Donington Derby: Race Report


29th/30th May saw the CSCC enjoy its second largest event ever, with 472 entries across the weekend. Read on for a race report, photos, videos and results from every series.


This was our first live streamed event of the year, with thanks to Speedclad Ltd for their support and Digitex for their high quality filming and production. Every race was captured live, we have saved you the trouble of spooling through all 12 hours+ by linking directly to where your own series race begins, at the end of each race report. At the very least I would urge you to watch the Adams & Page Swinging 60s Group 2 race, although the Group 1 and closing stages of the Motorsports School Turbo Tin Tops races are very nearly as exciting.

Lets start with Marc Peters, who has compiled his high quality video clips from both days, sit back and enjoy the atmosphere. His video starts with the Modern series, before moving on to the Classics at 4 minutes 38.

Official club photographer, David Stallard continues to find new and exciting angles from which to capture your cars. Any photos used in this report are of course courtesy of David and they may bought direct from his website.


Saturday 29th (Modern Series): https://www.davidstallardphotography.com/ClassicSportsCarClubCSCC/CSCC-2021/CSCC-Donington-Park-29-May-21/


Sunday 30th (Classic Series):

https://www.davidstallardphotography.com/ClassicSportsCarClubCSCC/CSCC-2021/CSCC-Donington-Park-30-May-21/


Commentators Marcus Pye, paired with Dave Goddard, took charge of the mics', also voicing the live stream. They did an excellent job I'm sure you'll agree. Marcus not only submitted meeting reports for publication in Motorsport News and Autosport, but has expanded on these a little further for your reading pleasure. Vicki Cairns, representing Adams & Page Swinging Sixties also gives her valued insight, with a few comments by the CSCC office team in italics.

Scroll down to find your series report.


Marcus Pye:

Donington Derby a resounding winner!


Any club race meeting which starts with a cheery conversation with Doncaster rover Tony Sugden - the Special Saloon and GT legend - is worth writing home about. But when the sun is shining at Donington Park and an entry of 472 competitors fills MotorSport Vision’s immaculate East Midlands facility, there are few finer places on earth to exercise cars. The CSCC’s Donington Derby subscribers fell just short of the record, but the action across the 14-race programme was top drawer. How wonderful, therefore, that spectators were welcomed back to enjoy it.


Donington first hosted motorsport 90 years ago, on Whit Monday, 1931, and those of us fortunate enough to have made the pilgrimage in 1977 when builder Tom Wheatcroft reopened the venue for racing - using the more compact 1.97-mile circuit we know and love, albeit with a sightly earlier chicane - will remember a gloriously hot and sunny day at one of England’s most scenic tests of driver and machine. Racegoers were blessed with summery weather two weekends ago, and the undulating tarmac ribbon threaded between beautifully striped greenswards looked more inviting than ever, following the most challenging year in living memory for all.


Split into halves, enabling most competitors a one-day option, the racecard largely featured more modern car sets on Saturday, the Classic element taking over on Sunday.

 

First out were the Gold Arts Magnificent Sevens, hordes of Caterham's spanning several specifications, plus representatives of two local marques. A pair of low-line Suzuki Hayabusa-engined Spire RB7s (built by former racer Paul Nightingale near Chesterfield) contrasted with a Stuart Taylor Locost, originated near Mallory Park, that other great midlands motoring mecca, close to the Bosworth Field battleground.


David Watson started his Spire on pole, Tim Davis having taken the previous winners five place grid drop, but the safety car was deployed to cover marshals clearing damaged cars and debris, following a tangle on the exit of the chicane. The pit stop window opened under the caution, which is where several competitors spoiled their chances by not stopping for the mandated two minutes. Penalties for this indiscretion would become a recurring theme, indeed altered the result of this race and three others.

