East of England Round 4 2017 At Bowyer-Lowe

1/10th Off Road

A fasntastic weekend at Bowyer-Lowe, Coupled with feirce competition. Click read more for more information 

 

The BRCA East of England regional series headed to Kings Lynn and the Bowyer-Lowe raceway for round 4. With the championship heading into the second half of the season drop scores would take effect after this round and we would start to see who were the contenders for this years crown. 

Upon arriving we were greeted with an overcast but currently dry and warm day. The drivers got themselves booked in and set up their pitting area and the track was looking in tip top condition especially considering the lack of rain over the last few weeks, well done to the BLR crew. Once all the drivers were booked in and the mandatory drivers briefing complete practice started a little after 9am in heat order, with the eight full heats completed around 40 minutes later there was a decision to install a new loop as there was a few “weak signals” coming through. With the new loop laid and a couple of pt changes we were ready to go with heat 1 just after 10.15. 

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The lap started with a blast along the main straight into a flowing right hand bend, dropping into a small hole and driving out to face the big step up mountain which saw most 2wd cars land on top while the 4wd cars could clear it and land on the downramp. Once safely (mostly) landed drivers headed into a double left hander then into a fast sweeping right hander before facing a smaller tabletop jump, this was an improvement on previous years as it used to be two slow humps of different sizes, with the center now filled in it left us with a small table top with a jump off which was more flowing. From here drivers had another double right hander with a small hump on entry and rolling down on exit, this led into a tight but very fast left hand sweeper which brought drivers almost 180 degrees before facing the most technical section of the track. Drivers popped up onto a mound, flicked hard right and dropped off the mound straight into an open hairpin before immediately turning right into a 90 degree right hand bend that had a small natural jump on the exit, a really testing section that caught many drivers out trying dive up the inside or running wide taking the jumps to fast. Once negotiated drivers heading towards the rostrum into a quick step down, step up hairpin before a blast along the dogleg left straight heading into the steep banked hairpin. As the cars flew down from here there was a harsh wedge half way along the straight heading back towards the main straight, taken too fast cars would cartwheel or too slow 

and they often nosedived off, getting this wedge just right and the car flew sweetly landing just before the big corner table top and carried the speed down from here onto the main straight. The general opinion from the drivers that the track was great to drive and some of the annoying features from previous years had either been missed off the lap or improved on to make the track more flowing with enough to challenge drivers with their set up and skill dealing with the “manmade” natural features of the track. 

QUALIFYING 

Sadly during qualifying we soon discovered that there were some gremlins and drivers were finding most laps were counting but every so often it would miss a lap or give a false time (these issues have since been rectified with the help of BBK) With trying to keep the meeting flowing but also go back and check drivers questioned laps it did affect the end of rounds and thus as a result some drivers starting postion in the next round. By the end of qualifying almost all times were corrected and the final end of round produced. In 2wd Danny Conway took TQ and the all important extra point which may well be crucial, behind Danny was Joe Howson and Lee Hedges who was looking at home on the grass track. 

Jonathan Brown would line up fourth with Simon Overall fifth and Stuart Collard Sixth. James Crockart was seventh and Carl Nunn eight, Simon Watson ninth and a delighted Connor Watkins scraping into the A final after some terrible luck in qualifying this season. Tony Price was the unlucky man to miss out and would line up pole in the B final, but as always he was still smilling. In 4wd Danny Conway made it a double TQ for the day with Steve Biscoe pushing him hard during the rounds to line up second. Joe Howson had some good runs during the four rounds and would line up third with Stuart Collard taking fourth. Martin Long on his home track had a storming second half of qualifying and sat fifth on the grid with Lee Hedges relying on his strong first half of qualifying to take sixth. Anthony French was seventh, John Myall was eight and Simon Overall ninth. Rob York tied on points with Kristian Gibbs and they could still not be seperated on round positions, so it would come down to fastest time and Rob’s was just over four seconds faster than Kristian. 

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Finals 

2wd 

E Final – 

1st Oakley Mattioloi 

2nd Norman Jepson 

3rd Chloe Tester 

D Final – 

1st Joshua Evans 

2nd Owen Carter 

3rd Michael Hayter 

4th Andrew Nicholas 

5th Joe Sharp 

6th Mark Tester 

7th Richard Sharp 

8th Richard Berry 

9th Kelvin Groom 

10th Ben Copeman 

C Final – 

1st Adam Spencer 

2nd Daniel Chilvers 

3rd Ben Chester 

4th Matt Carey 

5th Paul Cooper 

6th David Bloy 

7th Matthew Griffen 

8th Chris Hampson 

9th Roger Gale 

10th Lee Flynn 

B Final – 

1st Sam Bradshaw 

2nd Chris Pennington 

3rd Tony Price 

4th Craig Francis 

5th Neil Newby 

6th Darren Pollard 

7th Daniel Robins 

8th David Foulger 

9th James Wright 

10th Daniel Usher 

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A Final – Leg 1 From the buzzer Danny Conway got the jump and led the early stages, however hitting the small jump before the last corner tabletop he executed a forward roll and allowed Joe Howson through to lead. Jonathan Brown was second, Stuart Collard third, Lee Hedges fourth and Carl Nunn fifth. Disaster struck for Joe, after negotiation the huge mountain and following left hander Joe caught a track marker as he accelerated to the next corner and broke the rear end and was out. Now a little gap had opened out between the top three of Jonathan, Carl and Lee, as they swept around the first bend Jonathan’s car got stuck under the track marker and Carl was now leading from his lowly starting position. Danny Conway was recovering and through into fourth but a mistake at the same jump dropped him back down. As they entered the last lap Jonathan was comfortable in third and the race to the line was between Carl and Lee, Carl just holding it for a very well received win from the watching crowd. 

