The 2014 Championship resumed where it left of at Donington with a busy one day schedule at Silverstone. Qualifying and both races where ran in glorious conditions on Saturday on the northern National Circuit layout.
Silverstone National Rounds 3/4
Again both races provided the commentator and spectators with plenty of action thanks to a 30 car grid on a relatively short circuit. For some this was their first race weekend of the year and for others it was chance to test their amended set-ups or modifications from Donington.
It was a very tight qualifying session between the top four covered by a second but only by two hundredths for Matt Higginson and John Cutmore across their two fastest laps to share pole positions.
It was Matt Higginson who got the marginal better start and lead through the first turn at Copse with John tucking in behind. Rogers was tagged by a fast starting Horler and slid across turn one narrowly avoiding Gaunt, Whale, Mittell and Boulton. Bell took the early lead from Walker and unfortunately championship and F class leader Rickers wasn’t racing due to a failed engine in testing prior.
As the race settled down Higginson endured significant pressure from Cutmore until lap 8 when a late move was made in to Brooklands changing the lead, but seconds later at Luffield, Cutmore lost control and handed the lead back to Higginson. Meanwhile Walker was pushing Bell whilst battling with his clutch, hampering down shifts. Seemingly the entire field were in a battle of sorts providing great entertainment particularly as the leaders approached. Higginson was cautious through traffic knowing Cutmore had spun however by the penultimate lap the gap was down to within two seconds making a nervy last lap for Higginson to bring home his 2rd win of the season. Mittel brought his much improved new car home in 3rd followed closely by recovering Rogers and Horlor, Boulton.
Race two would line up similarly with Cutmore, Higginson, Mittell, Rogers, Horlor and in a reversal of race one, Cutmore lead from Higginson through Copse and was right on his tail. No dramas this time at the first turn and everyone got away safely down to Becketts. By the end of the Wellington straight Higginson had stayed within striking distance for Brooklands and made his move down the inside of Cutmore who positioned his car wide resulting in a second spin loosing grib on the marbles. This allowed a charging Mittel through into 2nd with Rogers in pursuit, Cutmore was avoided and re-joined. Again battles had generated throughout the field but the main focus was with Higginson and Mittel seeing a change for the lead entirely possible for four laps until Higginson settled and started to open a gap.
Again the battle was close for class F with Walker and Bell trading places at the front throughout the race with Spicer and Watson keeping them honest. Meanwhile Higginson as in the first race had the luxury of picking his way through the traffic at will with Mittell trying everything to close the gap, but the laps ran out to give Higginson a double win and move to the top of the Championship. Rogers followed Mittell home ahead of an improved Horlor and Whale, Cutomre recovered to sixth whilst unfortunately for Boulton retiring with temperature issues. Walker held on for his first ever class win still battling with clutch issues making it even more special, followed by Bell in his new car and Spicer. Cutmore can take heart from fastest laps in both races and no doubt he will be pushing Higginson and now Mittell hard next time out.
Great to have seen more returning faces along with new outfits at Silverstone. This made the spectacle all the better, not to mention the host of close racing throughout the field. Looking forward to another large grid at Snetterton later this month.
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