown could be settled this weekend.

Beckett’s first season running his own team has been a fruitful one at that. Despite a tentative start, he and the SBR Motorsport squad have really hit their stride as the season’s progressed, with Sam and Dan especially delivering their cars to the rostrum and victory lane more than once this year. Both drivers and the entire team should be proud of the progress as they now stand on the verge of a 1-2 in the championship.

Thomas Ikin has also been mighty impressive in his first season of tin-top racing after previous experience in single seaters, and he goes to Silverstone third in points and just five ahead of Tensport Performance teammate Matt Pimlott. Matt lead the championship at one stage early on, but recent car troubles have hampered his charge somewhat, forcing him to adapt and rethink his approach to races and bank everything he can. Also in close attention is outgoing champion Mike Blackburn, who’s found a turn of pace of late with wins at Cadwell Park and Croft, but has also had a rather character building title defense this season. If he can claw back the 12 points on Thomas and Matt and other results go his way, there’s every chance he could still leave the year with a top three in the standings.

Samuel Watkins makes a welcome return to the grid and could be the proverbial cat amongst the pigeons when it comes to points scoring, especially if his pace is good. Jade Goodwin is another returnee to the ST150 grid, now running under SBR’s banner for the first time after a successful first test with the team at Oulton Park. Guests Andrew Ward and Shanel Drewe also return, along with debutant Dillon Davis for 20Ten Racing.


NANKANG TYRE CITYCAR CUP & STUDENT MOTORSPORT CHALLENGE
All good things must come to an end as the saying goes, and in the case of the 2023 Nankang Tyre CityCar Cup and Student Motorsport Challenge, the final rounds of the season take place this weekend at Silverstone on the International circuit with both the overall and SMC titles to be provisionally decided, both subject to official confirmation of course.

It’s been a year that’s mostly seen domination by one Elliot Lettis, as the podium finisher from 2022 has really stepped up his pace another gear throughout 2023 and effectively gone on nothing short of a rampage. Of the seventeen races run thus far, Elliot has claimed victory in eleven of them and finished second or third in another four. In fact, the previous meeting at Donington Park produced his worst results of the year, immediately becoming two of his current dropped scores – although this does now bring second placed Stuart Bliss back into the fold.

Stuart heads to Silverstone this weekend just thirteen points behind Lettis with the real potential to end the weekend on top of the standings, incredibly stealing the title from under Elliot’s nose. Essentially, Stuart would need to outscore Elliot by at least seven points in each race in order to standing any chance to provisionally becoming champion, but as we know, that task is much easier said than tone. Nonetheless, both camps will be furiously doing the calculations to work out who needs what to succeed.

Meanwhile, Richard Jepp looks all set to pick up third place in the overall standings to go alongside his potential Student Motorsport Challenge success (more on that in a moment), as he’s been a consistent podium and top five finisher all throughout the year. Richard has also led a couple of races at times to prove the Team Northbrook car has great pace outright, only for bad luck to knock him off the top spot before the flag. He’ll hope to send 2023 on a high note. Behind him, Richard Snuggs and Bradley Porter will face off to break the deadlock between them for fourth place, with both enjoy excellent break-out seasons this year and hoping to end Silverstone ahead of each other.

Over in the Student Motorsport Challenge, Team Northbrook Racing look to be on the verge of securing their second title in a row and it could end up being a formality come the conclusion of race one. They enter Silverstone with a lead of 44 points on dropped scores, so unless terrible luck befalls them, it seems like they already have one had on the trophy. East Surrey College will be pushing hard to end the season on a high in second, as will West Suffolk College in third, while Barracksport and Queen Ethelburga’s will wish to score some solid points to provisionally lock in fourth and fifth respectively, although these two could end up swapping places if results go their way.


SW MOTORSPORTS CLUBSPORT TROPHY

With the special end-of-season race at the Race of Remembrance still to run in November, this weekend at Silverstone marks the final race in the regular season for the SW Motorsports ClubSport Trophy, which heads back to the home of British motorsport for its third visit of the year and completing the set of all three circuit layouts. After the GP circuit in March and the National in August, now it’s time for the International circuit in October. As per usual, the grid is fully stacked and set to be a sold-out affair with all 44 grid spots set to be filled.

