Blauwhuis, 27th April 2018 “King’s Battle” – Meeting Report and Photos

Better weather, a packed programme of F1, F2, F2 Junior, FAC 1600s, Rodeo and Standard cars in prospect and a couple more F1 cars in the already crowded pits all pointed to another cracking session of racing for the prestigious “King of Dirt” titles on offer today. For the F1 & F2 classes drivers raced in two of four heats with their points totals deciding grid positions for the title races, top scorers on the front – think of it as a sort of Netherlands shale World Final.

Who will be crowned 2018 King of Dirt?

Thirty cars for heat one with Sarge (re-aerofoiled) the only UK entrant.  Dick Bouman (261) was one of the additions in a very smart car, running an early second behind leader Auke Osinga (592) while star man Peter Ruig (55) gathered up a few others on the way to the green flag, bringing out, you’ve guessed it, the yellow flags, followed by a red flag! Craig Finnikin was one of those involved in the melee so was probably glad of the complete restart, with Bouman, Osinga and now Blokker (7) again leading the pack.

Four cars tangled entering turn one, more joined in and Pascal Spigt (6) contrived to drive over his own front axle, finishing propped up against the fence – cue more yellow flags. Bert Hondert (541) led the next restart with Sarge second and Finn well up the order. Bert de Vries (20) slowly reeled in the 541 car to take the lead with three to run, only for Hondert to fight back and reclaim it with 955 waiting to pounce. De Vries retook the lead and kept clear for the win but Hondert was sent to the fence by Finnikin on the last bend on his way to second place.

Watch that new wing, Sarge!

Bobby G carried on where he left off the night before with a win in heat two but it was not all plain sailing. A false start due to de Cock (525) failing to get going saw a red flag. Another red flag a lap into the restart for a blue top on his side in turn three confirmed that it was again going to be action all the way. Bobby was on the receiving end of a big hit entering turn three when racing resumed, losing several places, while a red top, could have been 61 or 81, stormed through the pack, sending 315 fencewards.

De Boer led, was almost overhauled by Wendy Koopmans (36) until she was baulked by a returning Hiemstra (315) and Haarsma (294) hit the front, chased by Griffin. 294 threw it away, handing the lead to the 166 – cue yellow flags! Haarsma and Roelof van der Veen (90) tangled but Rian Vronik (102) had turned over – to be fair we hadn’t had a roll over for several laps so one was due.  One lap behind the water cart, King’s Lynn style, before we got away again, Griffin maybe jumping the start to get the drop on those behind and staying clear for the win from Tesselaar (410) and Zijsling (292).

Roelof van der Veen (90) – another very smart car

Defending champion Wijbenga (228) had better luck in heat three, clawing his way up to second place by the flag but had no answer to flying white top Jur Blokker (7), even with a caution mid-race. Craig Finnikin received a hefty whack on turn one, popping his outside rear tyre – no points in this one. Pieter Langeveld (155) followed up his heat one fourth place with a third in this heat, even attempting to remove Wijbenga on the last lap!

Thirty-two for the last heat with Bobby G quickly up to fourth, surviving a half-spin before the inevitable caution. De Boer (58) again set the pace until Griffin eased by for another win, unswayed by Koen Maris (61) throwing a wheel at the fence near the end. Henk Jan Ronitz (240) scored his first points with a second place but Griffin had two wins and pole position for the final.

Not even a Fairhurst car can win on three wheels

I nipped into the pits to get Bobby’s view on the upcoming final only to find Daz Kitson’s legs sticking out of the 166 cab. When Daz emerged holding a piece of bell-housing I knew all was not well and beat a hasty retreat. A broken flywheel was the cause so it was a relief to see Bobby line up for the final in his deserved front row position. Griffin again got a good start, chased by Langeveld but an early caution for a scrimmage on the pit bend slowed things down. Finn lost a lot of ground but Griffin put on a real show until he hit back-marking traffic allowing Jacob De Vries to close up.

Another caution and the order was 166, 453 and 228 with mid-race watering to contend with too. Bobby again went early at the green, Wijbenga took second, lost it and out came the yellow flags yet again. Finn and de Vries had a battle for third but then it all went wrong for Griffin. He drifted wide and Wijbenga made his move on the pit bend, spinning the 166 car but trapping himself in the process. De Vries (453) was through for the lead, Finn lost out on turn three after running second and 453 took the King of Dirt title, with Bert de Vries second and Peter Ruig (55) third.

Jacob de Vries – the newly crowned King of Dirt

The last race on the programme was a ‘dash for the cash’, won by Wierd Gietema (76).

A fantastic two days of stock car racing, around forty races, gawd knows how many roll overs and all for 25 euros. It would be unfair to single out one driver or team for praise but I am going to anyway – Yoren Winans (575) was in the thick of the action each day, incurring a very damaging roll on the Thursday night. The 575 team cut, hammered and beat the car into shape each time so he could return for the next race. Not a single point came his way but that didn’t stop him trying. An excellent effort by Team 575 – let’s see you on our side of the water again soon Yoren.

Team Winans – Yoren bends it, they mend it. 

Words: Mick Jenkins
Photos: Ant and Mick Jenkins

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