Former Class C champion David Nye made further progress up the points table in this year’s BRSCC Fiesta Championship racing with MRF Tyres at the recent rounds at Snetterton on the 300 Circuit in Norfolk, as the series reached the half way stage in the 2019 season.
Qualifying on Saturday morning saw him produce an effort that put him on pole position by over three and a half tenths of a second from JamSport team boss Jamie Going. James Waite and Zachary Lucas came next on the second row ahead of Sam Watkins and Isaac Smith on row three, with the top 10 starting places for Race 1 completed by Ryan Faulconbridge, Jake Dawson, Joel Ryton and the returning Luke Bannister.
Nye picked up the lead straight away from pole at the start of Race 1 and immediately had the chasing Jamie Going right on his tail from the outset. Even though Jamie came close on more than one occasion to make a move for the lead, Nye’s experience shone through as he was able to resist any and all attacks thrown at him by the #46. On a couple of occasions, Going allowed the gap to grow to more than a second, but wasted no time in closing it down again straight away. By the chequered flag, the back and forth between the two drivers ended with Nye on top taking his third race win in four races, while Going settled for a precious 2nd place. Despite being some 5 seconds back at the end, Going’s young teammate James Waite once again kept up his impressive consistent podium streak with 3rd place, with Watkins picking up 4th and former points leader Isaac Smith rounding off the top 5. Ryan Faulconbridge took 6th after dropping back a couple of spots, ahead of Jake Dawson and Zachary Lucas with the latter classified 8th after a 5 second time penalty for track limits. Joel Ryton and Robert Stevens completed the top 10.
For Race 2, Nye was again quick off the mark and led the opening circuit, however Jamie Going’s race wouldn’t last longer than lap 2 as his retirement brought out the safety car for two laps, bunching the field up in the process. When green flag racing was underway again, Nye had to content with Waite hunting him down this time, but shortly after the restart Isaac Smith was quick to insert himself into the fight by stealing 2nd place away on Lap 5. However, his fortunes would fair no better as he too would fail to see the flag, also forced to the sidelines on the next lap. This battling lost Waite time to Nye in front who was able to extend his gap to as much as 2.7 seconds before the chequered flag. With that, David streaked to another win to bring his season tally to four so far in 2019. Waite was able to haul back almost 2 seconds on the final lap to finish just under a second away from the winner in 2nd place, while Watkins was able to claim the final podium place in 3rd, one position higher than he’d acheived the day before. Lucas was 4th from Faulconbridge and Stevens, with the top 10 completed by Marco Ricci, Tim Bennett, Luke Bannister and Sam Walton.
The third and final race was a chance for Nye to complete the clean sweep, but a poor first lap left him down in the pack with work to do as Waite took over in front in a bid to finally claim his first senior race victory in Fiestas. While he was able to maintain the lead for most of the race, his fortunes came undone when he slipped back to 7th place with just two laps to go and ultimately stayed there until the end. Back at the front, Jamie Going had assumed the lead on a circuit which has treated him well in the past, however he was one of five drivers that were about to be handed track limits time penalties of five seconds, meaning the finishing order on the road wouldn’t necessarily remain the same in the final result. When the encounter did see its end, it would be Ryan Faulconbridge at the top of the finishing order (despite copping a time penalty himself) with Watkins promoted all the way up to 2nd place and Going demoted to third despite crossing the line first himself. Smith, Lucas and Dawson were also penalty recipients and completed the top 6 respectively with the aforementioned Waite in 7th place, ahead of Ryton, Stevens and Bennett.
Now there’s something of a summer break for the Fiesta Championship as the next rounds on the calendar take place at the end of July, with the first of two visits to the Brands Hatch Indy circuit. Let’s see who’s got what it takes to try and break away in the championship battle!
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