For the first of its Finals Race Weekends in October, the British Racing and Sports Car Club returned to Silverstone on the International circuit, just a week after it had appeared on the National layout for a one-day thrash. Many championships in attendance were contesting their final rounds of 2023, with Mazda MX-5s, Fiestas, CityCars, Minis and more all wrapping up their campaigns in fine style, and with plenty of nail-biting action too!

Ahead of the final rounds of the 2023 GAZ Shocks Mazda MX-5 Championship, Steve Foden was in command at the top of the standings and hoping to hold on to his advantage with just three races left to run. Silverstone’s International circuit was the venue for the final weekend, and with no ability to drop scores from the final weekend, every single point scored was going to be crucial in order to wrap up the championship.

Jack Noller set a superb lap time in qualifying to claim pole position for race one, but he was beaten to Abbey corner by front row mate Thomas Langford as the top ten pack quickly began scrapping as early as the opening corners of the race. Some early shuffling promoted Noller back to the lead from Adam Sparrow and Langford, this front three making an early break for it while championship leader Foden rose to fourth in his pursuit with Ted Bradbury for company behind. For the first half of the race, the top five remained static while Luke Pullen led the next group of cars battling over sixth place.

Sparrow made a move for the lead at Stowe with eight minutes to go, but a superb switchback a couple of minutes later through Club corner moved Noller back ahead, with Langford also slipping by moments later too. Langford then made the pass outside at Stowe on Noller for the lead, before it all kicked off between the trio as they constantly diced and swapped positions in the final two minutes. This battling brought Foden into play on the final lap and while Sparrow led onto it, the scramble eventually put Langford in P1 on the road at the flag before he was given a three place penalty for gaining an unfair advantage. This gave Noller his first MX-5 Championship win ahead of Ted Bradbury, who put in a storming final lap to stand on the podium, with Sparrow also promoted up to third. Langford and Foden completed the top five.

Noller managed to keep the lead from pole at the beginning of race two, but Bradbury found himself back in fourth from the outset behind Sparrow and Foden. Sparrow applied the pressure on Noller as the pair circulated at the front, but while they were able to break away initially, it wasn’t long before Bradbury was on their tail. However, Bradbury was hit with a five second track limits penalty, pushing him out of contention as Langford, Pullen and Foden all closed up behind.

Then Sparrow also received the same penalty, easing the pressure off Noller somewhat whether he knew it or not. With the top six all bunched together again out in front, the final three minutes were incredibly intense as passing moves were made left, right and centre in typical MX-5 racing style. Noller managed to hold back the tide of attacks from Sparrow until Stowe on the final lap, when Adam managed to slip by before he, Noller and Bradbury went three wide through the final corner to the flag. After penalties (Bradbury receiving another time penalty for track limits late on), Noller was the victor again from Langford in second and Pullen in third, ahead of Foden and Sparrow in the top five.

The final race of the season produced more typical close nose-to-tail as Noller led the outset from Langford and Foden, although Steve ended up taking a more conservative approach in this third race as he knew what he had to do to win the title. He dropped back to sixth and let the top five scrap amongst themselves for victory with Noller, Sparrow, Pullen, Langford and Mills all dicing between each other. Bradbury and Lay were also in this group along with Foden too and over the final twenty minutes, positions swapped back and forth lap after lap with no clear favourite in sight.

In the end, a final mad scramble threw out Langford as the final race winner of the year ahead of Noller right on his tail, with Bradbury, Sparrow and Lay completing the top five. Just behind them in sixth, Steve Foden completed a drama-free race to finally be crowned champion of the GAZ Shocks Mazda MX-5 Championship for 2023 to his, his family’s and his team’s delight, while 11th place was more than enough to hand Tim Dore the Masters title for the year too. Another magnificent season concluded with two very worthy champions!

