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Whale & Dolphin Watching Boat Trips

Rounds 4 & 5 Pembrey May 15th & 16th

Well, what a fabulous weekend of racing! May 15th and 16th saw rounds 4 and 5 of the WRDA WSSCC at Pembrey, in blistering sunshine the whole weekend. Races were to be 15 minutes + 1 lap, so everyone had long, hot races in store!

Round 4 Qualifying

Terry Brown was quickest, setting a time of 57.369. Jeff Davies started the way he carried on all weekend, very quick! He set a 58.160 to claim his position alongside Terry. Jeff also had his Westfield at the circuit, so this was the first session in what would be 4 races in one weekend for him. Next up, and less than half a second behind Jeff, was ex-champion Graham Cole, who really seems to have his GCC Darrian 25 DNA (what a mouthful!) on song now. Graham was less than 0.5s behind Jeff. Huw Williams was next up in his Prosport, with Richard Rozhon’s Clubsport snapping at his heels in 5th. Alvin Powell was first saloon in his 1994 Mondeo tourer, and then the really close saloon battle that we’re coming to see this year was played out, with the Civics of Rhodri Jenkins and Rhys Lloyd and the Golf of Christian Evans covered by just half a second! Closely following these were the 3 Ginettas that have joined our Championship this year (big welcome to Paul Trowbridge, Richard Hollebon and Mark Wania!), all in 1m 07s. Alex Dziurznsky’s Golf was in 13th, followed by Lee David’s "Smoking Joe" Lancia Integrale. Andy Williams had problems with his Sierra, but did just enough to qualify ahead of the Rovers of Matthew Perkins and Anthony Allitt. Two more newcomers were next up, Stephen Pearcy in what used to be Mike Bevington’s Accord, and young rally cross ace Grant Rees in his "sideways but controlled" Suzuki Swift (shades of Graham Hollis – where are you these days Graham!?). Ken Rattenbury’s Sierra was next (more on that later) and finally Adrian Chapman. Now there’s a story. Adrian was having his first EVER race, and he’s in his seventies! Proof positive that you’re never too old to join in!

Practice times

Round 4 - Race

Sportscars

Terry was very quick off the line and at the end of the first lap had a 2 second lead over the fast charging Graham Cole, who had managed to pass Jeff. Richard also managed to gain a place on the first lap, putting Huw’s Prosport behind him, but Huw’s extra power saw him coming past on lap 2. Up front if was all change on the third lap with Jeff managing to squeeze past Graham’s Darrian. Terry extended his lead consistently through the race, but behind him the gap between Jeff and Graham was never more than a second or two, and sometimes a lot closer when passing the saloons! Huw had mechanical problems after 10 laps and had to retire, so the final 1 2 3 4 was Terry, Jeff, Graham and Richard.

Saloons

There was a heart in mouth moment before the race even got underway when Alvin’s Mondeo stalled on the line. "Thanks goodness Rhys has quick reactions and got past me", said Alvin after. "I was then trying to re-start the car and waiting for the bang in the back from someone else in the pack!" Luckily everyone else avoided Alvin, but it was Rhodri Jenkins that was first into Hatchetts in his Civic R, followed by Lee’s Integrale that had made an amazing start and powered by all the Ginetta’s and Rhys’s Honda. Rhodri and Lee almost touched, and Lee was edged on to the grass. When he came back on there was contact with Paul’s Ginetta, but luckily both could continue. While all this was going on Rhodri and Rhys broke away and for the next 7 laps the two Civics looked like they attached by a towbar! As Rhys said after " We were both flying really early on with cold tyres – I could see Rhodri’s car right on the edge, and I know mine was too!". Alvin Powell regained his composure and caught the Hondas on lap 4, but even then he seemed to have difficulty pulling away from them. Eventually, Rhodri made some time passing some backmarkers, and took the Class G win, finishing behind Alvin with Rhys just 5 seconds behind. Christian Evans was next up and Class H winner, having cleared the Ginetta battle which raged all race and looking like he might catch Rhys towards the end. Mark’s Ginetta just pipped Richard by 0.1s (that close!) with Andy’s Sierra just behind very closely followed by Paul’s Ginetta. You could have thrown a hanky over all 4 cars for the whole race! Andy took driver of the day for having improved so much from the morning, and was awarded his prize by WSSCC Clive Hayes (when are you getting your car back out Clive!). Lee had a good race to finish 13th, but was smoking a bit at the end. The Rovers had their customary close battle all race, this time Anthony edging out Matthew by less than half a second. Ken was next up in 16th followed by Stephen Pearcy, who had been running really well early in the race and threatening the Rovers, but electrical problems slowed the car in the final laps. And last but by no means least was Adrian, getting what certainly not all drivers do on their first outing – getting a finish!

