Manx team Michael Jackson/Callum Crowe win the F2 Cup class
The seventh and final round of the 2017 A.C.U./F.S.R.A. British F2 Sidecar Championship took place over the weekend 16th/17th September at Cadwell Park. The British F2 Sidecar Championship which was already decided after the penultimate round at Mallory Park with Team Founds Racing Pete Founds/Jevan Walmsley securing back to back titles, however the British F2 Cup class was still up for the taking.
There were two qualifying sessions on Saturday with the best combined times over the two sessions which would make up the grid for race one later in the day. Joining the series regulars were three wildcards, namely Reeves/Wilkes who were assisting Dave De Mott (DDM) on the set up of the sidecar, Gibson/Anderson/Moore. This would be Daryl driving his dads Shelbourne in his first British championship race with Ryan in the chair for Saturday and Ashley Sunday and also Meerkat Motorsport Millington/Child on their MR Equipe.
As the teams were preparing for qualifying one it started to rain, not particularly heavy, you know that fine light rain that gets you wet! The team leading the way on a not so wet track were Team ARC Lee Crawford/Scott Hardie recording a time of 1:52.956 on their second lap before the red flags came out. The rain started to fall ore heavily whilst the teams were waiting for the re-start of the session. No team could get anywhere near Crawford/Hardie at the resumption and thus they held a 4.6s over Reeves/Christie, followed by Founds/Walmsley, Ramsden/Ramsden and Hegarty/Neave.
On to qualifying two and the teams were brought to the holding area only to be sent back as there was oil down at Mansfield so an early lunch was taken.
After lunch qualifying resumed on a very wet track but at least the rain had stopped for the time being. The times started to come down from what the teams set in qualifying one and every single team went quicker on the sodden circuit and apart from five of the seventeen teams, the fastest lap achieved was on their last lap of qualifying. It was Crawford/Hardie LCR Suzuki on pole.187s ahead of Founds/Walmsley LCR Suzuki. On the second row Ramsden/Ramsden LCR Honda lining up alongside Reeves/Wilkes DDM Suzuki. The third row of the grid would see Hegarty/Neave Baker Honda lining up alongside Harrison/Winkle Bellas Honda. On the fourth row Reeves/Christie DDM Suzuki alongside first of the F2 cup class Gibson/Anderson Shelbourne Suzuki. On row five Jackson/Crowe Windle Suzukiand Remnant/Tilley Lumley Kawasaki. Row six would feature Ilaria/James DDM Suzuki and Riley/Haynes MR Equipe Suzuki. On the seventh row on their DMR Honda Anderson/Gravel and joining them Lumley/Whitnell Lumley Kawasaki.
Starting on row eight wildcards Millington/Child MR Equipe Suzuki alongside Stainton/Stainton LCR Suzuki and rounding off Pettman/Saunders-Stewart Windle Yamaha.
Race one was to be over twelve laps but due to delays was changed to ten laps. The race finally got away just after half past four and a blistering start from the Ramsdens lead the way up to Coppice. After the end of lap one the Ramsdens lead the way with Founds/Walmsley 0.3s behind, down in to third were pole setters Crawford/Hardie 0.4s behind and the same margin ahead of Reeves/Wilkes. Hegarty/Neave decided to see how wet the grass was and dropped eight places to thirteenth This was heading for a tight battle and with so much spray coming from the sidecars, track position would be at a premium. The current champions Founds/Walmsley then set the fastest sector one and two times and took the lead by the end of lap two recording 1:52.084 thus opening up a 1.536s gap to Crawford/Hardie, Reeves/Wilkes had slotted in to third at the expense of the Ramsdens. The leading F2 Cup runners Jackson/Crowe had a cushion of four seconds over Team Powerhouse Ilaria/James who in turn had a three second lead over Remnant/Tilley. By the end of lap three there was just one second separating the top three and a fastest lap of the race so far 1:50.805 was recorded by Reeves/Wilkes. In the F2 Cup there was change as Gibson/Anderson, Anderson/Gravel, Riley Haynes and Lumley/Whitnell had all moved ahead of Remnant/Tilley. After the end of lap four it was even closer between the top three as all three teams recorded 1:50, the fastest lap was set by Crawford/Hardie 1:50.490 and the gap to the leaders just 0.274s with Reeves/Wilkes 0.497s behind second. The gap stayed the same on the next lap but after six of the ten completed laps Founds/Walmsley recorded a time of 1:49.823 to open up a 1.237 gap to second placed pairing of Crawford/Hardie with Reeves/Wilkes right on their tail 0.103s in arrears. In the F2 cup Remnant/Tilley had gained one place and sixth in class at the expense of Lumley/Whitnell. On the seventh lap there was a racing incident between Crawford/Hardie and Reeves/Wilkes with the former having to retire on lap seven and handing a six second lead to Founds/Walmsley. So it was the current champions taking the win by 2.249s from Reeves/Wilkes and the Ramsdens in third with Harrison/Winkle pipping Reeves/Christie in fourth by the smallest of margins 0.036s. In the F2 Cup Jackson/Crowe took the spoils and in doing so secure the F2 Cup championship with Anderson/Gravel in second and Gibson/Anderson third.
