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Busy Weekend of racing at round 2 of the Crewe and South Cheshire Championship held at Tonfanau

Thursday June 2, 2016 at 1:35pm
It was three starts and three wins for Bob Varey (Yamaha 600) in round two of the Crewe and South Cheshire club’s 450-1100cc championship at Tonfanau, but unless the 19-year-old diesel engineer from Preston can find some sponsorship very soon, his hopes of going on to win the title look slim.

Riding a very stock machine, 12 bhp down the opposition, Bob not only raced unbeaten in his three races, but also set a new lap record of 99.64mph in his final outing.


Sixth on the grid for race one and forced to use old tyres because of lack of funds, it did not take Varey long to take the lead and he headed the pack at the end of the opening lap. Leading Chris Mort (Honda 600) by half a second, Varey stretched the lead to win by just over five seconds. Mike Norbury (Honda 600) was third home, more than six seconds further back.


Varey was on pole for race two, but was pushed back to second at the first corner. He was in the lead at the end of the lap, nearly seven tenths of a second ahead of Norbury. Again Varey pulled away from the opposition to win by four and half seconds from Norbury, who battled with Mort throughout the race. Norbury eased away from Mort once the pair caught the slower traffic, crossing the line almost two seconds clear.


Varey led race three from the opening lap, but Mort and Varey were right there battling with him and the positions kept swopping. Varey dropped back to third after running straight on, but passed Norbury on the penultimate lap to go second and then got by Mort to win by just four hundredths on the last lap. Norbury was third.


Mort, the reigning big bike champion, leads the series on 36, six ahead of Varey. James Evans (Yamaha 600) is third on 27 after taking a fourth and two fifths.  


Chris Ganderton (Suzuki 650) climbed to the top of the Minitwins championship, with an impressive hat trick of wins in his three races. He beat Joe Walton (Suzuki 650) by a comfortable 12 seconds in race one, then by a similar margin race two and finally by just under eight seconds in the third outing. Ganderton, the 32-year-old landscape gardener from Anglesey, had more ambitions than just winning his class. The Minitwins ran with the Steel Frame 600s and Ganderton’s aim to be overall winner each time out.


In race one Ganderton was the first man home, beat Jon Wright’s Steel Frame by over six seconds.

Wright was leading race two, but ran wide allowing Ganderton to get by and win by half a second.

Race three was red flagged after five laps, with Ganderton in front, two and a half seconds ahead of Wright. Ganderton tops his championship on 38 ten ahead of John Nicklin who had a fourth and two thirds. Those three wins in the Steel Frame class, plus his win in the rained off meeting earlier in the years, puts Wright firmly in command.


Dean Ephgrave chased Wright home in race one, just four fifths of a second behind, after setting the fastest lap of the race. Tony Jefferies was third, with one and a half seconds covering all three.


Wright beat Ephgrave in race two by two seconds, with Nick Jefferies third, over six seconds further back. Nick Jefferies was the faller that brought out the red flags in the final race. His departure left Wright one second ahead of Tony Griffiths and Ephgrave third. Wright has 40 points, with Ephgrave and Lewis Clark joint second on 26.


The day started badly for fast lady Caron Roberts. Her Classic 250 Singles Bultaco broke a piston ring in practice, damaging the piston and forcing to fit a new engine. She suffered from clutch problems in race one and failed to finish. Nick Bramley on his BSA Bantam 186 was the winner, beating home Dave Thorpe (Ducati) by almost four seconds.


Bramley won race two from Mark Capewell (NSU 250) and Thorpe. With the clutch working properly Roberts was fourth home, six seconds down on Thorpe.


Roberts was on top form in the third and final race, taking victory and setting the fastest lap. She crossed the line over seven seconds in front of Thorpe, with Roger Smith (Ducati) third. Bramley retired with mechanical problems, but still leads the championship after two rounds on 30 points, three more than Roger Smith. Dave Thorp is third, one point behind Smith


Roberts was in fine form in the Classic 250 class. She was third behind Ted Cornes (Suzuki) and Geoff Hadwin (Suzuki) in the first race, with just two and half seconds covering the top three after eight laps. Roberts won the next two races. In race two she beat Cornes home by three hundredths of a second, setting the fastest lap, with Hadwin third.


