EIGHT titles are still up for grabs at Darley Moor MCRRC after last weekend’s penultimate round where 10 championships were decided.
After hitting the track to contend with double champion Lloyd Shelley, Andy Taylor and Carl Morris were back out for the Open Solo races. Whilst the pair remained out front throughout race one, they were hit with jump start penalties, which effectively handed Richard Eglin the victory as Taylor bagged second and Adam Walters took third.
Morris made amends for his fourth place finish when he led the opening lap of race two, but Taylor passed him on the second lap followed by Eglin on the third, pushing Morris back to third as Taylor nabbed the win.
High Peak’s Chris Moore retained the Lightweight Championship after securing a flag to flag victory in the first combined Lightweight/Formula Darley race, nearly 10 seconds clear of Gary Vines.
His second place finish in race two, just ahead of Andy Bacon but behind nearest title rival Graham Wilson, was enough to put the championship out of reach as Moore retained his title for the fourth year in a row.
Reigning and current Formula Darley breadwinner Dave Carson was also back in action in the Mini Sound of Thunder scraps, where he finished just behind double-winner Joe Walton and nearly man Jason Wilkes in both races.
The result leaves Walton with a 20 point gap to Carson at the top of the Mini Sound of Thunder standings, and still a chance to dethrone the defending champ.
David Bradley secured the Classic 1000 Championship after two runner up finishes six and 10 seconds behind double race-winner Neil Hingley. But it could have been a different story had Hingley campaigned the entire season – his double victory makes it four wins from the last four.
With seventh place overall in the first race and a ninth in the second, Cumbrian Geoff Hadwin took two Classic 250 class wins and secured the title.
The Formula 125 championship honours went to Southampton’s James Bull after he and Durhamite Jake Hopper shared a second and a third apiece, with both F125 wins going to Jeremy Knight in an impressive fifth and sixth overall.
A lights to flag victory in the first Pre Injection 1300 race was enough for Jamie Pearson to put both hands on the crown as he nudged the title just out of reach of both Mark Brailsford and Andrew Lowe.
But both Pearson and Lowe failed to complete the first lap in race two, allowing Brailsford to sear off into the distance to take the win some seven seconds clear of Dean Ephgrave and Darren Spruce.
As usual, Lowe and Ephgrave then took to the combined Steel Frame/Pre Injection 600 grids on the same machinery – a Yamaha R6 and a Honda CBR600, respectively. But Lowe didn’t make the grid in race one, leaving Pre Injection runner Matt Smith to victory over Steel Frame rider Dave Marsden and Tim Walsh.
Lowe was then forced to start race two from the very back of the grid in 25th, but he made a heroic charge through the field and moved up to fifth after one lap, eventually hitting the front on lap five and holding on for the win just over 0.25 seconds clear of Smith.
Victory gave the Stone native his third Pre Injection 600 title on the bounce, while Ephgrave will have to wait until the Stars at Darley meeting next month for another chance to secure Steel Frame honours.
While Dan Knight and Matthew Rostron managed two dominant wins, Anthony Eades and Keith Box were the final championship winners of the round as they secured the Open Sidecar title with a brace of runner up finishes behind the 600 duo as first 1000cc outfit home.
Knight and Rostron’s perfect points haul leaves them with a 25 point advantage in the Formula 600 Sidecar Championship heading into the final round.
But as is the case in many clubs, the closest finish of the day was left to the competitors of the teeming CB500 grids.
Birminghan’s Andy Whale soared to the front of the pack in race one to take a win 2.3 seconds clear Chris Spink and Mark Emuss as championship leader Paul Sawyer only managed a seventh place finish.
Despite his zero points haul in race one, Sawyer got the jump on Whale in race two and led his title rival by 1.3 seconds after just one lap.
Whale moved to within 0.5 seconds of Sawyer on lap four after laying down the fastest lap of the day, but in the end he came up short by a hair-splitting 0.02 seconds as Gary Knowles managed third some six seconds further back.
*Images: Tony Else