Jonny Pittard was first to fall, having sizzled to the front and taken the chequer in his supercharged CSR. His first win should have been a red letter day, but he was hoist by his own pétard! A premature getaway saw him penalised 30.7 seconds which left the combo eighth. His BOSS team mates were already licking their wounds, for Davis had outbraked himself into the chicane while trying to oust Colin Watson, gyrated and taken him out. “I didn’t know where to look,” said Tim despairingly. Tim was avoiding an errant mudguard on the track a moment before contact with Colin. Jon Cutmore (Spire) was accorded victory, from Caterham Superlight duo Tim Bishop and Steve Riley, the latter’s with a 190bhp Hayabusa engine. Watson’s consolation was fastest lap.

The first double-driven car, Richard and Pascal Green’s C400, finished a Class D-winning fourth. In beating son Alan to Class C and Group 1 overall honours by 0.399s, Kevin Cooper became the third of his ilk to win this year, Robert Cooper having previously scored in B. Race two finished under full-course yellows, with two cars interlocked at the chicane and Davis parked at Schwantz. Cutmore was ahead but saved by the clock as Pittard was homing in with the fiercely accelerative black and gold JPS (Jonny Pittard Special). Nick Cook/Andrew Taylor (420R), Hugh Coulter (C400) and Alan Cooper - by 0.138s from Kevin - were class winners.


You can watch video of race one here: https://youtu.be/9KuoDzcYOos?t=1065

The second, sprint race is here: https://youtu.be/9KuoDzcYOos?t=10149


Detailed results of both races are here: https://www.tsl-timing.com/file/?f=CSCC/2021/212164mg7.pdf

 

The Liquid Moly New Millennium/Cartek Motorsport Modern Classics feature was led away by Darren Fielding (BMW E46 M3 GTR), but former Castle Combe champion Russell Humphrey growled ahead in the Interceptor Racing E92 version and their tussle raged until they stopped together. Wyatt resumed ahead but couldn’t maintain Humphrey’s pace. A 63.4 second penalty dropped them to eighth. Fielding thus won by more than 25 seconds from Chris Petch (Ginetta G50) who had Modern Classics victor Miles Masarati (Porsche 964 Turbo) filling his mirrors.

Hugh Gurney (E46 M3), Gary Wardle (Seat Leon Cupra) and Mark Smith (E36 M3) claimed the minor placings. Matt Holben (TVR Tuscan) was Masarati’s runner-up despite a penalty, with Australian Dave Griffin’s Diet Coke E36 M3 - with a full complement of doors since Thruxton - a class-winning third of the Modern Classics runners.


Go straight to the live stream action here: https://youtu.be/9KuoDzcYOos?t=6796


Full results are here: https://www.tsl-timing.com/file/?f=CSCC/2021/212164mil.pdf

 

Confident that rear suspension location modifications had improved his outrageous BMW 1M V8 Coupe’s handling, Matty Evans used the four-litre monster’s grunt to outgun Humphrey and Michael Pensavalle (E46 M3) in the Verum Builders Open Series race. David Harvey’s curious Lotus 340R - a lavishly bewinged beast powered by a supercharged Rover K engine which could have been plucked from a Jules Verne tale - whooshed into third, ahead of Dominic Malone’s BMW E90 WTCC and Max and Harry Petch in the family Ginetta.

Jump to the live stream race here: https://youtu.be/9KuoDzcYOos?t=11821


Full results of the 30 minute pit stop race are here: https://www.tsl-timing.com/file/?f=CSCC/2021/212164cop.pdf

 

The Co-OrdSport Tin Tops set had Andrew Windmill's Honda Civic Type R Leggera - unlike Pizza Express’ namesake without salad in the hole in the middle - starting with a 30 second success penalty for winning at Thruxton earlier in the month. Colin and Steve Simpson’s Peugeot 206 RC carried a similar imposition for their Oulton Park victory.


Windmill set off strongly in a bid to plump out a cushion, but a safety car called when Robert Jarman’s Renault Clio 172 Cup went pop took the breeze from his sails. Andrew tried anew, leading Martin Addison (Peugeot 106 GTi) by 7.4 seconds into the pitstop cycle, with Paul Mensley (Clio) and Nigel Tongue (Peugeot 306) chasing. Drama aplenty had already unfolded. Terry Upton pulled off at Schwantz on lap 2 when his Ford Fiesta ST’s bonnet flew open and wrapped itself over the windscreen. Ironically, Tom Bell’s sister car suffered a similar fate two circuits later.

