Skegness – 9th May 2009 Meeting Report

Rookie Lee Fairhurst. Chris Clark.

HEAT 1

Heat 1 saw eighteen cars come onto track under an overcast sky; including Ron Kroonder (H217), Mark Gilbank (21), Lee Dimmick (495) as red grade, Danny Wainman (212), Ivan Pritchard (434), Mickey Randell (172) and Chris Cowley (37). Nick Read (209) took the early lead and within 3 laps Mick Harris (8) and Robert Broome (41) were knocking on the door of yellow grade Dave Willis (337) in his new self built tar-car. Chris Cowley was first of the red grades to be in early contention along with Dutch visitor Ron Kroonder and Mickey Randell (172). At the half way flag the order was 8 – 37 – H217 – 172 – 41 – 209 -337. As the race progressed Kroonder took an easy lead followed by Randell leaving Broome and Harris to battle it out behind. Cowley was clear of the battling blue grades. Gilbank was in a qualifying position but not in a position to challenge the top five cars. Pritchard and Wainman passed the Willis car. Kroonder took the chequered flag unchallenged while second place was fought out between Cowley and Randell; and the smoking tyres of Randell managed second spot with Cowley in third. Tenth place Dimmick attempted to take ninth from Willis, but with a drag to the line Willis held his ninth.
Result: H217 – 172 – 37 – 41 – 8 – 21 – 434 – 212 – 337 – 459.

HEAT 2

Heat 2 saw seventeen cars make the field (Carlos Perez 305 missing) including Luke Davidson (464) as blue, Geert Van Keijzer (H6), Stu Smith jnr (390), Tom Harris (84), Frankie Wainman jnr (515) and Dan Johnson (4). In the opening stages Wesley Goodwin (295) and Steve Hopkins (347) got hooked up on turn two. While Ed Neachell (321) and Scott Davids (462) battled for position, the Keijzer car launched an attack on the rear bumper of Neachell going into turn 3, pushing him wide and forcing Davids to brake to avoid. Keizer tucked up the inside and was away. Carl Pickering (141) and Simon Panton (288) ran into the stationary Goodwin car going up and over the bonnet. Goodwin got going again only to spin out on turn two a few laps later. Keijzer was away out in front with Davids, SSJ and FWJ chasing. SSJ passed Davids; with Davids being unable to attempt to retake his place having to fend off the FWJ car. Keijzer took a second Dutch win only to be later excluded from the result.
Result: 390 – 515 – 462 – 321 – 73 – 60 – 311 – 646 – 393 – 211

HEAT 3

Heat 3 saw the reminding nineteen cars take to the track with the return of Ian Stirk (65) and the full début of Lee Fairhurst (217), World Champion Andy Smith (391) along with the remaining Dutch travellers Dave Schaap (H007) and Peter Van Den Bosch (H482). Lee Fairhurst (217) got away to a dream start pulling clear of the chasing pack. Yellow Graders Stirk and Dave Hopkins (447) were battling for second place and within five laps Schaap was in the top three places. As the half way flag was shown Fairhurst had a good ¼ lap lead on Schaap who was just ahead of Hopkins with the Paul Harrison (2) car ever closing and Jim Bamford (302) in fourth place. Harrison quickly moved into third and launched his own attack on Schaap, moving him off the racing line and resulting in a loss of places. Fairhurst moved though the back markers like a seasoned pro to take the win.
Result: 217 – 2 – 447 – 302 – h007 – 391 – 259 – 107 – 16 – h482.

