Mildenhall Saturday May 12
Unlimited Van Bangers, Saloon Stockcars and Ministox
Unlimited Van banger pictures by Stu Bishop
The fourth annual unlimited van banger meeting at Mildenhall raised another fine field of 52 machines on May 12 and once again we were not disappointed on the material front with some epic tin amongst the regulation Transits and LDVs. 442 Sean Crittenden had the lone Merc with a 308 while 14 Colin Lacey dared to be different with a Talbot bus which boasted three axles. The Misfits impressed with a brace of Campers, 130 Chris White returned his Ford US version from 12 months ago while 830 Lee White debuted an LDV and 557 Adrian Jaggard a Mk2 Transit. Further impressive Transits were a Mk3 dormobile for 22 Dave Vincent and a mega home built Mk1 stretch pick up from 168 Calvyn Girling. Elsewhere ambulances came from 196 Chip Howland with an LDV, 30 James Cudland with a Bedford CF while moving up a gear 807 Chris Murfin had a stunning Austin LD, 359 Simon Rolph a rated and smart Leyland FG and 179 Jamie Phillips a cool BMC JU250 which sadly failed to turn a wheel. 251 Mark Webb impressed with a Bedford CF fruit and veg van, 207 Michael Woodward had the smallest machine with a vintage Commer and 186 Mick Gedney excelled with a much large split screen Commer. 67 Mark Whittaker impressed with a tasty EA, 33! Simon Reed did not disappoint again with a giant Ford A Series bus but the biggest motor in action with a titanic Winebago from 564 Mark Cooper.
33! the Legend did it again with his giant Ford A series bus
67 Sparky was one of the stars of the star in his unstoppable EA
168 Calvyn Girling's most unusual Mk1 Transit pick up
Sadly 179 the Leg-End's cool BMC wouldn't run on the night
186 Mick Gedney entered another impressive display in his rated Commer
207 Compo's vintage Commer was a rare find
359 Mr Mint's epic Leyland ambulance
The massive Winniebago of 564 Coatie
807 Chris Murfin's vintage Morris Ambulance
25 vans assembled for heat one and it didn't take long for the entertainment to begin as 67 Sparky stuck it straight in reverse with 425 Martin Stopher's Transit taking the brunt of it. 19 Joe Mullarkey then caught 133 Karl Day in the door with 87 James Green blasting the former in turn as Lee White hammered 14 Babyface while a pile-up formed almost instantly by the pit gate. Gedney then zeroed in for a big hit on 133 Karly as 744 Simon Stoodly met 19 Dove Toe Joe on the nose. 130 Casper attacked Girling and 557 Stalky laid into 359 Mr Mint before Gedney continued with a solid hit on Stopher before he blasted Mr Mint. The luckless Stopher was T-boned by Casper as Dove Toe Joe assaulted Mr Mint only to take one in turn from Sparky. Casper battled on to ram Stopher on the nose as Stalky pounded 207 Compo and 611 Gavin Harris used his smart LDV to T-bone Sparky whose EA was already starting to fall apart. Girling then treated 604 Keith Silley to a T-bone as Gedney landed a big T-bone on Stalky which saw the latter's camper fall apart superbly. White again stuck it to Babyface as Sparky turned round to attack Dove Toe Joe while Stoodley pounded Stalky in reverse. White now shed his bodywork trying to get through the carnage on the home straight as Sparky took blows from 326 Shane Lynn and Stoodley before Sparky's crumbling EA was pounded by both Gedney and Stopher but the Buxton man shrugged it off to repay the latter with a head-on. This allowed White to nail the latter in what was left of his LDV as 511 Helen Licquorice used her LDV to hit Sparky head-on. 879 Reg Reed used his LDV to T-bone 326 Ratty and Dove Toe Joe attacked Licquorice before 879 Wrecked Reg scored on 727 Pat Smith's LDV. This allowed Gedney to pile the remains of his Commer into Reg as White again hit Sparky which finished the former. This left just Sparky and Mr Mint running and they traded a few hits while the former completed a couple of laps to be given the chequered flag but ultimately a joint win was given between the two.