The final day of racing for the Downforce Radio Mazda MX-5 Clubman Championship at Silverstone saw Matthew Fletcher aiming to seal the deal whilst also trying to fend off the attentions of nearest challengers Jordan Pimley and Jon Pethick in the top three. With no ability to drop scores from the final rounds, the pressure was on to score as well as possible to stay in the title fight.

Pimley drew first blood in qualifying by taking pole position, while main rivals Pethick and Fletcher would start the first race from third and fifth respectively. Pethick quickly took 2nd on the start to tail leader Pimley from the start, joined in two laps by Fletcher after he picked off Beau Parry and Paul Bateman. The three title contenders had the race under control out front, as Fletcher passed Pethick for P2 and chased Pimley all the way to the flag. In the end, Jordan had enough pace to sustain his lead and win race one, as Fletcher collected second while Bateman stole third from Pethick on the final lap to claim the final podium spot. Parry rounded off the top five with fifth place.

With Fletcher on the front row for the final race of the year, he couldn’t quite beat Pimley away from the start as the same top five circulated together and pulled away in the opening minutes of the race. A move at Stowe corner gave Fletcher the lead just before a yellow flag zone, and now with clear air it was the perfect chance for Matthew to push on and claim the title in style. Pethick shortly took his turn in front, but soon enough all three championship contenders were side by side scrapping for the win as the first half of the race concluded.

Fletcher ended up dropping back to fourth place as Pimley and Pethick gapped the rest of the field and briefly fought a private battle amongst themselves. Soon enough, Fletcher caught them again and it quickly turned into a seven car melee in the final two minutes of the season as the top two almost endlessly traded places back and forth. Pethick made one last attempt into Stowe to take the win but couldn’t displace victor Pimley from completing the double, but it was Fletcher’s third place that did enough to clinch him the Mazda MX-5 Clubman title with his emotions and delight clear for all to see. Bateman and Harry Deane rounded off the top five, while down in 12th place, Del Paice came home as the newest Masters champion in the MX-5 Clubman paddock too.

Concluding what had been by far one of the most energetic, competitive and exciting Clapham North MOT Mazda MX-5 SuperCup seasons to date, all three class titles were on the line at the final rounds of the year on the Silverstone International circuit. Aidan Hills, Robert Way and Nick Rutter were all looking to seal the deal in Pro, Club and Masters respectively, with three more races to decide their fates.

Patrick Fletcher took pole and the hole shot at the start of race one ahead of Pro points leader Hills, and the top two didn’t waste any time in gapping the rest of the field, topped by a frantic fight for third place. James Cossins managed to bridge the gap and catch Fletcher and Hills before long the three cars were together battling for the lead. Hills’ near race-long pursuit eventually paid off as a late pass for the lead helped him steal it as the final two laps beckoned. Victory in race one helped Aidan take a step closer to the Pro class honours, despite a late challenge from second placed Fletcher who in turn also had to fend off late pressure from Cossins in third. Tom Griffiths and Sam Heading completed the top five, while Kamal Kalsi won Club class after Robert Way was forced to pit with problems, and Alistair Dendy won Masters.

Fletcher led again from the outset with Cossins in tow while Hills sat in fifth early on behind Sam Heading and Leigh Britten. Britten dropped out of contention at half distance, leaving Hills to continue to chase the top three, but despite applying staying on their tail he didn’t quite have enough to overhaul them on the road. Cossins received a five second track limits penalty which would drop him off the podium come the chequered flag as Fletcher collected the win from Heading in second and Hills inheriting third after Cossins’ penalty. Griffiths and Alex Stott rounded off the top five, with Masters winner Dendy doubling up in seventh overall and Kalsi again victorious in Club ahead of Way and Steve Kite.

