AH­LERS UN­STOP­PABLE AS MOR­GANS HEAD TO WALES

AN­GLE­SEY: CSCC BY JAKE JONES

Motor Sport News - - Racing Reports -

Mor­gan vet­eran Keith Ah­lers dom­i­nated the first Mor­gan Chal­lenge race held at An­gle­sey de­spite never hav­ing raced at the cir­cuit.

He got an ex­cel­lent start and con­tin­ued to pull away un­til the che­quered flag, fin­ish­ing 20 sec­onds ahead of Phillip God­dard, with Rus­sell Pater­son third just be­hind.

Race two on Sun­day was damp with the grid set on the pre­vi­ous day’s re­sults. Ah­lers again crushed the field from pole to take his sec­ond vic­tory of the week­end and his 88th in Mor­gans. Ini­tially, he looked in trou­ble as wheel­spin dropped him to fourth off the line. El­liot Pater­son took ad­van­tage to lead from third place after a bril­liant move on sec­ond placed God­dard at the bank­ing hair­pin. It was short-lived as Ah­lers pow­ered past on the back straight to re­take the lead and cruise to his eighth win of the sea­son. Pater­son Sr fin­ished 19 sec­onds be­hind after he over­took his son, El­liot, early on. The lat­ter com­pleted the podium.

Colin Philpott was dom­i­nant in both the Jaguar and GT out­ings but was con­tro­ver­sially ex­cluded from the sec­ond race re­sult. The safety car in­ter­rupted Philpott’s ex­cel­lent start in race one cour­tesy of a Corkscrew spin for Bruce Cologne-brooks on the open­ing lap, but he weath­ered the pres­sure from Ian Drage through­out to se­cure his third win of the year.

He did the same in the wet race two, but his Jaguar XJS was found to be un­der­weight post-race which gifted the vic­tory to Drage.

“I put the wet tyres on and I think that’s where I slipped up with the lighter wheel,” said Philpott. “I’m a lit­tle bit peeved be­cause it was a dif­fi­cult race, it was wet and then dry­ing and we had a good race. I don’t think Ian would have wanted to win in that way but fair play to him.”

Gary Bate won both of the Open Se­ries races in tense en­coun­ters. In race one Bate was bumped to sec­ond by Richard Carter at the start but re­claimed the lead half­way through on the back straight into Rocket. How­ever, a speed­ing penalty dur­ing the pit­stops dropped him back again be­hind his ri­val.

Bate was fly­ing there­after and copied his ear­lier move to re-take the lead and win ahead of Carter and Nick Starkey in third. Bate stormed to a wet weather vic­tory in race two as pole­sit­ter and race favourite Danny Win­stan­ley started on the wrong tyres. Still, the race one victor was in a class of his own and had built a 20-sec­ond lead over the field by lap 10 and the race was a fore­gone conclusion when Win­stan­ley pit­ted for the cor­rect rub­ber mid­way through. As Bate was left to cruise to his sec­ond vic­tory of the week­end a lap ahead of the field, a stir­ring fight back en­sued for the pole­sit­ter as he fin­ished fourth.

Win­stan­ley started the Mag­nif­i­cent Sevens on the right tyres though and show­cased the speed that made him favourite for the Open Se­ries. De­spite a pit­lane start due to an is­sue, the Cater­ham Su­perlight was in the lead very early on, sweep­ing past Bate on the back straight and to the win. Peter Rat­cliff re-took third po­si­tion on track after Carter had nipped ahead at the mid­way stops.

David Mar­cussen was un­touch­able in the Mod­ern Clas­sics and New Mil­len­nium in which the safety car was prom­i­nent at the start. The non­start­ing Ginetta of Gary War­dle and a spin for the Porsche of Andy Yeo­mans meant a slow start to pro­ceed­ings. Pole­sit­ter Ni­co­las Olsen tried hard to over­come his 30-sec­ond suc­cess penalty ap­plied from his win at Don­ing­ton when the safety car peeled in. Once it set­tled down fol­low­ing the manda­tory stops early on, Mar­cussen emerged as the lead driver. He stayed there un­til the flag with Mark Smith and Ar­ran Moul­ton-smith fin­ish­ing 30 sec­onds back. Olsen and James Broad col­lided go­ing into Rocket bat­tling for third late on, with the lat­ter los­ing out and hav­ing to set­tle for fourth.

Mark Camp­bell scored an ex­cel­lent win in the Swing­ing Six­ties se­ries after a spin at the Corkscrew on lap one meant he ended the lap in 33rd place. Many in the field strug­gled with the wet con­di­tions but once the or­der set­tled down fol­low­ing pit­stops, Camp­bell’s Tri­umph had clawed its way back to sec­ond. He swooped past Mal­colm John­son’s Lotus Elan at Tar­get to take the lead mid­way through and even­tu­ally the win just be­fore pole­sit­ter Mark Hal­stead re­tired when his Ginetta lost drive.

Chris Board­man and Ar­ran Moul­ton-smith dom­i­nated Tin Tops so much so, that they still fin­ished eight sec­onds clear of Nigel Tongue in sec­ond even after penal­ties for ex­ceed­ing track lim­its were ap­plied. Nigel Ainge and Mike Jor­dan’s suc­cess penalty for a pre­vi­ous win meant the Honda In­te­gra couldn’t mount a vic­tory chal­lenge and fin­ished fourth.

No-one could get close to Ah­lers Philpott (l) and Drage bat­tled in Jaguar opener

Win­stan­ley had mixed event

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