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BriSCA F2 Stock Cars 2003 World Championship - Taunton - Sunday 14 September 2003

Pictures by Jason Cooper, reporting by Alan Parkinson

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BriSCA F2 Stock Cars - 2L Saloon Stock Cars - Taunton - Sunday 14 September 2003

Pictures by Jason Cooper, reporting by Alan Parkinson

BriSCA F2 Stock Cars

Heat one featured an early pile up on the west bend that accounted for Dave Ruby 731 and Graham Harding 827. John Vickery 771 led the field at this point, although Tim Farrell 667 had made it through to sixth at the restart. There was no holding the star grade driver back as he quickly made his way through to the front, forcing his way past Geoff Coleman 239 as he did so. Bernie Serpell 612 went in hard by the pit gate, Vickery clipping the dead car a couple of laps later. Farrell took the win from Coleman, whilst Justin Fisher 315 held off Gordon Moodie 79 for third.
Early leader of heat two was Andy Sobey 550 before a caution period was called to remove the stranded Dan Holloway 940 from the track. Sobey led the re start, but Mark Mills quickly pressurised him into going wide, Chad Harris 29 and Byrn Tootall 600 following through in their battle for second and third. That was how they finished the race with Colin Smith 719 taking an excellent fourth from Pete Rice 890.

Colin Eardley 589 and Clair Maynard 251 disputed the lead in heat three as further back Ian Thompson junior 901 and Paul Broatch 725 moved quickly through the pack. Bryn Thomas 900 and Neil Hooper 676 did likewise which only served to slow their progress to the front. Roy Goodman 800 was closing nicely in fourth when a pit bend pile up suddenly saw the veteran elevated to first place, the stadium erupting at this point. Goodman led the resultant rolling lap at the re start, whilst Thompson appeared to pass a back marker under yellows for which he was to receive the black cross. Goodman held onto second place at the line despite the closing presence of Broatch in his mirror, whilst Thompson, although receiving the chequered flag knew straight away that the victory wasn’t his, and so it was a clearly delighted Goodman that took his first win at Smeatharpe for many a long year, the whole crowd rising to salute one of the sports best loved characters, on such a fitting occasion.

The build up to the F2 World Final was exemplary, it had individual driver introductions, a grid walk and talk by Steve Linfield, two magical rollings laps, … and then it all went horribly wrong. Barry Goldin 401 from his pole position seemed to accelerate away going into turn three, the second row following, the green flag was at no time shown, so that by the time the lead cars had passed the starter they had realised that the race wasn’t on, unfortunately the cars in the middle of the pack had no sight or sound that this was the case and they flew into the first bend lifting stationary cars up in the air and on top of each other. Chris Roots 677, James Thackra 324, and Stuart Kelly 339 appeared to take the brunt of it, although a fair few cars sustained damage, including the pole sitters Bill Batten 167 and Goldin. As the race had not been officially started the drivers were allowed to take their cars off the track in order to get them ready for the delayed race that was moved further down the race order.

Once lined up again, and with all cars present and correct the order of “Gentlemen start your engines” was given to the drivers. Another painstakingly slow rolling lap proceeded a much better start and it was Goldin who led the field into turn one, with Mike James 717 collecting the Dutch hope Willie Peters H24, delaying the Cornishman somewhat. The race settled down to find Goldin leading from Batten, with Thackra in third. The Scottish pair of Stuart Kelly and reigning World Champion Chris Burgoyne 647 were the first major challengers to come to grief, and with both cars sat up on top of the back straight fence a yellow flag was called for. Goldin led the restart from Batten once more, although the veteran was never close enough to land a decisive challenge at that point. The race continued until Chris Roots went into the pit bend wall very hard bringing out the yellow flags once more. Goldin followed his familiar pattern on the rolling lap, but this time Batten appeared to miss the start, allowing Thackra the opportunity to hit Batten into the pit bend corner, but he could not shift him. Goldin was looking comfortable in first place, save for a couple of challenges from a back marking James Waterfall 290, who for good measure also delayed Batten somewhat. It was Waterfall’s car, his engine appeared to let go with the lap boards out, that if anything gave Goldin his first real test, the oil on the track causing a few anxious moments for the Bolton based driver. However it was soon clear that Batten and Thackra were struggling too, and it was a very happy Barry Goldin that had finally landed the most coveted prize in BriSCA F2 Stock car racing “the championship of the world”. Batten came home second, with Thackra an equal distance behind in third, Dave Luscombe 642 completing the top four. Goldin was clearly delighted to take the title after being the nearly man for so many years, whilst Batten was magnanimous in defeat, and Thackra was just so pleased to have completed the race distance on an unfamiliar track to come home in third place. The large crowd duly gave their respect to the podium finishers sweltering in the hot September sunshine, and at the same time welcoming Barry Goldin into the elite group of drivers that have the right to say that they have been BriSCA F2 stock car world champions.

Consolation one saw Dan Holloway 940 continue his good weekend form by taking the victory from Chris Mitchell 219, with Roger Mitchell 905 home in third.
Consolation two saw Denver Gratton 17 leading for a time before Mike Marr 461 came through to take up the running. Mike James was taking no prisoners in this one, but even he couldn’t catch the flying midlander.

A frantic final was brought to a halt early on as Alan Canham 351 continued his run of bad luck for the afternoon by rolling over on to the infield. Simon Walker 781 was by now out at the front, and very impressive he looked too. Further back a magnificent battle between James and Neil Hooper 676 saw the Cornishman spin out of contention, allowing Tim Farrell to set off after the leaders. Chad Harris 29 was ever so slowly closing on Walker, but he ran out of laps, the Leicestershire based driver taking the victory, and with it the magnificent Lipson Vale garage and van hire trophy, along with the annual Alan Benson trophy.
A reduced number of cars competed in the Grand National, but all the same

it was very entertaining with Broatch dispatching both Luscombe and James towards the west bend fence. This allowed Ian Chalkley 469 to set off after early leader Matthew Deeble 530 and relieve him of the lead. Luscombe and James finally got past Broatch again, and it was Luscombe who set off after Chalkley but to no avail. Gordon Moodie came home fourth, right on the tail of James.

RESULTS
F2

H1 667, 239, 315, 79, 511, 664, 71, 806, 917, 150
H2 88, 29, 600, 719, 890, 606, 905, 111, 815, 189
H3 800, 725, 901, 900, 676, 607, 684, 903, 663, 509
WF 401, 167, 324, 642, 103, 721, 170, 718, 998, 393
C1 940, 219, 905, 351, 251, 744, 111, 560, 321, 70
C2 461, 717, 469, 781, 154, 128, 684, 525, 17, 38
FL 781, 29, 667, 393, 88, 79, 901, 676, 642, 239
GN 469, 642, 717, 79, 111, 677, 725, 251, 14, 663

SALOONS
NCH 677, 17, 001, 654, 382, 720, 68, 161, 401, 511
H1 17, 141, 654, 402, 677, 720, 84, 607, 625, 807
H2 001, 382, 401, 114, 144, 120, 470, 7, 425
FL 001, 720, 382, 402, 401, 114, 104, 84, 654, 625






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