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MadStock

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    Watched the BriSCA F1's for 6 years
  1. Ah, the annual "World Final Venue" debate. Nobody can argue about capacity when Coventry is involved - it holds more folks, end of story. But this is not a one promotor sport and all of them deserve a crack at running the World Final. Some fall back on Coventry, but those who have a dig and promote it at their own tracks have been largely successful - Northampton included. What's probably niggling in the back of everybody's minds is that Tarmac World Finals (the races themselves) just haven't delivered in recent years. If the front rows are full of top drivers with top kit, and the first bend lunge doesn't come off, your winners are almost decided there and then. Back to venues, remember when Wimbledon was being touted as a potential venue? Although hindered by logistics, lack of parking, lack of pits, various omissions laws / taxes for transporters and fans alike, and the fact greyhounds took priority on Saturday nights, that would have been one hell of a venue from a spectators perspective... ...although you wouldn't want to be outside / row 1 one that day!...
  2. DOTD - 441 John Lawn Hung up in the Whites and Yellows whilst trying to avoid 307 on turn 4, but more than made up for it in Heat 2 - drove away at the restart not once but twice. Needed another couple of laps in the Final, as the "Shoot-out Train" overturned him with 3 laps to roll... RR - 7
  3. MadStock

    Skeggy World Final

    Although there are several arguments as to why Skegness is unsuitable, there are a few measures that could be explored to see if the track could get around the capacity issues: Parking - Years ago, there was a field across the road that was used for speedweekends; perhaps this could ease parking problems? Capacity - Skegness currently doesn't offer 'perfect' viewing around the whole track, and there are areas that could be better utilised; such as turn three (largely baron between the entrance / new toilet block), back straight stand isn't full length of the back straight, trackside parking could be replaced with something more appropriate etc. May have to ban camping chairs in some parts of the stadium. Toilets - Sounds like the situation was under control at the F2 WF, and if the vandals keep out of the permanent WC's, there shouldn't be that much of an issue. PA - Fine as it is. Eateries - Enough fast food outlets to cope - as long as the queues are sensibly organised. Pits - Adequate Camping - There really should be enough locally to cater for those who want to stay over, without the need to rob valuable pit / parking space. Undoubtedly, a lot of work would be needed to get the track into shape, but it shouldn't be discounted entirely. Kings Lynn and Northampton have adapted in recent times (radically, in some cases); perhaps its time for one of the UK's best tarmac tracks to see if they can repeat this kind of success...
  4. Who remembers when Wimbledon was being thrown around as a potential WF venue for 2008? Now that would have been a spectacle; enclosed stadium, excellent facilities, decent capacity, post and wire... Completely off the radar now though, what with 'Sunday-only' meetings, the congestion charge, emissions charges, limited parking... Hednesford surely deserves another go? 2001 was tainted a bit when Mark Woodhull left the raceway in an Air Ambulance, but otherwise it wasn't a bad nights racing. Although at the time, you didn't really need to look past the first two rows for a winner.
  5. Coventry has improved this season; track preparation between races with the tractor / blade rather than the grader is a vast improvement, meeting formats slicker and the filling of 'the hole' has also helped! All for the same £16... Where Coventry is naturally pinned back is the layout. Not only are the support formula pits a long way from the pit gate, the recovery process to drag those motors back round is naturally going to take longer. Its a quirk with Coventry... and unless another pit gate is constructed (unlikely)... then there is limited scope for improvement. The meetings Coventry run both F1's and Bangers seem the worse affected - there sometimes isn't enough tractors to get rid of 15 bangers that won't move under their own steam. Not only have these cars got to be recovered, but its going to take 5/6 minutes to recover those cars, drop at the pit, and return for the next run. Again; unless another pit gate is constructed, or you double the fleet of tractors on banger nights, there's no scope to improve. Saying this, I don't think Coventry are struggling to rope the punters in - a notably healthy crowd last Saturday... and deservedly so...
  6. R/R: 8/10 DOD: 16 Matt Newson Fantastic piece of kit from the 16 Team. Looks the part, wonderfully signwritten - a true credit for trying something different - square / box looks boring now!... ...3rd in the heat... ...brilliantly driven from the back row of the Superstars to take the Final... Enough said.
  7. MadStock

