Styrin closes in on third Boxsters title

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Styrin closes in on third Boxsters title

The heaving overnight rain had passed by the time the BRSCC Toyo Porsches had assembled for qualifying and the late-registereing Rick Styrin was looking to cement his third Class A Boxsters Championship in our penultimate round.

Our first Class B car of the season - bought from last year's winner Michael Goodacre and piloted by Andy Baker - joined 13 others on the grid and all eyes were on James Coleman as he pipped Rick Styrin to pole by a mere 0.055 seconds, Richard Avery in third. In the 924s, Philip Waters was ahead of Jamie Callender by nearly three seconds. With the track now drying, times were expected to improve still further as the day went on. Nick Hull suffered a grid penalty for an overtake under yellows. John Broadley was a late arrival after his road car refused to start at his hotel.

Race 1
The cars were called to the grid early for the first of the day's three races.

Lights out and Stryin is off the line and through into the lead but Lawrence is right up with Coleman for 2nd. From his slightly isolated mid-grid position, Andy Baker is quickly swamped by the lead 924s.

Waters takes the 924s lead by the completion of lap 1 with Broadley in tail. Coleman is now catching Stryin, while Warren is challenging Callender for third.

The front of Class A now spreads out into three pairs, Richard Avery breathing down the neck of Garry Lawrence for third and Philip Waters pulling ahead for a comfortable lead in the 924s.

There's no let-up from Coleman as he stays with Styrin into lap 7, the #00 car posting a new fastest lap nearly a quarter second faster than the leader.

Richard Avery, desparate for points to keep his Class A championship hopes alive, is stuck like glue to the back of local rival Lawrence's bumper as he fights for third. Molyneaux spins under braking for turn 1.

Callender and Warren swap places a couple of times in the 924s as they both chase John Broadley for class third place; Molyneaux meanwhile has now dropped out.

With less than 5 minutes to go, Coleman closes on Styin once again as the pair make their way through traffic. Waters' Class C lead is now nearly 6 seconds ahead of John Broadley.

Into the final lap and Avery looms large in Lawrence's mirrors through turn 1 but the blue #93 holds on. Styin takes the win from Coleman, whose front bumper and right wing sustained slight damage having hit the back of Styrin's car early the race. Garry Lawrence received a warning flag - but no penalty - for excessive weaving keeping Avery at bay.

Waters takes the 924s win ahead of Broadley and Callender third. Andy Baker brings his car home to complete his first ever race - and a class win. "I really enjoyed that", he said afterwards, "my lap time was better than qualifying so I'll keep trying to improve". Kevin Molyneaux's DNF was down to ABS failure; "I wanted to finish to keep in the points but after my spin at Gerrards, I thought it was too risky to continue".

Race 2
As the lights go out, Lawrence makes a move down the inside, close to collecting paint from the pit wall, to take himself up to second.

Coleman is the filling in a Lawrence and Avery sandwich. Broadley goes wide, losing his lead and dropping back to then be challenged by Callender for third.

Waters now with a decent lead ahead of Warren in the 924s. Avery makes a move before the Lakes Esses to take third; meanwhile Warren has closed with up with Waters at the head of Class C, with Peart similarly on Broadley's tail further back.

In a repeat of Race 1, Avery seems to be able to get on the coat tails of Lawrence through Gerrards but doesn't quite have the pace to overtake him down the Stebbe Straight.

But now the heavens open and the orange army are grabbing at their hoods as the wind picks up. With just over 4 minutes left, its the three Boxsters of Lawrence Avery and Coleman side by side into Gerrards.

Callendar has gone wide, sustaining front end damage but slowly rejoins.

The race is concluded two minutes early as visibility has become a safety issue, so Styrin again takes the win ahead of Lawrence, and Avery this time makes it onto the podium. Andy Baker takes his second Class B finish and in the 924s, Waters is again the winner ahead of Linda Warren and Jamie Callender.

