Oulton Park Race Report - MGOC Championship 2017

2017 MG Owners' Club - Production MG Championship


 

 

RACE REPORT

 

Rounds 11 and 12:  Snetterton 19th August  

 

With the season now in a crucial stage, the drivers headed up the A11 into Norfolk for a two day BARC organised meeting where the MGOC cars were on the supporting programme for 24 Hour Citroen 2CV race.

 

The races were held on the 1.98 mile long 200 circuit and with 24 cars on the grid and all of the leading drivers entered, the results of this meeting would go a long way towards determining the end of season championship positions.

 

Qualifying

This took place on a dry track early on the Saturday morning. Pole position was taken by the ZR160 of Dave Mellor with Alan Forster alongside him on the front row.  Row 2 was taken by the ZR's of Steve Williams and 1992 MGOC champion Mick Weidner. Row 3 was occupied by the ZR of Stuart Philps and the MGF of Simon Kendrick who was the leading Class F car.

 

The leading Classic Class car was the MGB of Chris Pollard who was just .05 secs ahead of Jim Baynam. Dave Amphlett was 3rd in class ahead of William van Vuuren and Bob Fisher.

 

Round 11

The field got away cleanly with the ZR of Mellor taking the lead ahead of Weidner who had a great start to get past Foster. Kendrick briefly moved up to 3rd place but was re-passed by Forster and Williams at the first corner. Philps also made a good start and demoted Kendrick with a well worked move around the outside at the Hairpin. By the end of a frantic opening lap, Mellor lead by a few lengths from Forster with Weidner several lengths ahead of Williams with Walker 5th place followed by Philps and the MGF of Kendrick. For the next few laps the positions remained static but Nick Golhar who started in 9th place on the grid was gradually moving through the field and was up to 6th place by lap 4 and having a battle with the MGF of Mark Baker.  

 

Mellor was driving well at the head of the field and was extending his lead over Forster by a few lengths every lap and went on to take his 6th win of the season with Forster in 2nd place after getting past Weidner at the Esses on lap 2. Weidner took an excellent 3rd place on his return to the championship with Williams taking 4th place.

 

Kendrick lead Class F from light to flag and took his ninth win of the season but Baker never gave up the fight and took 2nd place and took the extra point for fastest lap.  Plotnek took 3rd place ahead of Wisbey Espinasse and Togneri.

  

In the Classic Class A, Pollard made a perfect start to lead Baynam into Riches but the field closed up around the Hairpin and with Pollard boxed in Baynam took the inside line to avoid the traffic and carried more speed onto the Bentley Straight to take the lead under braking for the Esses.  Pollard found himself embroiled in a sometimes rather frantic battle with the ZR160 of newcomer Steve McDermid allowing Baynam to extend his lead.  Over the final laps, Pollard closed in on Baynam but a spin on the last lap gave Baynam a clear run to the chequered flag.  Pollard recovered well to take 2nd place and set a new lap record with van Vuuren taking 3rd place ahead of Fisher.

 

Round 12

Black clouds came in after the lunch break but the track stayed dry for the second race of the day. When the red lights went out, Mellor got away cleanly but Williams who was alongside him on the front row sat on the grid with the front wheels spinning allowing Forster and the fast starting MGF of Kendrick to pull alongside making it four cars abreast as the cars passed under the start line gantry.  The gaps closed and heavy contact was made resulting in the race being red flagged.

 

After a short delay, the race was re-started with Kendrick, Williams, Lawton and Plotnek missing from the restart.

 

Mellor made another perfect start and lead the field into Riches but Philps had moved up from row 4 to move into 2nd place ahead of Weidner with Golhar in 4th place ahead of Bhambra who had moved up from row 8.  Mellor quickly established what looked like race winning lead but the battle for 2nd place continued with Philps holding the narrowest of leads from Weidner who eventually moved into 2nd place on lap 5.  Weidner then began to close the gap on the leader but the race was terminated after 8 laps with Mellor taking the win by 0.96 secs from the hard charging Weidner who impressed in his first MGOC drive for a number of years and had the consolation of taking the point for fastest lap. Philps took a hard earned 3rd place ahead of Nick Golhar with Maninder Golhar taking an excellent 5th place.

 

With Kendrick and Plotnek missing from the grid, the way was clear for 2104 MGOC champion Baker to take advantage and he duly dominated the Class F race taking the win by ten seconds from Espinasse with Wisbey in 3rd place.

 

In the Classic Class, Pollard initially lead the race but lost time exiting Murray's chicane on lap 4 allowing Baynam to close the gap along the pit straight and take the lead under braking into Riches. Baynam had a clear track ahead of him and went on to take his second win of the day ahead of Pollard, van Vuuren and Fisher.

 

 

STAR DRIVES:

Mick Weidner – two podium places and an impressive return to the Championship.

Maninder Golhar – two impressive races in his first season racing his ZR160.

 

 

Visit the MGOC Championship website www.mgoc-championship.co.uk to see the full race results and current Championship positions.

 

 

Next races: Silverstone 7/8th October

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Visit the MGOC Championship website www.mgoc-championship.co.uk to see the full race results and the final 2017 Championship positions.

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

 

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