United Downs Raceway - Sunday 22nd March 2015

Glorious Spring sunshine greeted racegoers at St Day’s first national fixture of the new season, on a day when Stock Rod racer Adam Ignaczak and Autospeed announcer Bill Dalley, were both fondly remembered.

BriSCA F2 Stock Cars

Pre-meeting, numbers had looked excitingly good, but a most unfortunate sprinkling of no-shows reduced the entry down to 25 drivers, which led to a two from three format.  The first heat saw 663 Bryan Lindsay out front from the off, whilst 605 Liam Rowe made good progress from the blue grade.  542 Steven Gilbert and 676 Neil Hooper traded blows, with the latter sending the Novice of the Year fencewards in the turnstile bend.  That brought about the first caution period.  The race resumed, with Rowe leading them off, pursued by 575 Tom Clark.  Further down the order, 627 Gary Sillifant, 797 Dan Moss and 460 Matt Weston tangled, and in the chaos that followed, 979 Paul Moss shot over the bonnet of 890 Paul Rice.  With Moss left stranded, facing the wrong way, out came the yellows again.  A third caution period followed just three laps later, which bunched up the field; Rowe leading Clark and then 676 Neil Hooper.  Although Hooper got ahead of Clark, he could not catch Rowe.  Heat two developed into a fine battle between Sillifant, 302 Dale Moon and Rowe.  When the two yellow graders clashed, Rowe pounced, but he was then edged out of the lead by Hooper, who took the win.  The third heat saw 468 Sam Weston produce the best display yet of his short career.  Weston led from the off, past the halfway point.  The first to get to him was 126 Jamie Avery, and he went on to win, from 476 Ryan Wadling, with Weston a creditable fifth.  Nineteen cars gridded for the Voice of Autospeed trophy final, which went from green flag to chequered.  From the outside of the front row, Weston made a quick start, getting away far faster than pole starter Lindsay.  Weston duly built up a good advantage at the front, with Sillifant initially, and then Moon, as his main chasers.  The early stages saw some lively action in the blue grade, and despite having to start at the back of the group as an earlier race winner, Avery emerged as the leading blue top.  Just before halfway, Avery was up to third, behind Weston and Moon, and by lap thirteen Avery hit the front.  Having lost out on the Old Motor Cycle Club Trophy last October, he was in no mood to let a similar notable trophy slip from his grasp, and Avery motored on to victory, with Moon finishing as the runner-up and Hooper third.  Moon saw out the day with victory in the Grand National, to become the first Zetec powered winner at St Day, and Weston’s fine performance netted him a new tyre as the leading white top scorer.

Saloon Stock Cars

The sight of Saloon Stock Cars charging around St Day is one to behold, and even though there were only a dozen drivers present, they still served up some breathtaking action.  Special mention should be made of the outrageous and commendable efforts of 730 Dean Mayes, who travelled through the night, after racing at Cowdenbeath in Scotland the evening before.  28 Ian Govier made the early running in each of the races, but a strong charge by 677 Eddie Darby saw him storm to victory in heat one.  The second heat saw 460 Cliff Friend as the first to hunt down Govier, and whilst Darby got to second, he could not catch Friend, who took the win.  The final was the race of the day, and it all came down to the closing stages.  Friend caught Govier, and looked set to secure his second win of the afternoon.  Darby, too, overhauled Govier, but on starting the final lap, he did not appear to be close enough to even consider an attack on the leader.  However, the former double World Champion was not to be denied, and he bounded into the final bend, connecting with Friend, who was blasted wide, and that left the door open for Darby to steal the inside line and win the drag to the line in a sensational finish.  Govier completed the top three.

