CARS, STARS 12-15TH JANUARY 2017* NEC BIRMINGHAM
win in the second event, but ultimately the champion elect would not be denied his second win of the day and his title success. “This is just fantastic, it will take a while for this to sink in,” Swaffer said afterwards.
The lead battle though was eclipsed by an absorbing tussle for fourth between Needell and Goodman. To the delight of the crowd, the pair would swap positions numerous times as they braked as late as they dared for Club, the clouds of tyre smoke being a clear indicator of the ferocity of the battle.
On the final lap, the pair were handed an added incentive when third-placed Davison felt his car falter climbing Woodham Hill. Goodman led Needell as the pair approached Club, but the former F1 and Le Mans star muscled his way through exiting the chicane to steal the final podium spot.
The third race was a non-championship ‘handicap’ event, with drivers being released from the pits at specific time intervals with the faster runners being released last. Bryn Beaurain took victory ahead of Steve Carter and Senna Osman, with Waite finishing fourth despite needing to overcome a 70-second deficit.
Following victory in the St Mary’s Trophy race at Goodwood and Andrew’s race two win in the BTCC at Silverstone, Mike Jordan looked all set to continue his family’s recent run of success in the HRDC Touring Greats and TC63 contest at the wheel of his Austin A40. After 10 laps, Jordan had built up a huge lead over the battle for second involving Mark Daniell’s similar car, Neil Brown’s Austin A35 and Roger Cope’s Jaguar Mk1.
Yet, the race was red-flagged at this point and crucially, seconds after the mandatory pit-stop window had opened. The main beneficiary was Ding Boston in his Riley 1.5, who had pitted during this phase. It was to prove a crucial factor in the outcome of the race.
At the restart, Jordan was among several of the leading contenders to head to the pits to complete the compulsory stop. With Boston not needing to pit, he inherited the lead, leaving Jordan to embark on a heroic charge to close down a 50-second gap. Despite driving flat out around much of the circuit and lapping significantly faster than Boston, Jordan fell marginally short. Boston held on to claim a popular, if somewhat unlikely, win by just 0.480s. Behind the top two, Daniell held off Brown to take third.
There was a nail-biting finish to the first Mighty Mini Championship race too. Scott Kendall survived a last-gasp attempt by Adrian Tuckley to claim victory in the Super Mighty Mini class in race one, despite the pair making contact exiting Club. Tuckley was slowed sufficiently to allow Alex Comis to grab second on the drag to the line.
Kendall and Tuckley renewed their battle in race two but the former came out on top again, while Comis just held off Louise Inch to claim third. Greg Jenkins scored two Mighty Mini wins to strengthen his claim for the ‘Class A’ title, with Sam Tomlinson and Stuart Coombs taking a second each, despite the latter being concerned by fading brakes.
Former Porsche racing stalwart Pete Chambers took a lights-to-flag victory in the HRDC Allstars, Academy and A-series in his Lotus Cortina Mk1. Despite the intervention of a safety car, John Spiers was unable to close the gap to Chambers in the closing stages and had to settle for second in his similar car. Ben Adams recovered from a spin on oil at Church on lap two to claim third in his Turner MKII, while James Colburn was the first Academy driver home in his Austin A30.
1 Matt Swaffer (E30); 2 Harry Goodman (320i) +0.790s; 3 Will Davison (E30); 4 Tiff Needell (E30 320); 5 Rob Cooper (320i); 6 Stuart Waite (320i). Fastest lap Davison 1m34.725s (89.53mph). Pole Goodman. Starters 24.
1 Swaffer; 2 Waite +0.313s; 3 Needell; 4 Goodman; 5 Andy Strong (E30 320i); 6 Justin Turner (E30 320i). FL Davison 1m34.283s (89.95mph). P Swaffer. S 24.
1 Bryn Beaurain (E30 320); 2 Steve Carter (E30 318) +4.864s; 3 Senna Osman (E30 321); 4 Waite; 5 Edd Giddings (320); 6 James Vickers (E30 320i). FL Waite 1m33.808s (90.41mph). P John Stonehouse (320i). S 20.
1 Ding Boston (Riley 1.5); 2 Mike Jordan (Austin A40) +0.480s; 3 Mark Daniell (Austin A40); 4 Neil Brown (Austin A35); 5 Gavin Watson (Alfa Romeo Giulietta Ti); 6 Glenn Pearson/ Peter Dorlin (Jaguar Mk1). CW Jordan; Watson; Pearson/ Dorlin; Paul Unsworth/antony Ross (Alfa Romeo Giulia Ti); Bruce Chapman (Austin A35 Academy). FL Jordan 1m36.128s (88.23mph). P Jordan. S 22.
1 Kendall; 2 Tuckley +0.066s; 3 Comis; 4 Inch; 5 Rideout; 6 Butler. CW Jenkins. FL Kendall 1m38.138s (86.42mph). P Butler. S 16.