Scunthorpe – May 23rd 2010 Meeting Report

The BriSCA F1s made their first appearance of 2010 at the superbly appointed Eddie Wright Raceway in Scunthorpe on the hottest Sunday of the year so far on May 23rd, although any fears of dust problems were quelled by fine track preparation and regular watering. The 45-strong entry for the World Championship qualifying round included newcomer 235 John Weldon in an ex-Neil Shenton car, the former Autograss and rally driver making his BriSCA debut on his birthday. The Final saw World Champion 1 Andrew Smith take the 95th feature race win of his career, although the race will be better remembered for a bizarre incident involving 76 Lee Smith and a marker tyre.

Heat 1

Heat one on a well-watered track saw 19 cars on track with 48 Garry Fox and 463 James Morris the first spinners of the afternoon while 111 Mike Williamson led the opening laps until 136 Steve Jacklin took over. 390 Stuart Smith, fresh from a final win at Birmingham the previous evening, was the fastest mover and took over in front just past half distance, but just as it looked as if he would pull out a lead the silver top got caught on Lee Smith’s nerf rail as he lapped the yellow top. This allowed 2 Paul Harrison into the lead as Jacklin went into the wall along with 238 Richard Bryan and Morris also hit the Armco elsewhere. 515 Junior Wainman and the recovered Stuart Smith chased hard in the closing laps but couldn’t catch Harrison who took the win, Stuart Smith heading Wainman for second while after the chequered flag Fox spun 351 John Frost into the wall.
Result: 2-390-515-212-13-55-16-48-223-76.

Photo Chris Clark

Heat 2

A bigger field of 24 emerged from the pits for heat two which would turn into a somewhat destructive affair with no fewer than four caution periods. The first came when early leader 1010 Dave Waterhouse shed a wheel on the pit bend, while a few laps later 484 Craig Utley came to grief and was stranded on the back straight for another stoppage. 362 Lionel Shaw was the early leader with 462 Scott Davids in hot pursuit but 446 Joe Booth was flying and took over just before the second caution. Davids got past Booth on the restart but the yellow flags then flew again as 192 Luke Dennis went hard into the wall just past the pit gate, the white top able to exit OK. Davids now had Andrew Smith behind him and the World Champion quickly took up the lead on the restart before a tangle on the home straight saw 34 Mal Brown spin out 84 Tom Harris and 215 Geoff Nickolls had nowhere to go and finished up on the 84 car’s bonnet.

Photo Chris Clark

Photo Colin Casserley

While this was going on a sort-out between the leaders on turn one saw 4 Dan Johnson cut through into the lead with Andrew Smith and 53 John Lund next. After an intricate separation exercise involving a JCB and a host of marshals the wreckage was removed from the home straight and the race ran to its conclusion with Johnson making up for a lacklustre night at Birmingham by taking the win, Andrew Smith and Lund his placemen. Just nine cars went the distance allowing Weldon to qualify for the final in his first BriSCA F1 race.
Result: 4-1-53-34-97-170-462-158-235-NOF.

Photo Colin Casserley

Consolation

The 19-car consolation began with several spins among the blue grade which included Morris who then embarked on a superb hard-hitting comeback drive to try and break into the top eight to qualify for the main event. Utley led the way until sliding wide allowing the battling pair of 244 Mick Rogers and late arrival 198 Nigel Whalley to the front, but as they lapped Morris he picked up Whalley and piled him into Rogers sending both yellow tops spinning. This allowed the repaired Harris into the lead but a couple of laps later Morris did exactly the same to the red top sending him wide and handing 337 Dave Willis the lead, the latter going on to take his first win for some time. 21 Mark Gilbank and Booth were his placemen, while Morris’s efforts from a lap down were in vain as he could only manage 11th.
Result: 337-21-446-84-288-338-198-215-335-244.

Photo Colin Casserley

Final

25 of the 27 qualifiers contested the Final which was led away by Lee Smith before Both tangled with 13 Andy Ford on turn two. As they slewed back towards the centre a large marker tyre was flipped into the air and amazingly landed right on top of the leader’s aerofoil. Despite the extra weight it did not slow Lee Smith down and he continued to lead with the tyre hanging from his squashed aerofoil which certainly made for an amusing sight.

Photo Chris Clark

Andrew Smith was the man on the move however and took the lead just before half distance before the yellows came out for the fenced Johnson. Lee Smith was still up there in second but sadly during the stoppage overheating problems forced him into re“tyre”ment (sorry) which must have left him feeling deflated (sorry again), his new aerodynamic aide proving difficult for the marshals to remove and put back in its rightful place. On the restart 515 Junior Wainman provided the main action as he T-boned Davids as Andrew Smith took the chequered to take another step closer to his century of Final wins, Harris and Harrison next home.
Result: 1-84-2-97-21-390-55-53-515-16.

Photo Colin Casserley

Grand National

The biggest grid of the day saw 32 drivers take to the track for the Grand National, vigorous watering and preparation again ensuring that the dust was kept to a minimum. A brilliant race ensued with bumpers flying in and cars spinning everywhere, the red and superstars moving to the front much more quickly this time. 259 Paul Hines had endured a luckless weekend so far, but he turned his fortunes around in style as he shot through the pack to take early pacesetter Shaw for the lead and went on for an excellent win, Gilbank second ahead of Wainman while Andrew Smith made it up to ninth from the handicap.
Result: 259-21-515-16-84-2-55-335-1-212.

Photo Chris Clark

Dave Goddard

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