STOCK CAR: Strong showing from Spalding’s finest

NEED FOR SPEED: Spalding F2 Stock Car star Carl Issitt en route to a third place finish in the Consolation race on Saturday night. Photo supplied
NEED FOR SPEED: Spalding F2 Stock Car star Carl Issitt en route to a third place finish in the Consolation race on Saturday night. Photo supplied

The 2014 stock car racing season began for several Spalding drivers at King’s Lynn’s Norfolk Arena on Saturday night.

Two-litre saloon stock car stars Jamie Clayton and Simon Venni both scored third place finishes in the heats.

Clayton then went on to claim fourth in the main event, which was for the Clive Grief Memorial Trophy, a title that Venni won a few years ago.

Tom Yould, Dan Booth and Rob Heanes were also in action. Each displayed the fruits of a hard winter’s work as their cars were turned out in fine fettle. But results on the track did not quite match the effort put in off it, although Booth did manage fourth position in the opening race.

The title race was won by Norfolk teenager Jake Banwell, as he scored the biggest win of his fledgling career.

Meanwhile, Yould’s brother Ben was in action in the smaller 1300cc stock cars, which were also contesting their version of the Clive Grief Memorial.

He managed a pair of top-ten finishes as hometown racer Wes Freestone beat Spalding’s Dean Whitwell to the title.

Although the action was frenetic in the two saloon-based classes, Europe’s largest stock car category, BriSCA Formula Two was not to be outdone.

Veteran Spalding racer Carl Issitt was one of nearly 80 drivers in action as he returned to the fray in the super-fast specialist racing machines. Issitt qualified for the meeting final at the second time of asking, via a third place in the consolation event.

From there he went on to finish ninth, picking up a useful score in the season’s first world qualifying round.

Leicestershire’s Dave Harley won the main event for the F2s, from Yorkshire’s Billy Webster and Skegness racer Mark Simpson.

The meeting proved to be a chance for the lesser lights to shine, as only one of the category’s six races was won by one of the higher-graded drivers who have to start from the back half of the grid.