0 Plate Report – 2022
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2022 NKRA ‘0’ PLATE CHAMPIONSHIP
at the Clay Pigeon Raceway on April 10th.
MITCHELL AND WATTS RETAIN ‘0’ PLATES IN JUNIOR BLUE & FORMULA BLUE
Having won 2 of the 3 heats, Sam Mitchell secured Pole position for the Final from Rhys Read, who claimed the 3rd heat. The 2nd row was taken up by Jamie Bradfield and Jamie Dart.
From the ‘off’ Mitchell snatched the lead closely followed by Read, Bradfield and Dart. Positions remained the same for 4 laps with all the competitors in close order. Then Read made a move on Mitchell at the exit from the hairpin. The two were momentarily locked together allowing Bradfield to slip by both into the lead. He held the lead until lap 9 when Mitchell re-established himself at the front. There it stayed until the chequered flag, with Mitchell inching out his lead. Read tried all he could to pass Bradfield, but to no avail. Occasionally his efforts earned him a contact warning board but it was Bradfield who finished 2nd with Read 3rd and Dart 4th.
In the Seniors, it was Dave Watts who won 2 of the Heats with Anth Cleal winning the 3rd. These two took up the front row for the Final with Watts on Pole. Behind, sat Joey Foster on 3rd and Kieran Quirke on 4th. David Waldron and Nigel Vickery were positioned on row 3. Steve Groves and Paul Alexander on row 4 with Rob Mortimore and Mike Bell bringing up row 5. So there were 8 seeded drivers from last year in the top 10 grid positions.
Watts was ready for the lights change and took the lead followed by Cleal, Foster, Quitke and Waldron. By the end of lap one Serita shone had passed Bell for 10th place. Further back David Goode, in 14th had been ‘muscled ‘ off-line allowing Chris Lord, Phil Shears, Ben Joseph and Sylvian Vessier past. Somewhere in the opening incident, Stuart Gray accrued some damage causing his retirement.
Into lap 2 and the front three had created some ‘air’ between themselves and the chasing group, which was headed by Vickery. Back in 14th place, Joseph passed Shears followed by Vessier. Next lap and Bell was settling into his stride re-passing Serita. Joseph was now up to 13th position overtaking Stoddart-Stones. Again he was followed through by Vessier.
Lap 4 saw the faster drivers, who qualified well, forging forwards. Alexander and Bell passed Groves and Joseph accounted for Chris Underhill. Next lap and Joseph was past Mortimore and Vessier overtook Underhill.
Into lap 6 Alexander succumbed to pressure from Bell and Joseph. Vessier took another lap to pass Serita. Vessier continued his charge, followed by Serita and slipped past Mortimore. They were now in 11th and 12th place respectively.
Over the next 2 laps Vessier accounted for Mortimire followed, again by Serita . Lap 9 and Bell passed Waldron for 6th spot.
Half distance and the front three had broken away with Watts just clear in the lead from Cleal with Foster, a small distance adrift. Bell continued to charge and passed Vickery for 5th place. Joseph forced his way past Waldron thereby allowing Alexander to follow through. Behind Vessier overtook Steve Groves.
Into lap 11 and Joseph was up to 6th passing Vickery. Lap 12 spelled disaster for Alexander. Chasing Vickery and in passing lapped drivers, he chose the wrong side hoping to pull off a spectacular move. Unfortunately for him, it didn’t come off resulting in a trip to the barrier. Whist extracting himself, from the tyres the rest of the grid ‘sailed’ by. In the aftermath, Vessier moved up to 8th passing Waldron.
Over the last 8 laps, as the leaders came across drivers about to be lapped, the front 3 tried to capitalise on the situation by gauging how to get past without compromising their positions.
Lap 14 and Serita passed Groves and was now up to 10th position.
At 75 % race distance, Josephs’s charge came to an end as he rolled to the tack side. From 19th to 6th was quite an effort! Nos such bad luck for Vessier who passed Vickery as well as taking the position vacated by Joseph.
4 laps to go and the front 3 had closed right up each one pressing to try and force an error from the driver in front without giving space for a move from the man behind. On lap 17, novice Peter Staddon accounted for a re-started Alexander. With 3 laps to go Mortimore passed Groves whilst Shears slid by Robin Stoddart-Stones, who was having none of it and on the penultimate lap retook Shears.
Last lap and Watts led Cleal by the narrowest of margins, with Foster a few seconds adrift in a safe 3rd spot. In the mid-order, a tiring Groves lost several places and Shears was passed by Chris Lord and Alex Kemp.
So on to the chequered flag and a fine win for Dave Watts, thereby retaining his ‘0’ Plate from 2022. Cleal pushed him all the way finishing 0.3 seconds behind. 3rd was Joey foster with Kieran Quitke in 4th and Mike bell 5th over the line.
Once the points were been checked ( where you start plus where you finish added together) the various categories of ‘ o’ plate winners were announced.
1st – Sam Mitchell 0 + 0 = 0
2nd – Jamie Bradfield 3 + 2 = 5
3rd – Rhys Read 2 + 3 = 5
1st – Dave Watts 0 = 0 = 0
2nd – Anth Cleal 2 + 2 = 2
3rd – Joey Foster 3 + 3 = 6
1st Anth Cleal 0 = 0 = 0
2nd Joey Foster 2 + 2 = 2
3rd Nigel Vickery 4 + 3 = 7
1st – Anth Cleal 0 + 0 = 0
2nd Nigel Vickery 3 + 2 = 5
3rd David Waldron 2 + 3 = 5
1st Chris Underhill 0 + 0 = 0
2nd Robin Stoddart-Stones 2 + 3 = 5
3rd Chris Lord 4 + 2 = 6
BLUE TOP WEIGHT
1st rob Mortimore 0 + 0 = 0
2nd Phil Shears 2 + 2 = 4
3rd Ron shone 4 + 3 = 7