Archive for Juni 14th, 2014

Formula Blue in U.K. Race Report May 2014 – Mansell Raceway

Samstag, Juni 14th, 2014

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Formula Blue Race Report May 2014
After a very damp practice Saturday at Mansell Raceway, race day was looking to be a drier affair and that is how it turned out with the circuit dry enough for slicks as the Formula Blue grid took to the track for their 3 lap warm up. 18 drivers in the senior class and 4 in the junior class were all set to contest the latest round of the 2014 Formula Blue Challenge.
Heat one saw current O plate holder and pole man, Martin Wheeler, get off to a fantastic start to the day with an untroubled lights to flag win. Behind him it was Duncan Mcleod and Ian Branfield battling it out for second spot. Mcleod launched himself from 9th on the grid to get up into second ahead of Branfield by lap 2 but Branfield was not about to give up and managed to squeeze past a lap later to regain the place. On lap 5 the positions were once again reversed as Mcleod got past Branfield and this time managed to make it stick putting a very small gap between himself and Branfield to cross the line 0.3 of a second ahead of him. Chris Derrick was in fourth with Wheeler claiming the fastest lap with a 50.26 on lap 6.
Heat 2 and a first corner scuffle caused a small drama but it was Chris Derrick who benefitted coming through from 6th on the grid to take the lead as pole lady, Katie Helps tumbled down the rankings. Also on the move were Wheeler and Mcleod with the pair scything through the pack to 5th and 6th respectively by the start of lap 2. It was Wheeler who was the most clinical as he made up places on consecutive laps to find himself in third by lap 4 and from there he set about hunting down Derrick. Mcleod, caught up in traffic, nevertheless found himself coming through into third by the start of lap 5. Out front, Wheeler was reeling in Derrick and got past him on lap 7 going on to take the flag by 2.6 seconds and recording his second fastest lap of day with a 49.7. Derrick held on to second with Mcleod coming through in third some 3 seconds behind him. Branfield was fourth.
If heat 2 was a demonstration of Wheelers clinical ability to get through traffic, then the Cornishman from Wadebridge put on a masterclass in heat 3! From the back of the grid in 17th place by the end of lap 1 he was up into 8th place. Out front, Sam Dible had got past a charging Mcleod to take the lead, forcing Mcleod to slot in behind and keep tabs on the young driver for a couple of laps before regaining the lead on lap 3. By the end of lap 2 Ian Branfield, in fourth, had company in the shape of championship leader, Wheeler, who cruised up behind him on lap 7 and then relieved him of third place on lap 8. Wheeler then set about Dible, dispatching him on the next lap with Branfield following him through to demote Dible to fourth. Up front it was now a battle between Wheeler and Mcleod as the gap between the lead pair reduced and Wheeler got on to the bumper of Mcleod. On lap 10, Wheeler was through and Mcleod had to settle for second with Branfield securing third with Dible fourth. It was a stunning drive by Wheeler who collected his third fastest lap of the day with a 49.5.
The Grid for the final was a true reflection of the competitiveness of this class as Wheeler and Mcleod filled the front row with Branfield and Dible behind. The only usual suspect missing was Chris Derrick who having not started heat 3 was unable to start the final. At lights out, Wheeler was away with Mcleod and Branfield right behind him. Dible had a poor start dropping to 6th before fighting his way back to fourth on lap 7. Out front Wheeler and Mcleod pulled away from Branfield and whilst Mcleod had the pace he just couldn’t find a way past Wheeler who capped off a perfect day by taking the chequered flag for the fourth time. Mcleod had kept him honest and his fastest lap of a 49.5 was scant reward for his efforts. Branfield was third and Dible fourth.
In the Junior Blue class, despite there only being 4 entries, with two of them being novices, the racing was equally good to watch with the class mixed in with the DKRC Minimax grid.
Heat one and Luke Lattimer took the flag recording a 53.1 but closer examination of the timing sheet showed that second placed driver, Thomas Massarella, who despite being a novice was quicker with a 53.06. This was going to be interesting to watch. Jordan Elcock, also on his novice plates was third with a 57.3 with Taylor Waldron failing to finish the race.
Heat 2 saw Waldron dropped at the start as Lattimer and Massarella muscled their way through to relegate him into third. Lattimer kept the novice driver behind him until lap 10 when a great passing move saw Massarella get through to take the place off him and hold it to be the first Junior Blue over the line. Lattimer was second with Waldron third.
Heat 3 was a straight battle between Lattimer and Massarella with the more experienced driver holding on to the lead for the first 9 laps. However, on lap 10, Massarella struck and once again found himself out front in the class race. It was a confident drive and evidence that this is a competitive class across all levels of experience. Massarella took his second heat win, with Latttimer second and Waldron third.
With his confidence sky high, Massarella made the most of his class grid position and made sure that once out front he would stay there. Despite a strong drive by Lattimer, he just didn’t have the grunt to find a way past the novice who duly went on to take the class win with Lattimer having to settle for second. Elcock put in a stunning drive to make it 2 novices on the podium by taking third.
Overall, it was a great demonstration across both classes, both senior and junior that the racing is close, competitive and cost effective. With the NKRA round at Mansell Raceway next month, there will be plenty more action when these drivers return to do battle once more.

