For the last time in season 2012, Mendips Raceway will be back in action this Sunday and there is certainly a lot of silverware to be had with the BriSCA F2 Stock Cars Grand National Championship, the traditional ‘end of season’ title race for them, with the last race of each meeting counting towards the grid, and it dates back to 1971 as well as the West of England Championship Finals for both the all Sierra Special Rods and ‘Rookie’ Bangers.
Domestically, 886 Chris Bradbury wrapped up the track championship last time out. This was the fifth time in a row he has won the points here it looks set and that looks set to set up a fascinating battle between himself and the iconic Scotsman 7 Gordon Moodie, who is planning to travel down and defend the title he won at Barford last year.
Chris himself will be looking to re-gain the trophy he held in 2008, 2009 and 2010. It will not be all about these two of course. Teenage sensation 921 Jack Aldridge will be right up on the grid, as well the last driver to win the track championship other than Bradbury, 676 Neil Hooper and third in the World Final last month, 823 Sam Wagner is set to travel down from the northeast.If there is inclement weather, then an outside bet could be 254 Richard Beere, as the veteran is handily placed and as we saw two weeks ago, a match for anyone in the wet, and 783 James Rygor too another that shouldn’t be discounted.
The Bangers West of England Championship is the oldest Banger racing title in the region, and indeed the country as a whole, dating back to 1978. Back then Banger racing was, well, basic and as we know over time moved into being a meeting for what we now know as Unlimited National Bangers. The big cars are still a great spectacle but various factors have seen them on the wane in recent years, and with the Unlimited World Championship Ipswich, the meeting they all want to race at being moved to October from November it has rendered it almost impractical for us to run the WOE for Unlimited National Bangers. So, after last year’s somewhat disappointing meeting the decision was made to go back to the basics in which the race was founded 34 years ago, and run it for the ‘Rookie Bangers’. And thus it is not a new title for them, just a seamless shift, moving with the times. For the reasons stated in the news item on this website, the entry has had to be restricted, hopefully for this year only. Never the less, what we do have is a great looking entry of experience and less so and with only one previous winner on the grid in 29 Dave Dalton, a 49-1 chance of there being a new winner of the title at the end of the day. Last year it was won by 114 Nick Courtier, who has opted not to defend. There are plenty of favourites such as Bristol drivers 49 Rob Bevan, 54 Tom Davey, Somerset trio 113 Chris Jeanes, 133 Jody Jeanes and 475 Ben Sealey whilst perhaps the two that will take the most stopping could be 246 Ryan Sparks and 247 Richard Sparks.
The Sierra Special Rods provide local budget class non-contact racing and the West of England Championship has provided great races since it was incepted back in 2009. There is every reason to expect more of the same this time as they fight it out for the title, which was won is fine style last year by 210 Paul Barnes, just ahead of 23 Ross Stuckey and 198 Marcus Goldsmith. That runner up space was enough to secure Ross the points title. It is a case of deja-vu as Ross will come into the meeting with a slender points lead over 47 Richard Howard, himself a former winner. Whilst those behind do have a mathematical chance of winning it would be a vast surprise if it is not one of these two with the silver roof for 2013 at the end of the day. Which one though remains to be seen. With all the other protagonists set for the WOE too, the scene is set for another great race once again.
Please remember that due to the busy day, and the fact that the autumn evenings are moving in on us fast, the meeting will start at 1.00pm.