In the early stages she had been held up by a big Classic machine, but once past she caught Hadwin and then moved ahead of Cornes at the hairpin on the last lap to grab victory. Roberts won the final race, too, again setting the fastest lap and crossing the line seven seconds clear of Cornes, with Hadwin eight seconds further back. Roberts now leads the series on 37 points, two ahead of Hadwin, with Cornes third on 28.


Mark Griffiths (Honda) was unbeatable in the Classic 251-500 class. Second home in all three races was Sarah Measures (Yamaha). Thanks to her third place at Easter, Measures leads the championship on 35, five more than Griffiths. Mark Griffiths also gave a Ducati Mach 1 an outing in the first Classic 125 and Single Cylinder class, taking third place behind Nick Bramley and Dave Thorp in the first race despite missing gears and not being able to use first gear and no clutch after the first lap


A hat trick of wins for Derek Heap (Rob North BSA 930) was enough to take him to the top of the Classic over 501cc class, He has 30 points, four more than Michael Bevan (Norton 750), who took a third and two seconds.


With Easter’s bad weather a distant memory John Price was looking forward to round two of the club championships and with good reason. Price was well prepared with three Kawasaki ZXR 400s, two dry bikes and one wet bike for his six races. Price won his first Super Sports 400 class race, beating Paul Odlum on his Kawasaki by just under eight seconds. Phil Millard (Kawasaki) was a distant third, under pressure from Mark Disley (Kawasaki). Price won race two by more than 12 seconds from Disley, with Millard third. Price completed his hat trick in race three, a comfortable 17 seconds in front of Millard. Disley was third home. Price has 40 points, with Millard on 31 and Disley third, with 29.


Price had little opposition in the Forgotten Era 251-500 class. He beat Phil Millard by a clear 15 seconds in race one and was then over 22 seconds ahead of Millard in the next. Millard was second in the third race, 19 seconds adrift. Price not only topped his class each time out, but was overall winner in the three outings, beating the over 501cc machines.


Price tops the championship table on 40, with Millard second on 33 and Tony Griffiths third with 32.

To top a great day Price was awarded The Kelvin Beckett Memorial Trophy, He donated the £125 cash award to the Air Ambulance on the basis that we never know when we might need it and that they play such a large part in motorcycle racing.


Steve Birtles (Yamaha 1000) could not match the pace of Price’s little Kawasaki, but he was unbeatable in the big bike class. He beat Dean Culley (Suzuki 750) in races one and two and then headed home Marc Taylor (Yamaha 1000) in the third. Birtles leads the series on 40 points with Paul Myler (Suzuki 1100) second on 29 after taking three fourth places. Culley is third three points further back.  


Just Dave Edwards and Huw Edwards battled it out in the Forgotten Era up to 250 class. Huw won the first two races, but failed to finish in the third. Dave Edwards now has 29 points and Huw 20.


Talented teenager, Sam Grief, ran both the home built Kreidler 50 in the 50 and Classic 125 and 250 class and a Triumph 600, kindly supplied by Mike Chorlton of Oswestry, in the 451 to 1100 Open class. He won the first and second 50cc class races, but the machine was down on speed and he finished mid pack overall in a class he has previously won outright.  The third 50cc race ended in a retirement when a gear shift pin failed. The youngster had three steady rides on the Triumph, which problems with third gear. He learnt a great deal about a new and much bigger machine in a very competitive class.


Phil Leatherland (Suzuki) had a lonely time in the 250 GP class winning all three races without opposition after Andy Timbrell (Spondon Yamaha) retired after just two laps in race one.


Roger Stockton and Sharon Doodson (D&D Windle) tightened their grip on the club’s Sidecar championship winning all three races from Adam and Tom Christie (LCR). Stockton has 40, 13 more than Christie

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