Northampton – June 20th Meeting Report

The latest session for the BriSCA F1s at their spiritual tarmac home of Northampton attracted a fine field of 44 cars including Dutch visitors H6 Geert-Jan Keijzer and H482 Peter van den Bosch, while newcomer 213 Nathan Taylor made his track debut in Adam Slater’s car. 84 Tom Harris is rapidly establishing himself as a superstar, and looked very rapid en route to a heat and Final double on one of his favourite tracks.

Photo Colin Casserley

Heat 1

With the sun beating down 23 cars assembled for heat one including Taylor and 137 Rob Jacklin starting from novice grade while 197 Ryan Harrison was tyre testing in his father Murray’s car. A big push among the blue and red tops around the first lap saw 191 Josh Smith the first man into the wall as up front 460 Chris Cooke led the early laps. Smith was in the wars again a few laps later as 462 Scott Davids rode over both him and 41 Robert Broome but fortunately a big crash was averted, while 22 Will Yarrow was spun by the red top skirmish. A good battle developed between 212 Daniel Wainman, 4 Dan Johnson and 217 Lee Fairhurst who also swallowed up third placed 153 James Lund as they moved forward, but up front 73 Rob Cowley caught Cooke and took over with three to go, the yellow top taking the win and being presented with the trophy by 91-year old pioneer racer Crasher Allen on behalf of the Veterans’ Association. Fairhurst landed a last bend hit on Lund for second with Cooke a fine fourth.

Result: 73-217-153-460-4-212-11-12-372-197.

Heat 2

24 cars for a quieter heat two with the Goodyear tyres losing their potency after just a couple of laps in the heat. 401 Mark Elsden led the first lap only to spin with 60 Ian Venables riding over him as 37 Chris Cowley crashed into the infield tyres at turn three. The highlight in the pack was a brief battle between 16 Matt Newson and 515 Junior Wainman as Harris chased down 429 Gareth Wildman for the lead and was soon down the inside on the Horton turn. Harris went on to win with Wildman a good second ahead of Newson.

Result: 84-429-16-1-347-464-515-141-105-2.

Photo Colin Casserley

Consolation

Down to 21 cars for the consolation which began with former Saloon Stock Car man 445 Dick Gladden spinning 498 Spencer Taylor across the home straight before 195 Dean Whitwell hit the wall as the Goodyear effect began to take hold once again. Chris Cowley then buried 393 Dave Plumbley into the plating on turn three as Gladden tangled with 280 Colin Nairn at the other end of the raceway. Up front 295 Wesley Goodwin led from flag to flag with Cowley third behind Broome, while van den Bosch put in several good hits en route to fifth.

Result: 295-41-37-498-H482-107-172-22-462-191.

Photo Colin Casserley

Final

All 30 qualifiers lined up for the Final which began in spectacular fashion as Josh Smith was squeezed wide by 141 Carl Pickering on the back straight, the 191 car bouncing off the wall riding onto the side of Pickering before flying high into the air and crashing back onto the tarmac on its side. The red flags flew but Josh was straight out of the car and seemed quite pleased with his first ever rollover, while Pickering was also OK.

Photo Colin Casserley

After a clear-up the restart saw 172 Micky Randell slide into the wall where he was collected by Junior Wainman and Davids with van den Bosch the next to hit the wall as the midfield battle proved a little livelier this time around. Cooke and Wildman led the way until the latter was spun back-first into the wall by 372 Colin Goodswen as he took the lead, the yellows coming out to check on the white grader. Goodswen was at the front for the restart but Harris was right behind him and took over straight away before speeding clear to complete an accomplished double. 1 Andrew Smith came through late on for a distant second as Fairhurst renewed his acquaintance with Johnson as they tangled on the back straight, Spencer Taylor taking third.

Result: 84-1-498-2-12-464-105-41-217-197.

Photo Colin Casserley

Grand National

The temperature was still high for the 28-car Grand National which would prove an excellent conclusion to the afternoon. Randell landed the first attack of the race taking Nairn and Plumbley in on the first turn to bring out the yellows with Spencer Taylor at the front for the restart. 464 Luke Davidson caught the leader on the restart and along with Chris Cowley they enjoyed a fantastic hard-hitting battle for the lead, Davidson and Taylor launching each other into the plating on several occasions with some massive hits in a display of true stock car racing. This allowed Andrew Smith to fly through from fourth to second in one move as the battle raged on, while elsewhere 2 Paul Harrison made up for a quiet showing in the heats by staging his own scrap with Danny Wainman and Johnson. Davidson then produced a superb move on turn four to streak down the inside of Taylor, Chris Cowley and Andrew Smith in one move to retake the lead, but the World Champion was soon back in front and went on to win from Chris Cowley. Taylor launched a psycho lunge at Davidson on the final bend to secure third and send the red top into the plating ending a fantastic race.

Result: 1-37-498-217-445-16-141-2-4-84.

Photo Colin Casserley

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