PAUL MATTY SPORTSCARS LOTUS CHAMPIONSHIP
SUNDAY 13 SEPTEMBER 2020
After a weekend breather between meetings we were back again at the hallowed track that is Shelsley Walsh. It was a two one-day meeting and we were entered for Sunday’s event, although some of our lot decided they can’t get enough of Shelsley and also did the Saturday meeting.
I estimate the Championship will have done two years’ normal competing at Shelsley over the past couple of months which may explain why so many PB’s have been achieved!
It was a beautiful September day with perfect weather for hill climbing – warm enough to heat the track up nicely but not too hot for the engines. There were members only spectators again with no entrance to the paddock for them but it was nice to see a few people watching, including John Palmer who couldn’t race with us but came to watch and gave us a wave on the way back down the hill!
Due to the reduced entry, we were given a third practice before the lunch break and, as is the norm, everyone improved on their first runs. Briony in the Elise, and Clive who is sharing Karen’s Elan for the remainder of the season, and Stephen and myself are getting a little more familiar with our new machines and all improved on our PB’s. Malcolm was back on form, getting back into the 31’s. Steve M decided not to take his third practice.
Everyone seemed to have a trouble-free practice session except for Paul who had a misfire off the line. Back in the paddock, after eliminating a few possible reasons, he decided to try fitting a new coil which sorted the problem. Hurray!
The handicap was then thrashed out by Paul, Tony W and Clive and our timed runs commenced.
First off were the dual drives with Iain, JJ and Clive taking the first runs and all improving on their practice times. While they all swopped drivers, the rest of the road class went up the hill and all improved again, bar Pete and Karen.
No dual drives for the race class. The running order was slightly askew as those who had entered the Saturday meeting kept the same numbers. Only 4 of the 9 managed to improve on best practice, Paul, Tony S and Tony W, who got into the 30’s and notably Sarah who managed to beat my PB in the 20/22 by 700th of a second. Well done! (no imogis available!)
Final road class runs saw yet another batch of PBs from Briony, Clive, JJ and Iain and handicaps beaten by Clive, JJ and Iain. Geoff, Steve M, Dick, Pete and Karen all went slightly slower than their first runs.
Final race class runs were roughly the same split as the road class with Sarah, Tony S, Tony W, Dave G and Paul going fractionally slower. Malcolm, Brian and I went faster, as did Stephen P.
The handicaps were extremely close again, with only .68 of a second separating the top 10. Well done guys!
Speaking of the top 10, its worth mentioning the exciting top 10 run off on Sunday which saw PB after PB broken and Sean Gould got very close to the outright hill record.
So, leading up to the final meeting of this strange and unsettled season, Road scratch sees Iain with a comfortable lead behind Dad, Geoff with Pete hot on Geoff’s heels. Race scratch is closer at the top with only two points separating Tony S ahead of Tony W with Malcolm currently in third.
The handicap is another end of season cliff hanger with only one point separating Iain with 33 points and Sarah on 32, then Tony W and Tony Shute in third and fourth, again with only one point separating them, and only 5 and 6 points respectively behind Iain. Very exciting.
We look forward immensely to seeing the few who haven’t managed to be with us for various reasons at our final meeting next Saturday, namely Jon, Chris, Ken, Keith and our newcomer, Nick Atkins who will all be there for our finale.