Here are some photos from the fifth Darley Moor meeting of 2016, taken by official Darley photographer Tony Else...
With race meetings taking place at the Southern 100, Aintree, Croft and Pembrey, race entry numbers for Darley Moor Round 5 were a bit slim, forcing the organisers to combine multiple classes together. A benefit of this was that the races were increased to 10 laps in length but the change in schedule meant that we would be racing in back-to-back races.
On the week leading up to the meeting, Dave Carson Jnr caught shingles so felt a little off colour going into the weekend. The weather was looking well until 08:30 on the Sunday morning when the heavens opened and did their best to flood the track. When we attempted to do a quick wheel swap to wet tyres the front wheel spindle got stuck in the forks - but after some very helpful assistance from Tim Poole (and after spending circa 30 minutes struggling) the spindle was finally released and we were able to finish the wheel swap.
The two qualifying sessions, where we twice qualified 2nd in class, were wet - but the track was quickly drying, so we decided to swap to dry tyres for the first set of back-to-back races.
When we started Formula Darley Race 1, the track was still damp in places. With a good start, we took the lead and led into the first chicane. Second-placed Stephen Taylor was the first to suffer from the conditions, crashing on the exit of the first chicane. Gavin Mills inherited second position but then almost immediately highsided out of the race at Park corner (breaking his arm - get well soon Gavin!). All of this commotion meant that by the end of lap 1 we had an 8-second lead, which was increased to 68 seconds by the end of lap 10 when we took the race win from Chris Moffitt.
The Mini Sound of Thunder Race 1 took place immediately after the finish of the Formula Darley race and also included riders from the Pre-Injection 600 and Steel Frame 600 classes. In our class, Tim Poole had entered for the first time this season. From the start of the race, we were involved in a group battle with Tim and a number of riders from the 600cc classes. After five laps, Tim managed to escape from the front of the group but we were not able work our way through. After seeing Tim create a gap we decided to drop back from the group and secure a safe 2nd place finish.
During the first two races our Kawasaki ER650 Supertwin didn't feel quite right, so during the lunch break we partially stripped the bike to search for any issue. With no obvious issue found, we put the bike back together and prepared for the afternoon races.
In Formula Darley Race 2, we managed to get another good start and took the lead of the race into the first chicane. On lap 2, lightweight-class rider Chris Moore overtook us to take the overall race lead. We kept a good rhythm to keep class rival Kev Bond behind us and won our race.
The final race of the day provided the most entertainment - with a battle between ourselves, Kev Bond, Michael Gloster and James Reveley (who unfortunately crashed on lap 7). After the ten laps had passed, we crossed the line in 2nd place.
With 5 of 8 rounds completed, we continue to lead the Two Daves Racing-supported Formula Darley championship and lead the Mini Sound Of Thunder championship.
Our next meeting is BEMSEE Round 6 at Cadwell Park on 30th/31st July.
David Carson Jnr,