Kings Lynn – June 26th 2010 Meeting Report

It turned out that the Kings Lynn meeting would go ahead after all and twenty-two cars made the journey to the Saddlebow shaleway. This included a return for budget racer Tim Warwick (307) who has had his engine rebuilt, and was allowed on track pre-meeting to complete some steady laps. Half the competitors present sported a red roof with a surprise visit from Andy Smith; making the long trip from Rochdale for National Series/Grading points, despite heading the WCQR points and the National Points by quite a margin. Perhaps he has his eye on the ‘old’ Silver Roof and wishes to stake his claim for the National Grading Points Champion.

Five cars made it for the Stars of Tomorrow Whites any Yellow grade race with Luke Dennis (192) being the only one present who had not been racing for very long, being the Novice of the Year for 2009. Dennis led them away with Warwick already opting to start at the rear of the field for all his races to settle the engine in. Colin Nairn (280) took up second until clipping the homerstraight armco out of four, allowing Geoff Nickolls (215) and John Lawn (441) through. Lawn and Nickolls jostled for position with Lawn coming out ahead when Nickolls NSR started to go down at the end. Dennis maintained his lead taking the chequered before forcefully driving himself straight into the turn one armco, admitting that at the end he had thrown ‘a wobbly’. This was the last appearance of the night for Dennis as he was forced to load up with damage.

Luke Dennis (192). Photo Colin Casserley

As they came out for Heat one it was clearly going to be an all in format with only Luke Dennis and John Lawn being missing. As KL usually do a quick turn around, Lawn had not had long enough to change his gearing in between F1 races. Geoff Nickolls snapped up the lead near the start and looked to be on for a heat win as he powered off. Blue grader Steve Cayzer (380) got it sideways on turn two, collecting Josh Smith (191) and bunching up the following red tops as they fought to avoid them. Mat Newson (16) looked to moving forwards with purpose as Andy Smith got right behind Frankie Wainman jnr (515) and it looked as if it was to be a repeat of the battling performance they put in at the last KL. Mat Newson (16) then collided with luckless Colin Nairn putting an end to his race. Garry Fox (48) found himself momentarily sandwiched between the dueling Smith and Wainman and it looked like Frank would maintain his lead until a well placed bumper on Wainman’s inside nerf allowed Smith to make the pass.

Andy Smith (1) and Frankie Wainman (515) do battle. Photo Colin Casserley.

Simon Panton (288) looked to be going well and closing down Nickolls as further back, the overtaken Wainman appeared to be keeping pace with Smith. Andy Smith moved Ryan Harrison (197) between himself and Wainman as Craig Finnikin (55) dealt with Chris Brocksopp (338) to move up the order. At this point Wainman’s tyre let go and he was forced to pull to the infield. Panton took his chance to move Nickolls to take the lead and onto the win as Nickolls then half spun on the last bend when challenged by third place Finnikin, which relegated him from second to fifth.
288 – 55 – 84 – 1 – 215 – 338 – 197 – 12 – 212 – 22

Geoff Nickolls (215) and Craig Finnikin (55). Photo Colin Casserley.

Heat two soon followed with Nickolls again taking up the running, quickly followed by Simon Panton whose race ended shortly after when he spun out putting himself out of contention. A jostling group of reds went wide into turn one with Daniel Wainman (212) sliding up the inside. Steve Cayzer sent Garry Fox into a half spin, as for the second race running Cayzer put himself out of contention in a tangle of cars, coming to a stop in the turn two fence. By the time Cayzer sorted himself out to continue, he was almost a lap down to Nickolls. As trhe race progressed, Nickolls soon had back markers Cayzer and Nairn between him and the rest of the field as the quick Ryan Harrison was making his way closer towards the front. Michael Scriven (12), the first red to break away had Mat Newson breathing down his neck as Finnikin charging to the front with purpose, bumpered Andy Smith to pass. As the reds continued to jostle for position, Mat Newson pulled out of the race.

Craig Finnikin (55) charges past Chris Brocksopp (338). Photo Colin Casserley.

