Sunday’s weather forecast was looking “questionable” at best, not helped by a brief shower as I left my overnight accommodation but this had ended before I reached the circuit and it’s only a little more than a 5 minute journey. During the morning it remained cloudy but later in the day the sun came back out, not quite as warm as Saturday, but importantly dry.
A “Standard Production” class popped up on the Sunday but there was only one constituent a Mazda MX5 (yet Bob Ridge-Stearn was sole member of the 2000 roadgoing class in…a Mazda MX5 – strange?) The Turners obviously had problems after Owain set the only timed run of the pairing in the 1400 Roadgoing class and Liz Pearce was alone in her Impreza in the unlimited Roadgoing class.
In the 1700 Specialist class there was a very tight battle at the top. John Palmer managed to divide the Spencers’ Stryker, all three being covered by a tenth in the end! John Loudon was only a little over a second behind the trio in 4th. Stephen Everall again ran alone in the unlimited class. Then there was the oddball Elise based class Eifion Jones taking the class from Elen Worthington’s Elise.
In the ModProds a lonely Martin Depper took the 1400s and again won the modest battle with Tony Barber, similarly alone in the 2000 class. In the more numerous 1800 Specialist split Mark Anson again finish on top, with Mark’s co-driver Matt Hillman battling with Tim Nunn over runner up spot, with the latter taking it by 4/10ths. Terry Everall won the unlimited split comfortably clear of his opponents. In Sports Libre Colin Early again triumphed and this time Carole Torkington benefited from a special SBD breakfast by overcoming Philip Young.
In the 1100 race cars a new addition was seen as Andrew Nicholls had acquired the ex-Tudor Force and he and Paul Priaulx had a tight battle for honours with Nicholls coming out on top by a little over 4/10ths. In the FF1600s battle continued and was much tighter than Saturday. HSA Chairman Bennett again triumphed but only by a second from Quest mounted Dennis Pickett and Caiado-Gillett was a little more behind the Quest man (I know he works for McLaren but he should come out and enjoy more of this?) Welcome returnees to the 1600 class were the Pillingers in their DSP IV, who’d sampled some south west events, including some hillclimbs but realized as soon as they had practiced were they felt more comfortable, free from the regrets of their earlier season outings. There was little to choose between them but dad Dave came out on top of son Scott in the Pillinger family battle.
In the 2000s there were a number of felt that a single timed run to qualify was enough (conscious of the strain of a Top 12 to come, and a weekend in Anglesey to come in the following weekend) Nonetheless Mark Smith came out on top of Steve Broughton pairing in the SBD car and despite still further improvements over Saturday’s best Steve Miles finished third. Kevin Lealan had returned (having broken a front wishbone the day before, resulting in a quick return home overnight to change the offending item) to make life more interesting in the previous Dallara only battle. Getting amongst them on not dissimilar times was the FVL pairing of Martin Webb and Tony Jarvis. In the unlimited class Stewart Robb made a change to his traction control sensors and associated wiring, took just one timed run…and set another new outright record! Terry Holmes also took just the one run to qualify. Terry Graves continued his steep learning curve, never having seen the Pembrey track before this weekend, with an opener on the same second as his previous days Run Off, but then sadly broke a gear on his second his day done. Both Napier & Porrett qualified comfortably with a couple of runs. Finally both Peter Howgate and Brian Woffenden continued their steep learning curve in the V8 class both with good improvements over the previous day’s best.
Sole entrants Roger Turner in the Classics & John Jones in the Rally Cars came next and finally the TVRs. In the Vixen class Mike Roe came out ahead of Geoff Stallard with Saturday victor Lobley demoted to bottom of the pile, but all in a tight old battle. In the bigger class Paul Edwards won by a larger margin over Matthew Oakley. I think the TVRs might have found themselves a new home for their varied location battles?
