Saturday morning initially started out fresh and sunny here at Southport, but as practice drew to a close more overcast weather has moved in. There is only the slightest threat of rain and at the moment the forecast is dry – however its unseasonably cool and only the bravest of competitors are in short trousers.
Conditions and practice….
“Cautious” is a good word for how many drivers approached this morning’s first 2wd qualifying session. In the warm and sunny conditions, practice had been trouble free – but those conditions had now changed for dull and cool. Ben Smith, Paul Crompton and Neil Cragg were the pace setters in practice based on their fastest individual laps – with Smith putting in the fastest overall time.
2022 BRCA 1/10th Offroad National Championships
Round 2 – Southport – 21/22 May 2022
2wd Qualifying Round 1
As mentioned, most drivers approached round 1 cautiously. The track was still loose in places, especially coming onto the straight. A common opinion made as drivers queued to get up onto the drivers stand was that a slow lap was better than a rapid one which lead to a crash on the dreaded back section.
The first sign of A Final pace came from heat 10 of 12. Edward Callan and Jamie Hall the first drivers to get into the 21 second laptime bracket. Callan having a clean run, Hall having a single mistake near the end of the heat. The target time now set at 14/316.29
In heat 11, Lee Martin was the only driver to go faster than Callan, by only 2 seconds. Second in heat Ben Pugh going 4th behind Hall. Lee had a model of consistency type run with his fastest lap and average laptime very close. But he didn’t display the outright pace of Callan. This gave us a hint that the Round 1 TQ was anything but settled.
Heat 12 did not disappoint. Initially, Neil Cragg and Paul Crompton were fighting it out for the lead of the heat. Crompton briefly leading at the race midpoint before an error on the back section gave Cragg breathing room. Luke Holdsworth took up where Crompton faultered, but he was not able to catch Cragg who was now settled in and putting on a titanic display of pace. He went on to win the race and take TQ in round with a time some 9 seconds quicker than previous heat winner Lee Martin. Holdsworth second, Crompton recovering to third.
Overall 2wd top 10 after round 1