After each championship race the sidecars enter parc ferme for inspection for a period of time. After much deliberation that went on late in to the evening by the BMCRC club officials, the conclusion was to remove Reeves/Wilkes from the results for machine ineligibility.
Race one result Super F2
Race one result F2 Cup
On Sunday morning there was a slight delay to warm up, not because of rain or a wet track but because of thick fog hanging over the circuit resulting in poor visibility. One of the teams to suffer in warm up were the Ramsdens who blew an engine and with only just over an hour to the start of the second race they were certainly up against it.
Scheduled for eighteen laps they did indeed make the start and not only that had a blistering start once again and lead the way up to Coppice but unfortunately for them didnt get much further after suffering a clutch failure and there only DNF this season. At the end of lap one it was Harrison/Winkle leading the chasing pack over the line from Founds/Walmsley, Crawford/Hardie who had made repairs to get the outfit on the grid for race two, Hegarty/Neave, Reeves/Christie and in sixth and leading the F2 Cup class followed by another five F2 cup runners Remnant/Tilley who were just 0.075s ahead of Anderson/Gravel and Gibson/Moore less than a second back in third. By the end of lap two Founds/Walmsley had taken the lead and the first proper flying lap in the dry recording 1:40.263 to move ahead of Harrison/Winkle, with Crawford/Hardie third and Hegarty/Neave in fourth. The positions swapped again by the end of lap three and it was Harrison/Winkle leading from Founds/Walmsley and the gap between the top four teams was just 0.931s. In the F2 cup Lumley/Whitnell had moved in to fourth in class ahead of Ilaria/James. It was all change again after four laps completed of eighteen as Founds/Walmsley went sub 1:40 recording a time of 1:39.703 and took the lead once again, with Crawford/Hardie slotting in to second thus relegating Harrsion/Winkle to third and just 0.2s behind in fourth Hegarty/Neave. The team of Ilaria/James would retire on lap three due to a broken hose. After six completed laps there were new leaders as Crawford/Hardie had moved ahead of Founds/Walmsley and the gap 0.625s, Hegarty/Neave currently in fourth just 0.164s behind Harrison/Winkle in third. Lap seven would see the team of Reeves/Christie retire and after eight completed laps it was all change once again as Founds/Walmsley setting the fastest lap of the race 1:38.879 taking the lead from Crawford/Hardie and the team of Hegarty/Neave slotting in to third place at the expense of Harrison/Winkle. In the F2 Cup leading the way, the pairing of Anderson/Gravel had moved ahead of Remnant/Tilley with Jackson/Crowe slotting in to third in class ahead of Gibson/Moore. The husband and wife pairing Giles and Jen Stainton came off the circuit at Mansfield and hit the armaco barrier. At the end of lap twelve Founds/Walmsley had increased their lead out to 5.679s after setting the fastest lap of the race 1:37.950 to Crawford/Hardie in second and in third it was still Hegarty/Neave just 0.5s ahead of Harrison/Winkle. The fight for the third place podium changed again after thirteen completed laps as Harrison/Winkle usurped Hegarty/Neave and the gap 0.177s. In the F2 cup Jackson/Crowe had moved ahead of Remnant/Tilley in to second in class. With fifteen laps completed Hegarty/Neave had moved ahead once again of Harrison/Winkle. There was no change after sixteen laps in the super F2 class but in the F2 cup class Gibson/Moore had overtaken Remnant/Tilley to gain third place. Remarkably the pairing of Hegarty/Neave recorded their personal best lap on lap seventeen in chasing down Crawford/Hardie and as the chequered flag came down were just 1.101s behind them in third. The winners by 11.838s and taking their eleventh championship win this season Founds/Walmsley from Crawford/Hardie and Hegarty/Neave in third. In the F2 Cup Anderson/Gravel took their second class win this season, Jackson/Crowe were awarded a ten second penalty for overtaking under yellow flags thus resulting them being demoted to third in class and Gibson/Moore moving to second.
Super F2 cup
The final championship standings for the top three in each class are as follows:
For the full results please visit the FSRA website.
The FSRA would like to give thanks to BMCRC (Bemsee) for hosting us at the final round and also a big thank you to the marshal’s and medics as without you none of the racing would be possible and a speedy recovery to Giles and Jen Stainton.
Congratulations to the Isle of Man pairing of Mike Jackson and Callum Crowe on winning the British F2 Cup, Peter Founds and Jevan Walmsley on winning the 2017 ACU/FSRA British F2 Sidecar Championship and to all the other registered teams for providing great entertainment for the public as there has been great battles all season long throughout the field.
Enjoy the remainder of the 2017 season wherever you may be and see you all at the Sidecar Bonanza at Cadwell Park 28th
Don’t forget to book your hotel and dinner tickets for the presentation at the Radisson Blu hotel 2nd