Ollie White and Chris Middlehurst both took controlling wins in the third and fourth heat races of the Walter Hayes Trophy at Silverstone National.
Heat three took place in sunny conditions, but on a wet track, and Souley Motorsport’s White passed poleman Josh Fisher to lead into the first corner, while Wayne Poole Racing’s Fisher lost a further place to Low Dempsey Racing’s Jonathan Browne.
Fisher reclaimed second from Browne next time by, as White made his escape in front. B-M Racing’s Jamie Sharp passed Team USA scholar Bryce Aron for fourth, while Sharp’s team-mate Dave McArthur closed in behind.
Sharp continued to make progress, taking third from Browne, before closing in on Fisher. White controlled the pace up front, and Fisher held off Sharp at the line by 0.17s.
Browne finished sixth after losing out in a penultimate lap fight to Aron and McArthur. Kevin Mills Racing’s Megan Gilkes had a lonely run to seventh, 4.5s further behind.
Middlehurst won heat four by an even more comfortable margin of two seconds over Luke Cooper.
The Team Dolan was pipped off the line by KMR’s Michael MacPherson, who led the first time through Becketts, but Middlehurst did not let that stand for long.
Once he reclaimed the first place he started from, he built up a healthy lead as Macpherson and Cooper then battled. They were quicker than Middlehurst, but the leaer played tactics to ensure victory.
It looked as if it might have been over for Cooper on the first lap when he had a small off. However, it was not much of a setback and he was soon challenging Macpherson for second place and then spending the second half of the race ahead of the Scot.
Team USA scholar Jackson Lee fought off an early attack from Cooper’s team-mate Robert Hall to finish fourth.
Ben Mitchell, despite driving the oldest car on the grid (a Merlyn Mk20), held sixth place for much of the encounter, having made an excellent start and got a good run through the pack. He was passed in the last third of the race by LDR’s Maxwell Esterson and Graham Brunton Racing’s Logan Hannah.
Sunday feature Progression and Last Chance races before the semi-finals and final.
Additional reporting by Steve Whitfield
Heat 3 (8 laps)
1 Ollie White Souley Motorsport 9m17.630s
2 Josh Fisher Wayne Poole Racing +0.989s
3 Jamie Sharp B-M Racing +1.160s
4 Bryce Aron Low Dempsey Racing +1.919s
5 Dave McArthur B-M Racing +2.117s
6 Jonathan Browne Low Dempsey Racing +2.437s
7 Megan Gilkes Kevin Mills Racing +6.971s
8 Josh Smith Oldfield Motorsport +8.441s
9 Morgan Quinn Team Dolan +10.128s
10 Callum Grant B-M Racing +11.170s
Fastest lap: McArthur, 1m09.109s
Heat 4 (8 laps)
1 Chris Middlehurst Team Dolan 9m14.668s
2 Luke Cooper Swift Cooper +2.068s
3 Michael Macpherson Kevin Mills Racing +2.371s
4 Jackson Lee Low Dempsey Racing +7.494s
5 Robert Hall Swfit Cooper +7.718s
6 Maxwell Esterson Low Dempsey Racing +10.252s
7 Logan Hannah Graham Brunton Racing +10.650s
8 Ben Mitchell Wayne Poole Racing +13.831s
9 Chris Hodgen Souley Motorsport +15.377s
10 Pascal Monbaron John’s Racing Team +16.617s
FL: Macpherson, 1m08.898s