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HRP Lochgelly Raceway September 15th - A Report

Added Monday 17th September 2018CHAMPIONSHIP FEVER continued apace at HRP Lochgelly raceway this past Saturday as two formulas contested their 2018 Scottish Championship while three other formulas would play the role of support to the headlining acts at Scotland's premier stock car venue.

It was the turn of the Big Van Bangers and Ninja Karts to host their Scottish title events and both defending champions Zak Murdoch (Vans) and Charlie Hardie (Ninja Karts) were in attendance with hopes of holding on to their crowns.

The first race of the night saw the ProStocks take to the track for Heat One and, as has been the way of late, the limited contact formula did not disappoint with plenty of action from the off. Defending points champion Paul Barron has certainly been in the winning habit of late and maintained his phenomenal run with victory in heat one as he beat Neale Glancy and Scott Gordon to the finish line. Heat Two saw Barron pick up some front-end damage in the early skirmishes which reduced him to the role of spectator while Jack Cameron took his car to victory lane ahead of Stewart Aitken and Ian Christie. The Feature Final was another chaotic race with only the three finishers making it to the end and, in a bruising encounter, it was Paul Barron who took his rather second-hand looking car to the win ahead of John Jackson and Bob Welsh as the rest of the field failed to go the distance.

The Classic Hot Rods were making their final appearance at HRP of 2018 and a reasonable number of cars arrived for the evening with no visiting drivers in the line-up. The first heat saw some great action as the old Escorts and Anglias etc flew around the tight HRP Lochgelly raceway circuit and it looked like a grandstand finish was on the cards as Kenny Purdie and Alex Wilson battled it out for superiority with Wilson crossing the line first (but only just) only to be docked two places for contact on the Purdie car which handed the win back to Purdie. Heat Two saw former Superstox racer Matt McPherson manage to fend off Purdie as the National Points Champion sought his second win of the night in heat two. The Feature Final under the HRP Lochgelly Raceway floodlights made for a stunning sight as the coolest cars on the ovals showed their mettle. Having been docked from first place in heat one, Wilson made no mistakes in this one as he romped home to the win ahead of Jock Campbell and McPherson.

It was a busy night for Campbell who chose to race his 2.0 Hot Rod as well as his Classic Hot Rod and he lined up for heat one for the tin-tops as part of a greatly improved field of cars from the previous week which included Kevin Stewart debuting a stunning Vauxhall Tigra. Heat One saw Ryan Adamson and Andrew Denholm quickly move into first and second and they held these spots until around halfway when a fast-moving Billy Bonnar passed Denholm to begin his pursuit of Adamson. Bonnar eventually caught and passed Adamson with just two laps to go to take the win while Adamson held on for second and Denholm third. Heat Two saw Colin Wotherspoon take the lead in the early stages and, having tasted victory in his debut meeting just seven days earlier, he went on to take another win with Bonnar having to settle for second this time ahead of Ryan Mackie in third. The Feature Final was run under the floodlights as the autumn evenings draw in and, as he had done in his last meeting, Adamson romped home to a flag to flag victory. Heat Two winner Wotherspoon did not get too far into the race before his challenge ended while Bonnar and Mackie filled the remaining podium spots while Campbell was docked two places for contact on Kevin Stewart to conclude his busy and action-packed evening!!!

The Ninja Karts held their annual Scottish Championship event this past Saturday with a fantastic field of karts in the pits looking to unseat defending champion Charlie Hardie who was going for three in a row. Defending Champion Hardie drew a favourable position near the front of the first heat and he soon took the lead which he held all the way to the chequered flag with another of the pre-race favourites Bailey Millar in second and another contender in the shape of Toby Tyson in third. The second heat saw the starting positions from heat one reversed and it was Millar who took the win ahead of Rachel Kidd and Josh Bruce in another competitive race. Millar's first and second places put him on pole position for the big race with Hardie on his outside completing the front row. Rachel Kidd and Toby Tyson formed row two while it was Josh bruce and Kyle Johnstone on row three – a supremely strong front six. Hardie got a great start and claimed the inside line as the karts crossed the line for the first time before Toby Tyson picked up the lead but Hardie was not about to let his title slip away and he re-took the lead in short order to relegate Tyson back to second before Bailey Millar went into the runners-up spot. As the laps wound down, Hardie held a comfortable gap over the rest of the field and went on to take his third Scottish title in a row amongst some jubilant scenes while Millar and Kidd completed the podium in a year where all three have been at the top of their game wherever they have raced.

The final formula on show was the Big Van Bangers and they too were ready for their 2018 Scottish Championship with Zak Murdoch defending the crown in the same van in which he took glory 12 months previously. A double-figure field of home-based drivers took to the track as the drivers all aspired to take the title. The usual chaos ensued at the drop of the green flag in front of a sizeable crowd at Scotland's premier stock car venue as the vans thundered around HRP Lochgelly Raceway and thundered into one another with some decent hits going in. As the vans dropped like flies, it was Gavin Fletcher who found himself at the front when it matters most as he took the chequered flag and the title of 2018 Big Van Banger Scottish Champion!!! Two subsequent heats saw outgoing champion Zak Murdoch and Josh Heeps take victories before a rather interesting Demolition Derby saw only four participants - all from the same team!!! The inevitable happened as the drivers began smashing each other to bits with Lee Clarke's Mercedes Minibus outlasting the others to take the last event of a great night of action.

With this Saturday’s event at HRP Lochgelly Raceway being cancelled, the next slice of stock car action at Scotland's premier stock car racing venue comes your way Saturday September 29th and features another Scottish Championship Double Header with the 2.0 Hot Rods and CC Rods taking centre stage while the Superstox (fresh from their World Championship in Northern Ireland), ProStocks and Ministox complete a fantastic five-formula line up from 5:30pm on Saturday September 29th at HRP Lochgelly Raceway.

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