Cossins’ reverse grid pole for race three put him into the lead from the outset, pushed in the early laps with Amos his main challenger while Hills and Fletcher diced for third behind them. Keeping the championship firmly in his thoughts, Hills didn’t fight too hard against those trying to pass him, holding station in fourth by half distance despite briefly dropping behind Heading and Amos at one stage. Fletcher took over in front past Cossins with five minutes left to run, but a late shuffle eventually threw out Cossins back in the lead, fending off Griffiths in second to win while Heading collected third. But sixth was more than enough to give Aidan Hills the Pro title in the MX-5 SuperCup, while Robert Way also won Club class and the crown, and Nick Rutter recovered from a pit lane start to score enough points to clinch the Masters honours for the year too.

The showdown between Albert Webster and Alastair Kellett in the AIRTEC Motorsport Fiesta ST240 Championship was shaping up to be a dramatic one as the pair were both bidding to win the Pro class and claim the overall title in the process. With Morgan Kidd also hoping for a drama-free weekend to pick up the Club class honours and with no ability to drop scores from the final two races, the tension was thick in the air as race one beckoned.

Both drivers perched up on the front row together for race one, with Kellett snatching pole from Webster in the qualifying session. Kellett beat the pack to Abbey for the first time, but this only lasted for a couple of laps before Webster attacked and stole the lead after battling from Stowe all the way to the pit straight. With Webster pulling away, Kellett found himself mired in a scrap for second between himself, Simon Horrobin and Zachary Lucas, the latter two in the same JRW Motorsport stable playing their parts in aiding Webster’s cause.

Kellett fought back to third but was unable to unseat Horrobin from second place, forced to settle for the final spot on the podium as Webster’s victory put him one step closer to the Pro title. Drama then befell Club class leader Morgan Kidd as contact with Matt Luff at Stowe then left her tagged by teammate Sean Reynolds, leaving her stranded on the track with damaged steering. With the chequered flag thrown early as a result, Webster won from Horrobin, Kellett, Lucas and John Cooper, while Club class honours went to Adam Clark.

Sunday produced a perfect start for Cooper from the front row as he headed Webster from the outset, while Kellett quickly escaped the gaggle of cars behind them to chase after the top two. It didn’t take him long to pick his way past both drivers to lead with a quarter distance gone. From here, Kellett was never headed and he drove as hard as he could to cement his lead, hoping that results would go his way. However, as he crossed the to take the final win of the season, Webster’s third place behind Cooper was enough to clinch him the Pro class and overall title in the process at his first attempt at senior level. Lucas and Horrobin confirmed the top five, with another Club class win going the way of Adam Clark. As for Morgan Kidd, she nursed an ailing car home to score 16th overall, the points enough to score the Club class title in the process.

After a successful and enjoyable first season as a solo class championship, the Vinyl Detail Fiesta ST150 Challenge of 2023 culminated in its final rounds of the year at Silverstone on the International circuit. Sam Beckett was in prime position to claim the title as points leader heading to the home of British motorsport, but his rivals were ready to do everything they could to try and overhaul him.

Croft winner and outgoing ST150 champion Michael Blackburn still showed plenty of speed with pole position in qualifying for race one, and it was Blackburn that led the way from the outset ahead of Sam Watkins and guest driver Shanel Drewe. Watkins only needed just over three laps to pick up the lead at the Arena section whilst Dan Robinson quickly picked up 2nd moments later at Blackburn’s expense too. Robinson tried everything to pass Watkins but no matter what, he just couldn’t pick up the lead and settled for P2 in the end, as Watkins claimed a fine victory. Shanel Drewe impressed many with a superb podium with third, ahead of Blackburn and Davis, while points leader Beckett settled for sixth place.

For the final race of the year, Watkins got the better jump once again while Robinson managed to prevent Blackburn from stealing second from the get-go. With everyone else busy fighting each other for positions, Watkins’ drive was a straightforward affair as he calmly pulled out an unassailable lead lap after lap and was unbeaten all day with a second Silverstone win secured at the chequered flag. For second place, Robinson, Drewe and Blackburn diced over the podium positions all race long, eventually settling with Robinson taking P2 and Drewe stealing third on the final lap from Blackburn, as Davis completed the top five behind.

