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Added: 06 Sep 2011 Category: 2011 Oval Racing
2011 - #33 – Nuttscorner Oval – 4/9/2011
I doubt it’s just me whose opinion of a day’s racing becomes heavily influences by what the weather is doing at the time. So having left Carrick in the dry and headed for Nuttscorner, I was already starting to get that sinking feeling as the first spots appeared on my windscreen about Mallusk. As the skies got darker and the rain got heavier, slowly but surely the way I’d imagined the day going and the different angles of shots I’d hoped to get faded and the thought process became one more of choosing which single lens to use and how wet exactly I was likely to get.
A further dampener was put on things when I first looked through the fence upon arrival and could see the grass was still long enough on the infield to block half way up the door of a 2 Litre, so perfect conditions then for taking photos, I don't think!

Thankfully, the juniors put on a good show for the first race, with a great battle for the lead Connor Boyle was perhaps a little unlucky not to take it and got wrecked in the process, Derek McMillan took the win after a late scrap with Daniel Campbell. Shane McMillan went on to take heat 2 and the final for the juniors.

Next up the 2 Litre Hot Rods. Mark Madill drew pole for the opening 22 car heat for the Irish Open Championship, and led the race from lights to flag, Denver McLean took second with Wayne Woolsey third.
Andrew Murray took the honours in the second heat, which had been led off by Philip Beatty who was spun early on with Gary Wilson runner up and Adam Heatrick third.
With the points from the heats added it, Andrew Murray took pole for the final with Denver McLean alongside. McLean got the better start taking the lead while pre race favourite Andrew Murray spinning on the first lap and rejoining at the back of the field, this moved Madill up to second for the opening stages of the race before Shane Murray got through to chase down the leader. In the closing laps Shane Murray was putting pressure on McLean and had a few attempts to drive around the outside of the European champion. McLean held off the challenge to win the Irish Open with Shane Murray second and Derek Martin third, sole English visitor Jason Kew took fifth with Andrew Murray eventually battling his way back to a sixth, with what was probably the drive of the day.
Following the race an appeal has been lodged by a driver, and the result has been suspended.

The Lightning rods had a lively afternoon as well, with good car numbers plenty of spills, most of which happened when I’d my back turned to the, which is typical. Ricky Shaw took the opening heat with Vince Litter taking the honours in heat 2. Neil Davidson led most of the final, as the race entered the closing stages Dane Ferry and Richard Stewart had joined the scrap for the lead with Davidson, just as Stephen Emerson went around the outside of Stewart for third, Ferry and Davidson came together and spun out, gifting the lead and the win to Emerson.

The National Hot Rod British was the big attraction of the day, Stewart Doak won the opening heat with Gavin Murray second, the two then came together early on in the second heat, losing them both a lot of time. Jason Cooper took the second heat to gain a spot on the front row of the grid outside John Christie who had put in two strong finishes. Christie led early on but never managed to break away from Malcolm Blackman. As the leaders made their way through the backmarkers Christie spun in the pack and was collected by the oncoming Keith Martin, taking both out and causing a stoppage. Cooper led off from a much depleted restart, but Blackman soon got through followed by Doak, Doak stayed with Blackman until the closing laps, but never looked like getting the better of the world champion. Blackman took the British Championship, with Doak second and Jason Kew third.

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