Bright conditions lead to red-hot action at Raceway

Top three finishers in the Junior Rod Supreme Championship receive their awards from grid girls Shannon and Natasha. Pic: Davy Park.
Top three finishers in the Junior Rod Supreme Championship receive their awards from grid girls Shannon and Natasha. Pic: Davy Park.

The sun shone at Ballymena Raceway on Friday evening as racers took advantage of ideal conditions to serve up some very fast short circuit action.

The victories at the Eco Flame Boiler Services sponsored fixture were widely shared too with the twelve race programme producing no fewer than eleven different winners!

F2 Star Graham Fegan was the only driver to carry the chequered flag twice during the evening, but his hat-trick hopes were ruined in the final by Christopher Kincaid who powered away from the field to clinch victory in the McGill Motorsport Series.

It proved to be a good night for the Antrim based Kincaid family as Christopher’s younger brother, Antony, was also celebrating after an emphatic win in the Junior Rod Supreme Championship.

Another driver on top form was Jaimie McCurdy from Broughshane who took a significant step towards qualification for this year’s National Hot Rod World Championship with a determined final win on Friday evening.

McCurdy was also the top points scorer at the meeting which earned the teenager the PC Paints and Components Driver of The Day award.

NATIONAL HOT RODS

Fifteen competitors contested the penultimate round of the PC Paints & Components World Series NI where Simon Kennedy opened proceedings with a gritty drive to hold off the main pack in heat one. It was another yellow grade driver, Andrew Stewart, who took the chequered flag in heat two before Kennedy got his nose out front once again in the final.

The Dungannon driver was soon under all sorts of attack however, with a long train of cars all backed up behind his Trevor Falloon Motors Vauxhall Tigra. The pressure eventually told when Kennedy ran wide at Fisherwick bend which presented the lead to Jaimie McCurdy. The Broughshane lad still had plenty to do over the remaining laps, but expertly controlled the situation to strengthen his bid for a place at the World Final.

World Qualifying Round 13: 1. Jaimie McCurdy, 2. Carl Sloan, 3. Keith Martin, 4. Glenn Bell, 5. Stewart Doak, 6. John Christie

F2 STOCK CARS

Problems in practice for a number of cars left a reduced grid of 12 cars for the finale of the McGill Motorsport Series. Graham Fegan was the form driver in the heat races where the former European Champion steered his DK car to a dominant brace of victories.

The series final paired Fegan on the front row of the grid alongside Irish Champion Craig McConnell, with Christopher Kincaid and Mark Rainey on row two. McConnell got the drop at the green flag, but Kincaid used the bumper to good effect at the end of the opening lap to nudge his rival wide and ease ahead. Once out front Kincaid put the hammer down and sprinted clear to take overall victory in the McGill Motorsport Series, with McConnell and Fegan forced to settle for second and third.

McGill Motorsport Series Final: 1. Christopher Kincaid, 2. Craig McConnell, 3. Graham Fegan, 4. Mark Rainey, 5. Thomas Greer, 6. Bradley McKinstry

GROUP TWO LIGHTNING RODS

Once again the wins were spread around in the GP2 division where Mark Turtle scrambled through with just a couple of laps remaining to earn victory in the 18 car opening heat.

Mathew Curran gave his new car a winning debut in heat two, but it was Kilrea’s Stewart Nicholl who emerged victorious in the final to make it four different final winners at the four Raceway fixtures so far this season. Ballymena’s David Gillespie put in a strong challenge over the closing stages, but had to settle for second, while Irish Champion Freddie Fleck from Broughshane finished in third.

GP2 Final: 1. Stewart Nicholl, 2. David Gillespie, 3. Freddie Fleck, 4. Jason Clyde, 5. Rodney Stewart, 6. Jason Darragh

JUNIOR RODS

Two roof colour heat races determined the starting positions for the closed grid Supreme Championship and it was Crumlin’s Shea Duff who extended his excellent early season form with another victory in the opener. Matthew Milliken celebrated a first ever win at Raceway following a flag to flag success in heat two and this win, coupled with a third place in the first race, secured Milliken pole for the championship decider. He had star man Antony Kincaid alongside him for company however and Kincaid quickly took control of proceedings to dominate the race from start to finish.

Supreme Championship: 1. Antony Kincaid, 2. Jack Kennedy, 3. Jack Patchett, 4. Shea Duff, 5. Sam Wilson, 6. Matthew Milliken