A big group of cars were fighting for position coming down the backstraight and getting into each other. As the cars were all squeezed intolerably, young Daniel Wainman who had been at the front, appeared to get sideways, clip the marker tyre and fly up into the air in a roll. With so many cars in close proximity and unable to stop, the red and chequered flags were shown immediately, the race called and the result being rolled back to the previous lap. Daniel Wainman’s car sustained some serious rollcage damage but it is testimony to the strength of a Wainman built car that when it was eventually tractored back into the pits, Daniel was able to start work on it straight away.
197 – 215 – 55 – 12 – 1 – 16 – 441 – 338 – 97 – 515

Daniel working on car. Photo Stephen Cording

Photo Stephen Cording

Nineteen cars made it out for the Final, with Nickolls again taking up the running and Michael Scriven (12) being the first red to break away. Craig Finnikin and Tom Harris (84) were the first reds to follow his lead, with Finnikin sticking the bumper into Scriven, moving him aside. The two Smith cars of Murray Harrison (97) and Andy Smith raced closely, before Smith powered on and Murray dropped back down the order. Michael Scriven then challenged Smith and tried to regain his place unsuccessfully. Nickolls maintained his lead but the quick Ryan Harrison had moved into second as Chris Brocksopp attempted to pass Fox using his bumper but only suceeded in slowing himself down. Frankie Wainman was close behind Andy Smith and they tustled before Wainman put the bumper in and passed, sending the in-the-way Tim Warwick scuttling round the turn three armco as Wainman tried to put distance between him and Smith. Murray Harrison bumpered Michael Scriven but Scriven was not giving up another position and held him off. Scriven was then forced to withdraw, pulling onto the infield after getting it well sideways up the homestraight. Geoff Nickolls had been bumpered down the order, with first Harrison, then Finnikin and Harris passing and it looked to be building to an exciting finish as both Finnikin and Harris looked determinedly set on closing down the leader Ryan Harrison. At this point, the yellows came out for stranded Heat Winner Simon Panton just on the exit of turn four. Restart order ~ 197, 55, 84, 215, 515, 1, 97, 16, 22, 48, 280, 380, 338, 91

Heat Winner Simon Panton (288). Photo Colin Casserley.

The track was watered in the break to keep the dust down and created a bit of a Hot Topic afterwards as at the green it became clear that everyone was trying to go wide into the bends where it was dry to avoid the now slippy inside line. All cars caught the Armco at some point or another as the cars became more spread out and it was clear that Finnikin and Harris would not be able to get near each other nevermind Ryan Harrison who composedly drove away from them and successfully maintained a comfortable lead, getting to grips with the new track conditions for his first ever Final win.
197 – 55 – 84 – 1 – 16 – 22 – 515 – 48 – 91

Final Winner Ryan Harrison (197). Photo Colin Casserley

Thirteen cars came out for the Grand National with Ryan Harrison getting an unimpeded run from his lap handicap position as he raced by himself until he crossed the line. The Wainman woes continued as Frank tangled with Tony Smith (91) on the first bend smacking into the turn one Armco. As he set off again there was a trail of ominous blue smoke and he completed a solus lap before pulling off and peering underneath. Geoff Nickolls had again taken up the running but he was to be denied yet again as Andy Smith was making his way to the front with purpose and was soon into third place. Smith bumpered second place Garry Fox aside and began to quickly close down Geoff before purposefully taking the lead. The National completed what was a good night for Ryan Harrison as not only did he collect his first final winner’s trophy but he gained five points for finishing the GN and successfully got into the places for some double points as well.
1 – 55 – 16 – 215 – 84 – 380 – 48 – 338 – 197 – 1

On closer inspection in the pits, there appeared to be an awful lot of oil in the engine compartment of Wainman’s car and it turned out that he had indeed cracked the block. A hurried overnight welding saw Frank make it to Belle Vue the next day but he appeared to lose oil pressure and pulled off before the green without completing a racing lap. For the second year in a row, an unsuccessful night with engine damage at Kings Lynn followed by a similar story at Belle Vue, only this time it was Daniel who was forced to use his tarmac car as a replacement.

Ailsa Haigh

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