Back in eighth place, a conservative day by Sam Beckett proved to be more than enough to allow himself and SBR Motorsport to clinch their first Fiesta ST150 Challenge title. A fine effort all season for the new team and for Sam to end 2023 on top of the table.

Going into the final rounds of this year’s Nankang Tyre CityCar Cup Championship and Student Motorsport Challenge, it appeared as though both the overall title and the SMC crown were each going to be formalities for Elliot Lettis and Team Northbrook respectively. Silverstone International circuit would settle matters for 2023, as two more races beckoned for another packed grid of C1s, 107s and Aygos.

Lettis’ main rival Stuart Bliss continued to prove his pace by clinching pole in qualifying alongside Christopher Mackenzie, while Elliot had to start race one back in fifth. Bliss was quick to escape the pack on the opening lap, leaving Lettis to fight his way up to third place and battle Richard Jepp for second. Whilst there was plenty of jostling for positions in the battle packs behind them, the top three circulated together for the entire 15 minutes, with Bliss reeling off the laps to secure the win ahead of Jepp and Lettis on the podium and Mackenzie and Joe Moss completing the top five. Jepp also took another Student Motorsport win for Team Northbrook, meanwhile, with Jack Wheeler second for East Surrey College and Liam Browning for Boston College.

The top three remained the same as the final race of the year got underway later in the afternoon, Bliss leading off from pole followed by Jepp and Lettis as before, although this time Bliss was allowed to get away as the fight for second intensified. Jepp held firm while Lettis had to deal with Mackenzie, Moss and Wheeler on his tail. In the end, Bliss was runaway victor once again to round off a fine season, while Jepp’s second place confirmed Team Northbrook as Student Motorsport Challenge champions and third gave Lettis that coveted CityCar Cup title. Jack Wheeler took second in SMC for East Surrey and fourth overall with Moss completing the top five, while Liam Browning picked up third in SMC for Boston College.

The Mini 7 Racing Club ventured back to Silverstone as part of their final rounds of their regular season in something of a reflective mood, as during the Saturday lunch break the entire paddock turned out in pit lane for a special commemoration of the late, great Peter Baldwin, a legend of both club racing and the Mini 7 fraternity for many, many years. Alongside members of his family, many of Peter’s fellow racers and friends were in attendance to remember him.

Both the Se7ens and the Miglias had titles to settle still, although each category already had a provisional champion within each of their grids. Ben Colburn started the first Miglia race from pole, but he lost it heading into Stowe and ended up collecting both Kane Astin and Rupert Deeth in the process, all three out on the spot. All this left Phil Bullen-Brown and Colin Peacock fighting over the lead. However, Libre racer Craig Edgecombe tore his way through to the front of the pack and charged away to victory, with Miglia leader Bullen-Brown chasing him all the way to claim the win in his class respectively. Damien Harrington and Jonathan Page completed the top three in Miglias.

Ashley Davies ended up on pole for the partially reversed grid for race two, and had a 1.6 second lead at the end of the opening lap. Before long, both Astin and Deeth had worked their way up behind Davies and were challenging for the lead, but all of them hadn’t quite counted on the hard charging Edgecombe to come from the front of the Libre pack and straight past all of them to eventually lead by half distance. Edgecombe would go on to seal his second outright and Libre win of the weekend, while the Miglia victory went right down to the final lap, when Deeth won the duel with Colburn to be victorious in class with Bullen-Brown completing the podium places.

In the Se7en and Se7en-S ranks, Connor O’Brien wound up on pole next to Spencer Wanstall, while Joe Thompson and Mike Jordan were ready to duel for the title from the second row. Wanstall jumped to the lead while O’Brien retired moments into race one with mechanical issues. Thompson, Ross Billison and Jordan ensured Wanstall was enthralled in a four car scrap for the lead, quickly becoming seven cars as Darren Thomas, Glen Woodbridge and Aaron Smith joined in. All of the top four took turns in the lead, but at the flag it was Wanstall victorious from Thompson, Billison and Jordan, while an extraordinary finish in the Se7en-S saw a race-long battle pack end with Michael Winkworth taking the win from Frazer Hack and Arnold Duncan.

