Round 4 – Brands Hatch – 3rd May 2015

Words and Pictures by : Phil (Scoop) Broster.

‘e’ mail : phil_scoop@hotmail.co.uk phone : 07912537640

Sunday 3rd May and the second day of the MGCC weekend saw the fourth round of the Lackford Engineering Midget and Sprite Championship. The previous day had seen mixed fortunes for some, pace car intervention and a frantic 7 lap sprint to the flag. We were hoping for a less frenetic day!

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The day started slowly with some having stayed at the circuit others having travelled home to return during the morning. Paul Sibley had taken the opportunity to sort out his cylinder head and Tom Neat had gone back to change his engine overnight, real F1 stuff that! Apparently Brian Bedford had woken very stiff, lucky Brian, and apart from that he had an ache in his shoulder. He had already started to dismantle his car though. By late morning Ed Reeve hadn’t returned, stuck in traffic, he would make it for the race though.

As usual the grid positions for this race were decided on the second fastest qualifying times from the day before. There were some changes, non more surprising than Paul Sibley who wasn’t on the front row, in fact, because of his issues the day before he was on row 5! Pole was taken again by Dunkley, with Morris alongside, Reeve was next to where Pegram should have been. Southcott A was alongside Campfield, then came Southcott C. and Lackford R., Sibley, Chadwick, Neat, Stanton, Lackford N., Hilberry, Cow and Attwood all under a minute around the Brands ‘Indy’ circuit. Perry, Harris, Bridge, Langford, Homer, Jenkins and Prior completed the now 22 car field. Burgin didn’t make the start either.

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Just after 2 o’clock the grid formed and as the lights signalled the start it was Dunkley who took the lead from pole ahead of Morris into Paddock. Reeve was third from a quick starting Lackford R. and Campfield who were side by side for half that first lap.

Southcott A., Sibley, Hilberry, Southcott C. was fighting with Neat followed by Perry, Harris, Attwood, Cow, Langford, Bridge, Lackford N., Jenkins, Homer, Prior and a slow starting Chadwick and Stanton completed the field.

At the end of that lap we lost Dunkley from the lead as Morris went into Paddock well ahead of Reeve, Southcott A and Campfield. Sibley was making ground and was already fifth with Lackford R and Southcott C following. There was a lot of squabbling throughout the field Hilberry was Fighting with Perry who was on another charge. Harris and Neat came next with Cow, Lackford N., and a recovering Chadwick and Stanton from the rest.

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On the next lap Southcott A ran wide at Paddock losing a couple of places and Prior pulled up on the exit. Harris was staving off the attention of Southcott C. but he would retire on the tenth lap. Lackford N. was mixing it with Chadwick before he too would retire at the end.

Sibley was by now up to second having passed Campfield and Reeve in one lap and next lap coming out of Druids he pulled out to take the lead from Morris. Next fight was Perry and Southcott C. and Bridge was holding off Langford. Then suddenly we were missing Sibley and Morris came through in the lead.

We got a full course yellow followed by the safety car once again! Another great race suddenly brought to a crawl, although it did give a chance for people to gather breath! Apparently Sibley was in a dangerous place, he had had a front stub axle shear off and that was the end of his race also.

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So the order at the front was Morris, Reeve, Campfield, Lackford R., Southcott C, Perry, Southcott A., Neat, Harris, Hilberry and Chadwick. Four laps lost and the race was back on. At the restart Morris, Reeve and Campfield took off but a whole pack of dicing cars came down the hill from Druids with Southcott C and Perry ahead of Lackford R and Southcott A who shot past Jenkins either side.

Southcott A was on a charge and harassed son Chris for the last few laps eventually passing him and at the flag was less than two hundreths of a second ahead, what a fight!. Perry ran wide at Paddock and he dropped back, although he did stay ahead of Lackford R but Chadwick got between them at the end, he had had a brilliant race from the back. Harris came through slowly, hand in air, to retire with a possible blown head gasket.

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Lackford R. had smoke coming from the front wheel arch which turned out to be a tyre rubbing the bodywork. The fight between Perry, Lackford, Chadwick and Neat was fantastic, they finished half a second apart at the end! Hilberry and Attwood were also dicing hard.

These fights went on until the flag, the only other casualty being Lackford N. who retired just 2 laps from the end when his gear lever snapped.

At the flag it was Morris who took a deserved victory from Reeve who had held off Campfield. Southcott A. as mentioned was ahead of son, then it was Perry, Chadwick, Lackford R., and Neat. Cow came home a lonely 10th from Stanton who had made places from his lowly start. Hilberry and Attwood ahead of Bridge, Langford, Jenkins and Homer was the order further back.

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A race of attrition, another pace car intervention but it meant we effectively had a two part race making the whole thing more exciting for that intervention.

Next race Donington at the end of the month.

Scoops mementous moment : Any one of the fights going on down the order.