‘Petter’s son Oliver Solberg takes title’
All Mark Hoppe needed was third place in order to complete his double, this time out winning the BTRDA Gold Star title on home soil as Woolbridge Motor Club hosted the final at Crewkerne.
Simon Harris claimed the spoils in the best supported front-wheel-drive class by 11 points, having led Gary Preston by a single point at lunchtime. The superior torque of Harris’s VW Golf told during the afternoon. His ultra-smooth style helped open enough of a class lead to win the event overall. But poor seasonal positions prevented him from winning the Gold Star, 20 years on from his last.
Henry Kitching enjoyed a stunning morning, surprising by leading overall in the small new car class. He did slip back to second in class, however, during the afternoon despite some brilliant driving.
Hoppe and Dave Oliver had a titanic battle, trading points. Hoppe held the lead after the first eight dry steep hills, but slipped up to lead by only a point at lunch, whereby Oliver also made mistakes, but then slowly closed the gap down to two points at the end of 32 sections. Hoppe’s win and expert bouncing by wife Michelle on the second hill netted him the title.