A FIRST ON THE WELSH RIVIERA
Last weekend 17th & 18th May Stuart and his team were in action at the heart of Welsh Motorsport on the Pembrey circuit situated around 15 miles west of Swansea.
As forecasted the weather was hot on the Saturday and hotter on the Sunday. After carrying out some major modifications to the truck following the Brands Hatch outing Stuart was eager to try the truck out on the Saturday morning to compare the pace against the field. During the practice session the whole team were happy with the lap time that put them third fastest overall.
The first race of the weekend got under way mid afternoon and as always Stuart made a good start but only good enough to be in second place into the first corner. This was to be the position held until the chequered flag, unfortunately during the race whilst negotiating the class 2 trucks the marshals deemed that on a number of occasions Stuart’s wheels had crossed the white line and after the race Stuart received a time penalty that relegated him from a podium position.
Race two was to be a different story, Stuart was determined that no more penalties would be coming his way and instead Stuart pulled off a faultless race to enter the record books again and take his first race win in his SCANIA race truck. The win also put a bigger than normal smile on Stuart’s son Michael’s face as Saturday was his 24th Birthday.
Sunday morning the third race of the weekend got under way. For Stuart this was to be the highlight of his weekend, due to his previous day race win he was to start the race from the very back row of the grid. On the green light again his reaction off the line got him up into midfield by the notorious first and very tight right hand corner. By mid race Stuart was up into second position and challenging hard for the race lead, unfortunately this was how it was to stay until the chequered flag. After the race Stuart said he was confident he had the pace to get to the front but having a number of trucks hot on his tail waiting to pounce and the thought of picking up a penalty for going onto the white line he was happy to take a second place finish, “Not too bad from the back”.
Race four Stuart was again starting from the back row of the grid alongside the race three winner. Again Stuart made his trade mark start and by lap two was up into third, then the gremlins struck and due to a water supply problem to the brake system Stuart had to take it steady and bring the truck home with the brakes glowing red and virtually on fire putting him over the finish line in sixth position.
For the last race Stuart was starting near the front of the grid and was confident he could repeat his race win of the previous day. The start again went to plan but unfortunately halfway around the first lap Stuart’s rear tyre got struck and burst from behind by an ambitious manoeuvre from a following truck. This immediately caused a rear grip problem resulting in Stuart to drop down the pack to finish in fifth place.
Overall Stuart and his team are very happy with the weekends results. Stuart said “We arrived at Pembrey eighth in the championship and we leave in fourth so I am happy with that”.
The next outing is at the third round of the British Championship on the high speed Thruxton circuit in Hampshire on 14th & 15th June, as always the race action will not disappoint.