Stock Rods

Whilst the Stock Rod numbers continue to be slow to pick up at the start of the 2015 season, the Adam Ignaczak Trophy day did at least provide a thrilling showdown for the main event, befitting of the wonderful prize at stake.  Both heats went the way of young newcomer, 918 Sam Lobb.  The first victory was a career first, too, and he was chased home by 705 Dave Ham.  In heat two, 181 Lindsey Jones made it to second, and that was enough for him to seal a front row start for the final.  Adam’s father, Stefan, paraded his black and orange van at the front of the queue of Stock Rods, before the grid formed.  Lobb and Jones set the early pace, before Jones broke free to lead, and 37 Barry Trickey moved into second.  Points Champion 776 Simon Jones, sensing Lindsey Jones was getting away, muscled his way past Lobb, with a slightly untidy pass on the home straight.  Fortunately, the bunching of those in pursuit of the leader swiftly cleared, with Lindsey Jones out front and Simon Jones now looking to reel him in.  The Jones versus Jones head to head then took the focus for almost the whole of the remainder of the race, and it was a testimony to both drivers that they race so clean and fairly with one another.  They passed the midway point, with Simon Jones unable to make any passing move stick, and into the final quarter, they approached backmarker 222 Mike Belcher.  Sportingly, he held his line, and Jones and Jones were able to edge past without a problem.  One last effort from Simon Jones again came to nothing, and thus it ws Lindsey Jones who held on to win the spectacular and classy Adam Ignaczak Trophy, which Adam’s father Stefan handed to him in an emotional presentation.  Lindsey Jones also scooped the £100 voucher from Sear Race Parts as the leading points scorer.  Runner-up Simon Jones set the day’s fastest single lap, to win £20 from RCM Supplies.  Third went to 909 Justin Washer.  Lobb, who won both heats, was the day’s top white grade scorer, and he duly won the prize of a new tyre, courtesy of Sounds U Like Disco .

2 Litre Old Skool National Bangers

A most impressive showing of 32 cars assembled for the first 2 Litre Old Skool National Bangers meeting of the year.  The packed grids led to some hugely entertaining action.  Having for so long dominated the (rookie) Bangers, 246 Ryan Sparks has made a concerted effort to move into the 2 Litres this season, and he was rewarded with instant success.  Sparks swept to a faultless hat-trick of victories.  Supreme Champion 910 Katie Dawe charged from the rear of the grid to get to second in the opening heat, and 714 Paul Smaldon was the runner-up in heat two.  Due to a misprint in the raceday programme, there was some confusion over the identity of the third race.  Intended to be the final, the programme listing as Allcomers influenced many drivers into believing heavy crashing was permitted, and that upped the action a further couple of notches on the dial.  Sparks, however, won again, leading home 912 Sam Rees and 47 Marcus A’Lee.  Oddly, after such a boisterous final, just four drivers appeared for the genuine Allcomers, and Katie Dawe took the honours to end the day as the leading points scorer.

BriSCA F2 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th 9th 10th
Heat 1 A&B 605 575 676 522 302 116 890 740 460 663
Heat 2 B&C 676 783 605 302 126 476 315 254 116 468
Heat 3 C&A 126 476 542 315 468 890 979 460 785 nof
Final 126 302 676 476 605 542 797 522 468 254
Grand National 302 254 522 605 676 476 315 627 740 126
Grade Awards W 468 Y 302 B 126
Saloon Stock Cars 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th 9th 10th
Heat 1 677 28 891 995 730 460 199 186 105 178
Heat 2 460 677 199 995 28 730 158 178 81 nof
Final 677 460 28 105 730 199 891 158 276 nof
Stock Rods 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th 9th 10th
Heat 1 918 705 181 151 26 354 37 909 776 9
Heat 2 918 181 776 37 354 909 9 3 151 26
Final 181 776 909 37 354 9 3 151 26 87
2L Old Skool Bangers 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th 9th 10th
Heat 1 246 910 99 906 862 28 714 479 406 47
Heat 2 246 714 910 333 28 912 47 429 903 947
Final 246 912 47 910 333 714 479 nof
Allcomers 910 333 912 97 nof
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