On then to the Midland Circuit, Lelystad, a track that could not be more different from Emmen. Smooth tarmac, no stock car fence as such but lots of run-off room onto the outer oval. Fifteen F1s in attendance and all raced in Heat One, led away by Johan de Vries (257) and Gert Elzinga (393) in what looked like the former Keith Murdoch machine. De Vries set the early pace until the distinctive car of Peet Boersen (4) took over briefly before he was passed by Elzinga and Matt Schreurs (107). De Vries spun coming off turn four while the Zinga pressed on pulling out a useful lead. John van’t Veer (16) attacked Frank Wouters (417) into turn three, both cars tangling and careering onto the grass as Ron Kroonder (217), pre-race favourite, moved into third.
Wouters made a fast recovery from his earlier excursion but Kroonder, now up to second was closing on Elzinga with Wesley Schaap (77) third. Henk Jan Ronitz (240), the only driver to race at both Emmen and Lelystad this weekend (and in the same car) suffered a dislodged silencer along the way but kept going. The car sounded great but did not impress the steward who ordered the black flag for car 240. Henk failed (!) to see the exclusion flag for several laps, only pulling off when the yellows were shown with three to run, scuppering Elzinga’s chances of victory.
Gert held his nerve at the restart to power away from Kroonder but an attack by Chris Weyenberg (380) saw both star men tangle briefly going into turn three. Wouters came through for the lead but Kroonder, Schaap and Elzinga all tangled on the back straight next time around as they fought for position, 393 suffering a flat tyre. Wouters went on to win from Weyenberg and Johan Catsburg (99).
The same 15 for Heat Two with Jan Vrieswijk (104) going AWOL early on, leaving De Vries and Boersen ahead. Kroonder bundled Gert Jan Keijzer (6) aside but then cars 16, 417 and 99 all ended in a heap by the pit gate bringing out the caution after just 3 laps. A complete restart saw De Vries again leading until passed by Boersen down the back stretch, the 257 car being despatched grass-wards by Schaap and spinning out. A big hit by Gary Grattan (917) on 77 saw Schaap retire, the Irishman then losing out to Kroonder as he made his way into the lead. Keijzer was slowly closing the gap on Kroonder while Boersen received a hefty whack from Weyenberg. The number 6 pilot made a long dive at the 217 car going into turn three and had the lead by turn four with seven to run. Keijzer increased his lead over the remaining laps to take the flag from Kroonder and Grattan.
The earlier visit to the fence saw Catsburg’s car with damage to the side and Wouter’s car with a badly bent front axle but sterling work by both teams made sure we had a full complement of cars for Heat Three and this time Peet Boersen fulfilled the earlier promise by leading from flag to flag in a race that saw Keijzer and Kroonder again trading paint, this time joined by Weyenberg.
Wouters was the only non-starter in the 23 lap Final with Boersen quickly into the lead chased by Schreurs and Schaap. Schaap overcame the 107 car and tapped Boersen wide for the lead, a position he held for several laps until a tyre on the 77 car surrendered. The black number 4 car retook the lead with ten to go and maintained the gap between himself and the pack. Grattan tried to shift second-placed Catsburg as Kroonder lurked in fourth but a wild lunge at Boersen by 99, too far back to ever connect, saw Catsburg fall into Kroonder’s clutches on the last lap. Grattan tried a last bender on Catsburg but Johan rode it out to keep third.
Boersen celebrated with a burn-out on the start-line before taking his lap of honour and is clearly at home on tarmac though he has never apparently been tempted to visit Venray. Forty-nine year old Peet lives in De Koog on Texel where his sons Cris and Ben race on the dirt. His performance today has gained him valuable world qualifying points – will he be tempted to visit Ipswich I wonder?
My thanks to Hary NL (via Stoxnet) and F1Stockcars.com for the information about Peet. A big thank you also to John Graham for making the trip possible and to Michael Schutter (F2 H129) for the beer!
Words: Mick Jenkins
Photos: Ant & Mick Jenkins