Brands Hatch - 3 May 1999
Brands Hatch - 3 May 1999
|10||17||D||Jack Bellinger||+8||11:02.64||11||1 lap||73.38||58.79||10||75.09|
|11||27||C||Stephen Lockett||+8||11:03.03||11||1 lap||73.24||58.96||5||74.87|
|12||7||D||Mary Lindsay||+8||11:11.18||11||1 lap||72.35||59.50||6||74.19|
|13||31||D||Leigh Sebba||+8||11:12.55||11||1 lap||72.20||59.23||10||74.53|
|14||55||B||Philip McKelvey||+8||11:14.86||11||1 lap||71.95||58.90||11||74.95|
|15||42||D||Jeremy Holden||+8||11:16.19||11||1 lap||71.81||59.64||11||74.02|
|16||34||E||Peter Sargeant||+4||11:01.88||11||1 lap||73.36||1:04.12||3||68.84|
|17||11||E||David James||+4||11:09.55||11||1 lap||72.52||1:05.45||7||67.45|
Brands Hatch - 3 May 1999
|Lap record*||A||Matthew Wurr||+8||52.72||134.75||83.73|
|Lap record*||B||Rick Lloyd||+8||53.76||132.15||82.11|
|Lap record*||C||Chris Acklam||+8||55.71||127.52||79.24|
|Lap record*||D||Peter Horsman||+8||57.55||123.44||76.70|
|Lap record*||E||Peter Sargeant||+4||1:04.12||110.79||68.84|
|* Circuit change|
Brands Hatch - 3 May 1999
Sun, sun and more sun greeted 19 competitors for the 3rd round of the championship at Brands Hatch in Kent.
Fresh faces for 1999 in screen D and C at the Foulston Empire were Jeremy Holden and Stephen Lockett. With the events of last week at Snetterton and the demise of Chris Dady’s gearbox the numbers were down for the AMOC event.
This week saw a brush with authority for Simon McDermott and Stephen Lockett neither of whom had checked their blue books and the rule regarding bonnet number display and although waved on by the first scruitineer they were ejected from the pit lane by another more scrupulous one who sent them back to the paddock to rectify their numberlessness.
For those who hadn’t been practising at the circuit on Saturday, initial laps were spent finding a line through the Graham Hill bend. A couple of laps in and Mary Lindsay found one and kicked up a Kent dust cloud as she exited the revised corner on the grass. Grahame Walker, back after a break for round 2, wasn’t having much luck and 7 laps into his practice an ignition failure shut his car down on the Brabham Straight where he had to park. Keith Ahlers, in the wars again, had lost 5th gear and the yellow ‘post it’ note stuck to the centre of his steering wheel was there to remind him of that fact. Having rejoined the session McDermott was black-flagged for apparently dumping oil although as he vociferously pointed out to the marshals (who in their orange overalls looked more like his pit crew) it was the tyre rubbing against his wheel arch causing his smoky plumage. The fight for pole caught the attention of the early-starting commentators as Matthew Wurr and Peter Garland exchanged fastest times until by the chequered flag Garland pipped Wurr for top spot by just a fraction of a second and with Keith Ahlers posting an ‘easy’ lap only half a second further back and no interim problems, things were shaping up for an exiting race.
At the lights it was Ahlers who got a flyer tucking in behind Garland into Paddock demoting Lloyd to 4th and then Wurr to 3rd through Druids. Plunging down into Graham Hill Bend he went wide kicking up the dirt and losing all the ground he had gained. A purple haze descended on the Jersey man who wanted the 3 places back and carrying huge speed out of Clearways astonished McDermott when he easily passed him out of Clark Curve and astounded Lloyd powering up alongside him at light speed into Paddock Bend which he had no chance of getting round, harpooning across Lloyd’s bow and disappearing in a cloud of gravel trap eventually coming to rest, his dusty mount kissing the tyre wall. Annoyed with himself but not shaken and with only 1 lap completed, Ahlers had time to reflect on his kamikaze overtaking manoeuvre and wonder what might have been with 5 gears and an ounce of patience.
By the time Garland, who had made his customary good start, drove through the red mist still shrouding Paddock Hill Bend at the end of lap 2, he had a healthy lead over 2nd placed man Wurr who continued to fall away from the leader until lap 4 when, as Garland encountered tail-enders for the first time, he started to close and chipped away at the leader until with 2 laps to go was right on him as they encountered tail-ender Peter Sergeant for the second time. Sergeant, who didn’t need to be asked twice to interrupt his Bank Holiday social whirl to make up the numbers on the depleted Morgan grid, was to have a greater effect on the outcome of the race than he or Wurr had hoped, for although the leader lapped him with ease into Clearways, Sergeant had not anticipated or seen Wurr and as he reclaimed the racing line through the corner inadvertently closed the door on the charging model-maker who stood on his brakes to avoid a collision, lost the initiative and had to settle for 2nd place (and fastest lap) behind lights to flag leader and race winner Garland. Class B honours were once again taken by Rick Lloyd who, by steering clear of the Jersey cowl was 3rd overall and comfortably posted his class’ fastest lap, took maximum points and retained his joint lead in the championship.
Finishing 4th but not a happy man was Simon McDermott. After his victory in the previous round, McDermott was disappointed with his lack of power and the overall performance of his car in the hot weather at Brands.
In a packed Class C, Grahame White fulfilled all the pre-race expectations winning the class from Chris Acklam. In the week prior to the event, White had completed over 200 laps of the circuit and was ‘entertained’ as he watched Acklam weaving around in the driving instructor’s mirrors. It was Acklam though, who posted the class’ fastest lap in his chase for 5th as they both pulled well clear of James Paterson who finished 7th.
Paul Burry’s problems were compounding. Having missed third gear he’d lost places at the start then as they all dived into Grahame Hill Bend together, he nurffed Jack Bellinger who had slowed suddenly to avoid the luckless Grahame Walker who was again sidelined with his recurring electrical problem. By the end of lap 1 and with his Yuri Geller style front bumper, Burry was 11th and now mounted a charge through the field on his way to 8th place passing Jack Bellinger on lap 2, Stephen Lockett on the following lap and Class D winner and joint championship leader Peter Horsman on lap 10.
After Burry had passed both him and Stephen Lockett, Jack Bellinger spent the remainder of the race locked in a scrap for 10th, Lockett passed Bellinger under Keith Ahler’s yellow flag on lap 2 which might have angered the white-overalled one if, after giving Lockett a hard time for 6 laps, he hadn’t re-taken the place on the 9th lap and held the position to the flag.
So the last real tussle for position was that for 12th which was taken by Mary Lindsay who having qualified in a modest 16th place ‘mugged’ Philip McKelvey in Paddock Hill Bend on the 1st lap and then after giving Jeremy Holden a hard time for 2 laps used Druids to add him to her list of demotees dragging McKelvey and Leigh Sebba past with her. McKelvey, having performed his first overtaking manoeuvre was contemplating his second until, close behind Mary Lindsay, as he put it ‘that beautiful car became the widest Morgan I’ve ever seen ... behind that charming lady, there is a very aggressive woman’ he said. On lap 4, Holden, having overcome his demotion recovered and took Leigh Sebba who promptly retaliated and then as Lloyd came round to lap him, he tucked in behind and was sucked past McKelvey and into 13th place which is where he finished.
David James worked solidly between practice and the race to try and solve the misfire that has dogged him all season but with no apparent luck he continued to circulate in last place well behind his equally solitary adversary, grid filler and class E winner Peter Sergeant.