HRP July 28th - A Report
Added Monday 30th July 2018
On an evening where the prevailing weather conditions could be comfortably be described as mixed; drivers, teams and fans gathered at HRP Lochgelly Raceway this past Saturday for the first meeting of CHAMPIONSHIP FEVER â a series of events that see at least one major championship up for grabs every Saturday at HRP Lochgelly Raceway well into October!
It was the turn of the Rookie Bangers to contest their Scottish Championship and a grid of around twenty cars descended on the HRP pits to do battle for the coveted title. Sadly, last yearâs winner Rob Haines was not in attendance as part of what was a very large English presence! In fact, the English drivers outnumbered the Scots so another win for the Auld Enemy looked highly likely. Some stunning cars were on hand with some excellent paintjobs â one of the highlights being the shocking pink car of 292 Paul Davies which really caught the eye! The first race of the night for the Bangers was also their championship race so the grid was formed on the back straight before the cars rolled off to take the green flag. As expected, the English dominated the proceedings and, in fact, claimed all three podium places with Graham Smith taking third, Paul Davies second and Jake Carter claiming the title of 2018 Banger Scottish Champion after a very fast-paced race. The first all-comers race saw Reiss Carroll claim another win for England while Carroll would go on to take his second win of the night as the Scots were whitewashed on their home turf!
The 1300 Stock Cars were back in action after what felt like ages this past Saturday and it was good to see Ian Christie back out for another run while Kevin Hutchison made his return to racing after quite a while out due to a knee injury. The night's racing represented round four in the 2018 MR Coachworks and Ringtone Racepaints Series with Stuart Farrell still leading as the evening began. After his race-winning double last time out, Lochgelly driver Danny Whyte would begin his third meeting in the formula from the yellow grade. Whyte is more used to racing from the back of the grid in the Ministox, so this move did not phase the young pilot at all as he strolled to victory in heat one ahead of series leader Stuart Farrell and Ian Christie. Heat Two saw several cars fall by the wayside but this did not deter Whyte who took yet another win in his fledgling 1300 Stock Car career with Craig Haxton second and Farrell third. The feature final saw Whyte starting in the blue grade for the first time as a result of his earlier exploits; but he managed to get into the lead of the race to claim a fantastic hat-trick at the chequered flag with Haxton again having to settle for second while Hutchison could be well pleased with an excellent third place finish on his return. The 1300 Stock Cars contest round five of the MR Coachworks and Ringtone Racepaints Series this Friday August 3rd at HRP Lochgelly Raceway.
The highest turnout of Junior productions so far at HRP Lochgelly Raceway were on hand this past Saturday with three drivers visiting from Northern Ireland in the form of James Stewart, Graham Meek and Sam McNeice. Heat One saw a big impact for Charlie Hardie after a racing incident left the car looking rather second-hand. James Stewart survived the chaos to take a well-earned victory ahead of Scottish Champion Cameron Willacy and Meek. Heat Two saw Stewart take another win as the Northern Irish trio locked out the podium with Meek taking second and McNeice third. The feature race for the Juniors was another entertaining affair with the drivers giving it everything they had. Unfortunately for the Scots, it was another win for the Northern Irish as Graham Meek took his fantastic machine to victory lane ahead of Scotland's Jack Berresford and double heat winner Stewart.
The Ministox were making their second appearance in seven days at Scotland's premier stock car venue and another healthy grid of cars rolled in for the latest instalment of Ministox action with Aaron Richards the soul English visitor but tragedy struck for the English driver as his car retired with mechanical woes at the start of heat one. After having numerous issues with his engine; Ciaran Adams would have been delighted to finally put those gremlins behind him as he stormed to victory in heat one ahead of James Mooney and National Points Champion Sean Naismith after Kai Gilmour was disqualified from second place for spinning a car to the wall. Heat Two saw Richards suffer another early retirement as Michael Mitchell came through from the rear of the grid to take the win with Mooney finishing in second once again and the ever-improving Kai Gilmour third. Mitchell's win was very important as he looks to regain the National Points crown from Naismith. The feature final saw Jay Paterson leading for a few laps before heat one winner Adams hit the front. As the rest battled behind him, Adams claimed his second win of the night with Naismith coming home in second ahead of Declan Honeyman while Mitchell kept himself in the battle for the silver roof with fourth.
The fifth and final formula on show were the Ninja Karts. Some of the drivers had been at Aghadowey Oval in Northern Ireland for their European Championship last weekend and Scotland's drivers were to the fore as Rachel Kidd took fifth and Charlie Hardie fourth while Robbie Armit went on to successfully defend the title he won last year in what was his penultimate meeting in the formula before retirement. Armit's last meeting was this past Saturday and must have felt bittersweet for one of the very best in the class. As always, the Ninja Kart action got underway with a whites and yellows heat which saw an excellent win for Kaden Connor ahead of Hamish Plenderleith and Aiden Duffy. The first heat proper saw Armit storm through from the rear of the grid to take a win in his final meeting with Kyle Johnstone second and Charlie Hardie third. Heat Two saw Josh Bruce surge back to form with his first win in a while with Armit having to settle for second with Hardie again in third. The last heat of the night was another cracking race - it really is incredible to watch the way these youngsters fly around the tight confines of HRP Lochgelly Raceway and heat three was another masterclass from the stars of the formula with Rachel Kidd taking a popular win ahead of Bruce and Hardie with Armit concluding his Ninja Kart career in fourth. Armit should be moving into Ministox shortly and will definitely be one to watch!
It is a quick turnaround this week at HRP Lochgelly raceway as Scotlandâs premier stock car venue will open its doors for the latest slice of stock car action this Friday August 3rd from 7pm. The 1300 Stock Cars will battle it out in round five of the MR Coachworks and Ringtone Racepaints Series while the ProStocks, CC Rods and Ministox will also all be in action in a fantastic four-formula line-up with the green flag dropping on race one at 7pm.