Addison was ahead of Tongue by a short head as the pit stagger unwound, with the Clios of Stephen Reynolds/John Ridgeon and Mensley squabbling over third, pursed by the Fields’ Proton Persona, James Slater/Richard Harman (Civic Type R) and Windmill. Tongue and Addison traded places until Nigel cannoned Martin into the Coppice gravel trap two laps from home. Windmill passed the scene serenely for another victory, for Tongue was not only verbally reprimanded by the MSUK Clerks for contact, but also penalised for a short stop. He fell to third behind the Simpsons’ Pug. Mensley, who also infringed pit regs, wound up fourth ahead of Jonathan Dee (Honda Integra DC2) and Eric Boulton’s Civic.

Qualifying, pit stop and race results are here: https://www.tsl-timing.com/file/?f=CSCC/2021/212164ctt.pdf


All action video coverage of the race starts here: https://youtu.be/9KuoDzcYOos?t=14693

 

The Motorsports School Turbo Tin Tops were next out and almost provided a surprise result. This was the strangest field for the series to date, with 35 cars qualifying. Junior rally driver Tom Delaney, 21, started his supercharged BMW Mini Cooper R56 from a promising P5 and, after a cautious start, calmly picked-off Adam Chamberlain (Vauxhall Astra VXR), Dan Ludlow’s stunningly-presented Rutpen Honda Civic Type R, John Hammersley (debuting his new VW Scirocco) and pole sitter Keith Issatt’s Mini Clubman, mainly under braking for Redgate. Only Carl Chambers (Peugeot Pugsport 208 GTi) remained ahead.

The top four circulated as one until Chambers made his stop, leaving Delaney, Hammersley and Ludlow out front, pursued by the unbeaten Charlie Newton-Darby (Mini Cooper S R53) with a minute to add to his stop for a double win. Once everybody had pitted, Delaney towed Hammersley and Chambers back to the front. For several laps the youngster staved them off, earning breathing space when chaser Hammersley (eager to gap Chambers, filling his mirrors) dived inside Newton-Darby and squeezed him into the Old Hairpin kitty litter.


Delaney’s chance of glory was torpedoed when a temperature sensor knocked 50bhp from the Mini’s output, leaving him unable to suppress Chambers and Hammersley. Tom finished third, but Carl took the chequer almost five seconds up the road, Hammersley visiting the Clerks, but he kept second. Scott Carruthers set fastest lap converting Chamberlain’s start to fourth, Ludlow/Emmett having been bumped to fifth for a short stop. David Cox did well to bring his VW Golf GTi home on the lead lap.


Undeterred by rolling his Fiat Abarth 595 at McLeans in testing the previous day, racing newcomer Andrew Marson rewarded Andy Dawson [of Chequered Flag Lancia Stratos rally fame] and the DAD crew who set-to and repaired it overnight by winning his class.

Laurence Ward (Cooper S R53) was Class C’s sole survivor. James Clare narrowly overcame Jon Glover in the Mr Tyre Motorsport Puma Cup division. Bill and Alexander Gary topped the Mazda RX-8s after Simon Hands punctured.


Full results: https://www.tsl-timing.com/file/?f=CSCC/2021/212164tut.pdf


The race video is well worth watching, particularly the closing laps: https://youtu.be/9KuoDzcYOos?t=18293

 

The Liqui Moly Slicks Series rounded-out Saturday’s action with a 27-strong grid, Thruxton having mustered 11 (after a series of last minute drop-outs and mechanical woes)! Poleman Kevin Jones’ Noble M12 RSR aspirations were sunk by a first corner melée in which the blue machine gyrated onto the grass and Nigel Jenkins’ Ferrari 458 Challenge’s rear bumper was dislodged, not that it slowed him much. Once the ‘airbrake’ detached he howled after Matty Evans’ BMW V8, with Darren Dowling’s TVR Sagaris and Andrew Christopher’s Ferrari 430 heading the chasing pack, in which Scot, Alastair Mowat’s remarkable VW Golf Mk1 turbo - with up to 500bhp on tap from an 1800cc Mk4 engine - ran as high as seventh, from 15th on the grid, before breaking a CV joint.