It didn't take long for 186 Gedney and 359 Mr Mint to lose bodywork in heat one
One more van for heat two with 102 Steve Old the first to show as he T-boned 585 Kevin Giles with the latter taking similar punishment from 446 Lee Greer. It all kicked off at the end of the home straight as 397 Stu Sandell buried 317 Graham Jacobs into 564 Coatie blocking the track and triggering a cool van wrecking train. 565 Mark Carter blasted 397 Boo but took a big hit in turn from 307 Jon Joe Cunningham who was nailed seconds later by Old with 399 Darron Atkins blasting him to complete the train. To the immediate left of the train Howland blasted the LDV of 364 Sean Winchester before 21 Jason Colbert fired into 33! the Legend . 807 Murf traded blows with the LDV of 266 Ray Williams before the reds emerged with the track completely blocked but it then became clear that Colbert was in trouble and had sadly suffered a broken kneecap. A depleted field contested the restart with the Legend burying 251 Spiderman as Murf again attacked 266 Slippery. A back straight pile-up claimed Coatie, Slippery, the LDV of 93 Ady Chilvers and Crittenden with Coatie emerging to wreak havoc by the start line. Vincent piled in with a T-bone before the Legend weighed in with a good hit on the mobile home before Coatie took another shot from Crittendon. Winchester motored through for the win ahead of Chilvers and 348 Sonny Sherwood for an LDV 1-2-3, just seven finishing.
The night's two biggest machines met in style in the second heat
21 repaired in time for the consolation which was held during a short shower, this fortunately the only rain of the night. Gedney provided some humour with an umbrella fixed to his rollcage to keep him dry in the absence of a roof. The action begun with Slippery attacking 585 Big Ears only to take one in turn from Dove Toe Joe as a pile-up quickly formed on the road bend. 604 Keith Silley scored on Coatie who shrugged it off to give Dove Toe Joe a heavy hit as Greer smashed into the inner blocks hard. Wrecked Reg stuffed 727 Smithy before Gedney delivered a T-bone on Coatie which saw the latter start to also fall apart. Howland helped the process along by turning round for a big T-bone on Coatie as Gedney rammed Dove Toe Joe on the nose, the latter's rough night continuing when he was T-boned by 385 Paul Evans' LDV. Doe Toe Joe and Howland continued to pound Coatie whose monster van fell apart accordingly as Wrecked Reg put away Ratty which allowed 166 Ash Sheppard to snatch the win ahead of a recovered Ratty and Evans.
19 Dove Toe Joe was another star of the night, seen here trying to destroy 564 Coatie
186 Gedney, complete with umbrella, attacked 585 Big Ears
The remains of 564 Coatie's mobile home
A few non qualifiers were allowed to do the final which swelled the grid to 21 and it was another cracker. Sparky started the race with precious little body work and a hit from the LDV of 117 Karl Dack removed some more before Murf nailed Dove Toe Joe. 117 Kamikaze then buried Chilvers into Sparky as Winchester put away Green allowing Vincent to T-bone the British champion with 310 Tim Day nailing the dormobile in turn. 166 Ash Boy then hit Wrecked Reg as 327 Craig Blake used his LDV to hit the playful Sparky on the nose only to take one in turn from 288 Ash Burton who was given a stiff hit from Wrecked Reg seconds later. Crittenden then happily T-boned Sparly as Kamikaze did the same to Murf before Chilvers planted 726 Sam Smith into Sparky allowing Mushy to fire into Chilvers. Mr Mint had also shed most of his bodywork by this point but he still attacked Murf with a T-bone before the lively Wrecked Reg buried Ratty into the side of Kamikaze and Winchester T-boned Burton. Sparky turned round to attack Murf as Ash Boy scored on Dove Toe Joe only to take one in turn from Kamikaze. Girling now started to attack in reverse as he hit Winchester while Sparky did the same to Dove Toe Joe and Crittenden also attacked Vincent in reverse. Murf repaid Mr Mint before Chilvers buried 310 Dim Tim into the heap by the start line as Sparky reversed into Evans only to take one in turn from Crittenden. Murf nailed Burton and Vincent repaid Crittenden as Sparky continued his display with a head-on to Chilvers, Mr Mint also attacking the latter. Still the action came as Sparky now assaulted Kamikaze which left him prone to a hit from Chilvers as the lapping Mushy T-boned Murf and Mr Mint crashed into Kamikaze. Murf battled back to hit Sparky on the nose with Mushy T-boning the latter en route to taking the flag and he celebrated by burying the struggling Vincent. The latter took second with Kamikaze third and Crittenden the only other survivor.