CONSOLATION

As the sun was setting and the track in twilight twenty-eight cars came out for there last chance at getting in the meeting final. A false start gave the Garry Townsend (223) car the opportunity to join the grid line up. Richard Earl (285) and Kev Unsworth (74) both retired before the restart. White grader Wes Goodwin (295) got the advantage at the start and pulled away to take the lead, leaving the remaining cars to battle it out. Steve Hopkins (347) and Dave Willis (337) were the first of the yellow graders to get in the top three. As the half way flag was shown 295 – 347 – 337 – 209 – 215 – 65 – 498 & 84 was the racing order.
Nick Read (209) attempted to take the Willis car on the inside coming out of turn four but got hooked up, and collided with the centre tyres losing the front inside wheel. Lap down Carlos Perez (305) was causing havoc with the leading cars, allowing the John Riley (323) car to gain vital yards. As the lap boards were shown Spencer Taylor (498), Willis, James Neachell (322) and Riley were the cars locked in battle. The last lap saw a huge attack from Matt Newson (16) sending Willis and Riley off the racing line, enabling Newson to qualify for the final.
Result: 347 – 295 – 84 – 214 – 498 – 322 – 16 – 65 – 337 – 4.

FINAL

Under the flood lights thirty cars appeared for the final. Consisting of two whites, five yellows, eight blues and fifteen reds and S/S. Lee Fairhurst (217) again got the perfect start. Scott Davids (462) launched a huge early attack on the Mick Harris (8) car; and foot down screamed away. Stu Smith jnr (390) Frankie Wainman jnr (515), Paul Harrison (2) and Andy Smith (391) were locked in battle before Mark Gilbank (21) and Adam Slater (214) became hooked up on turns one and two resulting in the yellow flags coming out. Chris Cowley (37), Matt Newson (16), Mick Harris (8), Mark Gilbank (21), Andy Smith and Slater were all retired on the infield for the restart. Order – 217 – 447 – 295 – 464 – 321 – 347 – 84 – 60.
Fairhurst again managed to get a clean start and was away. As the half way flag was shown the Tom Harris and SSJ car were locked in high speed side-by-side racing. SSJ launched a huge attack on the rear bumper of Harris going into turn three, sending the Harris car into the Armco. He bounced out and chased the SSJ car down the home straight. FWJ was behind SSJ; as both entered turn one Harris attempted to take out both cars, but was unsuccessful and Paul Hines (259) and Paul Harrison (2) tucked inside, powering past the damaged Harris car. With five laps to go Lee Fairhurst was still leading a fast floodlit final manoeuvring though back markers with cool precision taking the chequered flag.
Result: 217 – 390 – 515 – 259 – 2 – 321 – h217 – 107 – 462 – 434.

Lee Fairhurst Final Winner on Debut. Photo: Colin Cass

Lee Fairhurst Final Winner on Debut. Photo: Colin Cass

GRAND NATIONAL

The Final race of evening brought out the largest grid of the night with thirty-four cars, made up of three white grades, five Yellow grades, eleven blues and fifteen Reds. Lee Fairhurst (217) did not take the lap handicap opting to start in grade, and got away again to a good start. Dave Willis (337) was the first of the chasing yellow graders in chase. Willis (337) took the lead. Dave Schaap (H007) spun in going in turn four causing mayhem for the following cars resulting in a huge track blockage including Lee Robinson (107), Micky Randell (172), Matt Newson (16), John Riley (323), Timmy Aldridge (257) and Dave Plumbley (393). Twelve cars failed to make the restart including Schaap, Ron Kroonder (H217), Mick Harris (8), Newson, Robinson, Carl Pickering (141), Randell, Fairhurst, Riley, Plumbley, Ivan Pritchard (434) and Craig Utley (484).
Restart racing order was 337 – 447 – 259 – 321 – 84 – 2 – 390 – 462 – 515.
However, Willis never got going from the restart and retired with engine problems. Paul Hines (259) benefited the most, taking the lead from Dave Hopkins (447). Andy Smith (391) was having a great battle with Frankie Wainman jnr (515) while in front Paul Harrison (2) had passed Tom Harris (84) who had Stu Smith jnr (390) hot on his tail in fourth place. In the closing laps, Smith (391) had got clear of FWJ and by the last lap was in fifth place with FWJ in sixth. Racing order on last lap Hines, Smith (390), Harrison, Harris, Smith (391), FWJ. The last lap saw a multitude of bumper action to give the final result.
Result: 259 – 391 – 84 – 2 – 390 – 515 – 321 – 462 – 4 – H6.

S.Cording

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