Northampton – 10th September 2011 BriSCA World Final Race Report

BriSCA F1 stock car driver Paul Harrison 2 pre-race. Photo Steve Botham

BriSCA F1 stock car World Final 2011 grid. Photo Steve Botham

BriSCA F1 stock car World Final 2011 grid rolling down the backstraight. Photo Steve Botham

An action packed BriSCA World Final saw F1 stock car driver Paul Harrison 2 finally claim the Gold roof for himself, winning the World Final in front of a packed stadium. Ivan Pritchard 434 failed to make the grid due to engine troubles allowing third placed consolation semi finalist Lee Fairhurst 217 to find himself at the rear of the field for the big one.

As the grid rolled round the final bend before the green, Paul Harrison was right up on the pace, pulling away before polesitter Paul Hines 259 and having to quickly get himself back in check until Hines roared into action seconds later. Hines shot forwards to take the lead but with a bulldozering Frankie Wainman jnr 515 flying up to the front, with his eye on the main prize, Hines was soon sharply relegated into second place.

BriSCA F1 stock car driver Paul Hines 259 receives attention from Frankie Wainman jnr 515. Photo Steve Botham

Hines clobbered into Wainman jnr as down on turns three and four Johan Catsberg’s H99 race came to an early end when despite being the quickest oversea’s driver in the time trials he found himself thumped out into the fence on three and four by the hard charging Stu Smith jnr 390. Back up the other end as everyone from the middle of the field vyed for position Jessy de Bruyn H399 span out, being dumped in the middle of turn two with cars racing by on either side.

Dutch overseas F1 stock car driver Jessy de Bruyn H399 spins out. Photo Colin Casserley

Paul Hines was not letting Wainman get away easily and the two roared round the bends side by side with Wainman pulling ahead and Paul Harrison 2 taking advantage of Hines to claim second. They yellows were then shown for possibly one of the slowest rollovers in history when Rob Cowley 73 rode up the armco on the backstraight and flopped over onto his side.

BriSCA F1 stock car driver Rob Cowley 73 rolls out of the World Final. Photo Colin Casserley

Catching breath, and looking at the fearsome restart order, it was impossible to predict whom the World Final winner would be as any of the F1 stock cars towards the front of the order were in with a big shout. Restart order 515 – 2 – 259 – 84 – 4 – 1 – 21. Sadly, fan favourite, the legendary John Lund 53 retired from the fray along with the F1 stock car of Craig Finnikin 55.

BriSCA F1 stock car driver Mickey Randell 172 clatters the fence. Photo Colin Casserley

At the green, as the field flew into battle once more, Antipodean competitor Shane French Aus19 seemed to slow, and crept round the inside kerb of turns one and two in the Neil Smith 507 tarmac car. Bumpers clashed all through the field as Tom Harris 84 many fan’s tip for the win, clattered into the rear of Paul Hines as Dan Johnson 4 lurked ominously close behind.

Johnson was soon on Harris and the two jostled for position with Johnson sending Harris out to connect heavily with the stationary Scott Fredrickson NZ8 in the Tony Smith 91 car. Upfront Paul Harrison was chasing Wainman jnr for the lead, when Murray Harrison 97 span out in a huge plume of smoke on turn two. NZ visitor Peter Rees NZ3 in Dave Riley’s 422 shale car clattered sideways into the fence as the field went past in a big press of cars with all the cars fighting for track space.

BriSCA F1 stock car driver Murray Harrison spins out in a cloud of smoke. Photo Colin Casserley

Unfortunately for Rees, he had been knocked senseless, and went head on into the fence at the opposite end, coming bouncing round the armco with his foot still down, the engine eerily screaming in distress. The yellows came out at once and with the field slowing, Ryan Harrison 197 quickly took the initiative and pulled across the front of Rees’ machine to stop the car’s momentum.

BriSCA F1 stock car driver Ryan Harrison 197 comes to NZ3 Peter Rees' aid. Photo Colin Casserley

Craig Finnikin, sprinting over the infield then leaned in to hit the kill switch allowing for Rees to be attended to. After spending the night in Hospital for observation, Rees returned to Brafield for the following day’s World Masters meeting with everyone wishing him a full and speedy recovery after a scary looking incident. Thankfully, freak accidents such as this are few and far between.