In Class A, home to the fastest cars that run to the maximum power to weight ratio cap of 235bhp per tonne, early favourite will be regular runner Phiroze Bilimoria in his VW Scirocco and he’ll have competition from fellow VW racers David Cox and Mark Jones in their Golfs, along with the Honda Integra DC5 of Lee and Jack Reynolds, Jonathan Hayes’ BMW and the Ford Fiesta ST240 race car with Larry Cosmin at the wheel.

Class B has the usual healthy and varied entried, headed up by no less than five of the impressive Audi TT Cup Racing cars continuing to prove their versatility. Andrew Dyer and Scott Parkin pilot theirs each solo, Paul and Brandon Savage share another, Patrick and John Booth bring one of their 4G Racing built cars out to play, while the other is in the hands of Ross Makar sharing with Daniel Molloy. They’ll be up against Barrie Culley’s SEAT Leon Cupra cup car, a trio of Honda Civics driven by Trevor & Joseph Hurrell, Philip Hart and Shay Kavanagh, Mike Parsons in his VW Golf.

Another great variety can be found in Class C, with regulars Stuart Kilroy in his Peugeot 207 GTi, Jonathan Pascal and Matt Massey’s Honda Civic, Charlie Hayes’ BMW Compact and Chris Stone in another Civic. Also in the line up will be the Honda S2000 of David Smitheram and Richard Hartshorne and the latest BMW 1 Series SuperCup car with Chris Coomer and Tim Evans behind the wheel, as the newest build continues its development. Also on the grid will be the Renault Clio of Rob Quantrell and John Marlow.

Over in Class D, ten cars are ready to battle for the victory with the bulk of the entry here being a mix of Mazda MX-5s and Renault Clios. In the Mazda ranks, Lee Davy-Martin pilots a Mk3 SuperCup racer with another featuring SuperCup regular Scott Wright at the wheel, while a third will feature Ben Tunbridge and Rob Sawyer. With the Clios, Jason Brough, Jared Coulson, Cavan Taylor and Steven Watson all wheel out their Renaults, with all of the above also joined by James and Roger Stonestreet’s Ford Fiesta ST150, Julian Hamer and Andrew Stephens in the MINI Cooper S, and Cameron Bell’s Toyota MR2.

Finally, Class E features Mk1 Mazda MX-5s with Pete Smith and James Dennison in one, Gary Paddock in another and CityCar Cup regular Liam Browning sharing a third with Stephanie Sore. Speaking of CityCars, Andrew Payne wheels out his Peugeot 107 to be shared alongside Nick Underwood, Colin Whitehouse enters his BMW E36 Compact as do Phil and Matt Adcock, the regular pair of Mazda2s are back in action as well and the Fiat Panda of Dean Lomas and Andrew Walker also features in this weekend’s line-up.


MODIFIED FORD SERIES

The Modified Ford Series has featured up and down the length and breadth of the UK’s race tracks this year and even in continental Europe with a trip to Spa-Francorchamps in Belgium in the summer, but now it comes full circle back to Silverstone where it began the season on the GP circuit. The 2023 Modified Ford Series concludes this weekend on the International layout where the entry is full to bursting and over fourty Fords will take to the track plus a small handful of reserves – it’s a grid that’s sure to look absolutely sublime when racing gets underway.

Super A houses four wheel drive Fords with a great little variety in its line-up. There’s Piers Warwick’s Mk1 Escort, Lloyd Jamieson’s Escort Cosworth Maxi and Dave Cockell’s lightning quick Escort Cosworth, while Luke Bennett also turns out in the unique SHP V8 Eurocar for an spicy fourth element to the class. One has to wonder what this car could potentially achieve in Sunday’s two races.

Class A has the usual powerhouses at the top of the class, featuring Ashley Shellswell’s Sierra XR4i, Alan Breck in his Capri, Sierra Cosworths for Stephen Scott-Dunwoodie, Brian Lilley, Sean Fairweather and the Sapphires of Scott and Dave Matthias, while Rory Jose’s shocking pink Focus ST Mk2 will have plenty of straight line speed. So too will multiple race winner James Allen in his ex-Time Attack Focus Mk2 as well, usually a car favourite to win and expected to do well here again. Ralph Higson also turns out in a turbo Mk1 Focus too.