16 returned for the last event of the night with a handful sitting out of the Accumulator although most of these couldn't wait until the demo started for them to join in. Murf was up for a crash and started the event in reverse with the Legend happy to weigh in with a big T-bone which saw the body work show signs of collapsing. Big Ears attacked Crittenden and the returning 261 Mick Wiseman nailed the former in turn to end all three drivers involvement there and then. Dove Toe Joe hit Murf only to take one in turn from Mr Mint as the Legend gave the ambulance of Cudland a storming hit. Dove Toe Joe was pounded by Sparky and Murf with the Legend delivering a second big hit to the latter which saw his ambulance fall apart in rated fashion. Still Murf battled on and joined forces with Sparky to reverse into the leading 344 Max Stoodley. Atkins gave Chilvers a solid head-on, the former then T-boning the chassis of Sparky before he took one in turn from Murf. Mr Mint then reversed his chassis into Murf allowing Atkins to attack the Leyland as Max Stoodley picked his way through to win ahead of Chilvers and Mushy. Into the demo with Mushy T-boning Atkins as Silley took a run up to give Mr Mint's remains a solid head-on. Murf T-boned Atkins and Sparky battled on to hit Mushy who shrugged it off with a shot on Mr Mint. A few quiet moments passed before the action resumed with Silley piling Chilvers into Mr Mint allowing Sparky to bash Chilvers with a hard head-on, Mushy making sure the latter was finished with a shot of his own. The three chassis riding pilots of Sparky, Mr Mint and Murf then ganged up on Silley and pounded him into submission with a series of hits before they traded blows among themselves on the pit bend. At this point Mushy found some more life and Sparky was happy to attack him as was Murf. The latter then expired together with Mr Mint as Mushy ended the night with a decent head-on to Sparky although officially a three way tie was declared between Sparky, Mr Mint and Murf, these three also collecting the entertainer awards alongside Gedney.
33! the Legend destroys 807 Chris Murfin as the Accumulator begins
67 Sparky and 807 Murfin battle it out at the end of the demo
What remained of 67 Sparky, 359 Mr Mint and 807 Murfin
Heat One: 67 Mark Whittaker and 359 Simon Rolph
Heat Two: 364 Sean Winchester, 93, 348, 22, 442, 807, 266
Consolation: 166 Ash Sheppard, 326, 385, 879, 726, 168, 186, 196, 19, 585
Grand Final: 348 Sonny Sherwood, 22, 117, 442
Accumulator: 344 Max Stoodley, 93, 348
Into DD: Whittaker, Rolph and 807 Chris Murfin (three way tie)
Round three of the Saloon Stockcar track championship raised a fine field of 32 cars, although this was some way short of the 40 plus who were booked in and included a pair of west country visitors. Sadly 176 Murray Jones failed to race, he was one of a handful of drivers who returned straight from Ireland but despite their best efforts he failed to repair the extensive damage to his car suffered across the water.
31 cars for the opener with 149 Jamie Sampson winding out 761 James Morris from the word go as 86 Simon Royal set the pace from 247 Barry Franklin as 311 Steve Newman clobbered the spinning 356 Anthony Filbert on the nose and 438 Tony Lay leaned 26 Tommy Barnes hard into the way. Royal removed Morris as Filbey fired both 512 Darren Barnett and 115 Scott Aldridge into the wall before 528 Ian Govier wound out 511 Craig Barnett. 417 Fred Powell spun 220 John Engleston as Royal continued to lead from Franklin with Barnes, 912 Andi Newman, Sampson and Darren Barnett next. 720 Shane Brown and 403 Ash Foulsham both spun while 377 Mick Oslar fenced Steve Newman and Royal went out handing Franklin the lead but it was only brief as on lap six Barnes took over by spinning Franklin aside. 305 Nigel Parker hooked out 27 Roy Fuller as Sampson moved into second with Andi Newman close behind as a recovered Brown spun Oslar. Sampson then spun Barnes just before half way to take the lead with the latter clobbered by 2 Paul Tuppen as 428 Lee Sampson removed Darren Barnett. At half way Lee Sampson moved into second ahead of 420 Ivan Street, Andi Newman, Barnes and Steve Newman but Andi Newman then flicked out Street which also claimed 186 Todd Jones with Govier delivering the final action as he spun Aldridge. Jamie Sampson held off brother Lee to win with Andi Newman third.