Dowling pulled off at Starkeys’ Bridge with an engine bay smoking on lap 9, whereupon marshals and Darren extinguished what became a sizeable fire. Chris Everill’s Ginetta-Chevrolet G50 had already fallen for the second time in the afternoon, joined in retirement by newcomer to racing on slick tyres Manjit Singh Johal’s BMW M3.

Evans and Jenkins were split by early stopper Christopher mid-race, but the yellow Ferrari passed the black one and homed in on the leading BMW. There was an unfortunate moment when leader Evans, repelling the shadowing Jenkins, was snagged by a back-marker at Redgate but Matty held on to take the chequered flag. A pit penalty reversed the order though, advantaging Nigel, with Christopher and Peter Challis (Arrowpak Porsche 997 GT3 Cup) third and fourth a lap down.

Results, including the all important pit stop times are here: https://www.tsl-timing.com/file/?f=CSCC/2021/212164sli.pdf


The race video, full of special cars is here: https://youtu.be/9KuoDzcYOos?t=21737

 

Sunday dawned even warmer than Saturday as competitors from five more sets prepared to do battle. Reflecting much effort behind the scenes the JMC Racing-supported Special Saloons & Modsports numbers had grown since Thruxton, with several cars repaired and Joe Ward in the almost invincible ex-Gerry Marshall Dealer Team Vauxhall Firenza V8 ‘Baby Bertha’ joining the fray. Donington GT championship fans will recall the fastest Super Saloon of the mid-1970s’ being raced by Paul Haywood-Halfpenny and Phil Barak in subsequent years. And where else can you see a Chevrolet-powered Morris Minor compete against a Porsche 934?

Guests from Bernie Chodosh’s V8s - compatible on all fronts - swelled the grid to a splendid 38 for the first leg of a triple-banger. A spectacle which will live on in the memory of spectators as the colourful field filled the plunge through Holly Wood and the Craner Curves to the Old Hairpin, a 90mph corner in the best handling among them. Among the debutants from both sides of the equation were Kevin Cooper’s ex-Joe Murch/Gail Woodworth Datsun 240Z with IMSA and TransAm history in the 1980s and Derek Drinkwater and Travis Paterson’s square-cut NASCAR Buick Regal in Bobby Allison’s Miller beer livery.

Andy Southcott threw down the gauntlet with a 1m13.601s (96.80mph) pole lap in his 2.3-litre Vauxhall-motivated space frame MG Lenham Midget clone. Thruxton winner Wayne Crabtree was closest on 1m15.128 in Dave Abrahams’ AbeSpeed Ford RS200, with its staccato-toned Subaru flat-four turbo motor, followed by Cypriot Pantelis ‘Laki’ Christoforou in his immaculate 2.6-litre Millington-engined Ford Escort Mk2.

Rod Birley (BMW E36 M3), Enfield-based Jamaican Clive Anderson (Prism Racing 5.1-litre BMW E30 turbo) and Malcolm Harding (2.6 Smith & Jones-powered Escort Mk2) were next up. Matt Holben (ex-Ian Flux TVR Tuscan Challenge) was best of the Bernie’s V8s, with Jack Gadd (2.6 SHP Escort-Millington), Martin Reynolds (2.6 Escort-Holbay Mk2) and Chris Ridge (TVR Tuscan-Chevrolet) completing the top 10.

