United Downs Raceway - Easter Sunday 21st April 2019

The sun shone brightly on the United Downs Raceway for the Mike May Memorial Trophy event for National Bangers, which attracted a decent showing of the big cars.  A quite wonderful Grand Parade saw every National Banger driver take part, as they received the commemorative memento from Lyn and Julie May.  Six drivers were handed Best Presented cars awards and there were further awards for 891 Darren Wade and 383 Andre McLellan, for their unusual cars – a Triumph and a Lincoln Town Car limo, respectively.

National Bangers

With a packed grid, the Raceway looked a superb site for the opening race which was always going to be chaotic.  Yet, despite the plentiful numbers, damage was thankfully minimal, which helped ensure good car numbers for the next two races at least.  120 Mark Ashley took his dated Triumph to victory in the first heat, whilst his son, 121 Mike Ashley, was victorious in his RX8 Mazda in heat two.  In the main event, 382 Danny Hunt got away well, and a third of the way into the race he reeled in early leader 452 Anthony Sleeman.  190 Steve Bailey was on a charge from the rear of the grid, but he was unable to progress further than third.  Having parked his limo into the rear of 453 Martin Sleeman, McLellan proceeded to inspire havoc around the track, before he came to a halt in the pits bend.  There, he was set upon by 99 David Spooner, who was duly trashed by 384 John Golden and Bailey, as a crashing train began to form just after Hunt had taken the chequered.  This crash-happy ending was very fitting after such a fine race, in which Hunt, Sleeman and Bailey filled the top three places.  There were notably less cars in the Allcomers, which had to be stopped when Bailey followed in 500 Matt Bardoe.  The race resumed, and 162 Brett Ellacott spun 205 Matt Cottle on the back straight, which sent the Screwloose Volvo into a side over side rollover.  Just four cars were left for the conclusion of the race and that became three when Ellacott retired to the infield, leaving Hunt to win again, this time from Sleeman and 278 Shaun Brokenshire.  The DD was a short, sharp affair as Brokenshire and 45 Anthony Croshaw repeatedly traded hits in a very sporting contest.  Eventually, it was Brokenshire who landed the final, telling blow.

Saloon Stock Cars

Despite a disappointing showing from westcountry drivers in particular, the heavyweight brigade in the Saloon Stock Cars still served up some exciting racing.  This was especially true of the first heat, which began with a scrap amongst white graders 00 Brad Morgan, 316 Dan McCluskey and 980 Charlie Lobb.  Whilst Lobb scrambled clear to lead, McCluskey got caught up with 399 Cole Atkins.  276 Ben King charged into contention, but even though he relegated Lobb to second place, he could not shake off the teenager, who finished a very close runner-up.  In the second race, it was 800 Scott Greenslade who relieved Lobb of the lead, but the young Cornish racer kept up the chase, and he returned the compliment to the East Anglian, and regained the lead.  Lobb saw out the remainder of the race, to win from Greenslade and Atkins.  An early spin for Atkins robbed him of any chance of retaining the Western Championship, and instead, it was teenagers Lobb and 561 Aaron Totham who set the pace.  As the laps ticked by, the two former Ministox racers stayed well clear.  Lobb looked to have the race all sewn up, only for Totham to attempt a tremendous last bend dive.  He just missed out on connecting with Lobb, who duly claimed a second win of the afternoon.  Greenslade completed the top three.

Ministox

A sprinkling of long distance drivers helped to swell the ranks of the youngsters, amidst which 942 Leon Williams raced his new car for the first time.  913 Jack Collins led the first heat until late on when he was passed by 577 Harry Darby and 927 Lee Robbins who went on to fill the top two positions, whilst Collins was disqualified for an inside-out spin of 900 Lily Tomkins as they tussled for third place.  Heat two saw Points Champion 654 Harley Soper take his first win of the season, as he through the grid to lead home Robbins.  The final had to be suspended when 914 Callum Faulconbridge and debutant 964 Myah Lobb tangled in the pits bend.  Another suspension followed, with Williams requiring assistance after he had clouted the turnstile bend fence.  Finally the race went the distance, with Harry Darby scoring his second win of the afternoon, to land the Snell Family Trophy which his brother Warren had won the previous season.  985 Sam Carter and 514 Abbie McGuinness completed the top three.

National Bangers 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th 9th 10th
Heat 1 120 190 75 648 121 45 278 768 196 17
Heat 2 121 382 190 452 278 162 120 75 500 147
Mike May 382 452 190 278 120 162 75 147 384 99
Allcomers 382 452 278 nof
DD 278
Best Presented 66 99 147 162 207 891
Unusual Cars 383 891
Top Trier 500
Top Entertainer 45 278
Most Wrecked 99
Saloon Stock Cars 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th 9th 10th
Heat 1 276 980 199 902 800 399 444 316 642 447
Heat 2 980 800 399 276 199 902 561 84 447 642
Final 980 561 800 902 276 199 447 399 642 00
Ministox 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th 9th 10th
Heat 1 577 927 900 654 514 985 946 907 998 914
Heat 2 654 927 514 577 985 946 569 913 942 964
Final 577 985 514 569 946 913 907 654 927 914
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