Northampton Raceway 16th October
Graham Hill Memorial

It was good to see the return of Leon Retchless for this meeting, it had been a while since Leon had last raced.

Race one.

Tony Smith and Luke Retchless had a drag race into turn one at the green flag with Tony taking up the lead, In the Blue grade Leon Retchless got a head of Pete Dorrell next came Steve Dawson Daniel Pooley Phil Retchless Andrew Bilby and a sick sounding car of Gordon Pooley. Chris Neal had made another one of his Lightning starts to pass Marc de Land by turn three and was now all over the rear of Cliff Bunn and Neil Clarke,

Lap 3 and Leon took up the lead from Tony with Daniel in close pursuit, Steve Dawson took Luke on the home straight to move up to fourth. Later that lap Tony retired to the infield, by lap 5 Daniel was all over the rear of Leons car and on the home straight took up the lead, young Leon stayed with Daniel down the back straight but just over cooked it going into turn three and spun him self out of contention, this allowed Steve Dawson to take up second. Phil Retchless ahead of Pete Dorrell who had now been joined by Marc de Land and Andrew Bilby and Jonathan Pooley, with Marc taking Pete by turn one.

Lap 10 Daniel was out front but all the action was for second place with Phil passing Steve Dawson on the back straight and Marc de Land tacking third on turn three Jonathan Pooley was only three car lengths further back. As mthe laps ticked down Daniel was keeping the gap the same to Phil though there was a train of cars now behind him, Marc tried to get on the inside of Phil exiting turn four but that door soon closed, he tried again the next lap have a better exit and went for the outside this time, Jonathan then thought he would get in on the action and have a go at taking Marc, then going into turn one Marc gave Phil a little tap up the rear of the Cheetah Peugeot so as not to loose a place to Jonathan. At the Line it was Daniel who had drove a faultless race

1/ D.Pooley 2/ P.Retchless 3/ M. de Land 4/ J.Pooley 5/ C.Neal 6/ S.Dawson 7/.A.Bilby 8/ C.Bunn

Heat Two

A good start by Luke to get ahead of Tony Smith, Leon was the first of the blue graded cars to come through with Steve Dawson and the chasing pack just behind. Back in the red graded cars they was all bunched up with Neil Clarke and Cliff Bunn along side not managing to find a way pass Neil, tucked up under the rear of Neil was Chris Neal and Marc de Land was to his out side and Jonathan Pooley had to sit behind until they could sort them selves out. Steve Dawson spun out on turn one and down the order, On lap 3 exiting turn four Tony Smith drifted wide and went into the fencing rather hard damaging the front and side of the car, as the chasing pack also exited the turn they had to take avoiding action, Daniel Pooley spun into the fencing in trying to miss the stricken 37 car, and then the red graders who was all still bunched up , Cliff Bunn braked but Marc de Land could not slow in time and court Cliffs rear wheel damaging the suspension, as the cars came to a stop behind the control car, Cliff Tony and Daniels cars were moved to the infield. On the rolling restart Luke was the leader but his brother Leon took up the lead on the back straight, Jonathan Pooley had managed to box in Chris Neal behind Neil Clarke and Marc de Land followed suit, though Neil had not seen Marc on his out side and moved across in doing so the no 15 car had a close brush with the Northampton wall. At the half way point Leon was out front with Jonathan Pooley now second from Pete Dorrell and Andrew Bilby then there was a gap to Marc de Land Chris Neal and Steve Dawson. On lap 11 Leon goes wide on the exit of turn four to allow Jonathan pass, but coming down the home straight Leons driveshaft broke and he coasts round to the infield and out of the race, Marc took Pete to move up to second with Chris on his tail, but there was no catching Jonathan and that's how they finished. Results

1/ J.Pooley 2/ M.de Land 3/ C.Neal 4/ P.Dorrell 5/ A.Bilby 6/ N.Clarke 7/ S.Dawson 8/ Luke.Retchless

Final

With a slightly depleted field due to race two, it was Luke who took up the lead from the yellow grade, Dad Phil was soon pass Pete Dorrell for second while Andrew Bilby and Gordon Pooley got pass Steve Dawson, Chris Neal made a good start from the front of the red grade to pass Neal Clarke and set about catching the blues, Marc de Land and Jonathan Pooley also past Neil on the home straight, as the no 77 car had fuel trouble and slowly slipped away from the pack, also on lap 3 Gordon Pooley and Steve Dawson retired to the infield. Luke Retchless and Pete Dorrell had a moment going into turn one when Pete got on the out side to pass Luke, Lukes car under steered and only Pete quick reactions avoided a coming together. Chris Neal took both Andrew and Luke going into turn three Marc got held up a little and coming down the home straight nipped up the inside of Luke while Andrew and Jonathan took the out side line to make it three wide going into turn one. By half distance Phil was out front though slowly was being reeled in by Chris Neal. Marc had managed to pass Pete Dorrell with Jonathan just behind, next up was Andrew in the VW. As the laps ticked down the gap was closing but was they closing fast enough, Chris was pushing hard but Marc was staying with him, these three had pulled clear of Jonathan in fourth, both chasing cars were breaking later and later in a bid to try to catch Phil. With five to run the gap was now down to six car lengths, coming up on some lapped cars Phil passed on the straight but Chris just hesitated going into turn one and allowed Phil to pull a little gap, Now Chris could see Marc had closed in, exiting turn two Chris slid a little wide as Marc got good exit speed and the pair was along side each other by turn three but Marc could not make it stick so as they exited turn four Phil took the flag and the Graham Hill Memorial Trophy for the third consecutive year, well done Phil.

Results

1/ P.Retchless 2/ C.Neal 3/ M.de Land 4 /J.Pooley 5/ A.Bilby 6 /P.Dorrell

7/ L.Retchless 8/ N.Clarke