FORMULA FORD FIGHTS TOP HSCC CELEBRATION
A mighty Historic Formula Ford 1600 contest between Mark Shaw and Dan Eagling topped the HSCC’S 50th anniversary race meeting at Castle Combe as former F3000 racer Shaw claimed his first victory in historic racing.
Shaw was starting his title campaign with Mike O’brien’s squad while Eagling, in only his second FF1600 race, was giving the Lotus 61 of Andy Langridge a shakedown run after a restoration.
Eagling quickly recovered from a tardy start with a bold run round the outside at Quarry and took the lead before a brief safety car period. From the restart, it was wheel-to-wheel stuff as James Buckton and impressive newcomer Benn Tilley tagged along.
However, as the race developed experience told and it came down to a tough contest in the best style of FF1600 between Shaw and Eagling. It was Shaw who just got to the line ahead. “There was a lot of pressure on,” said the Scot.
“We were too evenly matched for me to pull a silly move and risk taking us both off,” said Eagling after a remarkable result in the unfashionable Lotus.
The second Historic FF1600 race was for the other half of the oversubscribed grid, which unfortunately meant that the top racers were split across two grids. Callum Grant was the class of this one but had to deal with a determined challenge from Ben Tusting. Tusting was never going to win as he’d picked up a jump-start penalty, but Tusting’s pace against Grant put him far enough clear of Benn Simms to keep second.
Yet another victory went the way of Michael Schryver’s Chevron B6 after a typically strong opening stint from Simon Hadfield in the 40-minute Guards Trophy race. At the head of a capacity grid, poleman James Schrvyer (Chevron B8) jumped the start and that was all the invitation that Hadfield needed to dominate. Michael Schryver completed the job while his nephew James did enough to negate the time penalty and take second.
“This car is like part of the family,” said Hadfield of the car they have been racing to wins for more than 30 years. Charles Allison made it an all-chevron podium, while the GT division was all-TVR Griffiths as the Mike Gardiner/ Dan Cox car led them home.
In a shakedown race ahead of Monaco, Ray Mallock took his U2 Mk2 to a stylish victory in the front-engined Formula Junior race. “The chassis works so well,” said Mallock in tribute to his father’s 64-year-old design. However, as Mallock hit some gearbox issues, Andrew Tart loomed ever larger in the Bond and the gap was down to a second at the flag. “I was very happy to keep up with someone like Ray,” said Tart.
After taking third in the frontengined division in his Stanguellini, Stuart Roach was on course to win the rear-engined Formula Junior race until battery failure stopped his Alexis Mk4. Young Cameron Jackson, battling with clutch problems, took over in his Brabham BT2.
Both HSCC Road Sports Championships started with bumper grids and excellent racing as Lotus Elans won both races. In the 70s division, Julian Barter was the class of the field but Peter Shaw (TVR Tuscan) was always a major threat after leading the early laps.
The next day, Shaw switched to his Historic Road Sports Lotus Elan and saw off a concerted Morgan Plus 8 challenge for victory. Kevin Kivlochan should have been up there but qualifying problems left his Morgan well down the grid. The reigning champion quickly made up ground until struck by a misfire that eventually cut the engine completely. Tim Pearce had a quick spin at Quarry but fought back to grab second from Richard Plant in his Plus 8s.
Cumbrian Andrew Park took first blood in Historic FF2000 but had to defend hard over the first half of the race as Nelson Rowe mounted a stern attack. However, the local vet was having gear selection woes and that prompted a quick spin, which promoted Benn Simms to second but Park was away and clear. Andy Jarvis topped the concurrent Classic Racing Car section in his Palliser, while other single-seaters wins went to Peter Thompson ( Historic F3) and Richard Trott ( Classic F3/URS FF2000).
Warren Briggs topped an entertaining Historic Racing Saloons opener as his Ford Mustang enjoyed a dry track after a wet and slippery qualifying session that produced an all-mini front row. Chris Sanders chased valiantly in his Lotus Cortina.
Concern over his gearbox, due to a lack of available parts, forced Mark Charteris to make a cautious start in the Classic Clubmans race and prompted an excellent early dice as Malcolm Jackson led in his 50th season of Clubmans racing. Spencer Mccarthy joined in as well, but Charteris was soon able to take control as Mccarthy moved through to second.