Formula Blue in U.K. Race Report April 2014

Samstag, Juni 14th, 2014

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Junior & Formula blue ‘0’ Plate 2014

Following on from the past two years where the ‘0’ Plate Championship was rained off at Mansell and snow affected at Three Sisters, it came as a welcome surprise when the 2014 meeting at the Clay Pigeon Raceway, was held in the best of conditions. Sunny and 18 degrees ! All the previous winners were present with the exception of Martyn Morris (not defending his title) and Steve Barlow ( on a North Sea Oil Rig !) Ross Adamson, last year’s Junior Blue Champion, had since moved up into Senior and was attempting to win the two titles back to back.


Jake Calvert, new boy to Junior Blue, laid down his intent from the word go winning heat 1. Chasing him home were Luke Lattimer and Nathan Wells. A repeat performance in heat 2, with a clear wins for Calvert from Lattimer, though this time with Taylor Waldron taking 3rd spot. The 3rd heat was a photo copy of the 2nd, Calvert clear in front from Lattimer and Waldron.

The grid for the Final had Calvert, by virtue of his 3 heat wins, on pole and Lattimer alongside. The second row was taken up by Waldron and Wells. From the green light Calvert shot off into the lead followed by Lattimer and Waldron. Calvert continued throughout the 21 lap Final to extend his lead to the flag, taking a convincing win and the ‘0’ Plate title! Behind, Lattimer suffered a bent axle whilst trying to negotiate another driver who had spun in front and was forced to retire. This opened the door for Waldron and Thomas Massarella to race for the runner-up spot. It was Waldron who clinched it. The consolation for Massarella was in being awarded the best Novice trophy.


1st Jake Calvert 0 + 0 = 0
2nd Taylor Waldron 3 + 2 = 5
3rd Luke Lattimer 2 + 5 = 7


The Large number of participating racers would require an extra Heat and a ‘B’ Final. As such it would, throughout the day, be important not to squander points, for what ever reason, but involvement in the ‘B’ Final became necessary.
Heat 1 and Martin Wheeler showed his intent by winning from the front row and setting the fastest lap in the process. 2nd was Stuart Gray having started form the second row with Duncan McLeod in 3rd. The chargers in this opening heat were Douglas Simpson reaching 4th from a 19th start place. Ian Bran field having started in 23rd made it forward to 14th. Chris Derrick made up 8 places from 15th to 7th. James Rees incurred a 5 place penalty for a start line infringement and Grahame Dudley was excluded for a driving misdemeanour.
Heat 2 was a clear win for Ross Adamson from the front row, with Rees and Keith Wilson chasing him home, albeit a couple of seconds adrift. Drivers making their presence felt, despite starting further back was Wheeler moving up from 23rd to finish 7th and Sam Dible climbing up to 11th from 21st.
Heat 3 saw another Heat win from Wheeler, once again setting fastest lap in the process. This time it was Rees and Chris Derrick taking up 2nd and 3rd finish places. Top charger was Adamson starting in 19th spot and reaching 6th place. Behind, Duncan McLeod moved up to 8th from 16th and Gray up to 10th form 18th.
Heat 4 had Simpson showing his racing skills winning from a grid 11 start place. Equally dominant was McLeod who finished 2nd having started in 12th spot. Not wanting to be outdone, Chris Derrick charged forward from 20th place to finish 6th.