Paul Woodbridge started race two from pole, but Thompson would lead by the end of the opening lap with Billison, Wanstall and Jordan all back in sixth, seventh and eighth but steadily making their way forwards together over the first few laps before a red flag forced a stoppage half way through. Thompson retained the lead on the restart, joined by Billison and Jordan at the front. Jordan made two big moves to go from third to first, but Thompson retook the lead into Stowe for the final time and won from Jordan and Billison. Michael Winkworth once again won Seven-S ahead of Matthew Ayres and Matthew Page.

A magnificent field of Fords turned out to pack out the final Modified Ford Series races of the 2023 season at Silverstone on the International circuit, with a group of cars that had to be seen to be believed. Some wonderfully turned out machines were present across all classes, prepared for two more 15-minute encounters full of power, speed and noise.

The main duel of the weekend was between two cars that had never faced off against each other before – Jason Davies’ Sierra Sapphire and Dave Cockell’s Escort Cosworth. Both stupendously quick, both cars were on the front row for race one with Davies getting the jump on Cockell from the outset. The Escort did head the Sierra for a lap, before Davies slipped back through and began pulling away as the top two dominated the rest of the field. Davies was race one winner in the end despite a late comeback from Cockell, who settled for second ahead of Dave Matthias and Stephen Scott-Dunwoodies in their Sierra RS500s and Malcolm Harding’s Mk2 Escort Zakspeed replica.

Cockell beat Davies into the first corner first time through in race two, but Davies was ahead by the end of lap one and from here he was even more dominant that he had been earlier in the day. Consistently lapping at least a second faster than anyone else in the field, he charged away in the late Sunday afternoon sunshine and completed a superb double with race two victory. Cockell was still quick, but not able to get closer than 7.4 seconds in the end while Piers Grange took third in his Mk2 Escort ahead of the RS500s of Matthias and Scott-Dunwoodie.

The final race of the regular season for the SW Motorsports ClubSport Trophy for 2023 saw another magnificent group of cars gathered together on the grid at the Silverstone International circuit, marking the series third and final visit to the venue and completing the set of racing on all three layouts in one season. With a grid of no less than 44 cars lining up together, it was certainly going to be a busy and entertaining final race.

A pair of Audi TTs took up the front row, with Anthony Rogers on pole in his orange example alongside Scott Parkin’s Audi TT Cup Racing car, but Phiroze Bilimoria took his VW Scirocco quickly lept into the lead ahead of the TTCR machines of Andrew Dyer and Parkin. Dyer dropped back after a few laps, before Bilimoria tangled with a backmarker at Vale to allow Parkin to slip by into the lead.

Many of the top ten runners chose to pit during the second half of the 15-minute pit window, with Parkin ending up as one of the last to make his mandatory stop. When he rejoined, he found himself relatively unchallenged still in the lead, especially since Bilimoria’s VW had come to a stop just a couple of laps after pitting and pulled up at the Arena section. Now with a comfortable lead, Parkin reeled off the laps and the minutes to take the flag to win overall and in Class B, with the BMW Compact of Jonathan Hayes and Paul Subbiani taking P2 outright and the Class A win ahead of Dyer’s TTCR in the overall top three.

Philip Hart’s Honda Civic and Mike Parsons’ VW Golf completed the overall top five, while other class wins went the way of Charlie Hayes’ BMW Compact (Class C), Michael Sanford and Sam Reuter in their Mazda MX-5 Mk3 (Class D) and James Dennison’s Mk1 MX-5 (Class E).

Scott Woodwiss


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