Challenges - Round 8 – Brands Hatch 24/25 August 2008
Back to where it all began
In July 1966 Brands Hatch saw the very first Formula Mini Se7en race and 42 years later the Mini 7 Racing Club, the UK’s longest running single make championship, is still providing full on racing action. The Classic Mini might be nearly 50 years old but the best car of the 20th century can still cut it on a race track in the 21st.
The Formula Mini 7 cars were powered by an 850cc engine back in ’66 but things have moved on with Mini Miglias, powered by 1000cc engines, being added in 1970. With the demise of the little 850cc A Series engine the two championships are now powered by the 1000cc and 1300cc engines for Se7ens and Miglias respectively. Within these two very competitive championships a second class is run for the ‘S’ Class, which enables drivers to go racing on a limited budget.
With seven of the ten rounds completed, there is everything to play for in both championships here at Brands Hatch, where the drivers will be racing for the Graeme Bruce and Partners Trophy. At Croft in June for Round 4 Paul Thompson made Club history by becoming the first ever driver to win both the Se7en and Miglia races on the same weekend. He followed this up with a win in the Se7ens and fourth in the Miglias at Castle Combe and a second and fourth place finish at Donington three weeks ago, making him one to watch here at Brands.
In the Dunlop Mini Se7en Challenge it is reigning champion Max Hunter who is leading the title chase after seven podium finishes from seven starts but he has yet to win in 2008, a fact he’ll be keen to remedy. Hunter is just eleven points in front of six times winner Paul Thompson and a further ten points ahead of Kane Astin. However these points don’t take into account that each driver is allowed to drop two scores at the end of the season, so Thompson is still on course to add another title to the one he lifted in 2005 despite a non finish at Pembrey.
In the Dunlop Mini Miglia Challenge Mark Smith is the current leader, holding a slim four point advantage over round 2 winner Ralph Saunders and fifteen points ahead of reigning champion Andy Hack, who has won four times in 2008, including the last two rounds at Castle Combe and Donington Park, and will be looking to add to this tally this weekend.
For more information on the Dunlop Mini Miglia and Mini Se7en Challenges visit www.mini7.co.uk built by Racecar