Smeatharpe Stadium - Sunday 11th September 2016

It was a pleasant late summer afternoon that greeted racegoers at Smeatharpe Stadium for the 34th annual running of the National Bangers Championship of the World, the Autospeed World title.  It was a double helping of unlimited cc National Bangers, as the Old Skool Series reached its conclusion with the Supreme Championship.  It was a day of big and not so big, as the remainder of the programme was for junior drivers with the ORCi Ministox and BriSCA Micro Stock Cars.

National Bangers

It seems to be the case time and time again but there were several no shows from those who had booked to attend for the World Championship meeting.  In some cases there were genuine reasons, and notification was received.  In other cases, there was simply no communication.  The upshot was, for the second year running, the last chance race was cancelled and those who would have been in that event were tagged on to the rear of the main grid.  The drivers who were seeded had their grid position decided via public draw and it was one of the grandee names 190 Steve ‘Pikey’ Bailey who drew pole position, with last year’s runner-up, 717 Jack Tuffen alongside.  45 Anthony ‘Lips’ Croshaw and 17 Kyle Overy drew positions on the second row, with 331 Jason ‘Boxer Jack’ Jackson on the third row, where he was joined by 452 Anthony ‘Lurch’ Sleeman.  At the drop of the green flag, Bailey got ahead of Tuffen who tried to respond with a hit on the 190 car, but he spun in doing so which held up those around him and allowed Jackson to follow Bailey across the line in second place to start the first racing lap.  The battle between these two superstar names then became the feature of the race, as they contested the lead.  The race was far from devoid of action as 718 Adie Brown stopped 714 Paul Smaldon, who responded with a head on, defending title holder 162 Brett Ellacott piled in on Brown and 374 Richard Kelly piled in on Ellacott.  This train of cars then managed to move from the end of the back straight to the start of the home straight and Brown was clobbered by 79 Adam Brocks in an all-Previa clash.  451 Nigel Belfield then weighed in on Brocks, before Belfield’s Jag was completely wrecked by Lips.  There was action in the west bend too as 239 Steve ‘Nemesis’ Carter accounted for 246 Ryan Sparks and then 99 David ‘Bam’ Spooner went in on Nemeis, they were then joined by Kelly and 278 Shaun Brokenshire.  It was Kelly who signalled with a thumbs down and brought the race to a stop.  Whilst the action was going on, Bailey and Jackson had swapped the lead on a couple of occasions but it was Boxer who headed off the re-start although it was soon back to red flags with 372 Jay Matthews in trouble, after he was clobbered by the lively Lips.  There was not much left for the next re-start and try as he might, Bailey just couldn’t get on terms with Jackson.  He could have made a do or die last bend attempt but on the slippery surface it risked taking both out.  And so it was Boxer Jack’s victory, to get a gold roof back on the 331 car and the second time he has won the Autospeed title.  341 Andrew Jones joined DWO team mate Bailey on the podium for third.  The first Allcomers saw a red flag after 917 Andrew Tew was on the wrong end of a big hit from Ellacott.  Bailey went on to win the re-started race and the second Allcomers was won by Overy.   The Destruction Derby saw another gallant effort from Brocks in his Previa, taking on the might of Carter who just outlasted him to take the win.

Old Skool unlimited cc Bangers

From 54 potential qualifiers for the Old Skool Supreme Championship, it was thus a disappointment to see the total entry sit at 17 cars for the particular race/meeting, openly bringing into question the viability of running such an event in the future, and seriously doubting the prospect of the formula having much of a future at all.  362 Johnny James led the race from early on, until delayed by a backmarker.  He was ousted from the lead by 246 Ryan Sparks, but only briefly.  James got back ahead, and eased clear to seal the title chased home by brother 262 Buddy James, who overhauled Sparks in the closing stages.  Buddy James then took the win in what was the only Allcomers race for them.

Ministox

The 11-16 year olds in the ORCi Ministox had the Esau Family Trophy as the main event and considering the National Championship was taking place in Scotland on the same weekend, the entry was impressive to hit the 20 car mark, including three drivers in their first meeting in the sport.  With all of this taken into consideration and time in the programme allowing, the decision was made to run a two from three heat format.  The first heat saw a good battle between 907 Cameron Lawrence and 911 Harrison Bryant as they headed through the pack to the front, with Lawrence battling back at Bryant to take the victory.  Heat two saw 902 Brad Compton-Sage win by a good margin whilst heat three was the opposite as Lawrence went in for a last bend move on race long leader 988 Harry Sheppard.  This sent Sheppard wide and into the plating, giving Lawrence his second win.  The Final was headed off by 970 Archie Farrell until he was passed by Compton-Sage.  However, with both 927 Owen Robins and 917 Gemma Robins stranded on turn three the yellow flags were called.  This closed up any gaps and gave Lawrence the break he was looking for, moving ahead of his rivals to hit the front with five laps remaining.  He went on to win and complete his hat-trick of victories on the day by a long way.  Compton-Sage held on for a comfortable second and Bryant was third.

BriSCA Micro F2 Stock Cars

There was a small entry of BriSCA Micro Stock Cars for a variety of reasons, but hats off to 38 Freddie Holden and 246 Oliver Smith, who made long journeys to be present.  There was no stopping 783 Fin Carter who completed a hat-trick of victories.  607 Christina Sillifant tried her best to hold on in the last of the three races, but spun on the exit of turn four.  246 Owen Smith and 9 Harry Parramore filled the other two two three places.

National Bangers 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th 9th 10th
World Final 331 190 341 452 622 133 382 114 nof
Allcomers 1 190 33 341 452 17 239 114 74 382 331
Allcomers 2 17 239 33 190 114 341 74 45
King of Crash/DD 239
Best Presented 45 79 372 190 718
Oldest/Rarest 382
Old Skool National Bangers 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th 9th 10th
Supreme 362 262 246 185 114 275 912 954 284 113
Allcomers 262 185 362 954 275 282 112 743 284 113
Ministox 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th 9th 10th
Heat 1 A&B 907 911 980 951 677 654 999 972 982 958
Heat 2 B&C 902 980 951 988 667 677 917 999 654 927
Heat 3 C&A 907 911 902 988 667 917 970 982 915 927
Final 907 902 911 980 677 667 970 999 982 577
Micro F2s 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th 9th 10th
Heat 1 783 246 607 9 38 nof
Heat 2 783 607 246 9 38 nof
Final 783 246 9 38 nof
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