MX-5s HIT THE PARK AS CADWELL BECKONS

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Drivers will be nose to tail as they negotiate Cadwell's winding corners - Photo: Jon Elsey

We’re now 6 races deep into the 2018 BRSCC Mazda MX-5 Championship and already there’s something of a pattern emerging. A definitive group of front runners is starting to form, which may begin to provide clues as to who to watch in the battle for the title. Brands Hatch and Snetterton saw two drivers each take a clean sweep of victories respectively, although they have teammates for backup and a number of rapid rivals also intending to spoil the party. Cadwell Park in Lincolnshire is the setting for Rounds 7, 8 & 9 and there’s set to be plenty more action on the way.

The two drivers in question who picked up said clean sweeps were defending champion Will Blackwell-Chambers (Brands Hatch) and Oliver Allwood (Snetterton), however it’s Allwood who leads the points standings having only finished race as low as 4th so far. Blackwell-Chambers had a mixed weekend at Snetterton with P2 in the first race, P5 in the second and a mere P11 after contact late into the third race pushed him down the order. That said, his deficit is only 18 points and at this early stage, that can easily be clawed back with good pace and a little luck. As for Allwood, he’s missed out on the title the last two seasons and will make sure no stone is unturned to prevent coming second best a third time.

Snetterton provided some incredible results with Brian Trott taking two 3rd place finishes, although to him it should have also been a 2nd place had he not missed a gear on the run to the chequered flag in Race 2. Because of that, Mike Comber and Jason Greatrex swept past to take 2nd and 3rd respectively, before Greatrex missed out on winning Race 3 by the skin of his teeth as he and Allwood crossed the line just 0.003 seconds apart. This made for an incredible photo finish, of which the actual photo produced by the timing system certainly proved!

So all of the drivers mentioned above are pretty much certain to be in contention for the podium once again at Cadwell, but as we said earlier there are a host of other fast peddlers who could cause them all some headaches. Masters points leader Martin Tolley has kept himself in and around the frontrunners whilst dominating the sub-category he heads having taken six from six ahead of his fellow “experienced” competitors. Stuart Symonds has produced a very strong run of results having never finished outside the top 10, while Charlie Burge, Steve Foden and Teddy Clark are all still showing flashes of brilliance. Foden in particular impressed by taking the fastest lap in Race 3 of Group A and was able to keep with the lead group for most of the race, meaning he’s someone who could be on his way to a podium at some point this year.

One driver that can’t be forgotten is Samuel Smith, whose weekend took a sharp nosedive early when power problems put him out of Race 1 just corners afters the starts. After a strong beginning at Brands Hatch, Smith won’t stay down for long as he will look for a major rebound at Cadwell. A proven race winner, Smith will be gunning to get his title charge back on track. Another driver on the rebound will be John Langridge, after contact at the start of the second Group A race forced him to the back relegating him to Group B. He did complete the weekend with a win in that final race, albeit he will have dropped points to his fellow AB Motorsport teammates at the front. Also, both Harry Deane and Adam Bessell will be ones to watch after they impressed with their storming drives throughout the Snetterton weekend.

Cadwell Park always tends to throw up some interesting results, with its winding corners, fierce undulations and constant elevation changes never allowing any of the drivers a moment’s rest. Are we going to see a third different driver score a hat-trick? Are Blackwell-Chambers and Allwood going to claim all the wins between them? Or will someone else make a visit to the top step for the first time?

Scott Woodwiss

Next Race

Snetterton 300 - 29th - 30th Jun 2019

Last Race

Anglesey 8th - 9th Jun 2019

Current Standings

Driver Accrued Points Adjusted Total
1 Will Blackwell-Chambers 1082 898
2 John Langridge 1000 876
3 Ben Short 1048 870