King’s Lynn, 28th March 2015 – Meeting Report and Photo Gallery

A welcome return to King’s Lynn and the newly-dubbed ‘Adrian Flux Arena’, on a dry but chilly evening, saw 38 F1s in attendance.

The Whites and Yellows Championship was the first up on track, with 15 cars making their way onto the Saddlebow Road shale. Aaron Cozens (76) and Tim Warwick (307) led the pack away and it was Cozens who was out front by the pit bend. Although the leaders made it round the first bend with ease, some of the higher grade drivers were not so lucky. A pile up including 267, 207, 293 and 91 saw the 24 car of Mark Adkins come off worst; retiring with front tyre damage.

Cozens remained in control of the race, while behind him Warwick was under pressure from Mark Sargent (326). Sargent was soon up the inside, leaving Warwick to battle with Geoff Nickolls (215). This battle continued throughout the race and, with only 4 laps to go, 215 claimed third. 307 dropped back, allowing Paul Poulter (174) into fourth. Poulter tried to chase down the 215 machine but simply ran out of laps. Aaron Cozens crossed the line first, ahead of Mark Sargent and Geoff Nickolls.

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Whites and Yellows Championship Final front row

James Bailey (135) and Joe Thompson (386) took up their places at the front of Heat 2. 386 claimed the initial lead, but his luck ran out and he spun and was collected by Mick Sworder (150). World Champion, Craig Finnikin (55), also went for a spin in the early stages of the race.

Dylan-Williams Maynard (51) had found his way to the front, leading Josh Smith (191) and Mark Woodhull (335). Red graders Will Yarrow (22) and Sworder were already chasing down the leaders. Smith lost out to Woodhull and the 22 car moved into third. Newcomer Neil Clarke (311) introduced himself to the unforgiving King’s Lynn fence.

Williams-Maynard remained in control at the front of the field, while back-marking Finnikin sat between him and the second place car of Yarrow. After dealing with 55, the bumper came in from 22, pushing the 51 machine wide. Yarrow moved through and into the lead, but Williams-Maynard was not giving up without a fight.

As the lap boards came out, 51 was still trying to pull back the win, pushing Yarrow into back-marking 386 but the 22 car recovered to take the victory. Mick Sworder pulled off before the chequered flag, moving Rob Speak up to third.

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Heat 2 winner Will Yarrow

18 cars returned to the shale for the Consolation, including 150, 55 and 16. At the drop of the green, Elliot Smith (293) took the lead. Once again, Bailey went for a spin on the pits bend, as did 386. At the front, it was 293 from 24 and 91. 91 tried for second but slid wide. Mick Sworder pushed 386 out wide, but he had Finnikin right behind him.

Back at the front, Elliot Smith had opened up a clear lead, but then pulled off on the home straight, leaving 91 to inherit the lead, from 24 and 338. Lower down, Sworder was being challenged by Finnikin; the 55 machine won the battle and slipped up the inside of him on the road bend. 94 took second place going down the home straight, while Finnikin moved the 372 car of Colin Goodswen aside and 150 and 16 battled further down the grid. Thompson and Bailey tangled on the road bend. Sworder appeared to get caught up and rejoined lower down the order. The caution came out while the 386 car was moved onto the centre green.

Smith (91) lined up for the restart, with Dowson and Brocksopp in second and third respectively. Adkins pulled off on the rolling lap. As soon as the green is dropped, 338 comes under fire from Neil Scothern (152), who takes him wide and claims third. Trying to regain his position, Brocksopp tangles with the 152 car, allowing Finnikin through into third.

At the halfway stage, Tony Smith was coming up behind backmarkers and, after almost tangling with the 311 car, Smith pulled off onto the centre. John Dowson was now out front, followed by Finnikin, Newson and Sworder.

94 lost time as he caught up with the backmarkers and the 55 started to close. Feeling the pressure, Dowson went wide into the bends; Finnikin appeared to be biding his time, ready for a last lap move. On the final turn, Finnikin put the bumper in, propelling 94 towards the fence. They both scrambled for the lead but it was Finnikin who took the victory, from 94, with 16 in third.

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John Dowson Junior moves inside returnee Billy-Tom O’Connor

Cozens looked set to take the early lead in the meeting Final but instead he spun, allowing Dylan Williams-Maynard to get to the front. 16 and 335 went into the wall between turns 1 and 2, with the pair later collected by Billy Johnson (169). Slightly further down, 217 was under fire from #4. Johnson went up the inside and Fairhurst was soon passed by 515 and 318 as well. Speak went into a half-spin, losing time on the leaders. Wainman (515) retired to the centre with a flat rear tyre.

Dylan Williams-Maynard was still in control of the race, pulling out a gap over second-placed Sargent. Johnson moved into third and immediately began chasing down second. However, he mistimed his move, catching and colliding with Sargent and allowing Nigel Harrhy into second.

Fairhurst got in front of the 45, only for Harrhy to turn early in the corner, sending the 217 machine flying over the front of the 45 car. They were collected by Rob Speak and a stray tyre from the incident was also collected by 338. The caution came out for 45, 217 and 318, who were all stuck in the pits bend. Rob Speak managed to free himself from between the 45 car and the Armco.

Williams-Maynard led the field off for the restart, with Danny Wainman and Craig Finnikin right behind him. The 55 car dropped right down the order, suffering from a flat tyre, moving John Dowson up to third. With 3 laps left to run, Wainman (212) tried to close but the 51 driver remained firmly in control of the race.

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National Points leader Dylan Williams-Maynard on his way to a final win

26 cars made it out for the Grand National, including Mick Sworder, who’d missed the Final after suffering from gearbox problems. Problems arose for Nigel Harrhy, who had to be pushed off the track before the start. The green flag dropped and the 24 car went into the lead. This was short-lived as he went for a spin on the pit bend, allowing 293 to the front. Tony Smith hit the wall hard. More spinning from 231 before the yellow flags were waved to rescue the stranded Tony Smith.

The leaders at the restart were 293, from 207 and 463. Fairhurst, the first of the reds, was poised to attack in fourth and 318, 515 and 150 were ready to continue the battle for sixth. Fairhurst wasted no time in nerf-ing the third-placed driver aside, and Speaky was soon up to fourth, just behind Wainman.

Ben Hurdman had taken the lead, ahead of 217 and 515. Wainman went up the inside of Fairhurst but Sworder was also now in the mix. Sworder planted a big hit on the 515, punting him into the fence. Sworder grabbed the lead and Wainman, after a clash with younger brother Danny, was forced to retire with another flat tyre.

Once at the front of the field, 150 pulled out a huge lead, dominating the remainder of the race. Finnikin was challenging for third, taking the place with 3 to go. Then disaster struck for the World Champ and he spins out on the pit bend.

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Reigning Shoot Out Champion Rob Speak’s new colours for 2015

Words: Rhosanna Jenkins

Photos: Colin Casserley

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