Motor Sport News - - Sporting Scene -

Na­tional Hot Rods: Hed­nes­ford Hill By Gra­ham Brown Or­gan­iser: In­car­ace When: No­vem­ber 4 Where: Hed­nes­ford Hills Race­way Starters: 33.

Ja­son Kew swept to vic­tory in the last World Se­ries round of the year as well as lift­ing the magnificent new Angie Rowe Me­mo­rial Tro­phy to adorn his man­tel­piece for a year.

Gavin Mur­ray and Shane Bland fol­lowed Kew home in the fi­nal, while heat hon­ours fell to Jack Blood and Ralph San­ders.

A packed grid took to the track for the open­ing heat, the en­try swollen by a num­ber of vis­i­tors. A steady driz­zle made sure the wet track stayed that way, and most cars were on a mix­ture of slicks and wets.

Shaun Tay­lor was the first to show with Russ Wil­cox, Alis­tair Lowe and Ivan Grayson all in the van­guard, but there were bat­tles go­ing on through­out the or­der with a 13-car pack scrap­ping over the mi­nor places at one point. It was Blood who broke free of the rest to chase down the lead­ers, and the fired-up Vaux­hall man bar­relled around the out­side to take Wil­cox and then Tay­lor half a lap later.

With the leader pulling clear in­ter­est cen­tred on the fight for sec­ond. Although well back in the mix, Rob Mcdon­ald and Billy Wood were both charg­ing up the or­der. With the pass­ing of half dis­tance, Mcdon­ald had made it through to sixth and just kept on go­ing, even­tu­ally tak­ing the flag sec­ond al­beit a long way back from Blood, while Colin Smith took third about half a car length up on Andy Lane.

Heat two was just as crowded and equally fran­tic. Grayson got away first this time and quickly left the early op­po­si­tion be­hind. But with the sur­face still treach­er­ous, ex­pe­ri­ence be­gan to count and there aren’t many Hot Rod driv­ers with more of that than San­ders. The West Coun­try­man held off the other place­men to go sec­ond, and then carved into Grayson’s lead be­fore go­ing ahead at the East bend.

There was a good deal of three­wide rac­ing go­ing on fur­ther back but it was Smith’s BMW that broke away from the rest to chase the leader down. In fact, Smith is one of the few who ri­val San­ders in the ex­pe­ri­ence stakes and he spent the rest of the race whit­tling down the gap. He was al­most on terms start­ing the last lap but never got any nearer than that, the pair cross­ing the line well clear of third man Blood.

With Blood hav­ing gar­nered pole for the fi­nal, few were bet­ting against him mak­ing it a brace of wins and sure enough he shot away at the green flag, leav­ing Smith, Mcdon­ald, San­ders, Kew and Mur­ray to de­cide who had cor­rectly guessed the best set-up for the still grip-less and slimy track sur­face. Wood was go­ing in the right di­rec­tion for a while un­til his run stalled and he be­gan to lose places again. In­stead it was Kew who doggedly kept the pres­sure on Smith un­til he was re­warded with sec­ond.

Blood was still romp­ing away at the front, pick­ing off back­mark­ers eas­ily and gen­er­ally look­ing pretty se­cure. How­ever, Kew in­ex­orably be­gan to close down the leader’s ad­van­tage un­til he set­tled onto Blood’s tail shortly be­fore mid­dis­tance. Kew con­tin­ued his pol­icy of steadily pres­suris­ing the op­po­si­tion un­til he was fi­nally able to slip down Blood’s in­side along the back straight.

The new leader had just started to pull away when he was in­ter­rupted by the only yel­low flag of the whole meet­ing, San­ders hav­ing come to a stop in a very dodgy spot. The closed up or­der for the restart al­lowed Mur­ray to get an im­me­di­ate jump on Blood to snatch sec­ond, and had also now brought Bland into the mix, the track con­di­tions seem­ingly com­ing to him as the laps ran out, with Smith, Mcdon­ald and Blood all fall­ing vic­tim to Bland’s late charge.

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