Two’s company. Frittenden Grasstrack Pairs – Race Report and Results
The Frittenden & DMCC Ltd held a fantastic ‘Pairs’ grasstrack meeting, a unique event in the 2017 season, on the 16th July. With all classes having 3 heats to determine those pairs who go into the final. The final the points reset, and the highest point scoring pair in the final would determine the winners.
Report by Luke Russell – Images Courtesy of Garry Shorter – Results Images by Gareth Bemister
The day kicked off with the 500cc solos, who were riding over a round robin, which culminated in a 6 lap final at the end of the day. British Under-19 Speedway Champion Zach Wajtknecht won all 3 of his heats, with pair Paul Hurry having two 2nds & a 3rd ensured they qualified as highest point scorers. Eastbourne Eagles speedway duo Mark Baseby & Charley Powell qualified 2nd for the final, with two 1-2’s, and were beaten by the pair of Wajknecht/Hurry in their second heat. Charlie Saunders & Callum Walker were 3rd highest scorers, with local duo Martyn Sturgeon/Adam Filmer the final pairing to qualify for the final. There was drama however in the final, with Zach Wajtknecht who led from the tapes and took the win, Baseby followed him home for 2nd, however Paul Hurry who was holding 3rd, fell on the entrance to the first turn on lap 4, re-mounted to finish 7th, thus handing the overall win to Mark Baseby & Charley Powell (who finished in third in the final). Wajknecht/Hurry overall 2nd, and Saunders/Walker 3rd.
The 350cc solos, who were riding over 4 point scoring legs. With a possible 76 points on offer, the pairing of Dave Mears (who won 4/4) and partner Mark Taylor who had two 2nds and two 3rds, finished with a total of 74 points. Taylor was only beaten by Mark Giles, who had swapped bikes, and had now paired with youngster Connor Bell, and finished 2nd overall. Completing the podium was Max Pankhurst & Brian Cornelius.
500cc Sidecars were one of the hardest fought classes across the day, with wins for Simon Beard/Richard Webb, Dan Berwick/Mark Hopkins, Barrie Bennett/Eifion Hughes & Shaun Hughes/Louis Bennett. The final, saw Simon Beard/Richard Webb lead, despite being under pressure for the whole race. They were paired with Mike Read/Curtis McAlliney, and took the top step of the podium. All-girl crew Natasha Bartlett/Ciara Southgate took second step alongside Berwick/Hopkins, with the Welsh crews of Bennett/Hughes & Hughes/Bennett taking 3rd place.
The Left Hand Sidecars, threw up some interesting races. British Champion Will Penfold/Ricky Pay won 2 of their 3 heats and the 6 lap final, with partner Richard Webb/Jake Pope who finished 4th in the final, ensuring they took the top step. Welsh pairing Eirwyn/Alex Balman & Darren Morris/Craig Scott took a 1-2 in their opening ride, with the Balmans unbeaten in the heats. However in the final, mechanical dram for the Balmans, meant only Morris/Scott picked up points for their pair, finishing 2nd in the final and 2nd overall. Potter/Naden & Penfold/Woodbridge taking the final step on the podium.
Bob Dolman was in a class of his own in the Upright Solo class with 3 heat wins, and a win in the 6 lap final, and his pair Nigel Coates finished 6th in the final it was enough to claim them the win. Stephen Green/Chris Mackett took second overall with Lee Oakley/Robin Pilcher in third.
The 250cc Solos, with one of their biggest entries seen at Frittenden for a few years, had youth champion Charlie Brooks paired with Adam Shipp take the overall win for the class. Brooks was in sensational form winning all 3 qualifying rides, with Shipp taking two 2nds, and 2nd in the final behind Brooks. Ben Ilsley & Russell Little, who themselves had a maximum in their second ride, finished 3rd & 4th in the 6 Lap final to take the 2nd step on the podium, with Tim Neal/Chris Mackett taking the third step on the podium.
There was drama in the very first Right Hand Sidecar race of the day, with Mark Cossar/Carl Blyth pulling out of the meeting after breaking down whilst leading. The best was saved until the very last race of the day in the Right Hand Sidecars. Paul Whitelam/Alan Elliott with pair Matt Fumarola/Sam Fumarola, took the spoils. Whitelam/Elliott led the 6 lap final, until the start of the 6th lap Rob Wilson/Terry Saunters passed them to lead heading down the back straight. Entering the pits turn Wilson/Saunters left enough room for a fantastic move by Whitelam/Elliott to beat them on the run to the line. With Wilson’s pair of Myles Simmons/Bradley Steer in 3rd in the final, ensured they took second overall. Completing the podium was Will Offen/Sam Black & Simon Beaney/Gareth Bemister.
The meeting was finished by 5:15pm, with the club carrying out track maintenance throughout the day which kept the dust to a minimum.
The club are running another meeting at the same venue on the 24th September 2017 – Entries available now!