    Crowd apathy

    The tracks with the best atmosphere often provoke a better crowd reaction. Northampton on a sunny Sunday afternoon, with banned air horns and mediocre crowd turnouts is not going to set the world alight. Coventry is a strange mixture of being a fair distance away from the action, and on shale (which always seems slower than tarmac). Regardless of how many fans flood through the gates for a domestic meeting, the atmosphere can seem a little flat. Skegness is a different animal. Crowd are closer to the action, the terraces are banked steeper, its a tarmac track, so Finals under lights always look super-quick, and the track has plenty of 'character' - which adds to the racing incidents. Dare I say it, and despite the continuous low car numbers, even Wimbledon had a decent atmosphere - reflected in the fact that the tight tarmac track was completely enclosed. It also depends on what each paying punters wants to provoke the cheers and the terrace banter; some like the crash-and-smash on track action, some like the rivalries, some like the atmosphere and get more involved... some punters may just like the Fireworks... So does that mean the solution is to reintroduce barrels / marker tyres, the return of Rob Speak, completely enclosed tracks and fireworks in summer (remember Ipswich?). I don't hold my hopes out for any of them!
  8. DOTD: 380 - A return to form? RR: 3/10 Rebels tame. V8's can't cope on the sludgy outside line - not their fault, but makes for dire racing. F1 heats not too bad (point for each) / consolations were a non-event. F1 Only Meetings; The words 'nail on the head' spring to mind... For those of us who only attended the Saturday meeting, I think we've got good reason to feel slightly short changed. Yes; the Saturday Final and GN were moved to the Sunday - sorry, not much good for the 'Saturday-only' brigade. Also regarding the track condition, I don't dispute the efforts of the marshalls and the promotion as a whole (pun intended); i'm not a promotor, and at the same time i'm not a groundworker - who am I to call? However to cover the hole for the Sunday meeting with tyres, which was supposedly suggested (and seemed a logical solution) on the night, just adds to the bitter taste. Perhaps Coventry looked at the clock at 10:15PM (time of cancellation), realised they'd never in a month of Sundays complete the meeting before 'tannoy-curfew', and pulled the plug...
  9. R/R - 8 Steady heats, followed by good final and GN. Even the Rebels Final was entertaining!... DoD - 16 Matt Newson Decent 3rd in Heat 1, storming Final drive, regardless of where he started, only to be wiped out by the invitational Unlimited Banger driver 249 in the GN. Everyone likes on track action - thats what we turn up and pay admission prices for - but the sport should have no time for cheats and red-mist merchants. 249 deliberately rejoining the race behind 16, uncalled for nerfing adjacent to the pit gate, and a foot-to-the-floor punt on turns 3/4 - all from a lap down! Give that man a ban...
  10. I find that motor racing doesn't lend itself to being filmed too easily. Theres only so much that one chap and his camera can capture at any given time. When paying punters attend meetings, they're looking out for different things - following their favourite driver, focusing on one section of the track, watching the starter - no single-point video can replace that... Authorised track DVD's have often more than one camera angle, and are very well edited, which means you'll be getting a good idea of what happened at either end of the track. However you look at it; 'interpretations' of meeting finals posted on the Internet will never be as good as the real thing, or as good as the authorised track recordings - and like many have suggested, I can't see this affecting meeting gates or DVD sales to a great extent. Thats not to say that the Internet footage isn't doing a job. Some of the best bits from some of the most memorable meetings are there for people to enjoy. There are some great last-bend hits and good historic footage from years gone by - its documenting the history of the sport, showing the action that BriSCA F1 is famed for, and sharing it with the widest possible audience. That sounds like free advertisement to me...
  11. I thought the entertainment both before and during the meeting was relatively satisfactory. The guys on the mic did a good job of building up the event. The double decker bus was an interesting alternative to introducing the drivers, although the two laps of the circuit was probably overkill. The singer had perhaps the hardest job of the night - unfortunately, I don't think the PA system did her justice to be fair, and as to whether a cabaret act is appropriate at a stock car meeting is another matter, and down to the individual. The fireworks during the meeting were very good, as always. Over the years, i'm sure we've seen a lot worse... "laser display", anybody?... The big race itself wasn't that bad, and was on par with any World Final on tarmac in the last 10 years (Hednesford and Northampton hardly set the world alight). Bezz's oil slick on turn 3 probably put paid to any latecomers (259 was making ground) spoiling the 391 party. The start was a little muddled, but thats down to communication... after three rolling laps, i'd have expected the green drop, and can fully understand why half the field surged forward on turn 3. Thats racing... I can see the argument for both sides, but to say the entertainment was abysmal is a little harsh... ...maybe the disappointment lies in the fact that the entertainment was heavily advertised, and many people's expectations were too high?...
  12. As an East Anglian, i've been reading this thread with some interest, and i'm all for opinion - so i'll add mine... If you take all the East Anglian tracks (Kings Lynn and Ipswich), they make less than 20% of the fixture list in total (that includes all Semi's / WF / even the rogue 'no points' meetings etc). That means every other domestic meeting falls outside of East Anglia, which for someone in our neck of the woods means a lot of travelling (even Skegness which is being dubbed an Eastern track is still a fair old jaunt). Until recently, all of the World Finals have been held in the Midlands and in the North... so to have WF meetings held on the east side of the country (on what are very good tracks) is very welcome!... The decline in tracks in recent years hasn't just affected the North either. Remember Arena Essex? Swaffam? Wimbledon? (All relatively 'recent' deletions from the fixture lists, all held big meetings before). There has been, and always was, plenty of racing on offer in the Southern and Eastern counties. So this supposed recent 'transition' of meetings from the Northern / Midlands to the Eastern / Southern counties is largely imaginery in my opinion. To answer the original question "Is it fair to have this many large meetings in the East", I believe its more than fair. It's purely broken the trend... and is maybe a sign of how our sport is evolving...
  13. MadStock

