The BRSCC’s North Western Centre organised a slickly run meeting at Oulton Park on Saturday, 18th June. Despite many capacity grids, a reported 25 tyre-wall re-builds and, at times, very inclement conditions all eleven 20 minute events had been completed before the circuit’s 6:30 pm curfew came into operation.

The number of Mazda MX5 competitors continues to boom in the UK with both the Ma5da MX5 Championship for Mk1’s and the MX5 Cup for Mk3 cars bringing many entrants to Cheshire. Runners in the former had to be accommodated in 5 Groups (A to E) while a healthy 26 of the newer models took part in qualifying. With a total of 7 contests for the Japanese marque, there were at least two helpings of racing action available for everybody.

Many drivers fielded cars in both categories and this enabled Adam Gore to take a hat-trick of wins during the course of a very busy afternoon for the Radford-based man. He took a dominant 12 second victory in the Ma5da Group B v C encounter and followed this up by taking the laurels when Group A met Group B at the end of the day – this time his winning margin was much smaller as he was just 0.11 seconds ahead of Championship leader, Tom Roche, at the finish.

In between he had taken the honours in a thrilling initial MX5 Cup thrash which saw a 5 car scrap up front. Gore was unable to add to this run of success in his remaining Cup outing as he had to settle for fourth having seen Rob Boston make a decisive break from the pack when Jim Edwards Jnr delayed everyone else with a lurid moment at Hislops on the opening tour (Edwards Jnr then retired in the pits at the end of the next lap).

Back in the Ma5da’s Jordan Stilp took a maiden victory in the Group C v D race. He had moved into the lead when, on a drying circuit, Matt Davies slithered down the Hislops escape road. Stilp maintained his advantage even after a late Safety Car period had bunched the field up and did the double later on when Group E took on Group D. Alan Henderson was his nearest challenger this time but a slide early on at Brittens left him with too much ground to make up.

The first set of Ma5da’s to entertain the crowd endured the worst of the weather when a heavy rain shower drenched the tarmac as Groups A & E lined up on the grid. There was even a small river running across the track at Cascades! It is a great credit to all of the drivers that no major incidents occurred to bring out the Red Flags or Safety Car. Tom Roche took the win when the initial leader, Henderson, had to yield having failed to negotiate Hislops.

Providing some variety were contenders in the Design911.com Porsche Championship. In the Boxster class Dave Clark took two relatively comfortable victories. Steven Brown also did the double in the 924s although Jayson Flegg looked like he was going to mount a challenge but a spin in each race at Cascades and Old Hall respectively blunted his threat.

There was one event each for the Post 89 and Pre 90 Avon Tyres Northern FF1600s. The race for the modern cars was fantastic with 5 of them constantly changing places. With a brief shower falling as the competitors gathered in the assembly area Scottish visitor Ken Thirlwall opted for a wet set up. This gave him an initial advantage that saw him exchanging the lead with John Murphy. When Murphy spun down the order, Chris Middlehurst stepped up to the plate and soon demoted Thirlwall as the latter’s tyres overheated. Having been become a regular on the podium in the past few months, Middlehurst hung on to be the second person of the day to enjoy his first ever victory. Martin Short took third after Mike Bennett retired following contact with the barriers.

The largest winning margin was achieved in the shortest race of the day! The Pre 90 runners were Red Flagged on the opening lap after Nigel Dolan, Bruce Evans and Mario Sarchet collided on The Avenue. The restart over 15 minutes went to John Loebell by a considerable margin from Chris Stones. Andrew Thomas was the first of a jostling pack to come home – taking third in the process.

The full results can be viewed here: OULTON RESULTS

Dave Williams


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