Barrs Back To His Best, Newman Continues Title Push, Alban Shines On Home Soil

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There was a point recently when it looked as though Llandow might be lost but it’s now not the case. The back straight chicane was missing this year as the track surface was in a horrible state but I reckon the racing is better without it. Great to see that CLUB100 is now so accepted within the sporting community that the Tour of Britain saw fit to route one of its stages past the circuit so that the riders could see what proper racing is all about. Thought the amount of police outriders was a bit over the top for crown control though.

Changeable conditions on the day with the Lights suffering wet in the morning and the Heavies getting the best of the sunshine. Here’s how the day unfolded.

Heats

Adam Brittain got his day off to the perfect start by taking a dominant win in the first heat. Starting from the second row he took over at the front from pole sitter Andrew Mcwilliam three laps in and then controlled the pace from the front to take the flag just over a second clear of Mcwilliam. Yousuf Bin-Suhayl was third from Andrew Ward and Russell Cooper.

The real Ed Barrs finally showed up at Llandow winning the second heat by almost two seconds from Dan Seager. Barrs started on the third row but was into the lead after two laps and never threatened from behind. George Lawlor was third from Adam Sheargold and Christopher Powell the latter working his way up from eleventh.

Sam Lovelace was a comfortable winner of the third heat. Starting from pole he was never headed and took the flag over five seconds clear of second placed Dave Cottrell who only just held off Rob Newman over the line. James Martin was fourth from Aaron Clarke.

Bryn Alban claimed the fourth heat. Once again it was the polesitter who led all the way in a race that was notable only for its lack of excitement. Ben Lambeth was second from Stephen Westwood, Callum Martin and Harrison Kirkham. 

Sam Lovelace was the only heat winner from the first round  to break the fifty two second mark giving him an early advantage in the fight for pole.

Rob Newman started the fifth heat from pole but second time around Charlie Summers put a move on him at the Hook and went to the front. Newman fought back but was off line and Adam Brittain nipped by into second leaving Newman adrift. Summers continued to lead with Brittain just a tenth back whilst Newman was playing catch up.

End of the penultimate lap and Brittain defended into the final corner. Newman stayed wide and then went to duck under Brittain as they ran for the line. But Brittain hung on. Final lap and Summers led comfortably whilst Brittain again went defensive into the final turn. Newman replicated his move from the previous lap but Brittain hung on by just 0.040 as they crossed the line. George Lawlor was next over the line but a cone penalty dropped him to fifth and promoted Rhianna Purcocks to fourth.

Polesitter Stef Theodorou led the sixth heat for most of the race from fellow front row starter James Martin before a chasing Yousuf Bin-Suhayl nipped by Martin on the penultimate lap and then went by Theodorou as they came out of the last corner to win by just 0.022. Justin Draper was a couple of seconds back in fourth with Ben Lambeth fifth.

A very on form Bryn Alban made it two wins from two taking the seventh heat two seconds clear of Harrison Kirkham who had led the early laps from the front row. Polesitter Nikolas Lakasas was third from Stephen Westwood and Andrew Rabbage.

Ed Barrs took his second win of the day in the eighth heat but it needed a last lap pass on long time leader Sam Lovelace to do it. Lovelace started from grid six but was into the lead after two laps whilst Barrs started from grid seven and did not get up to second until three laps from home at which point he was almost two seconds back from the leader. But he quickly whittled the gap down. Michael Reader was third from Andrew Ward and Callum Martin.

At the end of the second run of heats, home hero Bryn Alban now had his nose just in front in the race for pole.

Justin Draper led heat nine all the way from pole to the flag with fellow front row sitter Ben Lambeth second. Rob Newman took third after starting sixth but he was never in touch with the leaders. The Championship leader was going to have to work very hard in the A Final. Yousuf Bin Suhayl was fourth from James Martin.

Greg Smith led over half the tenth heat after starting from pole before second row starter Harrison Kirkham took over at the front. Smith fell to fourth behind Aaron Clarke and Dan Seager with Stef Theodorou fifth.

Russell Cooper, Andrew Ward and Andrew Mcwilliam put on a great battle for the win in the penultimate heat. Cooper led from Ward after two laps with Mcwilliam joining them a lap later. Ward took the lead on the penultimate lap only for Ward to snatch the place back on the final lap. Mc William was right in their wheeltracks but never quite close enough to mount a challenge. Adam Brittain claimed more good points with fourth with Tommy Lee fifth.

