The Minicross Driver’s Association’s annual rally to the Netherlands’ Valkenswaard circuit.
Minis return to the Netherlands to rally around the Valkenswaard circuit.
Barring a two year gap, the Minicross Driver’s Association (MDA) has travelled to the historic Valkenswaard rallycross circuit annually since 1988. Six cars entered this event this year for the June event; a stark contrast to the 30 cars which used to enter in the first few years, but despite not looking many, they had lots of fun out on the dusty track over the weekend.
Saturday saw some practice runs and the first heat of the event. Jordine Wadge experienced her first ever Minicross race in Heat 1, and with a time of 3:44 she came in a very respectable sixth place. Getting steady lap times was the aim, and Richard Wakeling, even with all his experience (having driven the Valkenswaard track since the late-1960s), couldn’t keep up with George Edwards’ Mini. Heat 1 finished George Edwards, Richard Wakeling, Todd Crooks, Mark O’Flanagan, Ian (the entertainer) Clark, and Jordine Wadge. RACE DAY Sunday was race day, and with the weather forecast at 27°C, it was a hot day both on and alongside the track, which resulted in a dusty circuit. The start of Heat 2 saw a big surprise with Crooks taking second after the first corner, behind Edwards and in front of Wakeling. Edwards stormed away from
the field and made his fastest lap time in Heat 2, with a 47.071 – by far the quickest of them all. Wadge tried to keep up with the rest but needed a little more experience to fight Ian (the entertainer) Clark who ended up in fourth with O’Flanagan in fifth. Crooks defended his second place very well and crossed the line behind Edwards, closely followed by Wakeling.
Heat 3 was a little more spectacular. Richard Wakeling and George Edwards had a great battle for first. With both drivers finishing the race in a 3.16, there was just 0.100 difference between them. That was a close battle. Jordine Wadge tried the joker lap twice in this heat. But that didn’t made her loose fifth place, as Ian (the entertainer) Clark missed a beat with his car and tried to remodel his car in something faster. Hitting a wall doesn’t help that much! Ian Clark already had some trouble in the beginning of the weekend. The week before they raced at Duivelsberg Belgium, where his engine said enough was enough. With some great help of some Dutch Minifriends in Valkenswaard, the engine was rebuilt on Friday so he could race the weekend. All hands were on deck to get Ian (the entertainer) Clark’s car prepared for the final. It was great to see so much camaraderie to help him get back on track. The running order was quickly made after the start. George Edwards took the lead in front of Richard Wakeling and Todd Crooks. Ian’s car was back on pace after his mishap in Heat 3 and made fourth, followed by Mark O’Flanagan and Jordine Wadge.
With just six cars they really entertained the audience with some great racing. It would be great to see a bigger field of Minicrossers back in 2019. And 2020 will be the MDA’s 30th race at Valkenswaard so it would be great to have a turnout of 30 cars again, as it was in the early ’90s.
Richard Wakeling followed by George Edwards.
A close and entertaining battle after the start.
It was Jordine Wadge’s first Minicross race.
Todd Crooks tearing down the track.
George Edwards through the chicane followed by Todd Crooks.
Ian Clark followed by Mark O’Flanagan.