Smeatharpe Stadium - Sunday 5th June 2022

A wet Saloon Stock Car European Championship produced an entertaining spectacle and a popular first-time champion. A large entry of BriSCA Formula Two Stock Cars contested the Grader’s Award and 2-Litre Old Skool Bangers were in action in their latest Supreme Championship round.

Saloon Stock Cars

Almost all of the previous night’s entry returned to action. Twenty-six drivers had already secured their places on the European Championship grid but 124 Andrew Mathieson was forced to withdraw, meaning five places were up for grabs from the last-chance qualifier held in dry conditions. The Yellow grade pack of 27 Jason Kingwell, 328 Michael Boswell, 177 Chris Masters and 444 Kieran Bellringer were joined by 199 Phil Powell up front. When Bellringer dropped back it allowed defending champion 85 Kyle Irvine to sneak onto the grid in the final qualifying place as 620 Aaryn Triggs and 92 Charlie Morphey focused on destroying each others’ chances. Torrential rain before the big race led to a delay to allow the drivers to change their set-ups before they made light of the conditions to take part in a Grand Parade. When the green flag dropped, polesitter 677 Warren Darby’s hopes of emulating his father Eddie’s European title-winning feats took an immediate blow as he was shoved wide into the wall exiting the pit bend. From row three of the grid, 349 Michael Allard hit the front from 84 Carl Boswell, 902 Junior Buster, 600 Barry Russell and the recovering Darby. Boswell managed to edge inside Allard for the lead before the ORC champion powered back ahead on the back straight. But Allard then hit the spun 261 Dom Davies and himself gyrated on the Honiton bend. With Junior Buster also suffering on the back straight, that gave Boswell a healthy advantage over Russell, Darby, 698 Danny Colliver and 28 Ian Govier before the latter pair dropped back. Russell was revelling in the conditions, managing to keep it tidy through the backmarking traffic, and closed up to Boswell before getting underneath him for the lead at around one-quarter distance. British champion 618 Stuart Shevill Jr was also flying, climbing to fourth from 18th on the grid, and he began attacking Darby for third before making the move stick. Boswell was managing to maintain a similar pace to Russell and was handed an opportunity to fight back when a caution period was required for Kingwell who was stranded on the back straight. 277 Jack Grandon and Govier tangled into the tyres, just before the yellow flags appeared. With backmarkers removed from among the top six places, it meant the battle was on, with 670 Ross Watters and Allard also well in contention. But, still seeking his first major title, Russell was not going to beaten as he pulled clear. No-one could match the Brechin racer’s pace as he marched to a resounding success. It all went wrong for Boswell, promoting Shevill to an equally comfortable second for a Scottish 1-2, with local man Darby recording his best major-championship result in third. Among plenty of frenzied action and wall-riding in the treacherous conditions, Allard recovered to fourth ahead of fellow Norfolk racer 341 Austen Freestone and Londoner Colliver. “Thank God,” said a relieved Russell, who was serenaded by ‘Flower of Scotland’ on his lap of honour. “My turn this time.”

The 25-car meeting final was led for several laps by 418 Mitchell Driver but the Yorkshireman got delayed after a spin for Masters, who was met head-on by Allard. That let Govier into the lead. The experienced local was making excellent use of the outside line and he just held off 399 Cole Atkins – who had endured a miserable weekend to that point – for victory, with Grandon and Freestone following them home. An allcomers race rounded off the weekend, with Driver again leading much of the way before dropping back. Atkins passed him for the lead, only to be spun himself by Junior Buster with three laps to go. Junior Buster was delayed in the incident, letting Freestone ahead, but the Bristol racer managed to get back inside on the final bend and take the win, despite clipping a marker tyre in the process. Grandon was third, with Atkins recovering to fourth.