The final heat featured both the challengers for the A Final pole. Ed Barrs was starting from the second row with Bryn Alban on the fourth row.  Barrs was in no mood to hang around and took the lead first time around. After that he was never headed leading home Andrew Rabbage and Christopher Powell. Callum Martin was fourth with Bryn Alban fifth. Good enough for his highest ever starting position on the front row beside poleman Ed Barrs.

C Final

All drivers in C3 unless otherwise noted.

Chris Hancox on pole from Luke Roberts followed by Douglas Smith and Toby Wykes on the second row. Row three saw Yusuf Soeharjano alongside Patrick Millman followed by James Browning and Keir Hobson on row four and John Knox alongside Owen Camber on row five. Clifton Malcolm and Mark Hensler shared row six with Penny Millman and Nick Cvetkovic on row seven. Joanna Meliou shared the penultimate row with Jake Hicklin with Carl Power and Chris Swannel on the back row. First four home to qualify for the B Final and a trophy for the winner.

Hancox led away from the line but it was Roberts who was the first to show through the first turns. Wykes got the better of Smith to run third with Millman up to fifth ahead of Soeharjano. Roberts was pulling away at the front dipping under 55’s second time around.

But third time around the heavens opened and Roberts was caught out at the final chicane spinning out of the lead and resuming down in tenth. Wykes took over at the front with Smith second from Millman and Hancox. The rain continued to hammer down and the pace dropped as drivers struggled for grip.

Wykes ran wide and Smith nipped by into the lead whilst Millman went by Hancox for third. Fifth placed Hobson was still in the hunt for the final qualifying spot whilst Browning was being dropped but they were all doing well to keep pointing in the right direction.

Half distance and Smith was just a tenth up on Wykes with Millman almost a second back in third. Hancox ran fourth a kart length back from Hancox with Hobson just over a second back in fifth. Soeharjano was over three seconds back and coming under pressure from a recovering Roberts.

Smith began to edge clear at the front from Wykes, Millman and Hancox. Hobson lost time seventh time around and Roberts began to close in. Rapidly. Eighth time around and he took a better line out of the final turn to nip by Hobson for fifth. But he still had three seconds to make up if he was going to catch fourth placed Hancox.

Over the next couple of laps he was easily the fastest man on the track and on the penultimate lap he grabbed the final qualifying berth and then went one better as he got the better of Millman out of the final turn to snatch third on the line. He also set the fastest lap of the race.

The C Final trophy went to Smith with Wykes second from the inspired Roberts with Millman fourth. Hancox was fifth from Hobson and despite the atrocious weather not one driver picked up a penalty!

C Final Winner -
C Final Winner – Douglas Smith

B Final

All drivers in C2 unless otherwise noted.

Michael Reader on pole from C1 Rhianna Purcocks followed by Matt Ellis and Nikolas Lakasas. Row’s three and four were occupied by C3’s, Lewis Marchant, Adam Sheargold, Harrison Earl and Tommy Lee. Row five had Isaiah Egwuagu alongside Ami Breacher with Kym Eley alongside C3 Mortaza Hassan on row six and Adam Natha with C3 James Brittain on row seven.

Andy Bushell and Andy Orford were on row eight followed by C3 Keaton Ford and Jeremy Deeks on row nine. C3’s Ryan Williams and Benjamin Sproat shared row ten with Dan Grocott and C3 Sam Iddles on row eleven followed by the four qualifiers from the C Final, Smith, Wykes, Roberts and Millman. Top two to qualify for the A final and a trophy for the winner.

With the rain still falling Reader bought the pack steadily up to the line but Purcocks was smarter off the line to lead through the first turns. Over the course of the first tour she used all her experience to pull over a second clear of the chasing pack. Lakasas was up to second ahead of Reader and Marchant whilst Natha drove the lap of his life to jump up from grid thirteen to fifth ahead of Ellis and Brittain who came up from grid fourteen.

Two laps run and Purcocks was almost three seconds clear whilst Natha was up to second and lapping almost at the leaders pace and far quicker that the rest of the pack. Third time around and he set the fastest lap thus far and was closing the gap to the leader.  But then he made an error, lost four seconds and allowed Lakasas to slip by into second. 

Purcocks was now over three seconds clear of Lakasas whilst Natha was over two seconds back from Lakasas but clear of fourth placed Reader. Half distance and Purcocks was almost four seconds clear of Lakasas whilst Natha was beginning to close in on second place setting a personal best sixth time around.