For Class B+, this weekend’s grid see an small influx of regular drivers from the BRSCC’s own Fiesta ST240 Championship, with Caitlin May, Adam Clark and Simon Horrobin all electing to join in the fun for the final round. Wayne Crabtree also wheels out his Escort Mk1 on the grid, joined too by Piers Grange’s Mk2 Escort, David Guthrie’s ST150 Ecoboost, Nigel Craig and Malcolm Harding in their souped up Mk2s, and Steve Goldsmith’s wonderful little Ford Anglia. After it entertained at last year’s Formula Ford Festival at Brands Hatch, expect it to be sideways more often than not if track conditions get a little more slippery

Chris Baker’s Escort RS1600i features in Class B, along with the ST150s of Tim Sandhu, Mac McCarthy and Sam Shimwell here too, plus the Focuses of Adam Underhill and Paul Solbe, and Harry Hardy’s rapid little Puma too among others. Over in Class C, there’s more familiar names and regular back out to play too – watch out for Dave Barrett’s older Fiesta Zetec S, Jimmy Neophytou’s Mk1 Fiesta, Kevan Hadfield in another Puma and Alex Boam in the second of Boamerang Racing’s ST150s, only this one sports a Zetec engine instead.


MINI 7 RACING CLUB – MIGLIA & LIBRE – Written by Richard Williamson

Adding a little bit of extra excitement and spice to the timetable this weekend, we’re thrilled to welcome back our friends at the Mini 7 Racing Club as they join us at Silverstone for their respective final rounds of their regular season too. A grid-full of power-packed 1293cc Miglias should make the ground shake for the national finals meeting and although the championship has already been decided expect the competition out front to be no less intense Last time out at Croft in North Yorkshire it was Aaron Smith who secured his fourth national Miglia title, coming home 2nd behind Andrew Jordan, the latter’s second victory of the weekend. Former BTCC champ’ Jordan himself sits 4th in the standings and will be looking to finish higher overall but has both Kane Astin and Rupert Deeth to overcome and who are currently separated by 1 point in their bid to take the runner-up trophy. All are former Miglia champions but they will also have their work cut out looking in their mirrors and defending from the likes of Ben Colburn, Phil Bullen-Brown, Colin Peacock and Endaf Owens who will no doubt be hot on their heels. Expect race action to be on the Richter scale!

Starting behind the Miglias, the up-to-1400cc A-Series-based Libre category sees Julian Proctor atop the charts although 2022 class champion Richard Colburn comes to Silverstone on a run of five straight wins which has narrowed the gap to 14 points. However, unlike Proctor, Colburn has no drop scores to lose from his tally, but around Silverstone their 5-port engines may have to play second fiddle to the torquier 16-valve or 8-port examples of class rivals, including Huw Turner, Peter Hills and Josh Evans. Should be a fascinating contest!


MINI 7 RACING CLUB – SE7EN – & SE7EN-S – Written by Richard Williamson

It should be no surprise that the destiny of the Mini Se7en title goes into the finals weekend at Silverstone still undecided as that has pretty much been the way of things for close to 60 years. Joe Thompson holds a narrow 5-point advantage over Mike Jordan but the latter has considerably less scores to discount, the hugely experienced racer realistically only needing to finish within a place or two of Thompson’s best this weekend. Similarly, both Ross Billison and Spencer Wanstall will require ‘snookers’ to overhaul the pair ahead of them, although each has shown the pace to be on the winning step this season, whilst outgoing champ’ Connor O’Brien, along with Glen Woodbridge and Darren Thomas could also have an influence on how the podium positions fall into place.

Pacesetting in the latter half of 2023, as well as taking the chequer elsewhere has been the key to Jonathon Page’s claim on the 1275cc Mini Se7en-S formula title. Three victories and eight other podiums have elevated his total to where rivals have simply run out of races to bridge the gap. Brother Matthew has also chipped in with a couple of wins and several fastest laps to further cement that lead, leaving title rivals Matt Ayres and Frazer Hack to rue missed opportunities. Ayres and Hack have shared eight wins, but a ‘mechanical wipeout’ at Zandvoort lost the former three bites at the cherry, conversely ‘off-course wipeouts’ have blighted the latter’s campaign, whilst former champ’ Michael Winkworth has seen a return to form despite missing several rounds.

Scott Woodwiss / Richard Williamson

Circuit

Length: 1.85 miles

Circuit

Length: 1.85 miles

01327 320280

Silverstone Circuit
Towcester
Northamptonshire
NN12 8TN

CLUB PARTNERS

Race Entries
& Membership