Smeatharpe Stadium - Friday 10th September 2021

Despite the best efforts of the local road network to throw obstacles in the way of race teams and fans a good entry of cars gathered for the first of four Friday evening fixtures at Smeatharpe.  Spare a thought, though, for the drivers and racegoers who were stuck on the A30, and unable to proceed whilst a road traffic accident was being attended to.

BriSCA F2 Stock Cars

Running to a two from three heat format 15 cars gridded for the opening race with 988 Charlie Lobb going for an early spin.  232 Dan Abbott made the most of his downgrade to White by streaking into a healthy lead and was leading by the length of a straight at the time that the technical exclusion flag was shown to him for a loose rear wheel-guard.  This promoted 783 James Rygor into the lead, but he was forced wide by 418 Ben Borthwick.  With two laps to go Rygor attempted to retake the lead, but the hit was insufficient to move Borthwick aside.  However, a more forceful attempt on the final bend saw both race to the line with the 2013 World Champion just edging victory.  By the time the second heat gridded there was a light drizzle in the air creating very tricky track conditions which saw Rygor and 464 Matt Linfield tangle with one or two others on the Honiton bend.  895 Ben Goddard, who has a liking for such conditions made his way up to the front but had to relinquish it to 315 Justin Fisher.  Goddard then ended up in a tremendous battle for second with 890 Paul Rice, the two swapping places over a series of laps until 895 was spun towards the fence and out of contention.  Heat three saw the track giving up more grip as the drizzle subsided.  An excellent duel developed between Abbott and fellow white grader 540 Dayne Pritlove until Abbott broke free at the front only to then spin out himself on the pit bend which promoted Rice to the lead.  A late yellow flag stoppage was required as 128 Jack Bunter ground to a halt on the home straight just past the start/finish line, the rear of the car being clipped at speed by Borthwick, with thankfully little damage to either car.  Rice proceeded on the restart to take a comfortable win.  The Final was for the annual Remembering Rog trophy, and whilst Pritlove and 762 Mike Cocks sought to take the early lead, there was an exciting battle behind featuring higher graded drivers trading bumper blows at all corners of the raceway.  828 Julian Coombes moved into the lead, but he was overtaken by 33 Matt Peters who had shown excellent pace throughout the evening with little in the way of results.  In turn, Peters was caught and passed by 325 Ryan Sheahan, but he was then overhauled by Rygor.  Sheahan, Peters and 24 Jon Palmer contested a fierce battle for the two runner-up spots, Peters just missing out in a lively last bend finish.  The Grand National again featured a tremendous race over the opening laps between the star graders with Borthwick, Fisher, Rice and Palmer all jostling entertainingly for position.  Sheahan replaced Pritlove as the race leader but was himself reeled in by Palmer.  Sheahan withstood a last bend challenge by Borthwick for second to conclude a fine evening’s racing for the formula despite the modest entry.

Unlimited cc Bangers

A less than inspiring gathering of 14 cars assembled in the pits as the two seeded entries to the Ipswich World Final were to be determined.  Regrettably, 648 Jamie Smith, who began the night in a seeded place, was caught up in the traffic chaos, and duly missed out.  The grid was one short for the opening race which was run to Old Skool rules.  Early on 190 Steve Bailey pulled off a Billiards style shot, by bundling 912 Simon Rees into 278 Shaun Brokenshire in the pits bend, which ended the points leader’s race.  991 Ben Hale raced into an early lead which is where he stayed until the flag.  Behind, Bailey was spun on the last lap by 246 Ryan Sparks and 162 Brett Ellacott, and 254 Richard Beere enjoyed a good dice for the runner-up spots.  Previous race winner Hale was an early target of 225 Richy Edmonds in Old Skool heat two, and when 912 Simon Rees slowed to a halt on the home straight, his car was collected at full pelt by Ellacott and then is further clobbered by 838 Jamie Peters.  Bailey ran away with the win at the front.  The Final, run to National Banger rules is therefore the first points scoring opportunity for the qualifying spots and with Bailey knowing he needed to stop Brokenshire early on, he went for the hit on the pit bend.  However, whilst Brokenshire was run into the wall, Bailey lost a front wheel and thus that ended his own automatic qualification hopes.  The remainder of the race saw Ellacott lurking as race leader Sparks approached, and as he was delayed, Peters nipped by to take the win in an entertaining race; Peters thus securing his Ipswich slot along with Brokenshire.  To their credit, Sparks and Brokenshire returned for a DD, the two workmates taking turns at trying to destroy each other’s car both on the home and back straight, Brokenshire eventually being declared the winner.

BriSCA F2 Stock Cars 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th 9th 10th
Heat 1 783 418 24 522 27 325 828 33 895 194
Heat 2 315 890 24 35 828 783 540 464 522 762
Consolation 890 464 418 315 27 948 540 928 nof
Final 783 24 325 33 890 418 315 828 895 522
Grand National 24 325 418 890 315 35 540 27 783 762
Grade Awards W 540 Y 828 B 35 R 783
National Bangers 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th 9th 10th
Heat 1 991 246 190 162 254 185 912 114 282 225
Heat 2 190 254 185 246 838 278 282 nof
Final 838 246 162 nof
DD 246
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