Race Reviews – 2014

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Sunny and Hot



The FGA Championship finally got under way on a Sun drenched Saturday in Shropshire.
Wrekin GTC’s re-scheduled event saw the first competitive races of the 2014 season.

The seniors saw a number of new faces and also a number of returnees who have re-kindled their love of the sport. It was obvious from the first race that this was going to be fast and furious with no quarter given. The racing was hard, fast, close and exciting and certainly gave the spectators a good day and promise of more to come. The honours for the day went to Phil Thomas and Ryan Ashcroft who both ended the day on a maximum, with Adrian Guest and John Jones close on their heels only dropping 3 points each and Mark Evans always there or thereabouts.

Seniors Finishing Order   Joint 1st: Phil Thomas and Ryan Ashcroft

                                           Joint 3rd: Adrian Guest and John Jones

                                           5th: Mark Evans

In the Juniors Liam Ashcroft and Jack Walton were showing the way to Tommy Astbury and another newcomer Jack Budd with Ashcroft taking the spoils for the day but again the depth of talent coming through is going to make another exciting class.

Juniors Finishing Order  1st: Liam Ashcroft

                                          2nd: Jack Walton

                                          3rd: Tommy Astbury

                                          4th: Jack Budd

In  the Cubs newcomers Katie Gordon and Samuel Hall were quickly on the pace and challenging the more experienced Thierry Atkinson right from the first race demonstrating that this is going to be an exciting class.

Cubs Finishing Order        1st: Samuel Hall

                                            2nd: Katie Gordon

                                            3rd: Thierry Atkinson

This is promising to be one of the most exciting seasons for racing in  the FGA.

The future is bright, the future is the FGA.

The Race Card for the meeting is shown below



Sunny, Partially Cloudy and Warm




Last Saturday saw another quality entry produce some of the best FGA action seen so far in 2015. The WMCCs new Malpas circuit at the popular Rally Site venue just got better and better as the day went on even when track temperatures soared into 30 degree plus temperature’s. Great to see another healthy crowd witness Formula Grasstrack at its very best !

Runcorn’s Ted Wilkinson (Autos 6-8yrs) Eversham’s Eli Meadow’s (Cub 8-12yrs) Coventry’s Brandon Gutteridge (Junior 12-16yrs) and Shrewsbury’s Phil Thomas (Senior 16-83yrs) came out with the top spots but all were pushed hard in each of their six programmed rides.

Liam Cox who certainly has got his KTM flying had some great battle’s he finished runner up with newbie Billy Budd also now on a new KTM machine getting third. Great to see this young lad get up and walk away plus continue racing after a big high side in one of the heats. “A little sore and bruised” was the report on Sunday. “but he can’t wait for the next one” Nick said. Well done Billy !

Great to see this AUTO CLASS working in the FGA….plus the smell of two stoke oil again..FANTASTIC !

Autocadets Finishing Order        1st: Liam Cox

                                                       2nd: Billy Budd


Cubs Finishing Order        1st: Katie Gordon

                                            2nd: Samuel Hall

Brandon Gutteridge really got his bike dialled in here, scoring his first max in the Juniors, probably the lads best meeting to date. Jack Budd scored well in all races giving him second on the day.

Juniors Finishing Order   1st: Liam Ashcroft

                                           2nd: Brandon Gutteridge

                                           3rd: Jack Budd

The Senior class this year is more competitive than ever but once again its the current champion Phil Thomas who is just that cut above the rest at the moment. Consistent starts and tight lines really are the key for No 22. Another maximimum 6 out of 6 with this quality of field, the lad is certainly on form…Well done Phily T

Following a stewards enquiry at the end of the meeting plus after taking guidance from the ACU track committee regarding a five lap race in heat 27 the results are now declared as follows 2nd Richard Guest 3rd Graham Thomas 4th Elvis Jones Joint Fifth Wayne Broadhurst, Ross Wharton, Ryan Ashcroft.

Seniors Finishing Order   1st: Phil Thomas

                                           2nd: Ryan Ashcroft

                                           3rd: Ross Wharton

                                          4th: Tommy Crewe

                                           5th: Elvis Jones

                                           6th: Rob Cuffin

Great to see some former big grass riders returning to their FGA roots here plus The Liverpool Express David Radley having a blast again. Brilliant !!

