Oulton Park Race Report - MGOC Championship 2017

2017 MG Owners' Club - Production MG Championship


 

Race Report

 

Rounds 13 and 14  -  Cadwell Park 10th September 2017

 

For the first time since 2015 the drivers travelled to the 2.19 mile Cadwell Park circuit. This picturesque circuit in Lincolnshire has a narrow track with challenging corners and significant gradient changes that demand total concentration and commitment. On a bright and breezy Autumn day, Cadwell was looking in great shape and the drivers were set for two 20 minute races that would go a long way towards determining the 2017 Overall and Class champions.    

 

Qualifying Phil Walker took his second pole position of the year in his ZR with the MGF of Mark Baker alongside him on the front row.  The ZR of Nick Golhar was on row 2 together with the MGF of Simon Kendrick whose car had been re-shelled in the three weeks since the last meeting at Snetterton. Row 3 saw the MGF of Paul Wisbey and the ZR of Alan Forster who were ahead of the ZR of newcomer Steve McDermid and the MGF of Philip Espinasse.

 

The leading Classic Class car was the MGB of Dave Amphlett but Bob van Vuuren and Chris Millard, who were both making their Cadwell debuts, were on the row behind with Marcus Holland and Bob Fisher completing the grid.

 

Round 13

The start at Cadwell is always a tense affair as the track narrows slightly at the left hand kink after the start but the entire grid got away cleanly and there were no incidents.

 

The MGF of Baker made a perfect start to take an early lead ahead of Walker with Kendrick, Golhar and Forster all nose to tail through Charlies. By the end of the opening lap Baker held a narrow lead from Walker but these two had moved 50 metres ahead of Kendrick with Forster moving ahead of Golhar into 4th place.

 

By mid race, Baker had opened up what looked like a race winning lead over Walker but Kendrick began to close the gap to the leaders and by lap 8 was right on the bumper of Walker's ZR and pushing hard to get past the MGF and mount a challenge on Baker.  Walker was by this time leading Class Z by a long way and with three laps to go decided to safeguard his own position and let Kendrick through under braking at Park.  Despite a late charge, Kendrick was unable to close the gap on Baker who went on to take an accomplished win ahead of Kendrick with Walker taking a maiden ZR win from Forster with Golhar taking 5th place after Philps was given a three second time penalty.

 

In the Classic Class race, Amphlett took an early lead from Millard with van Vuuren a couple of lengths behind in 3rd place.  Van Vuuren passed Millard on lap 2 and quickly closed in on the leader but Amphlett was defending the racing line well and by lap 6 had managed to open up a 30 metre lead and looked the likely winner but ran wide exiting Charlies on lap 7 and van Vuuren took full advantage and reeled off the remaining four laps in confident style to take the win with Amphlett holding on to third place from Millard.

 

Round 14

Baker made the best start but the ZR of Walker held the inside line into Charlies and took an early lead but spun off at the Gooseneck and he retired from the race with a brake problem leaving Walker in the lead from Golhar, Wisbey, Forster and Kendrick. Walker put in two fast laps to open up seven second lead from a hard charging Forster who had moved into 3rd place ahead of Golhar.

 

By lap five, Walker had a six second lead over Forster and looked to be heading for his second win of the day but Forster was putting in some very fast laps and gradually closed the gap on the leader.  At the start of the final lap Forster was putting Walker under tremendous pressure but with limited overtaking opportunities it looked as though Walker would hold on to the chequered flag.  There was a final twist in the tale when Walker missed a gear exiting the final corner and the two identically liveried ZR's were side by side on the run to the flag but Forster had better momentum and took the flag by the length of a bonnet after eleven laps of breathtaking racing.

 

Wisbey initially lead Class F but ran wide allowing Kendrick to take the lead on lap 4. The garish orange and black striped MGF of Kendrick held a narrow lead from Wisbey but his task was made somewhat easier when Wisbey spun off at the Gooseneck on lap 8.  Kendrick reeled off the remaining laps to take the win ahead of Espinasse who did well to hold off a recovering Wisbey.

 

In the Classic Class, Amphlett again took the early lead but van Vuuren has looking for a way through before losing a lot of time with a spin under braking at Park on lap 5. Amphlett had a commanding lead but van Vuuren didn't give up the fight and gradually closed the gap to the leader.  In the closing stages Amphlett was defending his lead well but on the final lap allowed van Vuuren to sneak through on the inside line along Park Straight to take the lead. van Vuuren held the position to the flag to take his second win of the weekend from Amphlett with Millard in 3rd place ahead of Fisher.     

 

 

STAR DRIVES:

Phil Walker – A well judged drive in Race 1 to take his first ZR win and his first MGOC win since 1998.
Alan Forster – A tremendous drive in Race 2 from 5th on the grid to take the win on the last lap.

 

 

Race Reports
Silverstone National
Castle Combe
Thruxton
Rockingham
Donington Park
Snetterton
Cadwell Park
Silverstone (International)

 

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