Smeatharpe Stadium - Easter Monday 1st April 2024

A day of mixed weather conditions proved challenging for all concerned in front of a large Easter Monday crowd. A pre-meeting parade was undertaken by a plethora of trucks promoting Devon Truck Show 2024, to be held across the airfield at Smeatharpe in May.

BriSCA F2 Stock Cars

With damage to both cars and bodies from the busy Easter weekend’s proceedings the 29 car entry necessitated a two from three heat format.  The track remained soaking wet for the opening heat despite the now blue skies overhead with the lower graders dominating proceedings as 141 Harry Neath-Rogers took a flag-to-flag win.  Behind, Track Champion 127 Matt Stoneman’s hopes were dashed after becoming hooked onto the back of 835 Matt Westaway’s car.  Heat two saw 109 Tristan Smith leading, but he got out of shape on the back straight which allowed 259 Daz Purdy through into the top spot.  The west bend was proving tricky, as 890 Paul Rice found out when he clouted the fence, before Smith joined him a lap or so later.  654 Harley Soper then found the same spot, but this time he also collected the luckless 844 Jack Prosser who had been stranded on the turn since the early stages of the race.  Prosser was then collected hard by 468 Sam Weston which would have resulted in a late stoppage but by this time the chequered had already been shown to Purdy and therefore the race was brought to its conclusion.  An early yellow flag was called for in heat three with 121 Vinnie Neath-Rogers, 605 Richie Andrews and 663 Bryan Lindsay all in a heap between turns three and four.  525 Charlie Knight was shown the black cross for being quick away at the start, but it was to prove inconsequential as Knight exited with 303 Kurt Selway on turn four later in the race.  Harry Neath-Rogers raced away from the field on the restart as 27 Keiren Bradford, 315 Charlie Fisher and 528 Shane Hector collided on the pits bend.  After Neath-Rogers had collected his second chequered flag of the day, Knight and Selway had a falling out over their earlier incident and their on-track actions saw their day ended prematurely, with further disciplinary measures to follow.  Fisher did not make the start of the Final after a brief air filter fire was extinguished.  What followed was an enthralling race but instead of the star graders to the fore, it was once again the lower graders who emerged as the leading performers.  Harry Neath-Rogers and Smith were immediately into an early race battle.  As the race progressed, they repeatedly swapped places, which opened the door for 286 Kasey Jones to join the scrap, with Soper turning it into a four-way battle.  Eventually, the pivotal moment came as the lead quartet charged into the pits bend, having just taken the five-laps-to-go board.  Jones dived at Neath-Rogers and sent him into a spin, but this delayed Jones who was forced around the outside.  Soper pounced and grabbed the lead, whilst Smith regained second.  As Soper pulled away to seal a first final win in his native south west, Jones edged past Smith for the runner-up spot.  The Grand National also built to an exciting climax with Harry Neath Rogers caught and nudged wide by Andrews at the start of the final lap.  However, by now, the racing line was dry although the outside line remained damp and treacherous.  Neath-Rogers superbly came back at Andrews heading into the final bend which launched Andrews into the fence where he collected Bradford.  Yet, as Neath-Rogers also struggled for grip on the wet outside line, Rice nipped through to steal the win in dramatic fashion.

Saloon Stock Cars

A very wet track after a pre-race downpour greeted the 23 cars for the opening heat which included three from Scotland and 747 Matthew Stirling from Northern Ireland (his fellow countryman 59 Stephen Boulton not making it out the pits until later in the day).  768 Joe Delahay broke free at the front of the field, but at the rear, the star graders delayed one another on the tricky surface.  Amongst their battles, 677 Warren Darby was taken around by Scotsman 618 Stuart Shevill, with Darby then being collected by 661 Graeme Shevill in the process.  329 Kegan Sampson broke free into second and slowly carved his way through the back marking traffic to catch and pass Delahay with two laps to go to claim the win.  Heat two saw Bolton make the grid as 759 Trevor Whitford, fresh from a big rollover the previous afternoon at Bristol, shot into an early lead.  A caution period soon followed, for debris on the track from 199 Phil Powell’s car which had been spun and then collected by S Shevill and Darby.  Whitford was caught and passed by 561 Aaron Totham until 720 Archie Brown took over at the front.  Another bout of yellow flags were required when Delahay was inadvertently collected at full speed by 670 Ross Watters on the home straight with Delahay’s car rolling back out into the path of the oncoming traffic.  Brown ran out the remainder of the race out front as S Shevill, Stirling and 474 Michael Kent enjoyed a fine battle for third.  Another rain shower before the final made life extra difficult, although Whitford again looked good as he made the early running.  A yellow flag stoppage was imposed, after Sampson, 33 Pete Hollett and Totham tangled in a heap on Honiton bend.  On the restart Brown move into the lead with 760 Joey Reynolds second.  For a time, it looked like the backmarking traffic might allow Reynolds to pounce, Brown kept a big enough distance to withstand a last bend lunge and take the win.  Darby completed the top three.  The Allcomers had a chaotic start with Watters, Reynolds and Brown all tangling on the back straight sending the chasing pack scattering in all directions.  This allowed Hollett to break free into an unassailable lead as behind Darby and S Shevill were again in close competition, Darby being sent spinning around once again by the National Champion on the pit bend in the very last stages of the race.


