MX-5 SUPERCUP REACHES HALF WAY AT CROFT THIS WEEKEND
The popular Croft Circuit in North Yorkshire sees the 2019 BRSCC Mazda MX-5 SuperCup hit the half way point in the season, with the championship battle showing no signs of slowing down. The previous rounds at Anglesey saw three different race winners, two of which part of the trifecta at the top of the table separated by just 12 points – and the name at the top of the standings wasn’t one of them. Who’s got what it takes to lead the way this time?
Points leader Luke Herbert heads the field coming into this weekend with an 8 point advantage on dropped scores, although his visit to Anglesey saw him pick up two 2nd place finishes while main adversaries Jack Harding and Aidan Hills both scored a winner’s trophy each. At the moment, Herbert has only been able to win twice with a victory each coming at Snetterton and Oulton Park respectively. This proves that compared to the previous two years when Luke has come out on top, 2019 is proving to be a much tougher defence than he may have first imagined. In the last two seasons, Herbert has only won once but he’ll be keen to change that this weekend.
The two men chasing him down to steal the #1 from his door are Jack Harding and Aidan Hills, two names that pushed him all the way to the end last season and have picked up where they left off this year. Both men have collected a race win at each of the three circuits visited so far and with similar results alongside those victories, the dropped score situation comes into play with Harding merely four points ahead of Hills. Jack has just missed out on the title the past two seasons and must feel that it’s third time lucky in 2019, while Aidan came of age last year after he was dubbed Rookie of the Year in 2017. Hills has already shown he can step up and get his elbows out when necessary, and we’re sure to see more of that this weekend.
Next in line comes Steve Roberts, the former BMW Compact Cup champion that has made sure to keep the points rolling in despite only making it to the podium three times so far this year. A handful of top 5s have also kept him in touch with the top 3, however he will need to find another gear heading towards the second half of the season if he wants to turn this season into a possible title charge. As we’ve seen in the past, it only takes one small slip to cost a championship contender their chance and Roberts will be sure to pounce if the opportunity occurs.
With no Will Stacey present, Croft gives an opportunity to both Patrick Fletcher and Jack Sycamore to move into the top 5, with the former progressing well in his first season in a rear wheel drive car after years competing in Renault Clios, while the latter continues to get stronger and stronger after a personal best 3rd place last time out at Anglesey and pace all weekend to trouble the frontrunners. Masters points leader Garry Townsend lies 8th in the overall standings, with David Henderson in 9th and Bradley Kent (also not present on the entry list at the time of writing) completing the top 10, although he too could be overhauled by either Nick Rutter, Christopher Richardson or Will Stephenson.