CASTLE COMBE: Closing in on glory
11:00am Friday 30th August 2013 in Latest Sport News
ADAM Higgins needs a single point to secure the Formula Ford 1600 Championship after a titanic tussle at Castle Combe on Monday.
The Chippenham driver had to settle for second behind Ed Moore in an incident packed race, but that was enough to move him within touching distance of the Class A crown ahead of the final round on October 5.
Higgins started from fifth on the grid with title rival Steven Jensen from Saltford on the front row with team-mate Ashley Crossey pulling off a maiden pole position.
But Melksham ace Moore made the early move to take charge from fourth on the grid. Higgins soon began to pick off his rivals, pulling off an audacious overtake round the outside of Crossey around Camp Corner, a brave move rarely seen, to take third.
On lap five Higgins slid inside of Jensen going into Quarry, and then began his pursuit of Moore.
When the safety car was deployed on lap 10, the battle for top spot became a seven-car train, with Roger Orgee and American debutant RC Enerson joining the top five.
Langford’s Roger Orgee managed to pass Yatton Keynell’s Luke Cooper going into Quarry on the restart and was instantly putting pressure on Crossey.
Moore and Higgins managed to pull away from the pack until Higgins forced his way past Moore on the exit of Quarry on lap 13. On the next lap the drama really unfolded as the top seven charged full speed into Tower Corner.
Moore attempted a very strong move on Higgins and the reduction in speed caused havoc for the chasing cars, with Jensen having to brake hard, and a surprised Crossey left unable to brake hard enough, riding up the back of his team-mate’s car and taking them both out of the race and into the barriers.
Having survived the scare, Moore held on to pull off victory, with Higgins second, Orgee in third and Cooper fourth and Class B victor.
The happiest Class B driver of the day was Nathan Ward, who finished sixth overall, second in class, and sealed the Class B Championship for 2013.
Bristol’s Mark Wyatt (Vauxhall Astra) and Corsham’s Will Di Claudio (Peugeot 106) produced dramatic comebacks after colliding on lap one of the the Castle Combe Saloon Car Championship.
Wyatt’s car was catapulted into the infield, taking him down to last and Di Claudio to 10th with front end damage.
Both managed to pick their way back through the field with Di Claudio finishing second and Wyatt fifth. Burton’s Rob Ballard steered clear of the drama to finish 22.5 seconds ahead of Di Claudio.
There was a healthy grid for the Castle Combe Sports & GT Championship as Simon Tilling dominated and won the race and Class A by over 32 seconds from Wrington’s Josh Smith, who won Class B.
Third-placed Sam Smeeth (Ferrari 458 Challenge) won Class D, and Richard Gray (Radical SR4) Class C.
The first of the two races for the Porsche Club Championship never really managed to get going, due to a safety car being deployed after only four laps due to a stranded car at Bobbies, and then a red flag within a lap of the resumption of racing due to an accident shedding debris across the start/finish line.
Stuart Ings from Brislington was able to record a Class 2 victory, and finished second in class in the second race.
Tim Ingram-Hill and Graham Reeder, both from Pewsey, competed in the Pirelli Ferrari Open race, with Reeder finishing on the third step of the podium, and Ingram-Hill finishing fourth overall, and securing a class win.
In the Pirelli Ferrari Formula Classic race Malmesbury’s Peter Fisk finished seventh overall and second in class in his 328 GTB.
Andrew Higginbottom won the Pre 90 Formula Ford Castle Combe Challenge in his Van Diemen RF88.
The final race of the day was the Castle Combe Open Sports vs Saloon Challenge Series.
The classes were won by Tim Woodman (Class A and overall – Caterham 7), Simon Smeeth (Class B – Ferrari F430 Challenge), Simon James (Class C – Citroen Saxo VTS), and Tony Hutchings (Class D – Audi TT) to round up a fantastic day of bank holiday racing.
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