Catch up on all the action at Round 2 of the 2017 CSCA Series, hosted by The MG Car Club of Sydney on the North Circuit of Sydney Motorsport Park, thanks to this in-depth report by Competition Secretary Mike Basquil.
By Mike Basquil
April saw Round 2 of our 2017 CSCA Series hosted by the MG Clubs of Sydney and Newcastle at the North Circuit of Sydney Motorsport Park, or Eastern Creek as most of us still refer to it.
Preparation for the event ran smoothly, although we were concerned about the level of entries with just a couple of weeks leading up to the event. The eventual number was 108 entries with 4 withdrawals and 2 no shows, so 101 runners troubled the timers.
Administration and scrutineering were complete by 8:30am and the drivers’ briefing started not long after. I know some of us have endured untold numbers of briefings, but they are required both legally and functionally. They ensure that everyone is well aware of how the day will be run and what is to be expected.
I helped out in admin when needed and then moved to assist scrutineering. While the CLA runners’ level of car and safety preparation is up to scratch, some others are taking this important part of the event a little too casually. Scrutineering is no more than a basic safety check of the car and the drivers’ equipment to ensure that they are both up to standard. Some tyres were way below the markers and some of the helmets belong in a museum.
If you come to rely on these items it could result in a world of pain for us as organizers and the entrant in particular. To that end we will be doing spot checks as cars come off the circuit at future events failure in either department will results in fines from the stewards and a forfeit of entry.
Another thing to come out of the post-event debrief was that we are seeing some over driving in an effort to get clear laps. The hardest part of putting an event together is the grouping the cars, and it’s an inexact science not helped by a couple of drivers passing in the apex of corners – an action specifically warned not to be attempted at the briefing. Two-wide at the apex of the left-hander into the flip flop and three-wide into turn 1 could have all ended in tears. A certain yellow Renault and an Audi being the guilty parties.
The most troubling trend of all was the ignoring of the flags, specifically the RED and black flags. A yellow and black Elise (after passing a car into the wall TWICE) and a black Jag guilty on this occasion. Total ignorance was given as an excuse and the driver ‘talked to’ by the Clerk of Course might not be so lucky in future.
Lionel Walker informed the drivers briefing that for 2017 and beyond we will be dividing Class D into modern and classic classes to allow some of the older non-registered cars to have a class for competition and hopefully attract some extra interest from the Class Sa and Sb from the racing fraternity.
Len Goodwin continues his blitz of Class C2 in the 26R replica.
Class D2 was the battleground of the naturally aspirated Elise and Exige, and it is a battle ground where no prisoners are taken. Rex Hodder came out on top, with Leigh Mellor a deep breath behind in 2nd and Phil Easterbrook 3rd enjoying a battle with Mark Beckett in his Elise 111R 4th in class. Dennis Brady was home 5th, leaving the class results all CLA at the top.
Class D4 Modern saw Mark Alexander a class winner again and fastest marque car in his Exige S, despite literally blowing the roof off. Exige roofs fly just as well as the car – it got to great heights and gently came to ground on soft grass for very little damage, although that can’t be said for the fixings.
We welcomed Duncan Andrews back into the fold after a long layoff 2nd. Peter Taylor in his Elise S was 3rd, Liam Sheppard in the Cup 240 was 4th with Steve Alcorn in his Elise S 5th and Emiliano Valdes wasn’t frightened away after round 1 and returned in his Exige with 6th in class. Brett Stevens was our final runner in his Elise placing 7th.
In Class D5 Martin Duursma was the class winner in his V6 Exige, with Leigh Fuller in his Exige V6 2nd. This was a ding dong battle on the timesheets all day until Martin decided for ‘one last run’ and put in a banzai effort to take the win by 0.6 sec.
Class R1 saw Terry Waugh in the Banks Eurpoa Take 2nd in class with Brian Sutton in the Caterham 3rd (Brian ran under the MG Newcastle banner and was also the Chief Scrutineer). We were missing a few of our regular runners in this class.
In the non-marque classes Keith Edwards in the Audi RS3 took 2nd, posting a personal best in Class 2BM, with Rex Mellor in the BMW 4th. We had a new member running in Class 3BM – Stephen Wan in a Honda Civic with a bigger 2.4 liter motor to liven things up for 3rd in Class. Peter and John Deller in the Commodore were 6th and 7th in class with a separation of 0.2sec on the time sheets. It appears the long straights allow the Commodore to keep its cool.
Greg Baker in the Pulsar GTi was 8th; Mark Prew in the Porsche 924 complete with a Holden V6 power plant were our final runners and finished 15th in class. This class is very well supported, which is great to see.
Round 3 hosted by Jaguar will be run on the 13th May and entries are now open via the CAMS Event Entry website to continue the fun.
The remaining 2017 season the dates are listed below:
Round 3 JDCA 13th May SMP North
Round 4 AHOC 1st July Wakefield Park
Round 5 MOCA 12th August SMP Brabham
Round 6 SCCA 24th September SMP South
Round 7 TSOA 15th October Wakefield Park
At the close of play we had the CSCA presentation of awards for the 2016 season. I was a little disappointed with the turn out especially from the other member clubs and I still have eight awards to give to their respective recipients, always the worst part of the season close – with a bit of luck and a few dollars in the kitty we will be able to do a better job this year
See you at the track,