FIESTAS BID TO BE KING OF CASTLE COMBE

The battle at the top of the BRSCC Fiesta Championship racing with MRF Tyres is getting more and more intense as the series makes its way to one of the most daring and deceptive circuits in the UK – Castle Combe in Wiltshire is fast and flowing, but also one in which can bite back if drivers take liberties. With some real club level tin-top action in store, both the class and overall contests are sure to rumble on across the weekend.

Class C is where we find former Fiesta Junior champion Harry Gooding heading the table ahead of his JamSport team boss Jamie Going, and the pair indeed appeared to have the measure of the rest of the field at the previous rounds at Snetterton. Between the two of them, they took all three victories with Going’s pair of wins helping elevate him to 2nd place in the class standings. Gooding was able to further maintain his lead and add to the wins he took at Rockingham, plus the consistent run of podiums and strong points finishes racked up along the way. Castle Combe was another happy hunting ground for Gooding in his FJC title-winning year, so expect him to be a favourite this weekend.

One of his main rivals and fellow Fiesta Junior graduates is Danny Harrison, who started the year strong with a perfect hat-trick at the opening rounds at Brands Hatch. From there his luck has taken some ups and downs including mechanical issues and incidents that have hampered results on more than one occasion. Snetterton allowed him to reclaim some form with a pair of 3rd place finishes and it’s already common knowledge that when the car works for him, he’s difficult to beat. Perhaps this weekend may bring more of the same form that saw him win races earlier in the season.

Other Class C drivers entered this weekend who are sure to pose a threat include defending class champion David Nye, who rediscovered his race-winning pace with a pair of victories at Cadwell Park. Ryan Faulconbridge has also tasted top step success as he secured his first ever win from pole position at Rockingham, and he was joined on the podium on that occasion by fellow JamSport runner Myles Baker. Richard Dawson also competes under the JamSport stable, while Tom Hutchins and Jake Dawson make up the rest of the attendees in Class C.

Class D sees defending champion Jamie White not only heading his respective class once again but also the overall standings as well, with a mere 7 point advantage over Gooding. Even though he missed Cadwell Park, the ability to use both of those races as dropped scores has allowed him to maintain his place at the top without worrying too much about losing any of his points; in fact, he’s only finished lower than 1st place once, and even that was a 2nd place! Every other race he’s finished has seen him top of the class, something all too familiar from last season.

Zachary Lucas has had a superb debut season in the Fiesta Championship and even took a pair of wins in only his second meeting at Cadwell Park. His consistent form has helped him to 2nd place in the class points, ahead of last year’s Class A champion Tim Bennett; he too has been getting to grips with his new car and continues to get quicker. Marco Ricci sits in 4th, also in his debut year, while John Cooper is a surprising 5th. A pair of retirements from Snetterton, one induced thanks to contact with White, have hampered his points tally and having also retired from two more races this season, his chances look to be slowly slipping away. Luke Bannister is also back for more in a season where he’s steadily improved his form over his first Class D campaign last year.

Over in Class A, the duel between Colin Newbold and nemesis Mark Court will once again be fought out. Newbold has the advantage in points, and with Court having missed Cadwell Park and Rockingham, he now has a deficit that he desperately needs to reduce. With both drivers not able to attend Snetterton, their battle will resume from where it left off all the way back at Brands Hatch, where Court was the dominant driver all weekend.

Scott Woodwiss

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