Southcott spinning at Robert’s, after Crabtree had rounded him audaciously at Redgate, opened the door for Wayne to win the opening stanza by 3.416s from Anderson. Christoforou and Holben were next back, followed by Ward, Birley and Reynolds. In mid-pack, where wave upon wave of hairy cars - including Richard Morris’ interesting transverse Vauxhall-powered spaceframe Mini - entertained onlookers, the TVRs of Ridge, Matt Smith (‘Benetton’ Chimaera coupé), Clive Letherby and Aaron Noyce (Tuscans) finished together.


From a partially-reversed grid Anderson led race two until a safety car was deployed, Ian Hall (in Jim Seward’s Triumph TR7 V8) having conked-out on the edge of the track at Schwantz. Also there were Chris Scott’s ‘Cavalier-Volvo turbo,’ and Neil Duke’s Anglia-BDG, having contacted a TVR, and when Southcott spun in avoidance of Hall’s stationary car, adding to the intensity of the situation for marshals, the race was red-flagged.


The unfortunate saga that followed is chronicled elsewhere, but suffice to say that mistaken identity in the flurry of observers’ reports resulted in erstwhile leader Anderson’s ochre BMW - back on the grid, two-thirds of the way down, the pace car having not picked it up - being ushered into the pitlane. Crabtree completed a hat-trick at the restart, but victory was hollow. Ward, Harding and Christoforou chased him, clear of Birley and Holben, then the Reynolds, Gadd and Paxman Escorts.

The CSCC has issued a statement, passing on a sincere apology from Race Control to Clive Anderson and his team, for the mistake made in race 2.

Ward led the finale away, with Harding in pursuit, but Crabtree quickly bustled to the front, and Christoforou engaged in an energetic dice with Harding’s fat-arched Escort. Southcott made tremendous progress from the back, coming round 12th at the end of the opening lap. Sixth within three, he sliced past Birley and Christoforou on successive tours and set off after the podium trio. Gone by this stage was Stuart Entwistle who whacked the barrier at Holly Wood, dismantling his Chevrolet Monte Carlo. Tom Carey’s Honda CRX-BDG arrived at the pits in a smoky haze, then gearbox failure halted Crabtree, throwing the race wide open.

Harding led Southcott, who grabbed the lead into Redgate on lap 8. Malcolm retaliated, but Andy rattled down the inside into the chicane, contact damaging both cars. Harding, with tracking awry, shot back past as Southcott pulled the wounded Midget up, and immediately had Christoforou and the resurgent Ward to contend with. Sensing a whiff of victory, Joe thundered into second on lap 10 and the charismatic Castrol-liveried cars slugged it out to the finish. The Escort tripped the timing beam 0.166s clear, Laki enjoying a grandstand view of their full-blooded dice. Birley and Holben finished fifth and sixth, with Anderson a battling seventh (and 1st in class, deservedly winning a bottle of Pol Roger, courtesy of JMC Racing, as did all other race 3 class winners). Clive’s best lap was quicker than those of the three drivers ahead of him, but behind him Reynolds and Gadd set theirs on the final lap.

Full results are here: https://www.tsl-timing.com/file/?f=CSCC/2021/212164mod.pdf


With three races on the day there is plenty of racing to watch: Race 1 - https://youtu.be/SPWysectgsA?t=618

Race 2 - https://youtu.be/SPWysectgsA?t=10354

Race 3 - https://youtu.be/SPWysectgsA?t=19053

 

The Mintex Classic K hour was dominated by soloist Jamie Boot in his wasabi green TVR Griffith. Nobody saw the Hope Valley man for dust as well-tamed Ford V8 power told. As at Thruxton, the Marcos-Volvo 1800GT of Allen Tice/Chris Conoley was second over the line, but they and extrovert Mini Cooper S men Tom Bell/Joe Ferguson were penalised, bringing Mel Taylor/Ben Cater (Lotus Elan S1) up to P2. Oliver and Martin Rumble (Morgan +8) and Phil Bullen-Brown were next back, ahead of Nigel Winchester giving his beautifully-restored 4.2-litre AC Cobra - in a striking ’62 Nassau-inspired tribute livery - a run-out. Nigel survived a hairy spin having “forgotten I wasn’t in my Ginetta G4!”

