ROCKINGHAM COOPER PREVIEW
COOPER Pro/Am. Preview
We have finally arrived at the last races in the years MINI CHALLENGE. What a year it has been.
Current pro class leader Kyle Reid is running away with the championship. He is also very much in the running for the Sunoco 240 Challenge, which he currently leads. Last time out at Cadwell he had some contact with the scenery during practice. This was followed by a nervous practice seeing only P3 for the 1st race. In his usual fashion once in front where he stayed. The 2nd race he was less fortunate, the reverse grid making it hard going, only managing P6. The good bit is you have to drop 1 score in the MINI CHALLENGE so that leaves him at the top. Robbie Dalgleish could win the class if getting podiums and Kyle gets a few DNFs. Based on current form highly unlikely. Kyle’s car is so well prepared and his team know how to put a great together. Lydia Warmsley had a massive off in qualifying at Cadwell. She did not appear in any races, taking her battered car home for a new shell. The other places are still all very much undecided with Simon Walton, Jacob Andrews, Richard Newman and Toby Goodman all racing for the final place. With 174 points to be scored for 3 wins, qualifying and fastest laps, it is still all to play for.
Alex Nevill continues with his great performance scoring a P1 and P2 last time out. Andy Godfrey is still snapping at his heels with a P2 and P1. Equal point scoring. Gary Papworth is pushing hard for the podium too. Adrian Norman slowed down last time out but still managed to score 60 points keeping his chances of P4 overall alive. All 3 top places are still open, a few DNFs could upset the results dramatically. You have to finish to score points.
Some good close racing in guaranteed at what is the final visit to Rockingham as the circuit closes and the end of this year. We bid the challenging circuit goodbye, it was great racing here.
Cooper S Class.
It is still all to play for with R56’s topping the leaderboard, Will Fairclough and Rob Austin in cars prepared by AReeve Motorsport. Andy Montgomery failed to score any points in the last race and 30 in the first race. The R53’s certainly liked Cadwell with Jono Davis winning both races and new driver Daniel Butcher-Lord on pole for the 1st race and P2 in the second race in his very nice S. If only Jono had overcome his reliability issues early in the year, the championship leader would have been substantially different. there is no doubt that Jono is a very quick driver. He is moving up to the JCW class next year and has gone well in the previous outings in the JCW. Rob Austin had 2 P3s to add to his points haul while Will managed a P2 and a P4. Most unusual not see him on the podium in the last race. The grid is made up of 11-12 cars, half are R53’s with the lovely supercharger whine and the other half are R56. The 2 ladies, Chloe Hewitt, (Team Zebra) and Sami Bowler are both in R56’s, it is great to watch Chloe taking the race to Kevin Owen, (call me number 8). Stuart McLaren continues to delight as he races with his Mad4MINI teammate, Andy Montgomery, Andy in an R56 and Stuart in the R53. Needless to say, Stuart keeps winning, no team orders! The last visit to Rockingham for these racers, let’s hope they do it proud with some great racing as the season and Rockingham come to a close.