“Summer Saturday”...well it was a Saturday so it’s half right and the rain which threatened didn’t come to much. I managed to get a good bit of space in qualifying and make the best of the short run but despite the space could only manage 11th on the grid.
In race one the fast starting Greig Graham got the jump on me going into Duffus but I repassed him going into McIntyre’s as everyone took avoiding action whilst Russell Milloy used the whole track to gather up his rather lurid slide which started at Duffus! This put me into a group of eight cars by the end of the lap all with designs on third. No sooner had we completed the lap than Dave Colville and Alex Shaw came together on the exit of McIntyre’s. Mike Strong collected Dave and the incident forced me into the gravel on the exit of the corner, in preference to being part of the accident losing a couple of places. Four of us made our way past Alex Shaw on lap three before the Safety Car made it’s first appearance in XR2’s on lap four after Sandy Reid had a nasty roll a Duffus after an incident with Alex Shaw. This broke up the field a fair bit as the Safety Car never picked up the leader, so on the restart there were four of us fighting it out for 8th. As the four of us battled Greig Graham and Wayne MacAuley came together on the exit of the hairpin with Wayne falling down the order. This strung us out yet further and with the ST’s now making their way through the field there were no more opportunities to pass so we ended up 10th.
In race two the fast starting Tony Leese got the jump at the start on myself and Greig. I had a great opportunity to pass Greig at the hairpin along with Finlay Adams but the move ended up slowing me down to avoid running into anyone and I then set about making up the time. As we started lap 4 Chris Philip made the best of his exit speed from the hairpin to pass me round the outside but then go over ambitious with a move on Greig taking them both out on at McIntyre’s. Chris rejoined and in doing so ran into the side of my car, putting me off at the exit of McIntyre’s and losing me a number of positions. Going into Duffus next tome round the yellow flag as being furiously waved and as everyone turned in, everyone spun. A previous car had dumped some fluid on the track and the result was a spin for about every car in the field. I got away lightly just landing in the gravel trap but poor Derek McDougal rolled end over end and Stephen Emslie got collected by Chris Philip. This brought out the red flags whilst the marshals did a good job of clearing up the mess. At the restart everyone was well behaved until we got to Clark’s, where Russell Milloy was pushed into a spin which bounced him off the tyres. The safety car was immediately deployed bunching us up again. After the safety car pulled in there were four of us again fighting, this time for 5th. The fight was short lived as the ST’s, closed right onto the back of the XR2 field by the safety car, immediately started making their way through the field and split us all up. With Stephen Russell being disqualified for the move which ended Russell’s race we ended up 8th.
Overall, a disappointing weekend for results, both races being spoiled by forced trips though the gravel and ST’s passing through the field. The next race meeting is on Sunday 19th September. Our July meeting will be shown on Motors TV tomorrow night (Thursday 26th August) at 7.05pm.