Wednesday, 10 August 2011

Shootout Showdown at SHRCCC

On Tuesday, after a hard fought summer of qualifying, the top 10 protagonists in 2 & 4wd faced off at SHRCCC to duke it out for a share of the generous £380 prize fund up for grabs at the Shootout finale.

As I have previously mentioned the track has become testing to say the least, whoever made off with the spoils would be deserving recipients. Yours truly had managed to qualify 3rd in 4wd drive behind James Rumble and Rob Elmes, both of whom have shown consistently good form here with Rob unbeaten since taking delivery of his SX3.

This is what we were after.

Dudders had set up a fittingly testing track for the finale with a good mix of turns, small jumps, chinese hats and surface changes. I particularly liked the way the grid was set up. I felt it was a fair reflection of the qualifying positions, giving each driver a slight advantage over his successor and helping to avoid start line carnage.

These are the guys I was to battle it out with for 4wd glory.

                 James Rumble                  Kristan Minter                 Rob Elmes

                 Duncan Hedger                  Michael Jelinek                    Lee Davies

                                      Mike Vorley                 Paul Berkinshaw 

Timed practice over, driver intros complete, we took our places on the rostrum.
The pips went the siren sounded and battle was joined.
The grid system made for a fairly clean start. Rob set off with James and myself in hot pursuit. The first couple of laps went by with the three of us in quite close contention, I was giving James a bit of hassle which allowed Rob to creep away. James, however, had decent pace and started to get the better of me in our battle for 2nd. I decided to try and stay close and maybe take advantage of any errors; they weren't forthcoming!
It then became a case of staying calm and consolidating 3rd, I started being too careful and felt Lee creeping closer. Could I hold my nerve?
Thankfully Dudders announced the leaders were going into their last lap. I just had to hold it together for another 25 seconds. Luckily Lee got caught at the loop so I was able to cruise round to 3rd place and a share of the spoils.
When the siren sounded again the top 3 had finished on 13 laps and the next 4 on 12.
It had turned out to be a fitting final race of the series with great battles right down the order.
We retired to the pits to exchange tales of woe or glory and to calm our beating hearts.
4wd full results . . Here 

4wd top 3
(L to R) Pip Pullen (SX2), Rob Elmes (SX3) & James Rumble (DEX410R)

Well done to everyone particularly Rob & James. Both guys drove great races and were worthy of their positions.

The 2wd was a hotly contested affair with the top 5 finishing on the lead (13th) lap.
After qualifying in 9th place Glen drove a great race to 2nd managing to overcome one of the Hatton brothers (Tom) but not the other (Rob) who drove a fast, tidy race to victory.
Maybe there should be a battle of the brothers, Glen and Jay (Westwood) vs Tom and Rob (Hatton)?
Full 2wd results . . Here

2wd top 3
 (L to R) Tom Hatton, Rob Hatton & Glen Westwood

Everyone went home with a pot, some bigger than others. A few went home with some prize money, some more than others.
A good night was had by all.

I am sure I speak for everyone when I say it's been a great Summer of racing at SHRCCC. Thanks to Dudders for his investment of time, money and hard work and for putting on such a great season of fun racing.
I am sure next years series will be even bigger and better. I, for one, am looking forward to it already. 

Oh by the way, it took me less than 24hrs to spend my prize money.
I have, sensibly, reinvested it on a component that I am absolutely certain will make me a couple of tenths quicker . . Probably!

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