Skegness – May 10th 2009 UK Open Meeting Report

Frankie Wainman Jnr Celebrates winning the 2009 UK Open. Photo Colin Casserley

Frankie Wainman Jnr Celebrates winning the 2009 UK Open. Photo Colin Casserley

The format for the UK Open meeting; each driver to race twice in two of four heats. Top twenty-six point scoring drivers though to UK Open, with six last chance places to be decided via the Consolation to give a grid of thirty-two cars. The six cars qualifying from the consolation were to start at the rear of the grid.

HEAT 1

Under bright sunshine twenty-five cars gridded up for heat 1. Six whites, four yellows, six blues and nine reds. Danny Wainman (212) was using brother Frankie Wainman jnr’s shale car after having engine problems in his own car on the Saturday night.
Dave Willis (337) and Ian Stirk (65) were at battle from the green and became hooked together on Turn one with both cars rejoining the race at the very back. Lee Dimmick (459) took Mickey Randell (172) to the fence in turn one, ending Randell’s race. Chris Stafford (157) lost places from going wide into turn one and having to brake to avoid the stranded Randell car. Randell fired up and attempting to continue; realised he had a flat rear tyre and unable to get to the safety of the infield, on the back straight had to negotiate turns three and four. However, unaware of Randell’s problem Jim Bamford (302) launched an attack on Randell going into turn three, resulting in Bamford spinning round and coming to rest in over the curb on turn 4. With five laps to go, Geert Van Keijzer (H6) was leading closely pursued by Frankie Wainman jnr (515) in second with Luke Davidson (464) in third and Richard Earl (285) in fourth. Andy Smith (391) followed by Mark Gilbank (21) tucked up the inside of Peter van der Bosch (H482) to secure fifth and sixth place.
Result 515 – H6 – 464 – 285 – 391 – 21 – H482 – 107 – 305 – 73.

HEAT 2

Twenty-five cars gridded for Heat 2. Three whites, five yellows, eight blue and nine reds. Kev Unsworth (74) got the start before Lee Fairhurst (217) took the lead cleanly on the inside line. Scott Davids (462) was driving overtly fast in the turns trying to gain places and narrowly avoided fencing himself on a number of occasions. Meanwhile, Tony Smith (91) was holding his line and fending off attacks from the now bunched up red grades. Matt Newson (16) finally managed to move Smith (91) but Paul Hines (259) got the advantage and the place. Timmy Aldrige (257) spun in turn three and sat side on before firing up and getting clear. Dave Schaap (H007 and Stu Smith jnr (390) were engaged in high speed battle, jostling for position. Once clear of the Schaap car SSJ moved though the pack with ease. In the closing laps the race was still being led by two white grade drivers, with Fairhurst in first with a half lap lead on second place Unsworth with his best display of the weekend. On the last lap Fairhurst (217) moved back marker Craig Utley (484) going into four, Utley skidded wide and into the parked Davids car in the armco. Hines then had a last bend attack on Unsworth which took Unsworth out of the results.
Result 217 – 259 – 2 – 390 – H007 – 16 – 447 – 37 – 223 – 434.

HEAT 3

Twenty-five cars gridded for Heat 3. Five white, four yellow, seven blue and nine reds. Kev Unsworth (74) took the early lead with Wes Goodwin (295) in second while Chris Cowley (37) and Carl Pickering (141) became locked together in turns one and two. Dean Whitwell (195) was chasing down the leading cars with Frankie Wainman jnr (515) moving though the pack with speed. Jim Bamford (302) launched a huge attack onto the rear of Lee Robinson (107) and Luke Davidson (464) going into three and four resulting in chaos and the need for lightning fast reactions from the following cars. Steve Hopkins (347) was leading car before Whitwell bore down and took the lead.
Result 195 – 347 – 515 – 390 – 323 – 74 – 311 – 84 – 21 – 302.

