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Franklin Bookends EMRA Race Season

Tuesday September 22, 2020 at 11:25am
Franklin Bookends EMRA Race Season

The first race in the 2020 EMRA season was won by Emma Franklin, and it was she who closed the very much shortened season by winning the DJ Emanuele Open 500 race on her 250 Honda. Having already won the first 500 race, Emma started on pole for the final race but found herself overwhelmed by all the larger machines off the line and it was Martin Radford’s CB500 ahead of the similar machines of Richard Blunt, Darren Conneely, and Darren Faulkner, with Emma down in sixth place, and for the first half of the race Radford managed to hold off the three CB500s. On lap five Blunt got past to lead from Conneely with Marcus Tatchell bringing his NC30 Honda into third, Radford dropping to fourth with Emma now fifth and this whole group covered by less than a second. Lap six saw another new leader as Tatchell got ahead of Conneely and Blunt and Emma now fourth. With one lap to go she was second and setting fastest lap of the race she closed on Marcus, finally taking first place on the last lap, finishing off a very strange year with the best race of the day.

Four wins from four rides was the score for Dan Stamper, making a welcome return to his local track on the Allied Racing Suzuki. In the first Buildbase Mallory Trophy race it was John Lea who led early on from Ashley King, but Stamper took the lead on lap four and pulled away to leave Lea second from King. The second race saw Stamper pull away from the start, with King and Lea scrapping for second until Ryan Oliver got his Suzuki into third place in the closing stages. Both Superstock races saw Stamper win from King with Oliver third. The Pre-injection races were run in conjunction with the Superstocks and resulted in the customary victories for Steve Brittain with Aaron Staniforth second.

The first Tamworth Yamaha open 600 race saw Kirk Powell win after a long scrap with Blake Shaw, and the second looked to be a repeat of race one until Gerards on the final lap when Powell crashed and Shaw went on to win, with Shane Payne coming out best of a scrap with Caiden Wilkinson, Tim Walsh and John Bolsover for second place.

Darran Faulkner won the first Fast Bike 500 race, but Martin Radford followed him closely for the whole race, finishing less than a second behind. The second race saw Faulkner lead for three laps, with Richard Blunt close behind and Radford holding a watching brief in third. Blunt was ahead on lap four, but next time round it was Faulkner again, only for Blunt to make a better job of getting through the back markers on the last lap to win by 0.9 seconds – his talents clearly not confined to the most spectacular stoppies we’ll ever see on a CB500.

Josh Alder was just ahead of Shane Payne when the first Rookie race was stopped, but suffered a five-second penalty for anticipating the start, giving Payne the win. Race two saw Alder lead again from Payne, gradually pulling out a lead of over four seconds

Tony Bradazon won both of the Lightweight races from Will Loder, but it was a very close-run thing in race one with Loder closing to 0.3 seconds on the last lap. In the second race Loder had to worry about Marcus Tatchell, who finished only a quarter of a second behind him, lapping more than a second a lap quicker than he had in race one. The 125-450 class brought two more wins for Annabel Thomas on the Microlise Moto3 bike, with Katie Hand taking second in the class on the SS300, and Emma Franklin was the first 125 home. It is worth noting that there were six female riders in this class out of fifteen starters – 40% of the entry.

John Lea ran away with both Minitwins races on his 250 Yamaha with Richard Saunders second, and John Chambers won both Earlystocks races on his VFR750 from Daniel Imberg.

The ACU 50cc and Streetstocks races brought a good entry of 22 machines, with John Cooke running away from the field on his Derbi 50 beating Warren Harvey, also Derbi-mounted, by 18 seconds in race one while Harvey was involved in a scrap with Graham Corfield and Owen Monaghan on 125 streetstock bikes, Corfield coming out half a second ahead after seven laps. Cooke was even quicker in the second race, averaging a fraction over 70mph for the race – pretty good for a 50cc bike. Harvey was 24 seconds behind this time, with Clive Somerfield third, just ahead of Graham Corfield.

A full grid of sidecars included the pre-injection outfits, who turned up in numbers even though their championship (like so many others) was a victim of the Covid virus. Sean Hegarty beat Gary Horspole by 2.5 seconds, with Morgan third ahead of Brian Ilaria, while Joe Heys won the pre-injection section. Race two saw Hegarty ahead of Horspole but as the race wore on Brian Ilaria speeded up to finish only 0.15 seconds down in third, while Wayne Lockey also closed in to within a second at the flag. Heys was the pre-injection winner again.

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