Reader was falling back at the head of a train of karts. Earl, Marchant, Ellis, Lee and Brittain covered by a little over a second. Purcocks continued to pull clear whilst third placed Natha was edging ever closer to second placed Lakasas and with two to go he finally managed to slip by.

However, Lakasas wasn’t done and fought back on the penultimate lap to slip back into second at the Hook. But it was not without contact.  Purcocks took the flag almost nine seconds clear with Lakasas second over the line but penalised down to sixth and promoting Natha back up to second.

Reader moved up to third from Marchant and Sheargold. Earl and Lee crossed the line next but both had penalties dropping them out of the top ten. Brittain moved up to seventh from Ellis, Egwuagu and Breacher.  Marchant’s fourth placed gave him the C3 honours with fifth placed Sheargold second in class and Brittain third.

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B Final Winner – Rhianna Purcocks
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C3 Podium – l to r – Adam Sheargold, Lewis Marchant, James Brittain

A Final

Ed Barrs on pole then from Bryn Alban. His best effort in his CLUB100 career. C2’s Adam Brittain and Harrison Kirkham occupied the second row. A best ever effort from Brittain too. Sam Lovelace and C2 Yousuf Bin-Suhayl shared row three followed by Ben Lambeth and C2 Justin Draper on row four. Row five saw Championship leader Rob Newman alongside Andrew Ward followed by Dan Seager and C2 Russell Cooper on row six. James Martin and C2 Aaron Clarke shared row seven with C2’s Callum Martin and Andrew McWilliam on row eight.

Two more C2’s on the ninth row, Charlie Summers and Andrew Rabbage followed on the tenth row by Christopher Powell and C2 Andrew Rabbage. Rows eleven and twelve were occupied by C2’s, Dave Cottrell and Stef Theodorou on eleven and Greg Smith and Stephen Westwood on twelve followed by the two qualifiers from the B Final, Purcocks and Natha.   

Barrs led the pack away but some drivers got too excited on the still wet track and spun out of the Hook. Wisely the Clerk of the course called a restart knocking two laps off the race distance. Barrs led away for the second time but it was Kirkham who got off to a real flier to lead over the line at the end of the lap with Barrs second from Alban and Lovelace. Newman was up to fifth ahead of Lambeth and Brittain. Kirkham’s lead lasted a lap before Barrs moved back to the front. Newman was up to fourth which became third within a lap.

Once by Kirkham, Barrs began to edge clear whilst Newman in third place began to close down Kirkham. Half distance and he was into second but over a second back from former Champion Barrs. Could he catch him?

Barrs began to edge away and with three to go his win looked assured but Newman dug deep, setting his best lap and cutting almost half a second out of Barrs lead. One to go and the lead was down to just three tenths. Newman had a look into and out of the final turn but Barrs was wise to the move and held him off.

Final lap and into the braking zone for the final turn and Newman looked too far back but as Barrs braked for the corner Newman went by as though Barrs had suddenly stopped! Newman looked to be heading for Cardiff but he hung on well to the outside whilst an amused Barrs kept his line and drove for the chequered flag crossing the finish line it over a second clear of the heroic Newman.

It was certainly entertaining and something of a relief that Newman managed to avoid the tyres. Would those two lost laps have made a difference? We’ll never know. Kirkham crossed the some three seconds back and claiming the C2 honours with Alban fourth and on the C1 podium for the first time in his career. A good day Bryn!

Lovelace was fifth from Seager with Brittain seventh and second in C2. After a torrid time in the early part of the season it was good to see him have a trouble free round and show his undoubted talent. Lambeth was eighth with Purcocks a fine ninth after coming up from the back of the grid. Bin-Suhayl completed the top ten and took third in C2.

Championship round up

Rob Newman continues to lead the way from Dante Dhillon who needs to get back to his early season form if he’s to overtake the Championship leader over the final three rounds. It was good to see Ed Barrs back to his best at Llandow and taking a clean sweep. Is he out of the hunt? We’ll see.

Harrison Kirkham sits fourth and leads C2 by some distance from Yousuf Bin-Suhayl who is tenth overall. Adam Sheargold heads C3 with Tommy Lee second and just a couple of places back in the overall standings. James Brittain is third. 

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C2 Podium – l to r – Adam Brittain, Harrison Kirkham, Yousuf Bin-Suhayl