Championship leaders cement their positions at Raceway

Nigel and Derek makes a few adjustments to their car at Ballymena Raceway. INBT20-229AC

Nigel and Derek makes a few adjustments to their car at Ballymena Raceway. INBT20-229AC

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Craig McConnell and Wilfie McNiece strengthened their positions at the top of their respective series at Ballymena Raceway on Friday.

F2 Irish Champion McConnell followed up his hat-trick in the opening round of the McGill Motorsport Series with another final win in Round 2 on Friday evening and the Bangor racer also popped in the fastest lap time of the evening to capture the £50 Hot Lap bonus to boot!

On another evening of very competitive racing from the F2 class the heat wins were split between Conor Hughes and Christopher Kincaid.

Like his F2 counterpart it was series leader McNiece who took the final honours in Round Two of the Hill Contracts Supreme Series for the Stock Rods. Teenager Adam Sloan from Kells rocketed to victories in both heat races and was right in the mix for the final honours too until gearbox problems sidelined his Vauxhall Corsa.

The final eventually boiled down to a straight fight between McNiece and Yokohama Champion Steven McKane and it was experienced campaigner McNiece who coolly resisted all McKane’s advances to capture the silverware.

Group Two Lightning Rods and Euro Stocks completed the classes on display at the RWS Alloy Wheel and Car Body Repair sponsored meeting, where Alistair Christie from Ballymoney (Euros) and Cullybackey’s Rodney Stewart (GP2s) secured their first final wins of the 2015 season.

F2 STOCK CARS

Seventeen cars participated in Round 2 of the McGill Motorsport Series where former Irish Champion Conor Hughes took the honours in heat one, a welcome return to form for the Antrim racer. Irish Open Champion Christopher Kincaid sprinted through the field in heat two for a well judged win and it was Kincaid again who steadily worked his way to the head of the pack in the final.

A brush with one of the track marker tyres proved costly for Kincaid however and allowed Craig McConnell to take over out front with only a few laps remaining. McConnell took full advantage of the opportunity to make it two final wins out of two in the McGill Motorsport Series at Raceway. Graham Fegan followed the winner over the line.

McGill Motorsport Series Round 2: 1st. Craig McConnell, 2nd. Graham Fegan Snr, 3rd. Christopher Kincaid, 4th. Sam McKay, 5th. Conor Hughes, 6th. Gordon McKee

STOCK RODS

The Stock Rod drivers contested Round Two of their Hill Contracts Supreme Series on Friday evening where the heat races were both dominated by Adam Sloan from Kells. The eighteen year old extended his eye catching start to the season with anther brace of wins in the heats, but dropped out of the final after his Vauxhall Corsa developed gearbox problems.

It was therefore a straight fight for the silverware between County Armagh veteran Wilfie McNiece and Yokohama Champion Steven McKane from Ballymena. McKane put the Newtownhamilton racer until all sorts of pressure over the closing stages, but the experienced campaigner would not be denied and took the chequered flag after a faultless performance.

Hill Contracts Supreme Series Rd 2: 1st. Wilfie McNiece, 2nd. Steven McKane, 3rd. Gareth Bevan, 4th. Richard Taylor, 5th. Sammy Graham, 6th. Gerard Hartley

GROUP TWO LIGHTNING RODS

Brian Edgar continued his pleasing recent form with another well taken victory in the opening heat. Edgar was out of luck in heat two however as his Vauxhall Astra departed the track in a cloud of steam and smoke!

Cullybackey’s Darryl Reid took the honours in this one before another Cullybackey racer, Rodney Stewart, set the pace in the final.

Stewart was eventually overhauled by Jason Clyde and David Gillespie just two laps from home, but the lead pair tangled on the last lap which left the way open for a delighted Stewart to nip ahead once more and secure his first final win of the season.

GP2 Final: Rodney Stewart, 2nd. Nigel Doherty, 3rd. Jason Clyde, 4th. Johny Gillespie, 5th. Danny Norris, 6th. Kenny Carson

EURO STOCKS

Alistair Christie enjoyed the perfect evening at Raceway where the Ballymoney man went through the race card unbeaten in the Euro Stocks division. Newcomer Aaron McMullan set the early pace in the opening heat before Christie eased his way to the front on lap nine to open his account for the evening. Race two followed a similar pattern and those brace of heat wins meant Christie was moved further down the grid for the final. The Ballymoney man made light of the additional handicap and steadily worked his way back to the front once again.

Final: 1st. Alistair Christie, 2nd. Johnny McCloy, 3rd. Aaron McMullan, 4th. Lester McCloy, 5th. Liam Irwin, 6th. Stephen McCahon