Lauder’s champion sidecar duo toast win
Round seven of the Moslon British F1 Sidecar Championship saw a return to Cadwell Park for the second time this year, this time as part of the BSB series.
With 58 points to claw back in only four more rounds, it looked a tall order.
After Friday’s programme was abandoned mid afternoon with rain, Saturday was a big day, with qualifying and race one squeezed into the revised timetable.
A soaking wet track greeted the teams for qualifying but, with sunshine and wind aplenty, the lap times quickly dropped and, at the end of the 20 minutes, it was Ellis/Richardson who grabbed pole from Steve Kershaw/Stuart Clark by a miniscule 2/1000ths of a second, with Holden/Cain almost three seconds adrift in third.
By mid-afternoon, the track was dry and warm and perfect for battle to commence. All 19 teams got a clean start, with Ellis at the front but, on lap two, Kershaw took his chance and dived ahead on the brakes into Park corner.
The front two raced ahead and, on the next five circuits, the lap record fell each time as they battled for supremacy.
But, on lap eight, Ellis/Richardson slowed dramatically and dropped through the field. Eventually finishing 14th, a loose wheel was to blame.
Back at the front, the Lauder duo hit cruise control and completed the 12 laps seven seconds clear of Blackstock/Rosney and Holden/Cain.
With all the drama, the points gap was down to 35 and, with no reverse grid for race two, it suddenly looked vulnerable.
Again on Sunday, the weather was kind and another dry race was on the cards.
Kershaw/Clark, on pole, sat six rows ahead of Ellis/Richardson and all they could do was try and win, hoping the traffic would snare their opponents midfield.
A cracking start saw Steve and Stuart lead from the lights and gradually pull away from the field to take a clear victory.
Behind, all eyes were on Ellis/Richardson and, by half race distance, were up to fourth and catching third and second at two seconds a lap.
On lap eight, they made it to second but, by this time, were 10 seconds adrift and settled for the place ahead of Blackstock/Rosney. With their sixth victory of the year, the Borderers had trimmed their disadvantage by another five points, almost half what it was before the weekend.
Clearly delighted with their efforts, both Steve and Stuart were optimistic for the rest of the season.
“We couldn’t have asked for more this weekend – two wins and the lap record. Perfect!” said Steve.
“This gives us great motivation for the next round at Assen where we know we are always fast,” added Stuart.
However, the team are back in action in Scotland this weekend, to try and retain the Jock Taylor trophy at Knockhill in Fife.