Waller-bar­rett takes the glory from Smith

Motor Sport News - - Sporting Scene - By Gra­ham Brown

Or­gan­iser: Auto speed When: March 25 Where: Northamp­ton In­ter­na­tional Race­way Starters: 21.

Colin Smith looked to have done ev­ery­thing right at Northamp­ton, hold­ing off a fierce chal­lenge from Carl Waller-bar­rett through­out the fi­nal. But some early-race con­tact with dou­ble heat win­ner Danny Hunn, which sent him into a spin, would ul­ti­mately lead to Smith’s dis­qual­i­fi­ca­tion.

Dave Gar­rett took an early lead in the first heat but it wasn’t long be­fore Hunn was on him, the Mazda RX-8 driver swiftly tak­ing a lead he was not to lose. As the leader ex­tended his ad­van­tage, Gar­rett fell back into the clutches of Lay­ton Mil­som and Steve Dud­man. But the lat­ter pair were two of sev­eral cars that crashed on turn one af­ter Aaron Dew dumped his coolant in the brak­ing area.

The re­sult­ing cau­tion put Waller-bar­rett and Smith right be­hind Gar­rett, en­abling them to rel­e­gate him to fourth by flag fall, but Hunn was still clear.

Heat two fol­lowed a sim­i­lar pat­tern, al­though Gar­rett man­aged to stay out front for longer be­fore Hunn went by.

The places bat­tle this time fea­tured Mil­som, Smith, Dew, Dud­man and Waller-bar­rett, with Smith the man who broke through to chase af­ter Hunn. He had nar­rowed the gap by the end but the win­ner held firm.

As usual, the fi­nal grid placed Hunn in a lot more danger of be­ing caught, with Smith start­ing right along­side him and the likes of Waller-bar­rett, Ja­son Kew and Kym Weaver not far be­hind.

Hunn knew what he had to do and made a blis­ter­ing start, but it still wasn’t enough to leave ‘Smiffy’ be­hind. The two were soon squar­ing up; a brief con­fronta­tion that ended with Hunn spin­ning be­tween turns three and four. Smith was also de­layed by the im­pact, al­low­ing Waller-bar­rett to launch a chal­lenge that was to last the rest of the way. In­deed, their fight for the lead was the fea­ture of the race, with Waller-bar­rett ac­tu­ally along­side at one point as they tore through the traf­fic, and Kew nip­ping at their heels.

They crossed the line still in the same or­der but Smith’s penalty was then an­nounced.

Re­sults

Heat one: 1 Danny Hunn (Mazda RX-8); 2 Carl Waller-bar­rett (Vaux­hall Ti­gra); 3 Colin Smith (Ti­gra); 4 Dave Gar­rett (Ti­gra); 5 Mark Ed­wards (Ti­gra); 6 Ivan Grayson (Ti­gra); 7 Ja­son Kew (Ti­gra); 8 Chris Haird (Ti­gra). Heat two: 1 Hunn; 2 Smith; 3 Aaron Dew (Ti­gra); 4 Gar­rett; 5 Steve Dud­man (Ti­gra); 6 Waller-bar­rett; 7 Lay­ton Mil­som (Ti­gra); 8 Ed­wards. Fi­nal: 1 Waller-bar­rett; 2 Kew; 3 Kym Weaver (Ti­gra); 4 Haird; 5 Shane Bland (Ti­gra); 6 Dew; 7 Rob Mcdon­ald (Ti­gra); 8 Gar­rett; 9 Dud­man; 10 Brett Wal­ter (Peu­geot 206cc).

Waller-bar­rett (162) won

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