Race 3
As the cars reach the end of the green flag lap, Angus Archer dives into the pitlane from his position at the front of the reverse grid, leaving Nick Hull to lead off from the lights.

Hull maintains his lead ahead of Molyneaux while Archer joins from the pit lane after all cars pass. John Broadley grabs the 924s lead half way through lap 3.

Styrin is up to 2nd and Waters dives down the inside of Broadley under braking for Gerards. Styrin is now up to 2nd behind Hull but nearly all of Class A are still circling as a pack. Lawrence now takes Molyneaux for third.

Waters now leads the 924s, Callender finding himself third yet again. Just coming up to a back marker while braking for the Esses, Hull is suddenly mugged by both Lawrence and Avery.

Waters is now pulling ahead leaving Broadley mixed in with Archer, playing catchup, and Baker's Class B car. Molyneaux is keeping Coleman at bay for 4th while Callender is challenging Broadley for third.

Avery has disappeared from view and is dropping back down the timing screen - losing crucial championship points and waving goodbye to a third podium as the safety car is deployed.

The front of Coleman's #00 Boxster is badly damaged - a result of his collision with Avery while braking for the hairpin. With less than 7 minutes remainging, the reasonably-priced Safety Car peels in leaving the entire grid now bunched up behind - Boxsters mixed in with 924s.

Broadley too has dropped back - a result of a collision with Warren in almost identical circumstances as the Colemane/Avery incident - but he continues to circulate; Molyneaux is now glued to Lawrence's tail for 2nd, a mere 1/100th of a second behind as they cross the timing line at 14 laps down.

Waters still leads the 924s with Callender 2nd, putting Baker 7th overall - his best position of the day. Molyneaux retires after minor contact possibly having triggered a recurrence of his ABS brake problem from earlier.

At the flag its a third win for Styrin, almost certainly cementing his third Class A Championship win, Lawrence 2nd and Coleman third - but the #00 car is subsequently disqualified. Baker thus finishes 7th and its Waters from Callender and Peart in the 924s.

Rick Styrin, as winner of the final BRSCC race of the weekend, is also awarded the International Police Association trophy, presented by Clive Wood in memorial of Peter Goodwin, a big motorsport fan who lost his life in the line of duty.

We therefore look forward to our last three races of the season, over a weekend on the Silverstone International (South) circuit in three week's time. Only the Class A - and now Class B - overall wins can be considered a closed book - but the 924s title could go down to the final race.

Results - Rockingham

September 16th 2017

Race Spec Boxster

  Driver Grid Position
1 Ed Hayes 2
2 James Coleman 10
3 Richard Avery 3

Production Boxster

  Driver Grid Position
1 Andy Baker 1
2 Matthew Harris 2

Porsche 924

  Driver Grid Position
1 Karl Rossin 4
2 Ryan Lowry 3
3 Peter Smith 5

September 16th 2017

Race Spec Boxster

  Driver Grid Position
1 James Coleman 2
2 Richard Avery 3
3 Ed Hayes 1

Production Boxster

  Driver Grid Position
1 Andy Baker 1
2 Matthew Harris 2

Porsche 924

  Driver Grid Position
1 Ryan Lowry 2
2 Gavin Johnson 9
3 Pip Hammond 11

September 16th 2017

Race Spec Boxster

  Driver Grid Position
1 James Coleman 8
2 Ed Hayes 6
3 Adam Southgate 10

Production Boxster

  Driver Grid Position
1 Andy Baker 2
2 Matthew Harris 1

Porsche 924

  Driver Grid Position
1 Gavin Johnson 9
2 Ryan Lowry 10
3 Philip Waters 11

Championship Standings

  Driver Points
1 Ed Hayes 402.0
2 Adam Southgate 368.0
3 Richard Avery 306.0
  Driver Points
1 Andy Baker 213.0
2 Matthew Harris 166.0
  Driver Points
1 Pip Hammond 409.0
2 Gavin Johnson 357.0
3 Ryan Lowry 336.0

Next race

Brands Hatch (Indy) - 21st / 22nd October 2017

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