The stock car meeting at the Cowdenbeath Racewall on Saturday night was run in dry weather much to the drivers delight but there were a couple of times that it tried to rain but thankfully came to nothing.
Despite the formula II drivers and 2 litre National saloon drivers being south of the border contesting their British Championship the Racewall played host to the prostox British Championship where a healthy field of cars turned up to do battle! It turned out to be joy night for drivers from Northern Ireland who dominated winning both the qualifying heats and then filled the top three places in the Championship race. However at this stage the result is provisional with the cars undergoing their post race scrutineering checks.
There were 19 1300 saloon cars at the track and they served some exciting racing although Kenny Baird may not think so after he was rolled during the final. There was a big shunt in the ORCi stock rods when Jim Pitcaithly and Michael Bethune tangled during the opening heat resulting in the Pitcaithly car being sent crashing into the turnstile bend wall and being left in a sorry state. Bethune was back flagged for his part in the shunt and didn’t reappear.
The prostox drivers turned up in their numbers for their British Championship with the defending champion Steven Haugh amongst the strong Irish contingent on the grid.
The race format was an all in one with the drivers drawing their grid position for the opening heat with the grid reversed for heat two and the points scored in the qualifying heats determining where they would start the final.
Heat one was stopped almost right away when but when Robert Hamilton ended up in the pit bend wall and once the grid had been reformed it was Grady Ross who went straight into the lead from Stuart Wilson but next time around Stephen Boyd was ahead although he had Adam Whyte in close order. Just after half distance White took the lead from Boyd. Towards the end Wilson and Lee Booth tangled but White went on to win from Boyd and Del McLaughlin. Heat two had a hectic start with Scott Gordon and Leslie Paterson tangling on the back straight and then no sooner had to the restart started than it was halted after McAlpine was shunted into the wall. John Mason led the cars away at the third time of asking but next time around McMullan was through into the lead but had the dicing Smyth and William McFaul for company. However when Booth clattered his car off the wall on the main straight the race was suspended with the field lining up behind McMullan. Once the track was clear McMullan led the field away with McFaul getting ahead of Smyth but then had Boyd to contend with. Soon afterwards White joined in the dice but by now McMullan was clear and he went through to win from White and Boyd.
The grid paired White and Boyd on the front row with McMullan and Smyth on row 2 with Paul Barron on row 3 which he shared with Haugh. With five Irish cars in the top six things didn’t look good for the home drivers!
When the flag dropped White went into the lead but Haugh was an early casualty and soon afterwards McLaughlin was on the sidelines. However there was a pile up on the turnstile bend and that stopped the race. No fewer than ten cars were on the sidelines. White then led the pack away on the restart with McMullan in second and Smyth third but Ross had moved into fourth running just ahead of McAlpine, Barron was beginning to make up ground whilst Graham Watt was shunted into the wall. White by now was clear but Smyth and McMullan was swapped places as the latter’s engine began to tighten up. As the chequer fell White became the new champion from Smyth but as they crossed the finish line McMullan’s engine blew depositing its oil on the track. Ross won the Allcomers race from Wilson and John Jackson.
The ORCi stock rod numbers were a bit lower than normal with a couple of drivers rebuilding cars.
James Gray went on to win the opening heat after Pitcaithly and Bethune had crashed and he led home Steven Archibald and Simon Laing. Laing then went on to win heat two but he had to look sharp as Gray had his car almost alongside as the crossed the finish line with Kev Forrester in third place. Archibald went straight into the lead when the final started and was still ahead when the chequered flag appeared but he had Stuart Wedderburn and Forrester in close order.
No fewer than 19 1300 saloon drivers turned up with Robert Gold having his first outing at the Racewall.
R. Gold went through to win the opening heat from Cameron Milne and Fraser Anderson. Gold made it two wins on the trot when he came out on top in heat two this time leading home Fraser Clark and Anderson.
Milne was the leader when the final started but almost right away Steven Gold slowed to retire. Stu McCaig moved into second with Michael Byers in third. Clark, Anderson and Grant McGowan were running nose to tail and were soon making inroads through the field. R. Gold soon caught the leading group and slowly worked his way through them and into the lead. Once there he went through to win despite a late stoppage after Kenny Baird had rolled with Milne in second and Clark third.
The hot saloons were back down from Crimond and whilst there were not as many cars as hoped for they served up some close and fast racing. Scott Forsyth went through for a comfortable opening heat win crossing the line clear of Mark Farquhar and Dave Largue. Largue then won heat two from Farquhar and Forsyth. Mark Mathers led the field away when the final started but soon had Farquhar breathing down his neck and looking for a way through, Largue started from the rear of the field and he caught the leading duo up during the closing stages. As the laps began to dwindle Largue got ahead of Farquhar and then closed up on Mathers. However it wasn’t until the penultimate lap that he got ahead of Mathers and on to win with Farquhar in third spot.
That is the first part of the season over and there is no more meetings at the Racewall until the 22nd July. However the second part of the season looks to be a busy one with the BriSCA formula II World Championship semi-finals being staged on the 5th August and then the 2 litre National saloon championship on the 19th August although this meeting is being run under the Autospeed promotion.
The Racewall regulars will be in action over the break with the formula IIs and saloons racing in the UK Challenge at Skegness whilst the formula IIs have their European Championship at Northampton.
On Saturday night Gordon Moodie (Windygates) was qualifying for a grid place for Sunday’s formula II British Championship at the Mendips Raceway and after a strong qualifying session where he won two heats and was second in the other started the race from the outside of the front row. Moodie started the race from the front row but was eliminated in an opening lap shunt. Craig Wallace (Tranent) went through to win the British Championship with Moodie winning the meeting final.
However after a racing incident in one of his heats on Saturday night the defending champion Chris Burgoyne (Airth) is currently in hospital after a racing incident. Pending a further scan on his back after fractured vertebrae and may need an operation. We wish him a full and speedy recovery.
Kyle Irvine (Glenrothes) was defending his British saloon championship on the shale at King’s Lynn on Saturday night but unfortunately had to retire from the final with Shane Davies going through to win.
1300 Stock Cars