Venray 16th and 17th August – meeting report and photo gallery

This year’s World Cup weekend did not bring the 100+ºF temperatures seen previously at Venray.  The weather was overcast, with rain clouds threatening both the drivers and spectators.

Saturday’s Heat 1 was led away by Marco van Tiel (H580) and Gareth O’Beirne (412). 412 slid out wide while H580 took the early lead, followed by Raymond van den Hadelkamp (H113). Chris Cowley (37) quickly found himself in the wall on Turn 4, just as Henk Alberts (H71) went for a spin and was collected by Ronald Raaphorst (H7), bringing out the first caution.

Van Tiel took his place back at the front of the field for the restart, from H113 and Albert Sikkema (H215). Mick Sworder (150) was the highest placed Brit. H113 claimed the lead at the drop of the green, with Joep Hendriks (H365) also making up places.

Sworder was soon into third behind Lee Robinson (H107) and Tom Harris (1) moved into fifth behind Hendriks. Harris won third spot as H107 took the place at the front of the field. Mick Sworder’s progress was halted by a flat tyre, forcing him to retire from the race. Harris took to the lead, ahead of Robinson and Ivan Pritchard (434).

The caution flags were called for once again; this time due to debris on the racing line. Backmarker Rob Cowley (73) sat between Harris and Robinson at the restart, allowing the World Champion to get away easily, holding on to the top spot for the remaining laps.


Former dirt racer, Raymond van den Hadelkamp, finding his feet on the hard stuff.

Twenty-seven cars lined up for Heat 2, led away by H482. Steve Reedman (361) promptly moved into second. Paul Hermkens (H36) and Alberts got caught up, with H36 hopping over the front of H71 car. The red flags were bought out and a complete restart was called for.

The second start to Heat 2 began with a pile up into the bend. H482 took the lead again but Reedman went out wide and lost four places. Frankie Wainman Junior (515) and Harris were already climbing up through the field.

Harris passed up the inside of the 515 machine, moving into third just as Pritchard took over at the front. It wasn’t long before he found himself in second spot and then challenging for the lead. #1 onto the back of 434, but Pritchard was not giving up without a fight. The bumper came in from the World Champ, pushing 434 wide into turn 2 and allowing Harris up the inside off Turn 3.


Heat 2 saw both Wainman and Pritchard lose out to the World Champ.

Heat 3 was led away by H580 and H113 and an early incident bought out the caution. At the restart, H113 held onto the top spot. Luke Davidson (464) fired the third and fourth place runners out wide and took third. Rob Speak (318) was also on a charge.  Gerrit Zwerver (H19) slid around and came to a stop with H57 on the home straight, bringing out the waved yellows. 17 cars remained for the restart (about two thirds of those who had started), which was led around by H113, H380 and 464. Davidson made a move on H380 but went wide with him, allowing H107 and 318 up the inside.

Rob Speak made his way to second. Wesley Schaap (H77) spun and was collected by Jeffery van den Hadelkamp (H313). H113 hit lap traffic, which allowed Speak to begin to close the gap. Despite dramatics from 380 and 77, 113 remained in control.

Heat 4 was once again led away by H482 but it was H113 who took the early lead, as H148 ended up in the wall. Tom Harris was already working his way to the front, passing Davidson and taking fourth position.  Pritchard claimed the lead just as Harris moved into second. Harris reached the back of Pritchard and put the bumper in as he did in Heat 2, allowing the #1 into the lead.


Jeffery van den Hadelkamp was an early casualty, after collecting a spinning H77.

The last heat of the night saw H36 take up the early lead while 412 tapped the wall in T2.  Paul Poulter (174) spun and was collected by H13 and H7 and the caution was called to clear T4.

H36 led the field for the restart, with Speak the highest of the British competitors. 3 went sideways, collecting 380. Soon Speak was up to third, with Fairhurst and Wainman following him. Mick Sworder went for a spin and was collected by H77 in T2 and the two were stuck together.

As the lap boards came out for H36, Speak appeared to be closing in the turns and with 2 laps to go the 318 machine moved up the inside. Although official results show H12 as the victor, it was Rob Speak who went on the lap of honour.


Rob Speak failed to take on board the commentator’s suggestion about burying Harris in the meeting final.

Twenty nine cars gridded for the Long Track Memorial Final, led away by Sikkema, who was soon passed for the lead by H71. H113 went for a spin just as Lee Fairhurst came to a stop on the home straight. Sworder was soon relegated to the centre green and Wesley Schaap (H77), racing under an advantageous yellow roof, slowed. A caution was called for mid race and at the restart, Harris sat in sixth spot but within a lap of going green he passed 434 and H482 for fourth. Once again, it was Harris who took control of a high speed  race and claimed the victory, finishing way ahead of Smidt in second and Speak in third.


