Classic Hot Rod Meeting Report. Yarmouth. 8.6.14. English National Series Round 7
The sun shone on the righteous as the eleven classic hot rod drivers who chose to make the trek to the east coast of Norfolk were rewarded for, what was for some, a very long drive. The weather was gorgeous and the fans and holiday makers alike could enjoy the sights and sounds of the classics in the very best of conditions at the very well appointed Great Yarmouth Stadium.
After enjoying the sun drivers were keen to get the set up just right for this very small track. Its a track that presents quite a few challenges to the CHR drivers as room to pass is at a premium and a mistake could be very costly as the old fashioned wire and post fence could serious shred a valuable classic like a can opener!
Paint jobs sining illustriously the cars made the way out on track for heat one with 444 Gary Andrews on pole position. Gary is a driver that has been making the signs of significant progress this season and I had earmarked him for his first win earlier this week. But if that was to be fulfilled then racing challenges need to be overcome, the first one being the pace car! At he drop of the green the blue and while 444 machine was seriously bulked and the chasing pack of B grade cars, led by 196 John Hendy powered by. In those early laps Andrews was bettered by Hendy, 22 Rob Montagner, 445 Graham Boyd and 31 Steve Gooding, but it was fascinating to see the fight back that Andrews put in. Clawing back his place from Gooding and battling hard with Boyd. But the man outfoxing them all in heat one was English National Series points leader 198 Andy Steward. Andy had dialed in his Mk2 Escort to perfection for this little track and to see how he created the space, feinting, dancing, diving to go up the inside and the outside of his fellow racers was a master class in good old fashioned hot rod racing. Starting from the back, Andy over took ever other car on the track at least once to take a profound victory. Montagner, the popular local man at the wheel of his Chevette was second after leading the race until he was overcome by Donut. 445 Graham Boyd was third ahead of the recovering and battling Andrews.
Could Steward dominate heat two in the same way? Well this time the pace car was not in the way and Gary Andrews enjoyed a clean and fast start from the front of the grid. If Steward had his Mk2 dialed in from the back, then likewise Andrews from the front as the 444 seemingly hugged the tight corners very quickly and sure footedly with the big 10 inch avons. Montagner resolutely gave chase clear of Boyd and Hendy. But here came Steward, making the most of the slower start of 10 Paul Bowring and 271 Jamie Johnson. As the current East Anglian champion battled with the orange man, Donut shot round the outside of both of them with a real devil may care style! And with Hendy senior and junior’s cars not handling quite as smartly as they clearly looked, and Foxlow not on the pace thanks to the wrong choice of diff, it was all about whether Steward had more than enough pace from the back to catch the flying Andrews. In heat two, the answer was clearly NO. Steward was able to get the better of the other quick man Graham Boyd at the wheel of his A40, but Monty stayed ahead to the flag as did the delighted Gary Andrews who recorded his first ever win in classic hot rods! He was mighty pleased!
But could he repeat the feat in the final? He most certainly could. In a perfect display of clean fast old skool hot rod racing, Andrews repeated his heat performance over the greater distance in the final. Monty was set to repeat his second place but retired with engine problems with just a few laps to go. Boyd kept ahead of Steward this time.
So a successful night out East. There may have only been eleven cars, but to be honest round the tight little tarmac track at GT, it was plenty. Clean fast racing was the order of the day, a popular winner and new fans were won over to the formula.
From the feedback the Classic Hot Rod page, with more fans LIKING us all the time, it will surely only enhance our claim for a place at the Ipswich Hot Rod World Final speedweekend – 2015??