One less for the second heat with Andi Newman spinning early on as Royal again made the early running ahead of Franklin, 317 Dwayne Powell, Barnes and Street as Parker squeezed 156 Darren Goudy into the wall and Jones spun 369 Andy Santry who was collected as a result by 499 Dave Aldous. Tuppen then went round as Barnes moved into third with Street close behind and a recovered Andi Newman fenced Jones. Govier did the same Dwayne Powell with Lay then fencing Jones as Street spun Franklin but he also went round in the process ending both of their chances. Barnes moved into the lead on lap seven and at half way it was Royal in second ahead of Lay, Fred Powell, Govier, Aldridge, Craig and Darren Barnett and Brown, the latter having just spun Lee Sampson. Aldous, Royal and Franklin then all spun in a heap promoting Lay to second Govier not to far behind before Brown had Steve Newman out. Andi Newman put Jamie Sampson in the wall as a thrilling finish saw 402 Shaun Webster bury the leading Barnes on the last bend, the ensuing chaos seeing Fred Powell spin Goudy and Dwayne Powell hit Aldous. Lay slipped through to steal the win ahead of Govier and Aldridge with Barnes recovering in fourth.
28 returned for the final with no let up in the action. Lay was the firs to strike fencing Fred Powell as Aldous spun early on denting his chances. Royal made the running again with Govier and Andi Newman on his heels as Barnes spun Street. Santry fired in Oslar and Steve Newman did the same to 27 Roy Fuller before Brown stuffed Jones and 419 Luke Grief walled Barnes. The brutal fencings continued as Aldridge put away Morris as Brown spun 569 James Radcliffe and Barnes buried Darren Barnett before spinning the latter for good measure. Five laps in and Andi Newman took over but it didn't last long with Govier taking over ahead of Royal, Grief, Goudy, Englestone, Parker and Santry as Andi Newman lost several places. The lively Barnes spun Tuppen and Brown leaned Lee Sampson into the wall while brother Jamie suffered a similar fate at the hands of Street and Craig Barnett dumped out Aldridge. At half way Govier continued to lead ahead of Grief, a recovered Andi Newman, Goudy, Royal and Santry. Lee Sampson removed Steve Newman as Webster flicked out Jones as Grief moved into the lead on lap 14 with Govier then spinning out of the lead pack shortly after. Foulsham fired hard into the back of Morris with the former then spun by Radcliffe and Fred Powell rounded off the action by spinning Webster. Grief meanwhile motored to his second Mildenhall final win of the year ahead of Andi Newman and Goudy.
All 14 qualifiers returned for the dash for cash with Street spinning Lee Sampson in the early sort out as Barnes made the early running from Andi Newman and Govier. Lee Sampson recovered to attack Goudy as Street removed Steve Newman. At half way the top three remained the same with Grief, Aldridge and Englestone completing the top six. Grief soon moved into third as a sensational finish saw Barnes hesitate passing the back marking Steve Newman setting up the last bend attack from Govier. The west country man connected perfectly on Barnes with Grief also flying in but missing Govier and hitting Barnes which sent the latter in very hard as Govier took the win with Grief stealing second from the luckless Barnes.
Heat One: 149 Jamie Sampson, 428, 912, 26, 311, 499, 528, 369, 156, 402
Heat Two: 438 Tony Lay, 528, 115, 26, 511, 419, 512, 149, 402, 417
Grand Final: 419 Luke Grief, 912, 156, 220, 511, 26, 720, 369, 499, 528
Dash for Cash: 528 Ian Govier, 419, 26, 912, 511, 499, 115, 428, 156, 420
Round four of the Ministox track championship was an all RDC affair but once again a cracking field with 35 cars in action.
