Darley Moor Round 3
Despite weather forecasts of thunderstorms, it wasn't until 8.30am on Saturday when light rain began to fall, so wet tyres were the obvious choice for our Formula Darley qualifying session. The slippery conditions made for a lot of traffic - some of which were on dry tyres, including the unfortunate Formula 125 rider who fell right in front of us on his first lap - but we managed to qualify in 2nd place. In the following Mini Sound of Thunder qualifying session we also qualified in 2nd place (and in 4th overall on the combined grid), meaning that we had front row starts for all of our races!
The Mini Sound of Thunder Race 1 was less wet and more damp. We settled into 3rd position by the end of lap 1, with Paul Turner close behind us. We managed to pull a gap to finish clear in 3rd place.
The final race of the Saturday, Mini Sound of Thunder Race 2, was completely dry. We finished in 5th place after struggling to carry speed into the corner. We managed a fastest lap of 1'02.72 on the final lap (our Personal Best lap is 1'02.42), so were up to speed but just took too long in getting there.
Unlike Saturday, the light rain decided to wait until we were out on track before it began to fall on Sunday. With the light rain continuing to fall, we daringly put a single fast lap in to qualify in 3rd place for the Formula Darley grid. With the rain showers then stopping, we remained on dry tyres and qualified in 4th position in the Mini Sound of Thunder session (9th overall on the combined grid).
With the rain now starting to fall heavier, we decided to switch to wet tyres prior to the first Formula Darley race. But then the rain stopped and a dry line appeared on the track, so we quickly changed back to dry tyres (which was the correct choice). With the race started, we were running in 4th place when the bike started to misfire, which resulted in us moving back to 5th place. It was only when the bike finally coughed to a halt, on lap 4 of 6, that we realised what the problem was - we had ran out of fuel! With all of the rushing about to change wheels we had forgotten to check the fuel level... Doh!
Formula Darley Race 2 was entertaining with us slowly catching and then passing Ant Porter for 3rd place on the last lap of the race, but Ant managed to repass us, meaning that we secured 4th place. A lap time of 1'02.48 on the last lap was only 0.06 off our personal best lap time.
For the final race of the weekend, Mini Sound of Thunder Race 2, we got a good start and settled into 2nd place behind Paul Turner. Championship leader Brad Vicars passed us a couple of times but then ran wide, meaning that we were able to immediately make a repass. We managed to complete 6 of the 8 laps in the 1'02 second bracket (with our best lap only 0.02 off our personal best lap time), and finished in 2nd place with a race time of 8'30.05 - over 5 seconds faster than our previous best 8-lap race time which was a great result for us.
The next round of the Darley Moor championships will take place on Bank Holiday Monday 25th August.
Prior to that, we have Rounds 8 & 9 of the NG Supertwins championship at Donington Park on 26th/27th July.