Once more we must thank Allan Patterson for his race report:
Acequip Cockshoot Cup
Our first visit of the year to the long circuit at Oulton Park was bathed in sunshine, the sort of day lap records are broken on as the breeze keeps the air cool but the tarmac soaks up the sun. As we were first race in a programme billed as MG Mania (how right they were!) with three MG races, it was an early start even though this is most championship contenders "home" circuit.
Getting up at 6.00am on Saturday after spending all of the previous day watching the Third Test Match, at Old Trafford (Cricket !) (England versus Australia) and then a night out to dinner with old school colleagues, was not so easy, but certainly helped by the thought of driving the long circuit, my favourite track of all.
I had one of those practice sessions all on my own, no one passed me and I passed no one. The car seemed to go well but my in car timing gear was on the blink so I had no reference point. So I was a little uneasy to say the least, second spot but we all trailed Ian Wright by a further half second. John Hewitt had put two disappointing races behind him to be on pole by a comfortable 1.6 seconds. Mark Ashworth was a whopping 2.1 seconds ahead of Steven Cartwright and an embarrassing fifth overall beating four fully modified cars.
Well what a race! My time sheet records ten incidents in 22 minutes racing
involving seventeen cars!! Unfortunately on lap five one of the bigger
incidents involved yours truly. After a typical pathetic start from your
scribe I was working my way up from about ninth when on lap four I steamed
through Island into Shell Oils and neatly out braked Mark Pruton for sixth
place. It was such a nice move I decided to execute the same manoeuvre on the
next lap against Jeff Culkin. Unlike the previous lap though Jeff did not pull
over to the conventional line for Shell Oils, as he saw me coming and decided
to block. I realised this just a fraction too late, stomped on the anchors and
locked up sliding into the back of Jeff, what a noise, what a mess!
Fortunately we could both continue without any problems and a fair old ding
dong we had too. Richard Sapcote was not done either as he re-took me but then
spun right in front of me at Knickerbrook. I had enough time to avoid him, but
that! let Jeff go.
Graham Jones stopped on lap six with a broken flywheel leaving Jeff to have fourth and your scribe fifth. Up front Ian had an easy time until a late charge by Peter Harrison almost denied him his first win. Bill Hewitt was third. In the Road Going Modified Class Mark Ashworth won by a country mile, helped by the fact Steven Cartwright did not start due to a blown engine. Mark was third overall beating five fully modified cars and the second man in his class by thirty three seconds, all in ten laps. With sixty points the Cockshoot Cup looks a safe bet for him. John Hewitt beat his recent start line jinx to stroll home twenty seconds ahead of Jon-Paul Ivey.
After the race I had to make a humble apology to Jeff but thankfully he was so pleased with his fourth place, his best result this year, that he was quite generous in accepting what was a racing incident.
On getting home the news on my car is not so good and I am keeping my fingerscrossed it can be fixed in time for the next round, not helped by the fact I am off on holiday for two weeks.
Finally a big thank-you to our championship sponsor Arto Kesterlian (ACEquip) for the after race drinks and buffet very welcome after ten laps sweating round Oulton.
Our next race is again on the long circuit at Oulton on Saturday 2nd August if you do get there please seek me out in Car 14.
1..John Hewit..........(Midget) 2..Jon Paul Ivey.......(Midget) 3..Mark Asworth........(MGB Roadster) 4..David Ecob..........(Midget) 5..Martin Richarson....(MGB Roadster) 6..Adam Egar...........(MGB Roadster) Fastest Lap: Hewitt 2m 00.15s @ 83.14mph
Other MG races in the programme
Anglia Phoenix Challenge
Like the sun it was the MGF & Don Kettleborough that shone at Oulton Park, in this the latest round of the Anglia Phoenix Challenge. It was to be a second win in a row for the 'Gaydon' based, MGF race team, unusually there were no MG Midgets finishing in the top six
1..Don Kettleborough..(MGF) 2..Andrew Talbot......(MG Metro) 3..Tony Howe..........(MG Metro) 4..Chris Roche........(MG RV8) 5..David Brook........(MGB GT) 6..Eddie Physouni.....(MG Metro) Fastest Lap: Kettleborough & Townsend 2m 02.48s @ 81.56mph
Halford MG Midgets
There was certainly no lack of activity on the part of the MG Midgets in this race! No fewer than four seperate cars were to lead the race. There were a couple of retirements, which thinned out the field, with Graeme Adams and Peter May throwing in the towel at half race distance! Richard Connel brifley held the lead, until a spin at 'Lodge' allowed Dave Shannon through in lap six to take the lead, which he held on to finish ahead of Connel, who made a great effort after that spin on lap six, third place was taken by Edward Reeve.
1..Dave Shannon 2..Richard Connel 3..Edward Reeve 4..Paul Sibley 5..Karl Barras 6..Nigel Orange Fastest Lap: 1m 55.55s @ 86.45mph (Record)