United Downs Raceway - Sunday 19th March 2017

The first Cornish meeting of the new national Stock Car racing season produced some scintillating action at the United Downs Raceway, St Day.

BriSCA F2 Stock Cars

With the Voice of Autospeed Trophy up for grabs, and with the meeting also marking the opening round of the £2000 Zetec Challenge, this was a notable day for the F2s.  Leading the Grand Parade, 575 Tom Clark was presented with his 2016 Track Championship award.  The entry was reasonable at 26 cars, and did include 241 Ginge Crook, and local newcomer 502 Andy Solway, on their debut appearances.  A two from three heats format was deployed.  In heat one, blue tops 468 Sam Weston and 83 Sy Harraway hooked bumpers early on and lost considerable time.  Clark, meanwhile, made a superb start, and was soon hunting down the front runners.  689 Joe Marquand and 828 Julian Coombes settled into the two lead positions by the midway point, but with five laps to run, Clark had hit the front and won convincingly.  Heat two produced the most spectacular F2 incident of the afternoon, just four laps into the race, when 740 Neil Langworthy rode up over the side of 460 Matt Weston, and was sent skywards and up the fence, with 526 Marc Rowe also involved for good measure.  572 James Lindsay led off the restart, but 890 Paul Rice soon took over.  In turn, he was overhauled by Harraway, who was then chased home by 302 Dale Moon; Harraway giving an air punch salute at taking the flag.  Rowe caused havoc on the exit of turn two at the start of the third heat, with his prolonged efforts to rejoin the race after spinning.  As Rice and Marquand contested the lead, they got into a frightful tangle on the home straight, which caused the chasing pack to make assorted evasive moves.  The yellow flags were called to rescue the stranded Rice car.  126 Jamie Avery led off the restart, and sealed his first win of the season, whilst Weston’s wayward excursion upended a marker tyre in a dramatic conclusion to the race.  There was a lively start to the final, when Clark and Moon got caught up on the back straight.  From the clutch of white tops, Matt Weston emerged as the leader.  He was chased by Coombes, but when both went wide on the exit of turn two, Rice dived past to take control.  This was a breathtaking period of the race, just before the halfway point, for Avery was in hot pursuit of Rice, and star graders 315 Justin Fisher and 522 Chris Mikulla were looking to join the battle.  Once Mikulla had edged past Fisher, he then pulled off the move of the race, brilliantly nudging Avery into Rice.  In one fell swoop, Mikulla had leapt from third to first, and from there, he never looked back.  Avery held on for second, and Fisher completed the top three.  In the Grand National, Fisher and Moon indulged in a comical tit-for-tat exchange on the infield.  979 Paul Moss proved to be the fifth different race winner of the day, as he led home an-all Zetec powered top three, with 111 Lewis Geach the runner-up and Marquand in third.  Moss celebrated his success with donuts on the home straight.

Stock Rods

Boosted by a very good showing of drivers from the southern region, the Stock Rod numbers hit the 20-car mark at St Day for the first time since the ORC Championship was held there in May 2015.  Accordingly, the two from three heats format was deployed.  72 Marc Soby built up a very good lead in the opening heat, but having burst through as the leading star grader, 92 Adam Daniels reeled in Soby and second placed 222 Mike Belcher, to seal the victory late on.  14 Ross Montgomery showed the rest a clean pair of heels in heat two, as he stormed to the chequered, with only a strong late run by 740 Nigel Stuart even remotely threatening the outcome.  Montgomery won again in heat two, to book pole position for the Adam Ignaczak Trophy final.  World Champion 51 Luke Oliver joined him on the front row, with Daniels and 3 Matt Peters on row two.  In the early stages Oliver wrestled the lead from Montgomery.  Daniels picked up a puncture, and for a brief period, Peters moved into second place, before dropping back and retiring.  That left Montgomery in second once more, but Oliver’s pace was too much, and he eased clear to win by a distance.  Montgomery held on for second, despite a good late run by 351 Rhys Langdown.  There were super trophies for the top three, plus a Best Presented car award for 45 Jordan Wainwright, and accompanied by the race’s theme tune, “Coward of the County”, they made their way on the lap of honour.

National Micro Bangers

The opening round of Autospeed’s National Series for the National Micro Bangers attracted an encouraging showing of 24 drivers, who served up the sort of brutal action which the small cars have become renowned for.  Heat one began with action aplenty.  205 Matt Cottle was spun around entering the pits bend, and 648 Jamie Smith immediately blitzed him, which then left him open to a fine shot by debutant 654 Sam Hawken.  Race leader 621 Scott Kendall thundered into 53 Chris James at the pit gate, and 39 Anthony Purches on his debut, clattered into Kendall.  That led to a formation follow-in at the turnstile bend, as James rattled Purches into the wall, at the same time 79 Adam Brocks had despatched 511 Dan Crosbie.  The effects were devastating, with both the Purches Micra and the Crosbie Corsa being annihilated.  With Purches needed assistance from his car, the race was stopped.  Soon into the restart, Brocks struck again, this time administering a rocket speed burial of 114 Luke Niles, which left the engine of the 114 car dragging along the floor.  162 Brett Ellacott was already in control, and he won comfortably.  After some lively opening exchanges in heat two, 838 Jamie Peters managed to bundle 302 Dale Moon into the pits bend wall, squeezing Smith into the plating at the same time.  As the trio ground to a halt, James arrived at a rate of knots and lifted all four wheels off the ground as he thundered into Peters.  As James then slid sidewards to the fence, it opened the door for Kendall to blitz Peters too, and thereafter, Brocks weighed into Kendall.  The tables were turned one lap later.  Peters and James had limped out of the wreckage, but Kendall was still stuck there with Moon.  James blasted Kendall and Peters finished off the wrecking by parking in the back of James.  Just as in heat one, Ellacott was a clear winner.  Numbers had dwindled in the final, with just eleven starters.  Peters started the crashing, when he blasted 352 Carl Belfield and Brocks, before setting his sights on 289 Jamie Cocks.  Ellacott completed his hat-trick, by reeling in long time leader 196 Phil Chapman in the closing stages.  452 Anthony Sleeman rounded out the top three.  Ten drivers produced an enthralling DD to round off the day.  Kendall was again in great form, until he rolled over in the turnstile bend after an attack on Smith.  James took an absolute pounding on the home straight, but in the final knockings, Brocks just about battered Smith into submission.  This had been a day of truly top entertainment from the National Micro Bangers.

BriSCA F2 Stock Cars 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th 9th 10th
Heat 1 575 689 828 302 740 468 83 14 785 87
Heat 2 83 302 111 315 126 979 572 328 14 785
Heat 3 126 575 315 522 979 828 328 460 639 526
Final 522 126 315 468 828 890 979 526 689 83
Grand National 979 111 689 575 890 468 526 522 328 460
Grade Awards W 328 Y 828 B 126
Stock Rods 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th 9th 10th
Heat 1 92 3 215 72 151 45 437 222 944 26
Heat 2 14 740 51 215 3 45 437 9 351 68
Heat 3 14 51 351 72 92 944 151 9 740 68
Final 51 14 351 215 151 45 944 437 9 68
National Micro Bangers 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th 9th 10th
Heat 1 162 452 45 79 648 654 NOF
Heat 2 162 99 45 196 452 141 79 NOF
Final 162 196 452 45 99 141 NOF
King of Crash/DD 79
Entertainers 53 79 621 838
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