    197 GN ANTTICS

    What makes the situation slightly worse is that the race was possibly (?) stopped for 321 Ed Neachell in the first place. The nearest marshall was holding his flag static above his head, symbolising that Ed was believed to be hurt / injured and believed the race needed to be stopped for that reason. For 197 to complete another lap of the circuit, with waved yellows out for probably half of that lap, and still follow in a static car, which he'd put there in the first place, with a marshall standing beside it holding his flag, is a serious offence... Cars ending up in fences, whether its racing / intentional / accidental, are part of stockcar racing - it happens. In fact, a relatively 'roundy roundy' Coventry meeting last night was brought to life with some heavy bumperwork, including SSJ's steam train effort in the final. But malicious (multiple) hits like the ones 197 dished out last night are nowhere near acceptable. Ban 197 - the longer the better... feud or no feud... clearly no respect for anyones safety...
  14. The last three or so meetings have seen this new 'no personal food or drink' rule introduced. I believe Kings Lynn is one of the best places to watch F1's, or any of the formulas they have in support, and the meetings / promotion has always been, in my opinion, one of the best there is. What must be remembered is that this is a 'family' sport, and the paying public shouldn't be bullied into paying the extortionate food and drink prices within the stadium... especially if you've brought the family along - im sure it starts getting expensive quite quickly... and not everyone like burgers and chips... Whether its for shear financial gain or not, it will only put people off coming. Is there a reason why personal food or drink can't be brought into the stadium? I assume there must be a reason, otherwise the rule wouldn't be in place. Rules are rules - if thats what they want to do, then so be it. Whatever happens, I'm sure the 2007 WF at Lynn will be a great night... just have to eat your sandwiches in the car before you go in!...
  15. I have been to Wimbledon on a few previous occasions to watch F1. I think its a fantastic venue to watch F1's, or any other formula for that matter. I seem to remember last years meeting suffered from a similar fate - I believe over 25 cars were expected, and in the end, only 16 / 17 (?) made the track. OK, not a fantastic turnout, but with 2 heats and a final 'everybody in' format, I didn't think the meeting ran too badly - there was enough cars to make it interesting at least, and the racing was as good and as close as many other tarmac tracks. Despite the low turnout, despite the hope that there were going to be more cars - this wasn't a bad meeting. This has happened before, it happened yesterday, and (given the chance) I'm sure it will happen again... Obviously, with regards to the 'over-hyped drivers list, I dont really believe the blame can be shifted solely onto any singular party. 'Provisional Bookings' shouldn't exist in my opinion, and it is wrong to 'sell' the meeting on the likely presence of the current World Champion, but when it comes to the crunch, it is the fact that many of the drivers failed to show - which I find surprising given that this was a World Championship qualifier round. However, there are reasons why I can see drivers giving this meeting a miss (whether they booked or not). The fence is one concern, especially with the Wheels / Hednesford qualifier meetings coming up. The meeting was held on a Sunday night, which never really seems to work that well - for both drivers and spectators alike. Its also not the best venue in terms of access either - its a job getting there by car, let alone a bus / lorry. Compare this to Saturday's meeting at Northampton; no post and wire, saturday night meeting, relatively 'central' location. Is this where the answer lies? Is Wimbledon just not appealing enough? Whatever seems to be laid on - the 2005 WC Consulation, the 2006 'London Championship', last nights world qualifier round - nothing seems to be working. However, well done to those drivers who attended and put on a show - those who secured some valuable World Qualifier points will have felt the trip was worthwhile. Special mention for 441 John Lawn who seems to be giving tarmac a real go this season, and did well to get the car out for the final and take a well deserved 4th place.
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