Saloons WF w/end at Cowdie - Day 2 - Sun 20 Aug’17
After the excitement of the previous evening the Saloons turned it up a notch with today’s action surpassing the first day. The main event was the Raymond Gunn Tribute race. Daniel Parker the new world champion was unable to race owing to a scrutineering query following his win. The carburettor insulation block was the subject of an investigation which in the end was declared legal.
A surprise presentation occurred when, “The Hammer Of The Scots”, Conrad Self handed the Scottish Open trophy back after having it in his possession for 25 yrs!
Lee Sampson(428) and David Aldous(499) won the heats with Willie Skoyles(641) getting the Consolation. The Tribute event was the race of the weekend. “Dignity” by Deacon Blue played as the 29 cars moved off. Numerous stoppages occurred throughout the race until we got to the last few laps when it developed into a shootout between the Sampson brothers and local favourite Ross Watters(670). Jamie Sampson(149) was dealt with by Watters who then pile drives Lee into the wall with a death or glory style last bender. The crowd erupted throughout the stadium as they witnessed Sampson manage to drag his wounded car across the line to claim the £228 first prize whilst Watters’ increased momentum saw him spin out. Anthony McIvor(NI711) and Skoyles were 2nd and 3rd. The home fans appreciated what they had just seen and gave the Englishman rousing applause.
The F.2’s were racing for the Nationals trophy. The trophy featuring a scaled down F2 was created 20 years ago by ex racer and goldsmith Jon Padgett(ex 346) and is simply stunning. It was made using 1kg of silver wire and sheet and is mounted on a solid mahogany plinth which was from a ship step. Around 1500 separate pieces of silver were used with some of it gold plated. The main chassis and roll cage were soldered but everything else is riveted and took Jon approx. 300 hrs to make. The first year it was raced for, the top 3 drivers were able to take part in a lucky dip from a container of £1 coins for the winner, 50p’s for the runner up and 20p’s for 3rd. However many they could scoop out in one hand they got to keep. Elasticated cuffs on the overalls saw Toon Schut, Speaky and Bill Batten gathering up armfuls rather than a handful!! Chris Burgoyne the defending holder would have been the first to aim to win it 3 times had it not been for his Bristol injury but he was on hand to present the trophy.
A few less cars than Saturday sees a turnout in the low 30’s. Autospeed had a grand parade pre meeting and the draw for the Nationals Race grid positions was made. Pole went to Cowdie resident Paul Reid(17) with Conor Hughes(NI929) joining him on the front row. As on the previous day the first race was another event for the drivers who were teenagers back in March. Entitled the Teen Sensations it was won by Bradley McKinstry(NI747) and the overall winner of the two races combined was Anthony Kincaid(NI221). With Dean McCrory(NI935) winning day one’s teen race it was resounding domination by the lads from the Emerald Isle.
The Nationals race was run as Ht.1 and set off on the first of two rolling laps only for the drivers to forget there was another still to go which created a bit of a mix up. At the second attempt Reid raced into the lead with Middler and Polley up to 4th and 5th from their 5th row start. The NI favourite – Kincaid had made up 9 places into 7th but ended up losing places being spun out on the pit bend. 41 & 38 continued their progress with Polley passing Middler early on. Dawson and Wallace were also making good inroads to the front as the first and second placed men lost out to some decisive manoeuvres from Polley, the 38 car taking the lead around halfway. Wallace continuing his forward progress got 3rd with 5 to go but by then Polley and Middler had an unassailable advantage and the top two podium spots were secured. Ian Thompson Jr finished 4th having come through from the back of the grid.
Kincaid won the 2nd heat, Wallace the 3rd, Liam Rennie(3) the Final ahead of that man Kincaid, and Dawson the GN. Euan Millar(629) had a scary looking crash in this one ending up going through the infield crash barrier on the turnstile bend. So finished one of the finest weekends of stock car racing north of the Border for many a year.
Pics in the gallery.
Next week: The Scottish theme continues with the long haul up to Crimond.