Click here for results: https://www.tsl-timing.com/file/?f=CSCC/2021/212164cks.pdf


60 minutes of Dunlop-shod sliding can be watched here: https://youtu.be/SPWysectgsA?t=5932

 

Leaving perhaps the best to almost last in this round up, were the two Adams & Page Swinging Sixties races. Group 2 actually had the 'smallest' grid of the weekend at 28 cars and yet provided one of the best fights for the lead.


Pitstop penalties post-race, defined the results of four mini-enduros, including the Adams & Page Swinging Sixties Group 2 contest, as great a race as your scribe has witnessed in years. Simeon Chodosh was the star of the show, keeping his hulking 5.7-litre Chevrolet Corvette - a 1958 car with disc brakes in place of its original drums - ahead of Steve Hodges’ zippy Lotus 7 in a brilliant catchweight contest.

What a pity that rejoining from the pits seven seconds too soon negated Chodosh’s work. Hodges was penalised similarly, but having wowed Digitex TV’s live stream audience they deserved better than eighth and ninth.

The lead group embroiled Malcolm Johnson’s yellow Lotus Europa, Stephen Pickering and Simon James’ gruff Sunbeam Tigers, Ben Cater starting Mel Taylor’s Elan and Dean Halsey’s Brock Racing Enterprises-liveried Datsun 240Z at its frenetic height.

Offs at the Esses and Coppice punctuated Johnson’s feisty race. Malcolm recovered well to be third past the post, thus was flabbergasted to be declared winner from Halsey. The other 240Z was the impressive Spike Anderson Samuri of welcome club debutant Robert Crofton. The banker, running on a Taster ticket, kept ‘Big Sam’ in the hunt throughout, timed his stop perfectly, and was rewarded with fourth between Pickering and Stephen Bond’s Lotus Elan 26R.


The Group 1 fight started with a Strictly Come Dancing routine in which Mini drivers Ralph Budd, Tom Bell, Phil Bullen-Brown, Clive Tonge and Chris Watkinson made Sir Alec Issigonis’ masterpieces float as if barely in contact with the surface. Bell in particular retrieved his Cooper S from extraordinary angles as he and Budd traded places, sometimes more than once a lap. After the stops Bell’s partner Joe Ferguson was clear of Charlie Budd in the 1380cc car. Tom Pead ran them closest in his orange BMW 1600Ti, the last car to cover the full distance.

CSCC Committee Member Vicki Cairns gave us her detailed insight on the Adams & Page Swinging Sixties action:

What a day! Sunshine and two excellent races by the Swinging Sixties drivers - no Safety Cars or Red Flags, just really close racing. If anyone has not watched the live-stream at the time, then they must catch up now! Well done the CSCC for choosing a company which gave excellent coverage, it was probably the best racing in a long time. I watched the live-streaming at home and I saw more of the race than I would have from the pit-wall.


Group 1: Qualifying


Donington is always a popular track and qualifying for Group1 boasted a capacity 40 cars, with Group 2 slightly fewer at 28. Several cars failed in qualifying, perhaps due to the unusually hot weather. Charles Marriott’s engine suffered a failed timing belt, causing his withdrawal. Ian Hulett was only able to complete 3 laps of qualifying, before problems surfaced. He then had even worse luck in the race, as he had to pull up on the first lap.

The first 5 places were taken by Minis. On pole position was the Mini of Budd & Budd. Then came Bell & Ferguson, followed by Bullen-Brown. The first non-Mini was the 6th position MGA of father-and-son team, Jack and Steve Smith. It was looking as if a good race was in store, because the first three Minis were separated by half-a-second. Fourth on the grid was Watkinson, who had a 30-second Winner’s Penalty from his win at Oulton Park. The Safety car was on track for just 2 laps in the middle of the session.


Best wishes to Simon Page who was not racing due to a damaged hand, but was helping various drivers who had car problems after Qualifying.