BriSCA F2 Stock Cars

A 50-car entry consisted of 49 returnees for day two of the speedweekend, supplemented by one addition, enough for a full three-heat format with eight to qualify from each heat and the consolation for the Grader’s Award final. Heat one boiled down to a scrap between 127 Matt Stoneman, 161 Ben Bate and 560 Luke Wrench. Each used the bumper to enjoy spells in front but it was Wrench who broke clear for the win, while Stoneman secured second with a last-bend hit on Bate. 194 Luke Johnson’s lunge on 988 Charlie Lobb for the final qualifying place only succeeded in spinning himself but was worth a go. Odd spots of rain turned into a heavier drizzle for heat two. 475 Leah Sealy led until beyond half-distance when, under pressure from 915 Jamie Jones, she hit a kerb while lapping backmarker traffic and spun, delaying Jones in the process. 302 Dale Moon came through to win from 184 Aaron Vaight and Jones. Benevolent Fund Trophy winner 890 Paul Rice was fifth, behind 126 Jamie Avery, after being shoved wide by 390 Jessica Smith, who then spun on the next lap and failed to qualify. The slippery conditions caused plenty of spinners in heat three. 482 Dale Seneschall led for several laps but was powerless to resist an in-form 783 James Rygor who shifted 700 Adam Rubery for second, then repeated the move on Seneschall for the lead, with Rubery following in his wake. Rubery’s last-bend lunge on Rygor for the victory left both in a tangle with the backmarking 762 Mike Cocks, but they managed to scramble out and remain in the same order. 418 Ben Borthwick was third, while 542 Steven Gilbert usurped 960 Adie Whitehead for fourth on the final bend and Seneschall spun out of the qualifying places.  The 23 cars in the consolation race found themselves tiptoeing around the track in what had become very wet conditions. 53 Phil Mann led for much of the way before slipping back to fourth in the closing laps. Instead it was 35 Charlie Fisher who came through in impressive style for a resounding victory, having tangled with 728 Jack Bunter in his heat. Johnson spun Seneschall for second, and the top three was completed by the previous night’s big-money winner, 618 Ben Lockwood. If Fisher’s consolation victory had been impressive, his performance in the final was even more comprehensive. A 32-car field made for an action-packed race with a number of early spinners. Seneschall led until 578 Mark Gibbs briefly took over, only for Fisher to immediately get inside both. From there, Fisher never looked like losing as he pulled away to record a maiden main-event success. Having almost decided to sit out the consolation after banging his arm in his heat tangle, it was a fruity and fruitful turnaround. “I had a banana and now I’m fine!” explained the victor. Borthwick had climbed to second before losing out when he had to circumnavigate the spun 931 Rebecca Smith. That allowed a charging Stoneman to take the place, with another strong performance from Bate in third ahead of Gilbert, Rygor and Borthwick. Another packed field took part in the Grand National, and a number of early spinners led to yellow flags coming out after Lockwood was left facing the traffic entering the home straight. 979 Paul Moss quickly took up the running and went on to record his fourth race win on consecutive days. Mann and Gibbs followed him home as Wrench eventually topped a terrific star-grade tussle for fourth.

2-Litre Bangers

A high-teens entry of Bangers gathered to contest two heats and a final to Old Skool rules, before a National Banger allcomers race. BMW-mounted 246 Ryan Sparks, in the only rear-wheel-drive car, came through to win heat one from 133 Terry Hill and early leader 31 Liam Shipway, as 2 Jack Hodges put on a lively display which included spinning 6 Danny Greening and 280 Harry Ricketts in one go. Hodges went on take victory in heat two after spinning 845 Albert Haines from the lead, while Greening and 205 Charles Pearcey were both turned into the wall and a lively 278 Shaun Brokenshire used his Vauxhall Astra to good effect. Hodges then got a bit too crash-happy in the final, with Haines feeling the full force of his smartly painted Mondeo. Shipway, Pearcey and Hill enjoyed a good scrap for the lead before Shipway was dumped wide into Haines’s parked car. Hill took the victory from Pearcey and 743 Jake Bond, who worked his way through from the back. The full-contact allcomers race raised only eight cars but produced a fair amount of action, with Hodges in particular taking plenty of hits. Hodges was even on receiving end of one from race-leader Hill, but that didn’t prevent Hill just holding off Sparks for the win.

BriSCA F2 Stock Cars 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th 9th 10th
Heat 1 560 127 161 801 325 905 931 988 8 to Final
Heat 2 302 184 126 915 890 91 828 844 8 to Final
Heat 3 783 700 418 542 960 606 142 578 8 to Final
Consolation 35 194 618 53 320 979 667 482 8 to Final
Final 35 127 161 542 783 418 560 578 618 606
Grand National 979 53 578 560 184 542 801 988 35 700
Grade Awards 53 W 35 Y 161 B
Saloon Stock Cars 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th 9th 10th
Last Chance 27 328 177 199 85 561 672 444 33 319
European 600 618 677 349 341 698 525 670 120 730
Final 28 399 277 341 670 129 677 618 418 730
Allcomers 902 341 277 399 677 600 418 349 525 698
2 Litre Bangers 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th 9th 10th
Heat 1 246 133 31 743 278 298 205 6 908 59
Heat 2 2 743 355 246 31 298 908 133 278 333
Final 133 205 743 278 355 298 908 333 nof
Allcomers 133 246 205 355 278 nof
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