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Thruxton 8th September 2012 – Race Report Round 8

After last year’s special Memorial meeting at Thruxton for Roy the Circuit organisers had invited us back again as they had been very impressed by the organisation and turn out. I had decided not to make too much of this year’s meeting but many people remember Roy with love and affection, specially us McCarthys and again the atmosphere was warm, as was the weather.

The grids for 2012 have generally not been as good as 2011 and from the great turn out of last year of 34 we had 20 entered at closing and 23 on the day. The entries consisted of Three A Class, Seven B Class, Six C Class and Seven D class cars assembled for practice on the 2.3560 mile track but twenty one drivers would line up for the race.  Joe Parrington had a half shaft fail in the previous race and Ian Prior had lots of rods sticking out from places that they shouldn’t.

There had been a major problem when the transponder beam had failed and the time keepers had to take manual readings, however some of the timings were suspect to the drivers but they lined up in their appropriate places for the race even Martyn Clews who found himself on the fifth row with his A Class Midget, proud to be there but not believing the reading.  However it was generally decided that once started the cars would find their own positions on the grid.

Practice Positions

Overall and D class Pole went to Simon Cripps in his MGBGTV8 on 1.28.238 alongside C class Pole Ken Paton in his Ram Jag D Type Rep with a 1.28.999.  On row two Russell McCarthy in his MGBGTV8 with a 1.29.323 alongside Rob Spencer in his similar car on a 1.31.285.

On row three B class Pole James Wheeler who had a surprise entry from Mum and Dad for his Birthday in his MGB Roadster with a 1.32.252 alongside the Ram Jag D Type Rep of Tim Falce on a 1.33,187 and on row four Rob Roodhouse on a 1.34.905 next to Roger Connel on a 1.35.409.  Row five Kathy Sherry on a 1.35.592 sitting next to (A Class Pole?) Martyn Clews with a 1.36.095 looking very pleased with himself as he confessed he had never gone below 1.43 in his Midget.

On Row six Colin Jones back out, still limping but on the mend in his Twin Cam on a 1.36.138 alongside Ben White also with a smile on his face for his best time of 1.36.183.  Row seven the vacant spot for Joe Parrington but with Bob Lines in his MGA with a 1.36.824.  Row eight Babak Farsian having been demoted a couple of positions for apparently finding too much grass too many times on a 1.37.295 next to Ken Deamer on a 1.38.073.

On Row nine the (my) official Class A Pole Peter Hiscocks with a 1.38.215 best time ever which differed from his in car timer (1.41.87) alongside Mark Scott with a 1.39.240.  and on row ten Alan Kyson in his Twin Cam with a 1.41.109 alongside Martin Barrow in his Jag E Type with 1.46.888 and finishing the field the MGA Coupe of Andrew Moore with a 1.56.010 alongside Neil Fowler who joined the back of the grid as he had not practiced in the session.

As you may have noted there were quite a few happy faces who knew they were in the wrong positions on the grid but with the timing problems not a lot anybody could do about it.

THE RACE

I videoed the race from the banking at the chicane which was full of spectators in the hot 25 degree sunshine.  The grid assembled, the lights went out and the field stormed away.  Rob Spencer from row two got the best start with Simon Cripps and Ken Paton and then Russell McCarthy and James Wheeler, by the return to the chicane Rob was still in charge with Simon and now Russell, Ken and James all pulling out a gap from the rest of the field who all came through the chicane mostly nose to tail.

On the return to the chicane on lap two Rob, Simon and Russell were all over each other with Ken just holding back waiting for an opportunity.  James just a little further back now with Tim Falce and Rob Roodhouse a few yards further back but by lap three James had recurring engine problems and retired at Allards.

All the action was happening at the Chicanes and by lap five D Class Simon with three wheels lifting had passed C Class Rob on the Woodham Hill side and on lap six Russell sneaked passed on the second Club section now all three finding back markers but working their way through, Ken Paton still hanging on waiting for his chance.   Behind Tim Falce was now in fifth and Neil Fowler had worked his way up from the back of the grid to sixth overall with Tim in his sights

Up front Simon was pulling out a slight gap from second placed Russell but behind the battle for third was intense, Ken tried first one side and then the other to pass all round the circuit but by the flag Rob, making his the widest MGB on track, had managed to fend him off to keep third place and secure his Class C win.

Further down the field a race long battle between Rob Roodhouse, Colin Jones and Babak Farsian was exciting with nose to tail positions for the whole race Babak passing Colin on lap five but Colin retaking the lead on lap eight to keep him at bay to the flag.

Close racing mid field with Ken Deamer, Roger Connell, Kathy Sherry and Mark Scott and the MGA’s of Alan Kyson, Bob Lines and Peter Hiscocks and the MGBV8 of Ben White.  Martyn Clews after a great start retired on lap seven with overheating problems and Martin Barrow in the E Type only managed two laps before retiring. A lonely race by the MGA FIA Coupe newcomer Andrew Moore three laps down by the flag.

An exciting race throughout the field, much appreciated by the spectating crowd.

Congratulations to Overall and Class D Winner Simon Cripps

To Rob Spencer for his hard fought Class C Win

To Colin Jones for his equally hard fought Class B Win

To Peter Hiscocks for his lonely Class A win but managing to have some fun with the other MGA’s.

Pam McCarthy

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