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11th September 2016
A sunny September day provided lengthy circuit times for all drivers in an action packed day at Clay Pigeon.
The glorious sunshine was met with a brilliant race to start off the day as there were many very close battles early on in the Honda Cadets race, and Ollie Tyler, who started 9th, began his day’s campaign with an impressive win over Whittington-Couch, who climbed 10 positions. In race 2 it became clear early on today would be about 2 drivers at the front, with Alex Keens and Leo Purches disappearing from the rest of the field, Keens winning it. In the Minimax class Tom Adams kept stretching out his lead to beat Watts to the finish line, and Bradley Sheppard took the win in the Junior Max with Wilson-Brown not quite able to overtake him. In the 177’s Martin was able to take the win, but not without Dene Mann giving him a very close contest. The first Senior TKM race ended shrouded in controversy, as Davies and Barton collided on the final lap leaving Barton with a DNF and the former with the race win. The Senior Max was the biggest grid of the day, and it lived up to the hype too. Cole Edwards established himself as an early potential winner as he progressed rapidly through the field, but was unable to beat Harriett Stiles to the finish line.
The 2nd round of Heats began and the Hondas provided a great race for 2nd, with 2nd -11th place all so close together, however it was Ollie Tyler who won his 2nd race of the day and Sean Cuss taking the difficult 2nd spot. Keens won again in the IAME Cadet, and Adams won significantly more comfortably in the Minimax than he did in Heat 1. The Junior Max saw an exciting last lap, with Fry overtaking Goodburn for 3rd, but no one was able to stop Sheppard winning the race by over 10 seconds to Ethan Ling. The 177’s saw a great race between the top 3, with James defending lap after lap, but ultimately couldn’t hold on and Daniel Martin took the chequered flag. In the Senior Max, Edwards was able to go ahead and win from pole, ahead of a ferocious battle for 3rd.
The 3rd Heats were underway shortly after this race, and once again it was the Hondas who got them underway, with some brilliant racing in the final third of the race, but once again Tyler went on to win the Heat, taking him to a hat-trick of victories in the day, something which is uncommon within the Honda Cadet class. Bradley Sheppard went on to win again in the Junior Max, and in the 177’s there was a good battle for 4th, with Willson fending off Wood until the end. Barton overtook Davies on the last lap of a tense Senior TKM final Heat, and once again entertainment was supplied within the Senior Max as all of the drivers were squabbling for any position, a very close affair which Oliver Holden won to become the 3rd different winner in as many races.
The Finals began with a superb race from the Honda Cadets- notably the fight for 2nd, within which Vaughan (with whom luck had not been on the side of throughout the day) and Adams spun and Ethan Leader was able to take the position, Cucurullo- Yeomans driving excellently to finish 3rd on the podium but Ollie Tyler won the race empathically, but over 9.6 seconds and taking all 4 victories of the day. The IAME Cadet saw Keens win once again, following in Tyler’s footsteps, and this apparently 4 victories for 1 driver in each class was the course of the day, Adams winning his 4th by a massive 18.4 seconds. In the Junior Max Class, however, this string of consecutive winners was interrupted by Harry Wilson-Brown taking an unexpected victory when Bradley Sheppard lost power and had to settle for 6th. In the 177’s, Daniel Martin from pole was being caught by Dene Mann midway through the race, but eventually extended his lead to take his 4th win, and there was drama in the Senior TKM as they provided yet another close race, Davies sneaking the win, and the final race was ready to begin. The Senior Max supplied once again a brilliant race, with some amazing last few laps as there were 6 fighting frantically for the lead, which eventually settled down into a tense affair between Cole Edwards and Oliver Holden, the former taking a hard earned win.
Round 8 at Clay is on the 9th October, and it’s the biggest of the year, the Cancer Research Charity meeting
Written by Sam Hunt
Images courtesy of Steven Wood