Monoposto Championship Brands Hatch 28 March 2010: 1800, 1600, 1400 & 1000
Peter Whitmore brought out his now Hayabusa engined Van Diemen, but had a frustrated debut with drive shaft problems, and re-joined member Gary Hill had a very pretty Hayabusa engined OMS which went well until oil problems intervened. Darren Freeman was a casualty of Friday testing when he had the Big Paddock Bend Turn-In Accident and seriously scratched his Jedi, as well as removing himself to the medical centre for a while. He was an unfortunate and significant loss, but others also suffered start of the season problems, Doug McLay being forced to withdraw his Mygale from the Mono 1800 (and 2000) races.
The Mono 1800/1600/1400/1000 qualifying session started scrappily when several competitors were delayed by their Drivers Briefing. Peter Whitmore was in trouble immediately when a driveshaft failed, ending his day. Not surprisingly the bike-engined cars headed the timesheets with Arty Cameron splitting poleman Dax Ward from his team mate Marc Fortune. A slightly ill-at-ease Adrian Wright came next, followed by an excellent run from new man Gary Hill. Unfortunately the oil light on the lovely OMS came on at the end of the session and Gary took it home rather than risk the motor. Stuart Digby found his engine wouldn’t run over 9000rpm (!) but fixed the problem for the race.
The Mono 1800/1600/1400/1000 race came out later in the day, but to their credit MSVR were running their packed meeting ahead of schedule and to its credit the weather was still helping. Arty Cameron got the drop on the Ward/Fortune combo off the line and screamed into an early lead, the three Jedi slowly drawing away from Adrian Wright’s home built Gem. Julian Hoskins got a very quick start and went into a class lead (1800s) he wasn’t to lose. Initially he lead from Pete Bragg who got past John Whitbourn briefly. Peter then fell right to the back when he lost it under braking for Paddock Hill Bend and became a temporary resident of the gravel trap. This let Phil Nicholson into third in class. Phil was having an entertaining dice with 1600 leader Nigel Smith, Nigel eventually slipped through on the inside of Druids. Despite Whitbourn closely shadowing Julian throughout the race the yellow Vector left no gaps for John to exploit and Julian took a good class win, Michael Dales drove steadily to third in class.
Simon Davey and Patrick Huston.
At total of 53 Mono entries made it to the meeting, which was absolutely excellent. The entry also featured no less than 10 drivers who didn’t race with us last year, with a couple of them, Mathew Draper and Nigel Davers, competing in their first car race – both acquitting themselves very well during the day.
MSVR had taken on a very large entry for the meeting as a whole, and there were initial concerns about paddock space, but on the day it was fine, provided you avoided getting locked out of the circuit on the Saturday evening.
One issue which did raise its head during the day was driving standards. The on-track action was pretty hectic and various incidents, none too serious fortunately, brought out a couple of red flags, Safety Cars and many yellows. Several Mono drivers didn’t pay enough attention to these and the Clerk of the Course was kept busy handing out penalty points. Admittedly Brands tends to be a hectic circuit to lap in company, but it is really important that as Club we ensure that we do comply with flag signals – it’s essential for the safety of both the marshals and ourselves, so please sharpen up on this guys.
Scrutineering produced a drama for two of the new drivers when their race suits were found to be out of date, but the very friendly Monoposto crowd rapidly produced a couple of pairs of overalls on loan – great stuff!
Parki was second in the 1600 class in the svelte Reynard (seem to have blundered into a parallel universe here...)
Michael Dale was third in 1800 in his FF2000
Nigel Smith won 1600 in his bewinged Formula Vauxhall Junior 8V
John Whitbourne was second in 1800 and set the class fastest lap
Julian Hoskins Vectored onto the 1800 class win
Adrian Wright kept the flag of special building flying high by coming third overall and in the 1000 class
Arty Cameron led briefly, but ended up second....