East of England round 1 2016 at Stotfold

1/10th Off Road

With the winter clothing on standby it was time to kick off the 2016 BRCA East of England regional series at a cold but more importantly dry Stotfold, a new venue for the EoE to visit but no stranger to holding big meetings.  The drivers started to arrive bright and early with a cold and damp start to the day but with the forecast good for the rest of the day hopes were high that we could be in for some good racing on what is a well prepared surface.

The lap started with a blast along the main straight into a fast right hand sweeper onto one of the small tabletops, dropping off this and a 180 left took you into another right hander onto the short back straight. Reaching the end of the back straight up a crest open right dropping into a flick left sent drivers deep into the infield sections. A tight 90 right led into a hairpin left and into a second tabletop which caught a few drivers overjumping and missing the apex for the sharp left , before you head away from the rostrum and a hairpin right on top of a mound sending you back towards the rostrum. A quick jump over a crest sharp turn left heading away from the rostrum, over a couple a small hump and up to the wall. Carry your speed around the wall and blast back down to towards the end of a lap, over a couple of small but challenging mounds, sharp right and back on to the main straight to complete a lap.

stotfold 2With everyone safely booked in and the mandatory drivers briefing completed practice got underway at 9am. With the 2wd’s out first fellow drivers stood and watched to see how the first few heats faired with the damp surface, four minutes later and drivers were settling on a damp set up for the rest of the session. Once practice was finished and the late entries added the first of the eight heats headed out for the first timed race of 2016 at 10.15. With the sun coming through drivers in heats two and three started to wonder if a dry set up would be better as the Stotfold track dries really quickly, either way though there are four rounds so plenty of time to find the right set up with conditions becoming more consistent throughout qualifying. A little over four hours later and running just five minutes behind schedule qualifying was over and the drivers could knew what final they would be looking to win.  

Top ten
2wd                                     4wd
1.    Nigel Buck                 1. David Orbell
2.    Alex Carter                2. Danny Conway
3.    Simon Overall            3. Steve Biscoe
4.    Ian Buck                    4. Simon Overall
5.    James Crockart         5. Joe Howson
6.    Andrew Simpson        6. Paul Timberlake
7.    Danny Conway           7. John Myall
8.    Rob York                    8. Pete Palmer
9.    Ben Spindley              9. James Crockart
10.    Lee Harris                10. Martin Long

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2wd Winners
E Final – Ainsley Andrews

D Final – Sam Bradshaw

C Final - Ben Chester

B Final – Joe Howson

A Final – Leg 1 Was won by Nigel Buck leading from pole slowly extending his lead to finish a lap ahead of the rest of the field, Simon Overall taking second with Alex Carter in third.
Leg 2 – Again Nigel Led from the start to claim another leg win on 13 laps, this time however Alex Carter slipped through to end on the same lap and finished just 0.24 seconds behind with Ian Buck claiming third.
Leg 3 – This time the top three finishers ended up on 13 laps as the pace increased, Alex Carter crossing the line first with Ian Buck taking second, and Nigel Buck settling for third this time around.
With the scores tallied up it was Nigel Buck taking overall victory, with Alex Carter taking second overall, and Nigel Buck claiming the last podium spot.

Joe Howson took a superb victory in the B final and ensuring his won the juniors for the day, Jody Howard was junior runner up by claiming 7th in the B final and 2015 junior champion Connor Watkins took third top junior with 9th in the B final.

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4wd Winners
D Final – Ashley Kew

C Final – Craig Summers

B Final – Simon Watson

A Final – leg 1 With David Orbell having a nightmare it was Danny Conway who streamed away to finish a lap up on second place Joe Howson, Pete Palmer coming from eight place to take third.
Leg 2 – In a repeat of leg 1 David had a mare midway through and Danny stormed it to wrap up the meeting with another leg victory, David getting himself back together through the final and come home second and Steve Biscoe in third.
Leg 3 – With Danny sitting this one out and David sorting out some gremlins he stormed to an impressive win and could only wonder what could have been. John Myall picked off the field to take second and James Crockart following him to claim third.
Overall this left Danny Conway as clear winner, David Orbell the runners up spot and Joe Howson a really impressive third overall.

With his fantastic third overall in the A final Joe Howson claimed a double by being top 4wd Junior. Again Jody Howard would be second top junior by claiming 7th in the C final, and the last podium spot in 4wd would be taken by Jack Keeney by virtue of his 10th place finish in the C final.
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