With the completion of the heats the grids for both ‘A’ & ‘B’ Finals soon became apparent. Missing out by only 1 point Robert Dudley and Russell O’Neill shared the front row of the ‘B’ Final. Behind these two Robin Stoddart-Stones and Andrew Greenway made up the 2nd row. The fist four would qualify on to the rear of the ‘A’ Final so the race would eventually come down to finishing 4th or higher. From the green lights Dudley took the lead from O’Neill, by the end of lap 1 Rob Mortimore had moved past Greenway and Stoddard-Stones to take up 3rd place. Lap 2 and Stoddart-Stones had retaken 3rd position. Further back, Elis Jackson who had suffered terrible heats, was making his move and was up to 5th. Jackson continued his pressure first taking Mortimore and then Stoddart-Stones. On the half-distance mark Jackson passed O’Neill for 2nd spot whilst behind, the race for the all important spot was raging on. Rob Mortimore displaced Stoddart-Stones for 4th position. Next lap, however, Stoddart Stones tried an optimistic move and Mortimore who, unfortunately threw a chain in the resulting contact thus eliminating him from the rest of the race. On lap 9 Jackson took the lead which he held to the end. Behind, Stoddart-Stones accounted for both O’Neill and Dudley to claim 2nd place. The qualifiers, therefore, were Jackson, Stoddart-Stones, Dudley and O’Neill who now refuelled and joined the back of the ‘A’ Final.

In the ‘A’ Final itself, Wheeler had qualified for Pole Position, with Simpson alongside. On the 2nd row sat McLeod and Gray with the 3rd row holding Adamson (last year’s Junior Blue ‘0’ Plate winner) and the current No.1, Derrick.

After several rolling laps, ensuring a correct formation lap, the light changed. Wheeler had no intention of wasting his Pole position and took an immediate lead followed by Simpson, McLeod, Gray and Adamson. During the opening laps Wheeler established clear air between himself and the chasing pack. Behind him the racing was tight, Gray forced past McLeod with a ‘little’ contact which in turn allowed Adamson to follow through. Branfield out braked Foreman for 12th place and Jackson slid past David Goode for 20th spot. By lap 6 Wheeler was now clear at the front with Simpson leading the chasing group. Adamson and Rees accounted for Gray and set their sights on Simpson. Branfield moved up to 11th, passing Dible. Wilson out dragged both Ford and Foreman to sit on Branfield’s ‘tail’. Further back Stoddart-Stones, in a bold move slid inside Kaite Helps. On the half distance mark, Adamson, who had been pressurising Simpson, made his move and slid up into 2nd place. Wheeler, by now was some 3 seconds in front. Further back Ford passed Foreman for 13th place and Jackson claimed 19th spot from Kaite Helps. A tiring Ron Shone was passed by both his daughter Serita and Matt Parr.

On lap 11 Gray retook Rees for 4th. Once lap later and Derrick muscled past McLeod. Scott Keenan came to a halt, trackside, vacating 9th place and promoting the rest of the grid. Although the pace continued on furiously, the main player had, by now, achieved their position in the race. Wilson did however manage to account for Dible and take 10th place and Jackson passed Parr for 15th spot.

Into the last 3 laps of this 21 lap ‘A’ Final and Wheeler, some 6 seconds clear at the front, cruised home to an emphatic win. Adamson raced on to 2nd place, beating Rees by a second with Gray in 4th . A last lap move by Derrick say him passing Simpson, the pair then finished 5th and 6th. McLeod, Brotherwood and Wilson completed the ‘Top Ten’. Little changed in the second group of the ‘A’ Finalists, with Serita Shone holding off the attentions of Elis Jackson and Stoddart-Stones maintaining her position from Ron Shone.

The action didn’t end there ! Simpson was docked 5 places for a start line infringement dropping his position down to 10th place and Rees was excluded for a non-compliant carburettor.

The Final outcome gave a clear a decisive win and the National ‘0’ plate title to Martin Wheeler. 2nd overall was Ross Adamson who, having won the Junior ‘0’ plate last year came close to a back to back title win. Stuart Gray came 3rd taking the Master and Veteran titles at the same time. Further back in 16th place Ron Shone claimed the Legend title, whilst Duncan McLeod in 4th place won the Top Weight section.