Race results

Round 5 - Qualifying

Pretty much a carbon copy of the first qualifying session, with again very close grouping. 4 cars in 1m 6s and 4 in 1m 7s was going to ensure fun and games at the first corner in the race! Starting from the back this time would be Lee’s Integrale, which could not make official qualifying due to mechanical problems being a little more complex than at first thought.

Practice Times

Round 5 - The Race

Sportscars

Again, Terry was first away, but this time chased by Graham, who was looking really quick in his Darrian, with Jeff having a dreadful start which put him behind both Richard and Huw. It wasn’t until the third lap that Jeff was able to get past Richard and start hunting down the leading 2 cars. Terry had a solid 4 second lead by the end of the 4th lap, but seemed to lose a lot of time on lap 5 (what happened Terry?) and had Graham right up his exhaust. Terry pulled away slightly over the next few laps, with Jeff really pushing his Radical to catch the 2 leaders. Then on lap 10 disaster struck for Terry when what looked like electrical problems stopped his charge and he was forced out of the race. Then came what proved to be a superb battle for the lead! Graham was less than 0.5s ahead on laps 10, 11, 12 and 13, but Jeff managed to pass on the 14th lap and just held on to win after 16 laps, and for his performance he took Driver of the Day. Behind these, Huw had a trouble free race to finish 4th, but there was a superb battle for 5th between Richard’s Radical Clubsport and Alivin Powell’s Mondeo touring car (OK – we know it should be in the next section under saloons, but who cares!). What Richard must have thought with a ton plus of heavy metal sitting next to him all race is anybody’s guess (write in and tell us Richard!) but it was a great spectacle, with Richard just keeping Alvin at bay in the end.

Saloons

Again, a fantastic, incident packed race. Rhodri again was first into Hatchetts, but Rhys was all over him like a rash, looking like he was about to make moves to pass at both Dibeni and the Crossing. This is getting to be quite a battle! Lap times were even faster than Race 1, and for the first 6 laps there was again absolutely no space between the 2 Civics. Rhodri then broke the old Class G record not just once but twice, on laps 8 and 9 with a new record of 1m .5.903s, but even this did not shake off Rhys completely. Rhodri did then manage to extend his lead when passing backmarkers, and took the Class G win. He said after "This year the racing is really superb right down the grid– we’re so close you can’t let up for even a fraction of a second all race". Behind this there was really bad luck for Christian Evans, who had to retire from what looked like a safe Class H winning position with gearbox problems late in the race. Andy battled through to pass 2 of the Ginettas, but could not get to Richard Hollebon, who took an excellent 8th place overall. Alex Dziurzynski had a solid race to finish 11th. There was also a great scrap between the Rovers of Matthew and Anthony, and even more spice was added to this by the arrival of Grant Rees, who had a great race to beat off Anthony and finish right behind Matthew. Adrian had another finish in his Striker, and looks set to be back for more. And finally, thank goodness Ken Rattenbury is absolutely OK after his XR4i had huge contact with the tyre wall after going off at Paddock Crossing and being catapulted across the circuit. The Sierra XR4i was in an extremely sorry state, but Ken was just fine, and we hope to see him out soon (very likely in a different car – sorry Ken!)

Race Result

As regards Championship positions after the weekend, Rhodri Jenkins has extended his lead and now has an overall advantage of 8 points, with Christian 2nd, Terry 3rd and Rhys 4th.

So. all in all, a simply superb weekend. PLEASE – any of you drivers or spectators who have your own stories about what happened to you or what you saw during the race, e-mail them in. We writers can only see so much – so any input from you is very much appreciated. Just mail us and we’ll publish (as long as it’s not too rude!).

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