BRCA Rallycross Rd 1 Report.

8th Rally X

At last we are back racing and we settle in to the 1st BRCA RallyX nationals since 2019!

After a shuffle of the calendar it would take place at North West Nitro near Blackpool. All of the usual suspects were there to perform but with a lot of new “fast Kids” and the return of a few old faces it was going to be exciting for sure! Not to mention the 1/10th specialists taking to the engine while the 1/10th nationals take a break until 2022, so an awful lot of talent in the mix!

It was Neil Cragg who took the TQ in every one of the 5 rounds of qualifying, his domination was quite frankly, with the quality of racers in attendance outstanding! Behind him a few twist and turns with some amazingly fast drives by Elliott Boots, Will and Joni Skidmore and the returning Darren Bloomfield. In the end Overall Second would be reigning champion Elliott Boots with Joni Skidmore 3rd and Will Skidmore 4th.

TQ Man Neil Cragg:

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With a near capacity attendance the first finals started after the final round of qualifying on Sunday, the bump ups from the earlier finals were as follows:-

B 1/64

1st Nick Simmerson

2nd Mark Beattie

3rd Mark Pearl

4th Camden Stenhouse

A 1/64

1st Helger Lykke

2nd Matt Skinner

3rd James Crowder

4th Colin Davies

B 1/32

1st Michael Shorey

2nd Gary Gregory

3rd Max McDonnell

4th Nick Simmerson

A 1/32

1st Maxim Cook

2nd Ben Turner

3rd Jason Patey

4th Leon Morrell

B 1/16

1st Daniel Shelton

2nd Dennis Holding

3rd Mark Everitt

4th Ian Slater

A 1/16

1st Jon Spencer

2nd Jason Patey

3rd Maxim Cook

4th Jack Willetts

B 1/8

1st Scott Walker

2nd Matt Jessup

3rd Daniel Austin

4th Ben Billing

A 1/8

1st Chris Sharpe-Simkiss

2nd Maxim Cook

3rd Ben Simpson

4th Chris Smith

The 1/4 finals which were “stacked”!! Some names were familiar but some brand new! The first 1/4 final was the B side and it did not disappoint. Pole was Jon Hazelwood and his Bullitt powered Agama buggy, he was fast out of the blocks and lead the first part of the race. Mugen driver Simon Willetts was hot on his heels though and manage to take the lead just before the first pit stops, the pair would have a great on track battle for the majority of the 20min race and it was Simon who managed to take the win. Following him over the line were the 2 Tekno drivers Liam Brocklehurst and Daniel Austin, Dan having bumped from the previous final was obviously now in the groove, taking his 2nd bump into the Semi finals after a great drive. 4th after a steady race was Ashlee Owen and his HB machine.

The A 1/4 was dominated by the Agama of Lewis Jones, he led nearly every lap of the race. His Bullitt powered machine crossing the line some 8s up on 2nd placed John Holmes and his Sworkz Buggy. It was all to play for behind the Top 2 with several drivers in the mix for the bump into the Semi. The drive of the final went to young Agama driver Ben Simpson who having previously bumped came from 13th to 4th, taking the final bump spot behind the Tekno of Elliott Taylor who took a convincing 3rd.

Semi Finals time, The B side saw The Reds powered Sworkz of Boots dominate! From Buzzer to Buzzer he lead every lap, with a big lead from 2nd place Will Skidmore after 20mins. Will also hardly troubled in 2nd with his Mugen machine. Behind them it could have been anyone who got the remaining 5 bump spots to the main. The Alpha powered machine of Jack Hirst, Lee Matins Agama, Callum Niblett's Sworkz and the AE of the returning Darren Bloomfield would have a great on track battle for the next few places, Jack eventually getting the 3rd spot just over a second up from Callum in 4th, Darren following him home for 5th. An unfortunate issue for Lee saw him drop down the leader board so it was Tekno driver Mitchell Booth and young AE man Freddie Thompson who secured the remaining Bump spots to the main.

The A side had the superb Alpha powered AE of Neil Cragg on pole, he like Elliott in the previous final lead every lap and cruised home 17s up on the closest competitor, that being the BLOK powered Mugen of Joni Skidmore. A stunning drive by Jamie Clancy saw him get 3rd. The 4th spot was contested by the talented young AE driver Tommy Hall and Losi driver Dom Nunn. Dom held the position for the 1st half of the race, but Tommy managed to get ahead around the 2nd pit stop window and he held the place to cross the line in 4th. With the one stop strategy of Graham Alsop coming into play in the final minutes it was a brilliant end to the race with Graham, Mike Lewis and Dom crossing the line together and Dom getting 5th just 3 hundredths of a second ahead of Graham in 6th and with Mike 2 10ths behind him in 7th securing the last bump spot to the main.

The A-Main was not without its casualties! After Cragg and Boots dominated the semi finals they would both not finish the main! The Sworkz man Elliott after a rare mistake unfortunately didn’t make it to the start line, leaving Neil to pull out a small lead in the opening laps ahead of the following pack, however he would also return to the pits after just 6 laps! This opened up the race, Joni Skidmore took on the lead from his brother Will as the drivers entered the first lot of pit stops. It was another fine start by the Losi of Dom Nunn, he rose to 3rd but he too had an issue and had to retire. This left The AE drivers of Mike Lewis, Tommy Hall and the HB of Graham Alsop to try to catch the Mugens of the Skidmore brothers. Tommy drove an impeccable race, catching and passing Will in 2nd on a few occasions but some great overtake moves by Will saw him retake the 2nd position. Joni drove the rest of his final without drama and he came home for his second ever national win in style, Will just 7s behind him. The first brothers to ever get a 1-2 at a BRCA RallyX national event!!! Tommy Hall in his 1st ever national at this scale got 3rd, these 3 talented young drivers managing to get the lap up on the rest of the field as the 45min buzzer sounded! Michael Lewis crossed the line in 4th with Graham coming 5th. A superb drive by all the drivers, a great final to watch and we can’t wait for the next one!

Your Round 1 National Podium:

IMG 9591

It was so good to be back racing nationals after such a long time away due to the pandemic, and it was so good to see such an amazing amount of young talent go so well at this national, we anticipate an amazing year. We travel next to East Shrewsbury BRC in a months time, but with the next 3 nationals within 4 weeks of each other it’s going to be non stop action, Will we see a new champion?

Joni Skidmores National winning Mugen MBX8:

IMG 9586

For the full results summery and the current championship standings go to https://www.brca.org/8rx-results