Once the incident was dealt with, the F1 stock cars restarted their engines and started to slowly roll off. Ryan Harrison’s act of bravery had probably damaged his gearbox as he was forced to retire to the infield throwing his steering wheel out of the cab in frustration. Once again, it was still anyone’s race with Frankie Wainman jnr still leading with the order being 515 – 2 – 4 – 259 – 1 – 21 – SA1 (lap down) – 390….

F1 stock cars go three wide further down the field at the restart. Photo Colin Casserley

Current World Champion Andy Smith 1 thrust his own bumper at Paul Hines at the green, as brother Stu Smith jnr 390 laid into Mark Gilbank 21. Ahead, dynamic Dan Johnson thumped into Paul Harrison 2 but Paul was not moving from second easily and Dan had to renew his assault to succeed. Frankie Wainman was trying to put distance between himself and the rest of the field. Paul Harrison tore after Johnson and was soon filling Johnson’s mirror when the yellows came out again for Danny Wainman’s 212 outside front wheel which had become detached and bounced merrily up the homestraight.

Wainman jnr led the field for a third time and once again his slight lead had been negated. Restart order was 515 – 4 – 2 – 1 – 259 – 390 – 21 – 22 – 84. Tom Harris was quickly onto Will Yarrow 22 neatly passing him on turn two while Dan Johnson was ruthlessly pressuring Wainman jnr before mercilessly sending Frankie forcibly sailing out to the armco with Johnson briefly claiming the lead for himself.

BriSCA F1 stock car driver Dan Johnson 4 pursues Frankie Wainman jnr 515. Photo Colin Casserley

BriSCA F1 stock car driver Frankie Wainman jnr 515 finds the armco. Photo Colin Casserley

Wainman jnr came out of the fence and got straight back into the race but he was in the thick of it now and had been damaged and when Andy Smith 1 made heavy contact with Wainman’s outside rear wheel pushing him into the fence, Wainman’s hopes for victory and the rest of the race were definitely dashed.

the front of the BriSCA World Final grid after the restart. Photo Colin Casserley

BriSCA F1 stock car drivers Paul Harrison 2 and Dan Johnson 4 duel for position. Photo Colin Casserley

Up ahead Paul Harrison 2 sent leader Johnson crashing into the turn two fence, allowing an overjoyed Harrison through to take the lead around the half way point. Andy Smith in dealing with Wainman jnr had allowed polesitter Paul Hines to move back up the field into third while Tom Harris battled passed Stu Smith jnr with the two going on to trade blows for position for the rest of the race. As the laps rolled down, Dutch F1 stock car driver Louw Wobbes H22 and Will Yarrow 22 fought over placings with Louw coming out ahead and picking up the trophy for the highest European overseas driver.

F1 stock car drivers Louw Wobbes H22 and Will Yarrow 22 fight for position. Photo Colin Casserley

BriSCA F1 stock car Dan Johnson 4 tails leader Paul Harrison 2. Photo Colin Casserley

Leader Paul Harrison 2 had the majority of the crowd behind him, willing him on to repeat father Willie’s achievement in 1982 and was well amongst the backmarkers but also had Johnson back in the fight trying to reel him in but looking to be suffering with damage after his hard impact with the armco. Harrison’s back was momentarily protected by lap down Jan Roelof Wijbenga H228 but Johnson was also soon by.

BriSCA F1 stock car driver Paul Harrison 2 passing Jan Roelof Wijbenga H228. Photo Colin Casserley

Not far behind, Andy Smith lamped Paul Hines with Wijbenga sliding up the inside of both and Smith getting the better of Hines for third. An euphoric Paul Harrison 2 roared triumphantly out of turn four for the last time and with the chequered flags flying, Paul ecstatically charged over the line to the delight of the crowd but none more so than Paul’s own family. Dan Johnson took second, his best World Final finish with Andy Smith taking third.

BriSCA F1 stock car driver Paul Harrison 2 on his way to becoming World Champion 2011. Photo Colin Casserley

BriSCA F1 stock car 2011 World Final winner Paul Harrison 2. Photo Colin Casserley

The 2011 BriSCA F1 World Final top four. Photo Steve Botham

BriSCA F1 stock car 2011 World Champion Paul Harrison 2. Photo Chris Clark

BriSCA F1 stock car 2011 World Final winner Paul Harrison 2 celebrates. Photo Colin Casserley

World Final winner Paul Harrison 2 celebrates with his family. Photo Colin Casserley

The Paul Harrison 2 team get ready for their parade lap. Photo Chris Clark

Ailsa Haigh

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