The 2015 Mid East 4wd Championship season drew to a conclusion last weekend, and with there being three Schumacher drivers still in the title hunt, and many more in the top twenty, it promised to be a successful day, and season, for the British based racing team.
The season ‘wheelied’ off with what was to be the first of two visits to Grantham’s A1 track in 2015, and it didn’t take long for Schumacher’s superiority to become apparent. Nathan Waters took one step towards the round win in taking pole position, but team mate, and now multiple national A-finalist, Jack Neal had other ideas, and a rare mistake by Nathan in the final eased Jacks way to victory. Long time Schumacher advocate, Eugene Galley, rounded out the top three.
Round two of the series was held at Broxtowe’s Astroturf track. Again, it was a near Schumacher shut out with 7 of the top 10 again all driving K1’s. Through a very tight four rounds of qualifying I managed to take pole position from Jack, who again qualified 2nd, and Eugene 3rd. In what was a fiercely battled out final I managed to bring it home with a charging Eugene only a tenth of a second behind. Jack Neal came 3rd and was trailed by further Schumacher drivers Richard Drury, Eddy Crump, Wes Jolly and John Brook.
The third round of the championship was hosted once again by the A1 Grantham club, who kindly offered to put on an extra round. The sweeping corners and undulating bumps of the A1 track certainly suited the K1, and coupled with the depth of talent that Schumacher currently hold in the Mid-East it again meant the majority of cars making the A final were of Schumacher design. After being absent for the round at Broxtowe, Nathan Waters took TQ, this time from myself, and Jack Neal. An early error from Nathan allowed me to inherit the lead, and eventual win, but after dropping way down the field Nathan managed to fight his way back up to finish second. In one of his best results of the year, John Brook kept his nerve to deliver his K1 to a 3rd place finish.
Robin Hood Raceway saw the Mid-East contingent roll in to town for round four of the championship, and it witnessed one of the most one sided performances of the season from Jack Neal. Some days everything just clicks into place. You put your car down and the setup appears spot on, you feel like the track is ten feet wide and you learn it with ease, every time your car takes a jump its like an invisible hand lovingly guides it back down onto the racing line, and ‘that tricky bit’ of the track that you normally dread hasn’t been included…this wasn’t to be one of those days for many of us, unfortunately, but it looked like Jack Neal was having one! Having dominated qualifying he put his afterburners on for the final and took the victory by five seconds from Eugene and then myself. It was another strong outing for the rest of the Schumacher team with another four drivers cementing their places in the top ten. Nick Gurnell and Daniel Austin made their 2015 Regional A-final debuts and Jon Brook and Eddy Crump continued fine seasons in also making the top ten.
The fifth and final round of the series, to be held at West Bridgfords rain soaked grass track, would be decisive in the championship race, and with three (all Schumacher) drivers still in with a strong chance of winning, the day was beautifully poised for some good close racing. It was Nathan Waters who took the initiative though, and after taking the first two rounds of qualifying (including the only dry race of the day) it was he who would place one hand on the coveted championship shield by taking pole position. To keep things interesting, the other two contenders, myself and Jack Neal, were to line up second and third on the grid so it wasn’t over just yet….but, after only half a lap into the final, Nathan’s name was all but etched onto yet another title. In typical ‘sods law’ fashion I suffered an electrical fault which meant my race was over, but as my car came to a halt it was hit from behind by Jack Neal’s K1 which broke as a result of the collision and in the ensuing carnage the rest of the field was also held up….all whilst Nathan steered his way to an easy, yet deserved, win.
It was a character building end to the season for Jack and my self, but aside from Nathan taking the win there were further positives for the Mid-East Schumacher team as all three podium spots were still occupied by Schumacher drivers. John Brook again showed how to be in the right place at the right time to take second and Eddy Crump concluded his 4wd campaign by taking an excellent third. Although Nathan will take the plaudits for the day, there was another stand out performer with under-13 Schumacher driver Isaac Mcfadyean managing to make the top ten amongst some of the regions best talent, he will be one to look out for in the not too distant future!
After the scores were tallied up from all five rounds of the championship the overall top ten looked like this:
1. Nathan Waters Schumacher 718 Points
2. Jack Neal Schumacher 716 Points
3. Iain Mellish Schumacher 715 Points
4. Eugene Galley Schumacher 709 Points
5. John Brook Schumacher 697 Points
6. Andy Wesson Xray 695 Points
7. Eddy Crump Schumacher 691 Points
8. Richard Drury Schumacher 690 Points
9. Adam Skelding Durango 683 Points
10. John Jones Xray 682 Points
With seven out of the top ten all being Schumacher drivers it has clearly been a very successful year for the Mid-East team, and with Schumacher always keen to encourage and support young talent they must be pleased with this years efforts by our junior stars. In both the under-13 and under-16 classes there have been some outstanding performances, and with talent such as Laura Hicklin, Isaac Mcfadyean, Thomas Gill and super young Ben Smith, amongst others, the EOS finals may yet bear further silver ware for one of the most competitive regions in the country!
Of course, no racing would be possible without the hard work and dedication of a select group of people from each club, so along with a big thank you to everyone at Schumacher for all their support and great cars this year I am sure I can speak for everyone in expressing gratitude to the people who put in the hours to make RC Racing such a great hobby….
Thank you all!