Kevin Mills Racing’s Neil Maclennan started the BRSCC National FF1600 season with victory at a wet Oulton Park.
The Scot made the most of clean air to take pole in qualifying, which was also wet, and made a string getaway on a damp grid at the start of the race.
Team Dolan’s Chris Middlehurst wheelspun his way off the second place grid spot, dropping him behind Low Dempsey Racing’s Jonathan Browne and B-M Racing’s Rory Smith.
Browne held on to second for two laps before Smith, whose Medina chassis had superior traction in the wet due to its shorter wheelbase, found a way way through.
Smith immediately jumped on to Maclennan’s gearbox and even went side-by-side up Clay Hill before having to back out as the safety car was summoned to recover Oldfield Motorsport debutant Daniel Mackintosh, who had spun off at Druids.
Maclennan mastered the restart after several laps at reduced speed, but couldn’t hold off Smith’s attacks and was passed before the end of the lap.
The restart proved tricky for those further back in the spray, and another crash led to the race being red flagged shortly after the front drivers crossed the line to complete seven laps.
Just as the red flags were shown, Oldfield’s Milan De Laet was then rear-ended and Myerscough College’s Jack Wolfenden also went off, and the chequered flag was shown not long after as it was decided not to restart the race.
Due to the red flag, the results were taken back a lap and meant Maclennan was named victor ahead of Smith – who set fastest lap – and Browne.
Middlehurst got stronger as the race went on and finished on Browne’s tail, while his team-mate and defending champion Ross Martin finished a lonely fifth after the third Dolan car of Matt Cowley fell down the order after the safety car restart.
Souley Motorsport’s Ollie White pipped B-M’s Jamie Sharp to sixth by 0.022 seconds, with the third B-M car of David McArthur a further half-second behind.
LDR’s American rookies Bryce Aron and Grant Palmer rounded out the top 10.
The winner of the BRSCC Northern FF1600 classification was Peter Daly, who finished 16th in his Van Diemen RF88.
BRSCC Northern Pre-’90 drivers in italics
Race results (6 laps)
|1||Neil Maclennan||Kevin Mills Racing||16m46.472s|
|2||Rory Smith||B-M Racing||+0.709s|
|3||Jonathan Browne||Low Dempsey Racing||+1.121s|
|4||Chris Middlehurst||Team Dolan||+1.318s|
|5||Ross Martin||Team Dolan||+2.358s|
|6||Ollie White||Souley Motorsport||+5.622s|
|7||Jamie Sharp||B-M Racing||+5.644s|
|8||David McArthur||B-M Racing||+6.102s|
|9||Bryce Aron||Low Dempsey Racing||+6.311s|
|10||Grant Palmer||Low Dempsey Racing||+7.615s|
|11||Adrian Campfield||Kevin Mills Racing||+8.815s|
|12||Alex Walker||PWR1 Racing||+9.136s|
|13||Luke Cooper||Swift Cooper||+9.604s|
|14||Reece Lycett||Kevin Mills Racing||+11.439s|
|15||Tom Ward||B-M Racing||+14.114s|
|18||Andrew Thomas||BB Motorsport||+18.721s|
|20||Matt Cowley||Team Dolan||+23.470s|
|21||Sam Harrison||Tim Harrison Engineering||+23.511s|
|22||Neil Patten||Souley Motorsport||+24.166s|
|25||Trevor Morgan||DB Motorsport||+33.334s|
|26||Neil McArthur||B-M Racing||+39.070s|
|30||Jonathan Barnes||Souley Motorsport||+46.590s|
|Ret||Morgan Quinn||Team Dolan|
|Ret||Jack Wolfenden||Myerscough College|
|Ret||Milan De Laet||Oldfield Motorsport|
|Ret||Daniel Mackinstosh||Oldfield Motorsport|
|Pole: Maclennan, 2m05.454s Fastest lap: Smith, 2m04.942s|