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Added: 24 Sep 2013 Category: 2013 Oval Racing
2013 - #45 - Tullyroan Oval - 22/9/13
The second day of the World Weekender and the turn of the Lightning Rods to take centre stage. As it happened I followed Nigel Jackson out the last road to the track and said at the time we were following the future World Champion, and as it happened, that is exactly how it turned out.

Throughout the heats McConnell and Gordy McKee had looked faster than Jackson, but in none contact racing being faster is one thing, being fast enough to get around someone is entirely different. From the off in the big race McConnell made his move around the outside and Jackson made his car wide enough to back McConnell onto the outside which allowed Francis Allen through into second and sent McConnell down the pack, for most of the race Jackson was never more than a few car lengths ahead and in the closing stages the top five were nearly nose to tail, with Gordy McKee looking around the outside in the closing laps. Jackson held on the take his first World title and become only the second Northern Ireland driver to win the Lightning Rod World, with McKee second and Allen third.

Of the support classes the Stock Rods possibly put on the best of the Championship races, with Gunner, Gordon and Bell starting in the top 3 spots it was always going to be a good one. There was some great action in the opening laps as Bell, Lattka and Jonny Cardwell battled for the lead, before Bell eventually picked up damage and went back through the pack and then out. Lattka made his way back to the front to take the win in the Irish Masters. Alan McCormack picked up second with Chris Gordon third.

Jeff Minish joined the ranks of the Superstox for day two, another former F2 driver to come into the class and I’m sure he’ll not be long getting into the way of it. Kyle Beattie provided the only local win of the weekend in the opening heat before Jason Cooper took the second heat and the final. Twenty five laps seems like a long time for a Superstox final, I can’t imagine there is too many low grader winners over such a distance, if that is the norm on the mainland.

Boosted by visiting drivers, there was twenty two Ninja Karts in action for the opening heat, Adam McFall took all three races.

If the Superstox final seemed like a long race, the 2 Litre Irish Open could probably have been declared after the first bend as Adam Hylands got run wide and Shane Murray drove off into the sunset.

The ProStocks were down on numbers from the Saturday night, but still managed to grid 38 cars for the opening heat, so they weren’t down on action. Loads of carnage, loads of action, loads of stoppages and despite being down to about half a dozen cars by the end of the final, it still went right down to the wire with Ryan Fleming leading home Steffan McClelland.

Another full weekend of racing done, and probably the biggest this country has seen and will see for a while, it’s hard to summarize it in any other way, but just by saying, wow, what a weekend.

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