A fierce lead battle in the Castle Combe FF1600 opener ended dramatically when Michael Moyers tangled with backmarker Pete Diccox on the exit of Camp while contesting the lead with Roger Orgee. Moyers was lucky that his car didn’t flip, but the race was halted and Orgee took the win once Moyers was removed from the results.
The top three in the Castle Combe Saloons race took each other off at Tower and caused another red flag after charging the tyre wall. Gary Prebble (SEAT Leon), Tony Hutchings (Audi TT) and Charles Hyde-andrews-Bird (Renault Megane) were all eliminated. James Winter won on the restart in his Megane after holding off Mark Wyatt’s Vauxhall Astra.
Josh Smith blitzed to victory in the Sports-racing contest and David Krayem took Sports and GT honours once the fast-starting Mitsubishi of Barry Squibb expired.
Dave Maguire qualified on pole for the new Fiesta ST race and when the lights went out, that was the last anyone saw of him!
Newcomer Graham Mcdonnell took runner-up spot, with Brendan Fitzgerald holding off Hugh Mcevoy for third. In race two, there was confusion with the lights and ITCC regular Kevin Doran grabbed a lead he was not to lose from the second row. Poleman Maguire piled the pressure on but Doran was not be denied, with Mcevoy right with them in third. After jump-start penalties were later applied though, it was Mcdonnell from Mark Turley, with Doran relegated to third.
Darragh Denning was beaten away from pole in Ginetta Junior Ireland by Samuel Harron but William Harron drove round the outside of both at the Esses to take the lead – and the win. In race two, Samuel took the honours, with Morgan Quinn soaking up all the pressure to hold off William Harron for second.
Des Bruton drove superbly to take a dominant Irish Sportscar win ahead of reigning champion Alan Watkins. Watkins reversed the order for race two, but Bruton kept the pressure on throughout.
Brian Hearty took an easy Formula Sheane win from pole, with Paul Mcloughlin holding off Richard Kearney for second. Hearty did the double in race two, but it might have been a different story had Robbie Allen not started at the back. The Rga-backed driver charged to second with fastest lap, with Mcloughlin third.
Jackie Cochrane made his usual tardy start in the HRCA race before charging back to take the win from David Kelly’s Elan and Val Thompson’s TMC Costin. In race two, Cochrane got to the front early but a slight misfire, coupled with a late charge from Steve Griffin, meant he was glad to see the chequered flag.
Andy O’brien was untouchable in the opening Supercar race, crossing the line over 10 seconds ahead of class returnee Alan Dawson, with Peter Barrable in third. Barrable retired from race two, leaving O’brien to do the double.
Niall Murray returned to the SEAT Supercup series and made no mistakes to win from pole. Niall Quinn was the only one to keep him in sight, while debutant Rob Butler came out on top of a great battle for third, from Rod Mcgovern and John Farrelly. In the reverse grid second race, Erik Holstein led until contact from Murray sent him sideways and cost him the lead. He hung on for second ahead of Farrelly.
Despite starting from the pitlane, Jonathan Fildes blasted his Ralt RT4 to the front of the BOSS Ireland field, chasing the lap record as he pulled away. Barry Rabbitt had somehow led the early laps after an incredible start from the third row of the grid but gradually fell back. Noel Robinson and Cian Carey completed the podium. Fildes again charged through to win race two, from Robinson and Eamonn Matheson.
Having had his SEAT Ibiza remapped to suit the Future Classics barrier time, Timothy Duggan never put a foot wrong on the way to an impressive win in race one. Marty Moore took a good second, while Brendan Travers charged to third. In race two, Duggan just held off Adrian Dunne for the double, while Aidan Byrne pipped the giantkilling David Hammond’s Uno on the run to the line for the final podium place in what was a thrilling race.
Shaw narrowly beat Eagling
Winter defeated Wyatt in action-packed Combe Saloons encounter
Hadfield/schryver Chevron led Guards Trophy enduro throughout
Fildes’ Ralt ran away with both Formula Libre encounters
Doran leads Maguire in second Fiesta race but would be denied