Leg 2 – With the rain now falling quite consistently the buzzer sounded and we off for leg two. Joe Howson got stuck on a track marker half way around the first lap and Danny Conway rolled it on the table top, this left Jonathan Brown and Lee Hedges away to battle for the lead. Around mid-distance and Jonathan was still leading but Simon Overall was through to second, Lee Hedges third and Joe fourth. Leg one winner Carl Nunn was having a nightmare and scrapping around the tail end of the field. Jonathan with a faultless drive took the win, Lee Hedges was second with a last lap move to get past Simon Overall who was third, with Connor Watkins a superb fourth. 

Leg 3 – The rain had stopped and we had a clean start to this one as the cars circulated around the first lap. A minute in and Danny made a small error which allowed Joe Howson through to lead. Danny Conway was currently second with Lee Hedges another strong drive to sit third and Carl Nunn now working his way through to fourth to have a shot at the podium. A largely uneventful final with drivers keeping their lines clean and saw Joe Howson took the win to surely think what could have been if it wasn’t for his earlier bad luck. Danny Conway crossed the line second and Carl Nunn a strong third with Jonathan Brown fourth. James Crockart the unlucky one having slowed rapidly towards the end of the 

race whilst in third. 

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Overall With all the scores added up and the drivers crowded around the presentations commenced. Tenth down to fourth were read out leaving us with just the top three and all were tied on four points. Lee Hedges was third overall as his best result was a second place, this left us with two who both had a win to their name, so it would come down to the fastest time. Jonathan Brown had managed nine laps in the rain whilst Carl Nunn stamped in a 10 lapper on the way to his win. A great round of applause from the watching spectators with Carl picking up his first regional victory. 

1st Carl Nunn 

2nd Jonathan Brown 

3rd Lee Hedges 

4th Danny Conway 

5th Joe Howson 

6th Simon Overall 

7th Connor Watkins 

8th Stuart Collard 

9th James Crockart 

10th Simon Watson 

Juniors. 

Joe Howson with his fifth overall also took the top junior for the day, Daniel Robins was runner up with a very solid seventh in the B final. Joshua Evans took third top junior by winning the D final. With his four win of the year Joe Howson retained his junior 2wd championship for 2017. Congratulations Joe, certainly a rising star for the future. 

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4wd 

D Final – 

1st Lucas Prendergast-May 

2nd Miklos Szabados 

3rd Joshua Evans 

4th Jasper Kavanagh 

5th Rob May 

C Final – 

1st Daniel Robins 

2nd Ashley Kew 

3rd Craig Francis 

4th Craig Summers 

5th Neil Newby 

6th Carl Dufton 

7th Justin Easey 

8th Matt Carey 

9th Greg Stevens 

10th David Webster 

B Final – 

1st Graham Kisby 

2nd Kristian Gibbs 

3rd Chris Pennington 

4th Jody Howard 

5th Darren Pollard 

6th Tony Price 

7th Paul Pratley 

8th Sam Bradshaw 

9th Daniel Chilvers 

10th James Crockart 

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A Final 

Leg 1 – Away from the line and while most of the field made it through the first few corners the tail end tripped over one another leaving themselves plenty of work to do if they were to get a result in this leg. Danny was out in front while Steve Biscoe Joe Howson and Stuart Collard were all scrapping for second. Joe was through into second and looking quicker than Danny slowly reeling him in until a small mistake let Steve back through and Joe with all the hard work to do once more. Danny strolled home un challenged in the end with Steve Biscoe under pressure but Joe trying to make a move crashed allowing Steve to cross the line second and Joe third. 

Leg 2 – Danny Conway led from the start with Steve Biscoe close behind, most drivers made the opening lap without issue except Joe Howson who rolled and had to wait to be marshalled leaving him slightly adrift of the field. By the end of the second lap Danny had crashed leaving him back in sixth with Steve Biscoe and Stuart Collard to battle it out at the front with Lee Hedges closing in. Around mid distance and the top three were pulling away from the rest of the field who were still tripping over one another at times and dropping further back. As the cars crossed the line Steve took a comfortable win, behind were Stuart and Lee who were literally locked in a battle for the line as they clashed as can be expected with open wheel racing off road, Lee just pipping Stuart.

Leg 3 – Quite a messy start as most of the field seemed on edge with places up for grabs. Danny had quite a lead but Steve Biscoe was closing him in lap by lap. As they crossed the line for the final time Danny had enough of a lead to slow down enough to safely bring it home for the leg and overall win. Steve in second with Stuart Collard another great run in third. 

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Overall – With all the scores added up Danny Conway took TQ and the overall victory with Steve Biscoe a comfortable second. Stuart Collard courtesy of his last leg third place also took third overall just pipping Lee Hedges by one point, any lower than his last leg showing would have left them tied on points and Lee had the higher finish and faster time. 

Juniors – Joe Howson not only made it a double for the day in 2wd and 4wd he also completed a double championship once again retaining his 4wd crown. Joe Howson has been top junior in both classes all season and is now giving the main championship and real go. 

Thank you all to the Bowyer-Lowe raceway crew , despite the lap timing gremlins the positives from drivers was that they thought the track was great with just enough features to give you something to think about but not be unmanageable. We now roll on to Coastal and back to astro for round 5 where championships could be decided.