NSSCC Race Report Mallory Park 29th May 2005
Car - 944 Turbo
The last time I had been to Mallory Park was in my first seasons racing in 1989. I had taken advantage of half a days testing to refresh my memory and had clearly forgotten just how much commitment you need through Gerrards. I left testing with a reasonable lap time but somehow suspected it was not going to be fast enough.
Race day came and I was first out onto the circuit. Both John Parton and David Cox had been to the circuit more recently and it showed. I allowed them past to give me the opportunity to chase, but it wasn't long before traffic interfered and I didn't get many opportunities to improve my laptime. Meanwhile Tony Caig was flying and took pole, with Coxy in second, John Parton in third and me in fourth, fastest in class. Steven Ferguson had to go home because of a leaky radiator, and it looked like both Stewart Whyte (Escort Cosworth) and Andrew Morrisson were newcomers to the circuit.
I knew that with a good start I had an outside chance of taking the lead by the first time into Gerrards, and after that. who knows?.
The lights went out and I fed the clutch in. Initially David Cox pulled away, but as the boost came in second gear I surged forward, partially on the grass and left the braking late as I cut in front of him to move to the inside. I was still moving over and probably just marginally in front of Tony Caig, but he had the inside line and took advantage of his position, with John Martinson (Renault Clio) taking a tow. They were both immediately on the pace, but I needed to consolidate my position. I gave chase initially but it was clear that I didn't have the overall pace due to problems I was having getting power down through Devils Elbow.
After pulling out a short gap Coxy closed again and we settled into a regular routine of me pulling away on the exit from Gerrards, while he closed at Devils Elbow and through the middle of Gerrards. I made sure I made no mistakes and placed the car deliberately so that he would not have a sniff of getting through. He did get very close, almost close enough to touch, but to his credit there was no contact, but I know he thinks I have a very wide Porsche.
Stewart Whyte meanwhile lost no time getting through the field and passed me easily on the exit from the hairpin. I suspect he used 1st gear, and avoided any turbo lag. One for me to remember. The race was cut short when John Martinson lost control on the exit of Gerrards and spread his Clio over the whole circuit. Andrew Morrison had just found a way past me as the red flags came out so the race was counted back one lap and I finished third overall, second in class.
That left me leading class B. Sadly due to a Porsche racing commitment at Spa I would have to miss the next round at Knockhill, giving Andrew the chance to take the lead back from me.
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