A full field for heat one with 349 Todd Payne the first to show spinning 350 Thomas Parrin before the formed hooked out 389 Charlie Garrod seconds later as up from 399 Tom Atkins led from 329 Reece Laybourn and 372 Kyle Tuppen. 314 Joe Annison also spun as 303 Ben Murray had 362 Liam Friel out while up front Tuppen and 301 Tom Wenham moved into second and third behind Atkins. 382 Jack Foster whalloped the spun 334 Adrian Court as Murray had 307 Jamie Lee-Potter out and Wenham spun 330 Jack Thompson before Murray and Garrod slammed into the inner wall. 302 Jordan Murray walled Payne as we hit half way with Atkins still leading ahead of Tuppen, Wenham, Laybourn, Hannay, 327 Roy Laybourn and 316 Jack Wheelwright. There were spins around the raceway for 356 Sid Cooper, 325 Charlie Overy and Court as 340 Wes Freestone fenced Payne. On lap 13 the rapid Wheelwright raced into second but was still somewhat adrift from Atkins who was cruelly spun on the back straight by a back marker allowing Wheelwright to nip through for a quality win from the back ahead of Wenham and a recovered Atkins.
Just two less for the second heat with 371 Jason Cobbold attacking 370 Kyle Overy from the off as Wenham hassled Parrin with the former moving into the early lead ahead of Atkins and Tuppen although the latter soon came under fire from Reece Laybourn who moved into third. Cobbold then spun Annison who was collected by Foster as a result. 387 Ollie Ovenden spun 335 Lorna Annison before 320 Ben Burbridge turfed aside Freestone with the former then fencing 351 Lewis Byron. At half way Wenham continued to lead ahead of Atkins and Reece Laybourn with Court, Roy Laybourn and Wheelwright next. Tuppen walled 331 Rob Gamble as Upson went in very hard exiting the road bend. Parrin and Court spun at the end of the back straight which claimed Kyle Overy and Wheelwright leaving the former and latter stranded on the pit bend but they sat tight and the action continued with Roy Laybourn making the most of the carnage to take the lead. Freestone and Byron went out and were collected by Ben Murray as Joe Annison spun Atkins and Charlie Overy fenced the luckless Byron. 318 Emma Powell stuffed Cooper as Tuppen collected the unfortunate Wheelwright but Roy Laybourn held off Cobbold to win with Reece Laybourn third.
Still 26 returned for the final although Jordan Murray was excluded immediately for jumping the start as Upson set the early pace from Ovenden and 310 Chas Lee. 313 Timmy Barnes used the bumper to spin Foster but was turned aside himself seconds later by Wheelwright as a small pile-up claimed several on the road bend but this quickly cleared. Wenham moved into second with Payne, Powell and Roy Laybourn next before Atkins battled his way back up the order and into fourth place. Wenham spun Upson in a bid to take the lead but he lost time as well which handed Payne the top spot but it was short lived as Roy Laybourn slipped past. Further action saw Barnes spin Powell and Joe Annison remove Upson as Roy Laybourn led them to the half way mark ahead of Wenham, Garros, Payne, Joe Annison, Wheelwright and Cobbold. On lap 14 Roy Laybourn was delayed by back markers and Wenham didn't hesitate spinning him for the top spot before Garrod fell foul of the bumper of Barnes who was turned aside by Wheelwright seconds later. Wenham meanwhile held off a closing Wheelwright for the win with Joe Annison fending off Cobbold for third.
Heat One: 316 Jack Wheelwright, 301, 399, 327, 329, 370, 371, 340, 308, 387
Heat Two: 327 Roy Laybourn, 371, 329, 325, 310, 389, 313, 387, 370, 399
Grand Final: 301 Tom Wenham, 316, 314, 371, 335, 370, 349, 327, 399, 389
A storming night of action with all three formulas in blistering form. The unlimited vans again delivered the goods with one of the most entertaining meetings of the year and a number of superb performances with Sparky, Mr Mint, Murf and Gedney very worthy of their entertainer awards but there were many more who excelled on the night. The Saloons and Ministox continued their excellent season at Mildenhall with some tremendous action in all of their races.
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