Group 1: The Race


From “lights-out”, there were incidents, with Trevor Peters on the grass at Redgate. Luckily he managed to avoid spinning the car, unlike at Thruxton. He saved his spin for later in the race!!! It was quite a sight to see the 5 Minis at the front of the field achieving the most extreme angles, especially going through the Kraner Curves and the Old Hairpin. Steve Smith (MGA) was keeping up with the Minis, but sadly had to retire after 11 laps. The following lap Watkinson also retired with a very smoky engine.


There were lots of duels taking place further down the field. Brent Fowler (Frog-Eye Sprite, which contrary to the commentators’ suggestion is not Tim Cairns’ car!) had several laps tussling with the Ford Anglia of Alex Williams. Longdon & Longdon (Mini Cooper S), Doyle & Stowe (MGA) and Fraser & Fraser (Ford Lotus Cortina) finished 2 seconds apart.

There were several good drives which should be mentioned: Tony Hunting (Mini) started in 24th position and finished in 8th. Kym Bradshaw (MG Midget) started in 27th place and achieved 12th place.

Short pit-stops (less than the current regulation time of 2 minutes in the pit-lane) resulted in penalties for 5 drivers. These penalties affected the final result.

The final result of the Group 1 race was a win for Bell & Ferguson by 17 seconds from Budd & Budd with Tom Pead (BMW 1600) a further 18 seconds behind them.


Group 2: Qualifying


As soon as Qualifying began it was clear that Mark Campbell (TR5) was going well, and his fastest lap was on lap 3. That lap put him on provisional pole position by over 1 second. This time remained the fastest until Simeon Chodosh, in the mighty 5.7 litre Chevrolet Corvette, eclipsed it by 0.2 second. Unfortunately this time was deleted due to exceeding track limits !! This relegated him to 4th position on the grid, although it boded well for the Race.

So, the front of the Grid ended up: Pole Position: Campbell, followed by Robert Crofton (Datsun 240Z) in second place, the always-quick Malcolm Johnson (Lotus Europa 1700cc) in third, with Simeon Chodosh fourth.

Jon Wolfe & Dave Thompson were racing for the first time this season in the TVR Tuscan and they put the car in 6th place on the grid. But after 6 laps of the race the new engine failed. As always, Jon & Dave remained very positive and they went on to take a Class win in the TVR Grantura in the Classic K race

Group 2: The Race

This race turned out to be one of the most exciting (and well-driven) races that I have been privileged to see ! The live-streaming and commentating coverage was first class. I cannot hope to do justice to the race….but, here goes.


The excitement began on the first lap, though I doubt that Mark Campbell would agree with this description, because he had to retire before the end of the first lap. This meant that, at the end of the first lap, the order was Chodosh, very closely followed by Johnson (Lotus Europa), then Jon Crayston (Lotus Elan), Cater & Taylor (Lotus Elan), Stephen Pickering (Sunbeam Tiger), Simon James (Sunbeam Tiger), Robert Crofton (Datsun 240Z) and, a bit further back, Steve Hodges (Lotus 7) (more of him later).

After Lap 4, Cater & Taylor had dropped away, leaving Chodosh, Pickering, James, Halsey, Hodges, Johnson, Crayston and Crofton all “at it hammer and tongs” all within 5 seconds! This then set the seal for an “edge of the seat” race to the chequered flag.

On Lap 6, Pickering got past Chodosh to take the lead, which he held until lap 17, when he took his pit-stop. During that time, Hodges had climbed to 3rd place behind Chodosh, where he remained (never more than a second behind) for 5 laps (intriguing stuff, with the Lotus 7 climbing all over the back of the huge Corvette through the corners, only to be left standing on each straight section!). These two “squabbling” cars, enabled Crayston and Cater & Taylor to stay in touch. I was willing Hodges to make his pit-stop and leave the “squabble” with Chodosh and maybe to rejoin in a situation where he could be released to make up time to “pass” Chodosh, when he made his pit-stop. As it happened, they made their pit-stop on the same lap, meaning, that, when they came out of the pits, the “squabble” started all over again!