1st Martin Wheeler 0 + 0 = 0
2nd Ross Adamson 5 + 2 = 7
3rd Stuart Gray 4 + 3 = 7
4th Duncan McLeod 3 + 5 = 8
5th Chris Derrick 6 + 4 = 10
6th Douglas Simpson 2 + 10 = 12
7th Robin Brotherwood 8 + 6 = 14
8th Ian Branfield 12 + 7 = 19

1st Stuart Gray 4 + 3 = 7
2nd Duncan McLeod 3 + 5 = 8
3rd Chris Derrick 6 + 4 = 10

1st Stuart Gray 4 + 3 = 7
2nd Kevin Ford 10 + 12 = 22


1st Ron Shone 15 + 17 = 32

1st Duncan McLeod 3 + 5 = 8
2nd Douglas Simpson 2 + 10 = 12
3rd Ian Branfield 12 + 7 = 19

Formula Blue in U.K. drive the next 3 years with BEBA Race Runner BBB TAB and with the BEBA Rain tyre Wet Runner TAB

Samstag, Juni 14th, 2014

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S & B Automotive Academy Blue Challenge
Round 1 at Clay Pigeon 9th March 2014
After the preceding winter’s terrible rain and associated floods, racers attending the
opening S & B Blue Challenge round were treated to a superb race day in lovely
sunshine. This would be the south’s first race on the newly homologated BEBA tyres
and the overwhelming feed back was positive with no adverse comments. Indeed a
few drivers raced on tyres purchase earlier upon which many practice laps had been
In the Junior Blue class the small grid saw Luke Lattimer gradually asserting his
authority by winning all 3 heats and putting himself on P1 for the Final. Nathan
Wells, winner of the opening Northern round and racing at Clay to get some track
time before the ‘0’ plate, sat on P2 following 2 x 2nd places and a 4th place in the
heats. In the Final Lattimer continued in a positive form establishing an early lead.
Revelation of the day was Thomas Massarella. On this, his first competitive race in
Junior Blue he moved into 2nd spot where he stayed until the flag. Try as he might,
Nathan Wells could not narrow the gap behind Massarella and he finished 3rd just
over a second adrift. By the time of the chequered flag, Lattimer had established a 9
second lead and laid down his marker for the rest of the year !
In the Formula Blue Senior Class, the largest senior grid of the day, all of the
previous years’ front runners were present, plus new boys James Rees and the father
and son duo of Mark and Toby Cook. With this number of racers the heats would
be very important in establishing the all important grid positions for the Final. Heat
1 was won by Ian Branfield from the reigning No.1 Chris Derrick, and then Kevin
Ford. Drivers charging forward included Keith Wilson and James Rees and Mark
Cook. On to heat 2, where Martin Wheeler won in dominant style from Wilson and
Sam Dible. The chargers this time were Branfied, Derrick and Rees. Heat 3 and this
time it was new boy Rees to show his potential with a clear win though he was being
chased down by Martin Wheeler, who finished 2nd from Sam Dible. Not far behind
was Duncan McLeod having forged forwards from absolute last.
The grid for the final had Dible on P1 with Rees opposite on the front row P 2.
Behind were Branfield and Wilson with Chris Derrick and Kevin Ford taking up
Row 3.
It didn’t take long for Branfield to move into the lead where he stayed to the flag in a
faultless display of precision racing. Wheeler and McLeod tangled with drivers in
an opening lap melee and then spent the rest of the race passing drives concentrating
on damage limitation. 2nd was Derrick with Wilson ‘locked’ on to his rear bumper !
3 seconds behind came Dible and Rees. The chargers in the Final were Robert
Dudley finishing 14th from absolute last and Ron Shone crossing the line 10th from a
16th start position.
The challenge now moves on to the Whilton Mill circuit, with Ian Branfield firmly
in the lead on 3 points with Dible close behind on 4 points. By virtue of also being a
Top Weight, Branfield has established a notable lead over Ford who ended the day
on 12 points. Chris Derrick ( on 7 points) heads the Masters section from Ford, who
in turn lead the Veteran group from Ron Shone ( 26 points). Finally, Shone fronts
the legend racers with Robin Stoddart-Stones in 2nd on 34 points.
Junior Blue
1st Luke Lattimer 0 + 0 = 0
Formula Blue
1st Ian Branfiled 3 + 0 = 3
2nd Sam Dible 0 + 4 = 4
3rd = Chris Derrick 4 + 3 = 7
James Rees 2 + 5 = 7
Keith Wilson 5 + 2 = 7
6th Kevin Ford 6 + 6 = 12
Blue Master
1st Chris Derrick 4 + 3 = 7
2nd Kevin Ford 6 + 6 = 12
3rd Duncan McLeod 10 + 9 = 19
Blue Veteran
1st Kevin Ford 6 + 6 = 12
2nd Ron Shone 16 + 10 = 26
Blue Legend
1st Ron Shone 16 + 10 = 26
Blue Top Weight
1st Ian Branfield 3 + 0 = 3
2nd Kevin Ford 6 + 6 = 12
3rd Duncan McLeod 10 + 9 = 19