Derby Phoenix rises from the ashes with the support of Thundersport to put on an excellent weekends meeting. Twenty one outfits took part with seven teams entering the FSRA F350/Post Classic & pre-injection Championship.
Saturday's practise session was in the wet, however both Saturday and Sundays nine lap races were in perfect conditions. Great to see Gordon Jones back out for the first time with his new F350 which he has built from new by himself - chassis and all. Unfortunately Julie Jones is still not ready to passenger with her knee no being fully repaired.
New to the championship was Gary Wilson with Claire Duplock riding a Baker Suzuki RF900 based machine and Wesley Pettman and Paul Jeffery with their Thundercat. This has made a total of fourteen teams who registered and raced in this year's championship giving me the encouragement to carry on with this championship in 2016.
Joe Heys not being ready with his new Thundercat and the reliability of my new FJ 1100 based outfit up to this meeting, meant luckily for me the Championship was already guaranteed. But with Pete Millington's Thundercat back, Tony Wheatley on his sorted TZ750 and the ladies Marianne Walford/Kerry Hughes only missing a couple of rounds then the remianing 2nd and 3rd spots in the championship were still up for grabs.
Saturday Race 1
With Pete Millington/ Bob Dawson on their Thundercat in the lead, closely followed by myself /Mark Edwards we were passed by Tony and brother Neil Wheatley on lap five as I try too low a gear at the bottom of Mansfield. Oops!!! Out comes a con rod and with hot oil hiting the hot exhaust the FJ ends in flames - that was the weekend over for me. The top 2 places remianed the same with new team Wesley Pettman/Paul Jeffery on their Thundercat coming home in third and Marianne Walford/Kerry Hughes holding on to fourth. Gary Wilson was having a go at driving, after being a passenger for many years with passenger Claire Duplock and a steel framed F1 Suzuki unfortunatley over heated and retired.
Saturday Race 2
This was the Pete Minion trophy race and it was good to see Pete there. He provides the prize money for this trophy race as thanks for all for the support that he received from fellow competitors many years ago when he sustained injuries at the TT. The TZ750 of the Wheatley's hits trouble during the race giving Pete Millington/Bob Dawson their second win. Wesley Pettman/Paul Jeffery take second with Marianne and Kerry third - all three of them on 600 Thundercats.
Sunday Race 1
Whilst Gordon Jones was back after a couple of years with his all new Yamaha TZ350 and Bob Dawson previously agreeing to passenger for him, this left Pete Millington passenger less and with no one available Peters weekend of racing was finished. The TZ 750 engine change overnight wasn't completed so the Wheatley brothers missed this race. Wesley Pettman/Paul Jeffery took the win (the first in 20 years of competition for Wes!!), with Marianne and Kerry second and Gordon Jones/Bob Dawson third.
Sunday Race 2
The Wheatley brothers went back out, but had to settle for second as Wesley Pettman/Paul Jeffery took another win, with Gordon Jones/Bob Dawson third and Marianne and Kerry forth. Gary Wilson with Claire Duplock had worked overnight to repair the Baker Suzuki RF900 but unfortunately an air lock in the cooling system caused their retirement.
The Derby Phoenix program shows plans for a 2016 race program, with possible rounds at Donington, Snetterton as well as Cadwell, Mallory and Anglesey - let's hope these come true. The program also shows the casualty list of twenty four motorcycle road racing clubs now gone.
Final championship table