With a larger than expected turn out of cars a two from three heat format was deployed.  130 Chris Durrant took a flag-to-flag victory in the opening heat.  There was an eventful start for 881 Caitlin Emery in the second heat.  On her first outing at the track, she found herself stranded across the home straight in front of the starter’s rostrum.  Having got back in the race, she then lost grip on the back straight and again found herself broadside across the track.  323 Barry Philips exited the race whilst in the lead which left 756 Troy Hooper to take over, and when his nearest challengers went scattering around the back straight and pit bend, he enjoyed a free run to the flag.  The third heat is a similarly chaotic affair but brought a win for track debutant 3 Luke Philp. The final for the Gus Garret Trophy is a fitting tribute to the former Smeatharpe favourite.  There is predictable early chaos, but once that cleared, teenager Emery looks on course for success.  However, she is closed on, lap after lap, by 113 Chris Jeanes.  On the final lap, Jeanes grabbed the lead, and in an effort to get back ahead Emery fell into the clutches of 621 Scott Kendall who just pipped her for second.  The Caravan Chaos provided plenty of thrills and entertainment to reward those that had stayed to the end of an unavoidably long afternoon.  There were six entrants, and the clear star performer was Jeanes.  Having been untangled from the wreckage during a couple of brief suspensions to the race, he relished the encouragement to launch himself into a near-complete van on the back straight.  As the caravan had the whole of one side missing, this afforded idyllic viewing of the caravan interior for those racegoers on the home straight.  Jeanes managed to perfectly land inside the van the remaining walls enveloping him in a picture perfect moment to rapturous cheers.  Buoyed by this continued encouragement, he requested the marshals to release his car to allow him one last blitz into another wrecked van on the home straight.

Stock Rods

The conditions throughout the afternoon provided an advantage to those starting towards the front of the grid but even so the performance of 914 Callum Faulconbridge to lap everyone up to seventh by the end of heat one was impressive to watch, the Ministox graduate using the outside line to his advantage.  220 Richard short was also unchallenged for the win in the second heat.  Faulconbridge then grabbed the third heat, although this time by a smaller margin.  Behind him, an exciting battle developed between 285 Martin Walker and 9 Chris Drake, the two running side by side for a number of laps.  However, Drake’s efforts were unrewarded as he was docked after the race for contact earlier on.  The Final featured a stoppage after 204 Georgie Polley was squeezed towards the back straight wall.  On the restart long-time leader 235 Paul Harris was faced with fending of a challenge from 476 Vic Wadling and Faulconbridge.  The three drivers raced superbly for position with Harris eventually dropping to third at the conclusion of what had been a great race given the tricky conditions.

BriSCA F2 Stock Cars 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th 9th 10th
Heat 1 A&B 141 109 259 654 24 53 528 776 468 286
Heat 2 C&A 259 121 24 194 525 776 605 286 542 468
Heat 3 C&B 141 127 53 542 194 890 528 315 128 509
Final 654 286 109 194 141 890 53 605 776 542
Grand National 890 141 542 127 286 605 194 315 53 468
Grade Awards W 141 Y 194 B 890
Saloon Stock Cars 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th 9th 10th
Heat 1 329 768 760 277 561 199 444 618 27 720
Heat 2 720 561 618 747 474 677 27 661 329 577
Final 720 760 677 618 670 661 747 474 799 164
Allcomers 33 561 618 474 27 661 747 677 164 382
Stock Rods 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th 9th 10th
Heat 1 A&B 914 351 313 231 311 944 285 476 275 37
Heat 2 B&C 220 79 9 522 909 32 862 275 37 235
Heat 3 C&A 914 351 285 9 944 32 235 311 231 51
Final 476 914 235 313 220 79 415 311 909 51
Bangers 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th 9th 10th
Heat 1 A&B 130 60 83 235 556 113 44 70 230 459
Heat 2 B&C 756 206 3 621 786 747 230 718 556 739
Heat 3 C&A 3 70 67 739 113 198 786 6 823 718
Final 113 621 881 786 3 739 230 235 556 70
Caravan Chaos 113
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