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Castle Combe race report

By Rod Birley

The fast and undulating Castle Combe circuit witnessed another twist in the Quaife Intermarque 2013 season. The drama started just as the cars ventured out onto the circuit for qualifying, as three hot air balloons appeared over the horizon. Luckily the wind direction changed, so the unexpected visitors drifted away in another direction.

Intermarque With Matt Simpson and Chris Brockhurst lining up on the front row of the grid, everyone was predicting it would be these two fighting for the win. However, it did not turn out that way. Firstly, Malcolm Blackman made a storming start to appear in second position after Jeff Simpson and Brockhurst ran very close, and a bit wide, at Quarry Corner. On lap two Malcolm had a grassy moment at Bobbies, which ultimately led to his retirement with overheating, due to grass in the radiator. Meanwhile Brockhurst reasserted himself in second, which became first when Matt Simpson had a lurid spin at Camp Corner due to a broken stub axle. Jeff Simpson upheld family honour in second place, until suddenly the No.89 Tigra pulled off with ignition failure after the ECU came loose. Exit the two championship contenders.

Now the lead battle intensified as Jeff Simpson had local heroes Russell Humphrey and Keith White right on his tail. Despite their best efforts, the senior Simpson man held on, with Russell and Keith less than two seconds adrift. A fine fourth was Lewis Smith in his father's Tigra, with Mark Fuller holding off Luke Armiger and Chris Ayling. Simon Smith had been in front of this group, until his fuel pressure took a dive and he slipped back. Malcolm Harding got the better of Ross Loram. Baz Johnson had a lengthy spin, but still brought his car home albeit two laps down.

Intermarque Yet again position 8 was drawn out of the hat, so Simon Smith took pole for race two. Whilst the first three rows got away cleanly, mayhem ensued further back. As usual opinions differed as to exactly what happened. Suffice to say there was much damaged fibreglass, and Baz Johnson, Malcolm Blackman and Russell Humphrey took no further part. With the red flags flying, the ones that limped back to the pit lane were given five minutes to effect temporary repairs. With hefty use of tank tape, Matt Simpson, Chris Brockhurst and Malcolm Harding all reappeared just in time.

On the re-start Simon Smith led after lap one, but Lewis Smith squeezed through on lap two. Matt Simpson was making stunning progress through the depleted field, and by lap four he emerged in the lead. Brockhurst took a bit longer to thread his way through, but he never gave up the pursuit. Lewis Smith looked comfortable in third until he suddenly ran out of fuel, whilst his uncle Simon had already retired with fuel pump issues.

Intermarque Jeff Simpson and Keith White were never far apart, but again the red BMW was another retiree after a tyre deformed. Joining the list of DNFs was Ross Loram, with brake issues, and Luke Armiger with a faulty lamda sensor. So into fourth place, and receiving the driver of the day award, came Chris Ayling. His flambouyant sideways style through the corners, earning much praise. Mark Fuller had another good points haul in fifth, with Philip Young getting his best result of the year in sixth.

The four Avon tyre awards went to Russell Humphrey, Luke Armiger, Mark Fuller and Chris Ayling.

So with just two rounds to go on November 3rd at Brands Hatch, the championship battle is still close. Matt leads Chris by ten points.

Next Race Meeting:

23rd September 2017
Brands Hatch (TinTops and Intermarque)

24th September 2017
Brands Hatch (QMS)

Latest Galleries:

Latest gallery Quaife Modified Saloons with Cannons TinTops,
10th September 2017

Latest gallery Scrapco Avon Intermarque,
3rd September 2017

Latest gallery Quaife Cannons TinTops,
2nd September 2017

Last Race Results

Quaife Modified Saloons:

1. Rod Birley
2. Malcolm Wise
3. Paul Adams
See full results

Quaife / Cannons TinTops:

1. Dan Fisher
2. Rod Birley
3. Bob Hosier
See full results

Scrapco / Avon Intermarque:

1. Lewis Smith
2. Malcolm Blackman
3. Keith White
See full results

2017 Championship Leaders:

Quaife Modified Saloons:

Rod Birley
See full standings

Quaife / Cannons TinTops:

Dan Fisher
See full standings

Scrapco / Avon Intermarque:

Malcolm Blackman See full standings