Here are some photos from the third Darley Moor meeting of 2019, taken by official Darley photographer Tony Else...
With the Isle of Man TT over for another year, it was time for normal service to be resumed in the club racing world and it was time for Darley Moor Round 3 - on Father's Day... so Happy Father's Day to Big Dave!! :-)
Summer is fast approaching but the weather seems to be far from usual for the season... This was a race meeting that had promising results on paper but was a proper ballache to take part in - with no less than 14 wheel changes performed in a single day of racing!
A day of wet, dry, wet, damp, dry-ish, wet - and any other variation - was the order for the day. But fortunately by the time the points races rolled around there was a dry track and sunshine! Qualifying was a mixed bag due to the "weather lottery" - we qualified in 14th for the Formula 600 race and in pole position for the combined Mini Sound of Thunder & PreInjection 600 race...
Our first race was a wet and slippery Mini Sound of Thunder Qualifying Race. We kept on getting quicker and quicker until eventually we ran over a kerb and had a 'moment' - looking back we saw there was a big gap to 4th place (on track) so eased off a bit and ran a sensible race. At the flag, we won the race by 12 seconds from Martin Robbins, with Mike Minns taking third.
Next up was the Formula 600 Qualifying Race. The race took place around 20 minutes after the Mini Sound of Thunder race. Knowing how slippery it was, we switched to wet tyres front and rear. By the time we got back onto track, the conditions had changed and were a lot less damp than before. A good start elevated us from a 14th grid position to 9th place into the first chicane. On the opening lap we overtook Stuart Hall, Marcus Wiskin and Kevin Barsby to move up to 6th place, and by the end of lap 2 we were with Zach Tansley and Joe Walton. But by lap 3 (of 6) the rear tyre had already overheated, so we backed off to conserve the tyre wear. Marcus Wiskin and Kevin Barsby took advantage and both came passed, demoting us to 8th place by the flag. Up at the front, Rich Baker took the win from Brad Vicars.
After the lunch break the weather turned dry and sunny! On the warm-up lap for the Mini Sound of Thunder Points Race we did our best to scrub in a brand-new dry front tyre. We got another good start but got boxed in at the chicane putting us back to 3rd in class into first chicane. On the opening lap we managed to pass Martin Robbins and at the end of lap 2 we overtook Adrian Kershaw to take the lead - but then saw what we thought was a yellow flag from the corner of our eye, so let Adrian back through again. A few laps later we managed to catch and pass Adrian again and this time kept the lead to the flag to take the win. Adrian Kershaw finished in second with Ben Heaton taking the final podium position.
The Formula 600 Points Race sighting lap gave us another opportunity to scrub in some box-fresh dry tyres - but this time it was both front and rear. Another good start saw us arrive at the first chicane in 7th place from 8th on the starting grid. From there we managed to pass Kevin Barsby, Zach Tansley, Joe Walton and David Shallcross to move up to 3rd place by the end of the 5th lap. At the chequered flag, Brad Vicars took the win by just 0.26 of a second from Rich Baker, and once again we secured the final podium step to finish in 3rd place.
Our results in the Point races have had a great impact on the championship tables, with us moving up to 2nd place in the Formula 600 championship, as well as extending our lead in the Mini Sound of Thunder championship. But with a potential maximum of 78 championship points still up for grabs, there is still a long way to go...
FORMULA 600 CHAMPIONSHIP STANDINGS (AFTER 3 OF 7 ROUNDS) - TOP 5
Rich Baker 37
David Carson 26
Matt Zschiesche 18
David Shallcross 18
Lloyd Shelley 15
MINI SOUND OF THUNDER CHAMPIONSHIP STANDINGS (AFTER 3 OF 7 ROUNDS) - TOP 5
David Carson 44
Richard Saville 22
Daley Mathison 16
Mike Gittings 16
Adrian Kershaw 12
Our next race meeting will be at Darley Moor Round 4 on 14th July. If anything happens in the meantime we'll keep you posted... :-)
David Carson Jnr,