Kart finale at Castle Combe

The final round of the MSA British Superkart Championship, MGs, Caterhams and the penultimate rounds of the best circuit based championships in the country are all part of the diverse programme on offer at the Castle Combe Circuit’s race meeting on Saturday September 13.

This is the first time the British championships for the tiny 250 cc karts concludes at Castle Combe, Reading’s Jason Dredge likely to attain the title in the national class race. A strong contender for outright victory though is former British Champion and circuit lap record holder, Gavin Bennett from Gloucester, out to prove a point after unreliability earlier in the season cost him a chance at the title.

In the penultimate round of the even faster Division 1 Superkarts are ex World Champion Trevor Roberts and two times National Champion Paul Kennings amongst those looking to break the magic 100mph lap for the first time.

Moving towards a tense climax is the National Mobile Windscreens Saloon Car championship, with youngsters Will Di Claudio from Chippenham and Jason Cooper from Yatton Keynell, hammer and tongs in their season long battle to be top dog in Class D and highest scorers overall.

Di Claudio, in the more powerful Peugeot 106, has a useful 6 point lead over Cooper in the humble Fiesta, both well clear of their nearest challenger, Mark Wyatt from Bristol, in the Class B Astra. With a potential 14 points on offer from the final two rounds, reliability and staying on the track could well be the determining factors in deciding the champion, though Cooper’s chances should improve if his Fiesta gets its awaited engine upgrade for this event. The weather could also play a part, Cooper establishing himself as a wet weather maestro even against opposition from the big classes.

The battle for those is still very much alive, with West Country drivers featuring throughout. Wyatt’s main challenger is Bridgwater’s Tony Dolley in the 206, just 1 point behind, whilst Calne’s Tony Hutchings is ever improving his Audi TT and Ditcheat’s Kevin Bird is now flying in the ultra powerful SEAT Leon Cupra R.

Right up front, Melksham’s Simon Norris and Cheltenham’s Laurence Kilby shared the spoils with their Mitsubishi Evos last time, Norris taking the win, Kilby a new lap record and second place.

Nick Charles from Yate is now a force in Class C with his 106, though has a 10 point gap to make up to class leader, Nick Mizen from Bristol in one of many MG ZRs.

The MG Car Club’s Peter Best Insurance challenge race sees a variety of MGs from all eras competing in four diverse classes. Closest fought should be Class C, with Swindon’s Dan Ludlow in the modern 1.8 litre Metro GTi pitted against the almost 50 year old 1380cc Frogeye Sprite of Circuit P.R. man, John Moon from Batheaston. Joining in the same race are the Drayton Manor Park Metros, including Glenn Bowker from Longwell Green, Swindon’s Steve Carter and Stroud’s Tony Dowler.

The penultimate round of the savesometax.co.uk Castle Combe Special GT Championship sees Westbury’s Shane Marshall with a useful five point lead over Bridgwater’s Josh Fisher. A lack of entries in Class A will limit Marshall’s points scoring ability, even though he will be favourite to win outright, with Fisher likely to give him a very hard time if it rains, the nimble 2 litre Mantis vastly underpowered compared with Marshall’s Chrysler V6 engined Jade.

Adding to the Class B interest is Bath’s Guy Parr, debuting a Nemesis 2 litre, a similar chassis to that of Fisher and also run by Wayne Poole Racing from Gloucester. And just like Fisher, Parr will keep busy by also entering the circuit’s Formula Ford race under the Wayne Poole banner, in a Class A Van Diemen RF00.

Trowbridge’s Mark Funnell and his amazing Lotus Exige are still in contention for outright GT honours, despite ending the last race entangled with Class C rival, Nick Williamson, after the latter lost the back end of his Escort Cosworth. Funnell will also be a strong favourite to win the end of day Open Sports and Saloon race.

Brotherly love is not necessarily a feature of the Melton Concrete Products Formula Ford 1600 championship, now well under the control of Josh and Felix Fisher. Felix pulled off his debut outright victory at the last race in his Class B Swift SC92 after a closely fought contest with his elder brother, the pair having a virtually unassailable lead in the championship. Castle Combe’s Andrew Jones has an outside mathematical chance, whilst developing the new Swift SC08 is Saltford’s Steven Jensen.

Cirencester’s Tom Margetson took his first Class C win last time out, adding to the plethora of Wayne Poole Racing successes this year.

Completing the nine race programme are 2 ten-lappers for the Daily Telegraph Caterham Academy, Bristol’s Tim Woodman one of the many novice drivers out in the 1600cc machines.

After the morning’s qualifying sessions, which begin at 8.45, there will be a public grid walkabout featuring the cars and drivers from the National Mobile Windscreens Saloon Car championship. Racing gets under way from 13.15.

Admission prices are £12 for adults, £6.00 for OAPs, £2.50 for Paddock Transfer, whilst accompanied children under 16 are admitted free.

For further information, visit the Castle Combe Circuit website on www.castlecombecircuit.co.uk

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