Danny Smidt (H148) took second in Saturday’s Final, but there was no catching Tom Harris.


The World Cup race was led away by Danny van Wamelen (H47) and Geert Jan Keijzer (6), with Tom Harris and Dan Johnson the highest UK starters.  Keijzer took the early lead. Johan Catsburg (H99) hit Harris, then Johnson wellied Catsburg into the stationary #1 car.

Robinson took second just as Wainman (515) passed 47 for third. 107 claimed the top spot just as H113 and H215 went for a spin. Wainman seemed to be trying to save his tyres behind Keijzer and Robinson, no doubt hoping one of them would get a flat, but Johnson was faster than all of them.

Wainman was reeling in the 6 machine but, behind him, Johnson was on a charge. The 4 car slid up the inside of 515 and was soon on the tail of 6. By the time the lap boards came out, Johnson was battling Robinson for the lead. The hit came on Turn 3 and for the final three laps Johnson remained in control of the race.  Keijzer got a big cheer from the home straight grandstand patrons for finishing second ahead of ‘van’ Robinson.


World Cup winner, Dan Johnson, celebrates his victory with Keijzer (2nd) and Robinson (3rd).

Heat 1 started with the rain. H13 took the early lead. H148 hit the wall on Turn 3 and ended up facing backwards on the home straight before being collected by H77. The yellow flags flew and the weather continued to get worse.

H13 led the field for the restart. 183 was straight on the back of H13 in an attempt to take the lead but 183 misjudged the move and spun around in Turn 2. Frankie Wainman Junior went up the inside of H12 for third position and Fairhurst and Sworder continued to make their way up the order. Wainman was soon up to second and challenging for the lead. However, Wainman’s time at the front was short-lived and, as the lap boards came out, Fairhurst passed him for the lead.


Heat 1 winner, Lee Fairhurst, showing the crowds he knew how to handle the wet conditions.

H482 went straight to the front at the start of Heat 2, followed by H113. A roll over for Lee Robinson bought out the red flags. At the restart, H482 got away off the front, but his time there was short-lived. H313 took the lead after only two corners, but his lead was cut short by a spin. H313 was collected by H113, bringing out the caution.

H482 led the field around for the restart, followed by 361 and H57. Dan Johnson wasted no time, pushing H007 out of the way and causing him to spin. At the opposite end of the track, an incident involving Theo van Lier unfolded, which caused the race to be abandoned.

The Bev Greenhalf Memorial Final was run in the pouring rain after discussions with Theo van Lier’s family. Very few cars took to the track to contend, but it was announced that the trophy would be given to van Lier in the hopes of a speedy recovery.

The final was once again led away by H482, who also took the early lead. Sworder seemed to be coping better with the wet conditions.  H71 bumpered H482 out wide to take the top spot while, further down the order, Johnson began battling with Sworder.

H12 took the lead as Johnson passed 183 for second. H99 hit the wall as early leader H482 retired to the infield. Behind the leader, Dan Johnson had car problems, allowing Wainman (515) into second. By this point H12 had nearly a half a straight’s advantage over 515 and 434. As the lap boards came out, Frankie Wainman Junior also appeared to slow, allowing Pritchard into second.  It was too late to catch H12.


A slowly deflating tyre prevented the 515 machine from catching H12.


Words: Rhosanna Jenkins

Photos: Colin Casserley and Rhosanna Jenkins

Venray-17-8-14-Colin-Casserley-01 Venray-17-8-14-Colin-Casserley-02 Venray-17-8-14-Colin-Casserley-03  Venray-17-8-14-Colin-Casserley-05 Venray-17-8-14-Colin-Casserley-06  Venray-17-8-14-Colin-Casserley-08 Venray-17-8-14-Colin-Casserley-09 Venray-17-8-14-Colin-Casserley-10 Venray-17-8-14-Colin-Casserley-11 Venray-17-8-14-Colin-Casserley-12 Venray-17-8-14-Colin-Casserley-13 Venray-17-8-14-Colin-Casserley-14  Venray-17-8-14-Colin-Casserley-16 Venray-17-8-14-Colin-Casserley-17 Venray-17-8-14-Colin-Casserley-18 Venray-17-8-14-Colin-Casserley-19 Venray-17-8-14-Colin-Casserley-20 Venray-17-8-14-Colin-Casserley-21 Venray-17-8-14-Colin-Casserley-22 Venray-17-8-14-Colin-Casserley-23 Venray-17-8-14-Colin-Casserley-24 Venray-17-8-14-Colin-Casserley-25 Venray-17-8-14-Colin-Casserley-26 Venray-17-8-14-Colin-Casserley-27 Venray-17-8-14-Colin-Casserley-28 Venray-17-8-14-Colin-Casserley-29 Venray-17-8-14-Colin-Casserley-30 Venray-17-8-14-Colin-Casserley-31

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