ROCHE RETURNS AT ROCKINGHAM


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Tom Roche has a busy weekend ahead of him at Rockingham. Photo: Jon Elsey

Our ever-busy Midland Centre pays their final visit of the season to Rockingham this weekend for a meeting featuring sixteen races, on both the long circuit and the oval.

One of the busiest men at the Corby track will be Tom Roche who makes an unexpected return to the BRSCC Mazda MX-5 Championship, as well as taking on his regular duties in the MX-5 SuperCup. Tom is the reigning Mk1 champion but hasn’t raced in the championship since last October. His likely successor is James Blake-Baldwin who is currently on a winning streak of seven consecutive victories. James is sure to relish the challenge and won’t be duly overawed as he got the better of Tom several times last season. If results go his way, James could leave Rockingham on Sunday evening as the ‘champion elect’.

Tom faces an equally tough task in the SuperCup. Two wins at Oulton Park three weeks ago gave him a three point lead over Hull’s Abbie Eaton, but Abbie has fought all season long for the Mk3 title so she won’t be giving up just yet. If the lead pair falter, then Helsby’s Matt Davies is waiting in the wings to take advantage. Matt is only thirty points adrift of Tom and with two hundred points on offer he is still very much in the title race.

There is also a very close title fight going on in the Alfashop Alfa Romeo Championship between Class E protagonists James Bishop and James Ford who are separated by just ten points. The Alfas have turned out one of their biggest grids of the season with twenty-four examples of the famous Italian marque due to line-up at Rockingham. The grid will be further boosted by eight Smart Cars from the 4TwoCup.

Geri Nicosia will arrive at Rockingham as the leader of the BRSCC Fiesta Junior Championship, but Rob Cox, Michael Higgs and Thomas Grundy are all still in contention with four races to go. Rob Cox is the only driver from the current FJC intake who has previous experience of racing on the unique ‘International Sportscar Long’ circuit so that may just give him a crucial edge while the other drivers adapt.

In the Jam-Sport Fiesta Championship, Dagenham’s Dan Holland is on a roll in Class C having won the last four races. However, he still has a lot of work to do if he is to reel-in leader David Ellesley, whose early season form and subsequent consistency has given the Ipswich driver a thirty-three point advantage over David Grady. Edward Cockill is likely to dominate the two races for the entrants in classes A, B and D, but he hasn’t got Class D sewn up yet as James Appleby has consistently been right on his tail. Ian Scruton and Lee Dendy-Sadler are still disputing the Class A honours but Keith Chapman has an almost unassailable lead in Class B.

The Pickup Trucks will add to the drama on Sunday with two thirty-five lap races on the Oval track.Michael Smith and his stable mate David O’Regan are currently leading the Championship with only nineteen points between them. However, ‘Mr Consistent’ Pete Stevens is close behind them and looking to take the championship lead.

The Met Office is forecasting light showers on Saturday but mild and dry weather on Sunday. You can see a detailed forecast at ROCKINGHAM WEATHER

More information about the meeting can be found at ROCKINGHAM RACE WEEKEND