Vauxhall engines all had issues and more intense than the occasional ones present the day before). John Payne’s opener began with the car sounding far from healthy, and on less than it full complement of cylinders, it slightly got better as the run continued an his time was almost surprising in the circumstances? Kevin Lealan was next away and although clear earlier it too followed suit and he returned to his paddock slot to give the whole thing a good talking to, after a dreadful (but complete, conscious of points) run! Phil Lynch improved on his timed run times and although better than his Saturday run the Birmingham pair decided that one was enough and little if anything was to be gained from another run. Graham Porrett’s opener pushed him ahead of the Dallara and Pilbeam pack with his best of the day. Simon Keen fell into the BSC style and made sure this time a solid “banker” was his opener…..Steve Miles followed suit (now in no-mans land in midfield – well clear of those behind but catching those in front would be maybe a step too far) Then the V8s really set to work, Ross Napier finding great chunks of seconds to drop into the 91s. Steve Broughton felt his opener would be enough to save the car comfortable in 5th spot, Terry Holmes opener was less ambitious but quicker than the timed runs and Mark Smith’s opener was a few hundredths. Then it was Robb’s turn and his opener included the mother and father of a moment (when unfortunately I was looking elsewhere) but despite that he went to the top of the pile.
Second time around Kevin Lealan’s talking-to of his engine paid dividends and he finished close to his PB at the venue all was well again in that camp. Graham Porrett couldn’t improve on his second run (had he already begun his week’s Welsh holiday?) but safe in 7th. Simon Keen found more time but couldn’t do better than 10th. Steve Miles decided now was the time to pour it on and finished with a Pembrey PB and 6th spot. Then Napier found another way to enjoy Welsh holiday week and found even more time to conclude with a 91.63 and second place and the whole family was delighted. Terry Holmes was also intent on improving and also found the 91s, his best of the weekend, but remained a few tenths off Napier in 3rd. Mark Smith had thought about foregoing his second run but thought he might be capable of catching Holmes. That lasted until the first corner…..after which Mark returned from whence he’d come! Then surprisingly, having already won, Stewart Robb took another outing, but apparently it was in an effort to overcome the reaction from his first run.
1. Stewart Robb (4.0 Pilbeam-Judd KV4 MP88) 91.27s; 2. Ross Napier (3.5 Gould –DFR GR37S) 91.63s; 3. Terry Holmes (3.5 Lola-Judd CV T90/50) 91.93s; 4. Mark Smith (2.0 SBD Reynard-Duratec DB Mk 1) 92.88s; 5. Steve Broughton (2.0 SBD Reynard-Duratec DB Mk 1) 93.93s; 6. Steve Miles (2.0 Van Diemen-Duratec RF96MM) 96.80s; 7. Graham Porrett (3.5 Lola-Judd CV T90/50) 99.05s; 8. Kevin Lealan (2.0 Pilbeam-Vauxhall MP62) 99.78s; 9. Phil Lynch (2.0 Dallara-Vauxhall F301) 100.39s 10. Simon Keen (2.0 Dallara-Peugeot F302) 100.54s; 11. John Payne (2.0 Dallara-Vauxhall F301) 102.00 DNS Terry Graves (3.5 Gould-DFR GR37)
Class Results Mervyn Brake (Mazda MX5) 151.29; Owain Turner (Austin Mini) 136.27; Bob Ridge-Stearn (Mazda MX5) 144.69; Liz Pearce (Subaru Impreza) 145.89; Jim Spencer (Sylva Stryker) 114.48; Stephen Everall (Westfield SeiW) 121.28; Eifion Jones (Lotus Excel) 136.77; Martin Depper (Rover Mini Cooper) 119.71; Tony Barber (VW Golf) 121.56; Mark Anson (Westfield Megablade RR) 110.63; Terry Everall (Westfield Sports 2000) 108.87; Colin Early (Darrian T9) 120.02; Andrew Nicholls (1.1 Force HC) 106.56; Chris Bennett (1.6 Van Diemen RF89) 120.28; Dave Pillinger (1.4 DSP IV) 104.01; Mark Smith 93.14; Stewart Robb 90.30; Roger Turner (Triumph TR3A) 186.14; John Jones (Renault 11 Turbo) 140.34; Mike Roe (TVR Vixen S4) 127.85; Paul Edwards (TVR T350R) 118.21;