At the end of Lap 20, when all pit-stops had been completed and the race had settled down, the order was Chodosh, with his heels being snapped at by Hodges, followed by Halsey, then Johnson. From this moment onwards, these 4 cars remained in close company, swapping places, until the chequered flag, when the order was Chodosh, Hodges, Johnson & Halsey who had a “moment at the last chicane and was lucky to escape from the gravel-trap. These cars were all covered by 3.5 seconds at the line, after 27 laps – an excellent race by all drivers.

Halsey’s escape from the gravel trap, without losing a place, was very lucky, as turned out, because the race result was changed, when Chodosh & Hodges were awarded 30-second penalties for short pit-stopping during the race. This left Johnson as the Race winner, with Halsey in second place and Pickering who had been steadily catching the front group of four throughout the second half of the race, in 3rd position. Chodosh and Hodges ended up 6th & 7th respectively.

A brilliant race between an eclectic mix of very different cars, which was a credit to the drivers who, as far as I could see, never touched throughout the whole race.


I hope I have done justice to this superb race! Now, please go and watch the video if you have not done so!

Group 1 race is here: https://youtu.be/SPWysectgsA?t=15945


Group 2 race is here: https://youtu.be/SPWysectgsA?t=12916


Full results of both groups are in this one document: https://www.tsl-timing.com/file/?f=CSCC/2021/212164c60.pdf

 

Marcus Pye finishes his report with a quick overview of the Advantage Motorsport Future Classics race.


Mark Chilton outran the snarling TVR Tuscans of Stuart Daburn (ex-Steve Guglielmi) and Aston and Tony Blake to win the Future Classics 80's group curtain closer, but discovering that the Japanese monster’s engine block had cracked took the shine off it. Daburn was demoted to fourth for a mis-timed pit stop, being classified between the rumbling Morgans of the Pratts and Bill Lancashire and son Howard, hindered by the extra 30 seconds stationary imposed for Bill’s Thruxton victory. Wife and husband Louise and Jason Kennedy finished sixth in the Pagan Sport Skyline. MARCUS PYE

First overall for the 1970's group was Geoff Beale in his always immaculate Sunbeam Lotus. The chase between the top three became ever closer as the clock ticked down, but Chilton just had enough in hand by the end, despite his sickly car. he reported that fluid had sprayed onto the screen at an early stage, saying much about the toughness of the legendary straight six that it hung together until the chequered flag.

Those all important results are here: https://www.tsl-timing.com/file/?f=CSCC/2021/212164fuc.pdf


Your race, filmed live is here: https://youtu.be/SPWysectgsA?t=20737

 

We would like to finish this report with a thank you to our many volunteers, from the CSCC Office. Donington has a longer day available to us than at most circuits, something we take advantage of in order to fit in every series. Whilst the £10 from the club and the breakfast paid for by donations from the drivers appears to be a welcome gesture, we are grateful they choose to work these long hours for us.


Three individuals deserve a special mention from this weekend. When our Safety Car Observer, Joyce George fell ill (but was thankfully better by Tuesday) on Saturday night we needed to find a replacement on Sunday morning to sit alongside driver, Phil Woods. The observer is important in receiving the instructions from race control, responding immediately and where necessary indicating to drivers to pass. Step forward our heroes: Andy Yeomans, who having raced with us the day before in the Gold Arts Magnificent Sevens was looking forward to a relaxing day off at home. He dropped everything to come and help us, but had to leave before the day finished. Next to volunteer for the late shift was Chris Blewett, long term CSCC racer and Committee member. Not only did this mean Chris had to stay until the end of the day, it also meant his wife, Jane Blewett, who had already helped us in race administration since the start of the day, had to stay too. It was only later that Chris admitted he had been known to feel queasy as a high speed passenger! He toughed it out however and the Safety Car remained unblemished!

Thank you to all three of you, it was a vital role you played towards the success of the meeting.