(Current UK championship leader Ben Power at speed / Photo Credit : George McNeill)
LOUTH, LINCOLNSHIRE : For the first time in three years, the MRF Legends Cars National Championship will make a welcome return to Lincolnshire’s sensational Cadwell Park circuit next weekend, 13th/14th May, for the third event of an already vintage season of action.
After a highly successful outing on home ground at Anglesey in North Wales a fortnight ago, Ben Power (Guilsfield, Powys) leads the driver standings after a very consistent start to the campaign. As well as aiming to consolidate his position, Power will also be seeking to add to the four victories he has achieved so far. Save for a misfire at Anglesey, his tally might be standing at five already.
Currently 30 points adrift of Power is reigning champion, and erstwhile 2017 series leader, John Mickel (Horsham) who also has four wins to his credit. Having taken three victories during the Brands Hatch championship curtain-raiser at the end of March, he hit back from two engine failures at Anglesey to importantly record another win there.
Third in the standings is Steve Whitelegg (Bury) who, like the two rivals currently above him in the championship table, has enjoyed a very strong start to the season. Taking two wins away from Brands Hatch, he added his third success of the year at Anglesey but, like Power and Mickel, did experience some misfortune last time out and lost vital points as a result.
Masters Class pace-setter Paul Simmons (Lingfield) is an excellent fourth in the championship ahead of the Cadwell race meeting and not very far adrift of the top three contenders in the outright title race. Another very consistent weekend during the previous event in North Wales also heralded a first podium of 2017.
Next up is multiple podium finisher Jack Parker (Wolverhampton), who recorded his first win of the year at Anglesey, while the top six in the championship is completed by lead Rookie racer Miles Rudman (Sutton Coldfield) who took his first outright podium last time out.
Rudman, who was also a rostrum finisher in the standalone ‘Nations Cup’ Legends Challenge race at Anglesey, had a terrific weekend capped off by being presented with the ‘John Nicol Award’ which is given to the driver deemed to have been most impressive across the Anglesey weekend each year.
Victory in the aforementioned Nations Cup, which pitted national competitors against drivers from the visiting Scottish Legends and Irish Legends, went the way of Tom Grainger (Sidcup) to mark his first silverware of 2017.
For race fans planning a visit to Cadwell Park, great local interest will come courtesy of championship rookie Marcus Pett. The 25-year-old former karting champion, from nearby Boston, is enjoying an excellent first season – not only in Legends but car racing in general. In only his second event, Pett took a maiden outright podium and added a second rostrum visit in the Nations Cup encounter.
Sean Smith (High Wycombe) also joined the list of 2017 podium finishers last time out as did Robert King (York), with Nathan Anthony (Horley) taking his first silverware of the year in the all-comers Nations Cup contest.
Cadwell Park is, quite rightly, regarded as one of the very best challenges of driver skill with its undulating layout providing a stern test to competitors of any ability. Set in beautiful Lincolnshire Wolds parkland, the circuit is a treat for both drivers and spectators.
Looking ahead to the third event of the season, MRF Legends Cars National Championship owner Phil Cooper said: “After two cracking race meetings at Brands Hatch and Anglesey, I know I speak for everyone involved with the MRF Legends Cars when I say we can’t wait to be back at Cadwell. It’s a fantastic track, a wonderful test for the drivers and guaranteed to provide some sensational action.
“We have a terrific battle at the top of the championship and with more and more drivers coming through to challenge for podium finishes, the quality of the racing and the competitiveness is just getting better and better. I’ve no doubt at all we’ll be in for six incredible races next weekend.”
Qualifying at Cadwell Park for the MRF Legends Cars will take place at 09.00 on Saturday, 13th May, with Heat One scheduled to start at 11.55, Heat Two following at 13.25 and the Final set to begin at 16.00. On Sunday, 14th May, the day’s opening Heat will start at 09.30, Heat Two will follow at 12.40 and the Final will begin at 15.20.
Provisional MRF Legends Cars National Championship Points:
- Ben Power – 2010 pts
- John Mickel – 1980 pts
- Steve Whitelegg – 1765 pts
- Paul Simmons – 1700 pts
- Jack Parker – 1540 pts
- Miles Rudman -1385 pts
Provisional MRF Legends Cars National Championship Masters Leader:
Provisional MRF Legends Cars National Championship Rookie Leader: