Birmingham – May 22nd 2010 Meeting Report

Birmingham’s World Qualifying round for the F1s drew just over 40 cars to the Bordesley Green venue on a scorching hot May 22nd, and after a night of the yellow tops throughout the heats it was 390 Stuart Smith who made a welcome return to form to take the Final.

Photo Colin Casserley

Heat 1

The two-thirds format was employed and 26 cars lined up for heat one with an early tangle among the blue grade seeing 372 Colin Goodswen and 172 Micky Randell sent spinning.

Photo Colin Casserley

429 Gareth Wildman was the early leader as the pushing pack behind him sent 41 Robert Broome out into the wall while 16 Matt Newson was a big hitter in the early laps stuffing 107 Lee Robinson into the recovered Goodswen. 385 Steve Thompson and 302 Jim Bamford broke clear to chase Wildman with the white top eventually sliding wide on the fifth lap allowing his pursuers through. Newson was battling 1 Andrew Smith and 55 Craig Finnikin further back as the lower graders held sway at the front throughout,

Photo Chris Clark

Photo Chris Clark

Thompson holding off a late attack from Bamford to win with Wildman heading home 223 Garry Townsend for third.
Result: 385-302-429-223-37-153-464-141-515-84.

Heat 2

Down to 24 cars for heat two with Bamford taking 101 Dave Waterhouse for the lead on lap two as 22 Will Yarrow continued his recent run of form as he battled 498 Spencer Taylor for second. Further back Stuart Smith was enjoying a scrap with 97 Murray and 197 Ryan Harrison which came to a head when 515 Junior Wainman stuffed Ryan into the silver top sending both into the wall at turn three and leaving Ryan’s car on Stuart’s bonnet. Murray Harrison and Taylor also got caught up before Wainman’s car threw a Goodyear and he spun out onto the centre. Waterhouse then crashed into the pileup on turn three as Bamford raced to the win ahead of the closing Yarrow and 37 Chris Cowley.
Result: 302-22-37-259-84-4-212-2-1-97.

Photo Colin Casserely

Heat 3

The third heat saw 26 cars on track but Waterhouse and 191 Joshua Smith would retire before the green flag. Wildman led the way once again until that man Thompson once again took over a few laps in, and the UK Open champion soon opened a lead up. In a quieter race the highlight was a battle between Randell, Stuart Smith and 259 Paul Hines in the midfield, but once again Thompson looked dominant and completed his double with Yarrow and Stuart Smith next.
Result: 385-22-390-2-259-172-429-498-141-459.

Photo Colin Casserley

Final

The night had been relatively subdued by normal Birmingham standards but the 32-car Final would prove much more lively as the day’s heat began to fade. A big push into the first turn saw blue tops Murray Harrison and 141 Carl Pickering tangle T-bone fashion with Joshua Smith then scooping under Pickering to almost roll the tarmac specialist. 217 Lee Fairhurst also crashed in as 84 Tom Harris almost hooked up with Newson, while ahead of the chaos Wildman led until Thompson and Bamford once again took over. Wildman pulled up as Yarrow battled past Taylor into third, but Stuart Smith was the man on the move having got the tyre setup spot on. Bamford moved past Thompson and led for a lap but the National Points champion was soon on their tail and launched a perfectly timed attack on turns one and two to send both yellow tops wide and take over at the front. He went on to take his first feature race win for a while with Thompson falling back in the closing laps allowing Bamford to take second ahead of Yarrow, Hines just beating Andrew Smith in the drag to the line for fourth.
Result: 390-302-22-259-1-37-385-2-172-515.

Photo Chris Clark

Grand National

28 cars returned under the floodlights for the Grand National with 488 Mike Kingston Jnr starting from white grade for the first time and he led them away until Thompson once more took over. Wainman looked livelier this time following an off-the-boil evening and battled with Fairhurst and 2 Paul Harrison as further up the order Yarrow scooped under the back of Finnikin in the heat of battle with the collision also claiming 53 John Lund. Taylor caught and passed Thompson with two laps to go with the National Hot Rod star trying a last bend lunge but it didn’t work and Taylor took the flag with Bamford’s excellent night concluding with third place and Kingston Jnr taking a fine seventh, ending a good meeting but not as lively as previous action seen at Birmingham.
Result: 498-385-302-1-84-4-488-107-515-2.

Photo Colin Casserley

Dave Goddard

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