HEAT 4

Twenty-five cars including four whites, five yellows, seven blues and nine reds. Richard Earl (285) took the very early lead before Lee Fairhurst (217) challenged. Richard Davies (325) spun on turns one and two and remained parked against the armco, soon to be joined by Spencer Taylor (498). As the cars settled down and the speeds increased, three abreast racing was starting to take place. This resulted in Tony Smith (91) being pushed wide and colliding with the stationary Taylor car resulting in yellow flags being required. Restart order – 217, 411, 285, 447, 223, 16, H482, 391, H007, 2, Matt Newson (16) rolled to a standstill on the restart and parked up on the inside of the home straight. Andy Smith (391) worked his way though the field and with five laps to go was sitting in second behind Lee Fairhurst (217). Dutch Dave Schaap (H007), Paul Harrison (2) and Ron Kroonder (H217) had worked there way into the top five with just three laps to. Fairhurst (217) had clean air in front of him and was able to keep ¼ lap between himself and the chasing Smith for the remaining three laps to take the win.
Result 217 – 391 – 2 – H007 – H217 – 259 – 459 – 464 – 447 – 212.

CONSOLATION

Seventeen cars came out for their chance at the last six grid positions of the UK Open. Five whites, three yellows, five blues and four reds. Dave Plumbley (393) took the early lead while Ian Stirk (65) was moving though the white graders. Stirk came out of turn four four-abreast with other cars, had no track and went bumper first into the outside armco on the exit of the turn. Stirk reversed and re-joined; but from the damage sustained, car handling was an issue that saw Stirk spin up on turns one and two, facing oncoming traffic. Robert Broome (41) collided face on with the Stirk car, with Chris Stafford (157) plowing into the back of the Broome car. Yellows had to come out for those involved. At the restart the order was 295, 393, 462, 434, 302, 172, 188, 212.
Wes Goodwin (295) got away to a good start and Scott Davids (462) was quick to take the second spot and then the lead with Ivan Prichard (434) close behind. Pritchard (434) slowly reeled in and past Davids to take the lead and eventual win. Mike Kingston (188) attacked Jim Bamford (302) going into three, with both cars coming out neck and neck of turn four. Bamford smoked his tyres to win the drag to the line and fifth place.
Result – 434 – 462 – 295 – 172 – 302 – 188 / – 212 – 393, 211, 214.

UK OPEN

UK Open. thirty-two cars in were put in points scored graded order. Lee Fairhurst (217) had another perfect start on a perfect debut weekend to take the lead. With the cars building up to full racing speed Garry Townsend (223) spun in the path of Matt Newson (16) in turn one causing Lee Dimmick (459), Carlos Perez (305) and Townsend to all become locked together on the armco; as the remainder of the field negotiated this mini-track-blockage. Dimmick, Perez and Townsend got unhooked, but there was another pile up on turn two again involving Townsend along with David Squire (311), Richard Earl (285) and John Riley (323) which brought out the yellows. Eight cars retired from the race, with the restart order being 217, 195, 347, 74, H6, 447, 464, 515, 259, H482, 390. On the restart Andy Smith (391) became the ninth car to retire by coming to a stop against the fence on the exit of four. Dean Whitwell (195) appeared to jump the restart and unsettle Fairhurst, (217) putting him into second place. Frankie Wainman jnr moved though the field with purpose closely followed by Stu Smith jnr (390) and Paul Hines (259). Meanwhile up front, Fairhurst settled into his groove and retook the lead from Whitwell and was able to keep the yellow grader behind, fending of numerous attacks from Whitwell. Whitwell himself was being challenged by Steve Hopkins (347) in third place. With five laps to go Fairhurst, FWJ, Whitwell and SSJ was the racing order while behind Tom Harris (84), Hines and Ron Kroonder (H217) were battling hard against each other. FWJ (515) reeled in Fairhurst (217) and cleanly overtook with just three laps to go. Fairhurst attempted to retake the lead but was no match for FWJ’s race craft.
Lee Robinson (107) launched a last bend attack on Peter van der Bosch (H482) which took both cars to the armco and out of the results.
Result 515 – 217 – 390 – 259 – 84 – 195 – H217 – 447 – 2 – 21

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