The drivers faced all sorts of troubles at the Cowdenbeath Racewall on Saturday night ranging from thunder and lightning, heavy deluges of rain and to add to everyone’s misery the rain went off when the meeting finished! There were plenty of drookit spectators who got caught out when the rain started and most made a bee line for the stand.
The Saloon ranks were swelled by the appearances of Billy Smith, Bradley Compton-Sage, Matty Stirling and Simon Venni whilst Patrick Rutters was over from the Netherlands.
However the show stealers were the 1300 Saloons who were racing for the Craig McNicoll memorial trophy with over 45 drivers racing.
The Ministox and Micro F2 drivers coped admirably with the wet conditions although there were one or two unexpected spins.
The 1300 Saloons drivers turned up in their numbers with drivers from HRP and Northern Ireland joining the GMP drivers to pay tribute to Craig McNicoll. There was a parade lap prior to the meeting with the drivers receiving a momento of the occasion.
There were numerous sponsors for the heats with added prize money and tyres being handed out. The field was split in half with twelve from each heat and sixteen from the consolation going through to the final.
Heat one saw Jamie Brown go through to win from Dale Robertson and Zak Gilmour. The second heat fielded some late comers with Fraser Clark going through to win from Kieran Edgar and Sean Naismith.
It was a smaller than expected field of cars for the consolation race with Charlie Folan coming out on top where he led home Dougie Ford and Raymond Brown.
Most of the cars made it onto the grid for the final with any non qualifiers starting at the back of the grid
The race was suspended almost as soon as it had begun after Martin McCaffery’s car shed a wheel. The grid was reformed with Edgar leading but there was another stoppage after a pile-up developed on the top bend. The race then developed in to some hectic action as Kyle Hegg, Scott Lindsell and Clark fought it out for the win. Clark began to fall away and then there were some big hits between Hegg and Lindsell. Hegg lost his bonnet with Lindsell finally going through into the lead. However he had broken and spring guard and lost some metalwork and he like Hegg was disqualified this handing the won to Gilmour from Cameron Milne and Darren Rae.
The Saloon drivers were in good form despite the conditions as the drivers got a chance to see how their cars fared in the wet weather.
The opening heat saw Marc Honeyman go through to win from Graeme Shevill and Ross Watters. However in heat two M. Honeyman went on to pick up his second win of the night when he led home Watters and Shevill.
When the final started Willie Mitchell going into the lead but by the end of the lap M. Honeyman was through into the lead and quickly pulling away. Billy Smith appeared in second but after a dice with Barry Russell and Shevill, Watters moved into third and as the race progressed began to close the gap. Smith was closing the gap to M. Honeyman but then he had to contend with Watters with some big hits going in. In the M. Honeyman eased away to win the Turner trophy final from Smith who was just ahead of Watters when the chequered flag dropped.
There was another good field of Ministox drivers and the drivers coped admirably with the conditions taking their cars as close to the wall as possible to find grip.
Kai Gilmour went through to win the opening heat from Mitch Gold and Mika Millar. The second heat had an explosive finish with the top four drivers fighting it out on the run up to the finish line. Gilmour got there first whilst Jay Paterson and Charlie Hardie were sent spinning as they crossed the line in 2nd and 3rd places respectively.
The final was led off by Hannah Borthwick but she was caught at the end of the lap as Hardie went through into the lead although chased by Gilmour. Millar and Declan Honeyman were squabbling as they made their way through the field. The race was suspended after Rian Mitchell was spun on the main straight and his car wouldn’t fire.
The restart saw Millar charge through into the lead with Gilmour spinning and Robbie Armit appearing in third but was then squeezed into the wall. This let Ross Lawrence through into second ahead of Gold but by now Millar was clear and he went through to cross the line first but was then penalised two places for too good a restart with Lawrence being declared the Turner trophy winner from Gold and Millar.
If the Ministox drivers were good in the rain then the Micro F2 drivers were something else when you consider they ware aged between 7 and 11 years. However we said goodbye to Joelan Maynard and Bobby Brandon who had reached the age limit but added Cole Ramsay to the ranks.
Heat one saw Maynard go through to win from Kara Russell, but it was a close run thing, with Brandon finishing in third. In heat two Russell had led for a few laps but had lost out to Maynard but managed to force herself back into the lead and though to win from Maynard and Alfie Smith.
There was five car shunt at the start to heat three as the rain came down even harder! In the end Maynard bowed out on a high by winning the race from Smith and Russell.
* At the St Day oval in Cornwall Gordon Moodie (Windygates) won the Formula II semi-final 1 with Robbie Dawson (Aberdeen) in sixth place whilst it semi-final 2 it was Ben Borthwick who won with Euan Millar (Lockerbie) in eighth place. Dundee’s Lim Rennie rolled his car and will join six other drivers in the consolation semi-final at Buxton.
1300 Stock Cars