Others here that must get a mention..The hard charging Jon Higham who always gives 100% Mike Flynn who still can be the fastest out of the gate said he really enjoyed his “little ride round” Katie Gordon who once again showed the lads how to get out of the tapes. Liam Ashcroft and Jack Walton who in only their 2nd Senior event mixed it all day and Rob Cuffin who again continued to impress. Shame that Rocco Casale was a non starter due to van trouble and broke down on route from Buckinghamshire, he got back home at the same time had he been racing !

Finally thanks to all the marshals, Peak Medicare and everyone else who assisted in the running of this event which was such a great advert for the FGA.

Last but not least a big round of applause to farmer Jones for the track preparation !!
Elvis finally got to drive a tractor !!

Roll on to round 5 and the now famous 2 dayer !!!!!


Sunny, Partially Cloudy and Warm


Slippery initially, becoming better midway through the meeting

Last years winners reigned supreme at Saturday’s FGA championship round 1 re run event run by the WMCC at the popular Rally Site venue Malpas, Cheshire.

Youth riders Thierry Atkinson cub class 8-12yrs and Jack Walton juniors 12-16 yrs won all of their 6 races with tape to flag wins proving they have no plans of handing their titles over in a hurry just yet. The senior class was certainly a different story where Elvis Jones was down in a lowly fifth place at the interval but then won his last three rides to joint top score with this years series leader Philip Thomas. FGA chairman Mark Evans now back to full fitness looked as though he was on for a rare meeting victory at one stage, he kept the pair honest and took the last rostrum spot just a single point behind on 33pts.

Excellent performance’s in their first season saw Sam Hall and Katie Gordon take the cub 2nd and 3rd.

Cubs Finishing Order        1st: Thierry Atkinson

                                            2nd: Samuel Hall

                                            3rd: Katie Gordon

Brandon Gutteridge had his best one to date since his move up into the 2nd tier of FGA racing finishing 2nd Luke Postlethwaite improved all day and got third.
Newbie Jack Budd who really is loving his racing had a steady day scoring 19 points with Tommy Astbury having an off day by his own high standards rounded of the top 5. Good to see him shake off a nasty fall in his 3rd ride.

Juniors Finishing Order   1st: Jack Walton

                                           2nd: Brandon Gutteridge

                                           3rd: Luke Postlethwaite

With 29 Senior riders at this one it was always going to be difficult to go through the card and this proved to be the case with just 5 points separated the top 10 at the final reckoning.

Other riders that deserve a mention

Long distance traveller Rocco Casale from Buckinghamshire made an impressive debut in his first adult event winning a couple of rides, Liverpool’s David Radley who switched from main stream grass racing to make his FGA debut and was right in the mix, Katie Astbury the lone senior lady rider took her first win and finished with 17 points.  Andy Binns and Ross Wharton both put in solid performances. Good to see Andy Smith back in the FGA fold looking very smooth after a 16 year absence he will be kicking himself from a 5th ride fall.

Seniors Finishing Order   Joint 1st: Phil Thomas and Elvis Jones

                                           3rd: Mark Evans

                                           Joint 4th: Andy Binns, Ross Wharton and Andy Smith

Thirty three riders all on 125cc Hondas cracking stuff – THE FUTURES BRIGHT, THE FUTURES FGA

Clerk of the course rider of the day was again a shared result. Luke Postlethwaite and Rocco Casale

Special thanks to all the marshals and officials,WMCC members who assisted in the track prep.

Special one man and his no dog award goes to sheep whisperer Mike Flynn for his practice performance.

Special thanks to the red arrows for the pre meeting fly by entertainment. Apologies for the slight delay as these were booked for 1pm!


Rain Showers at the start, becoming drier later


Muddy and Slippery

When you get the thumbs up and seal of approval from speedway promoter Graham Drury it certainly goes to show that the Formula Grasstrack Association is heading in the right direction ! This weekend at Gresford Wrexham saw ninety top quality heats, 45 riders ( all on Honda 125s) The closest ever top eight Senior finish, at the end it could only be separated by 4 points,imperious maximums in both youth classes, guest appearances from 3 x Ex  250cc British Champion Graham Thomas, International grasstracker Phil Ashcroft and Ex speedway rider Jack Hargreaves and to top all that of Sunday witnessed a interclass 6 team tournament that produced arguably the best riding ever seen, you needed a lie down in a dark room after this one !

On a very slick track made greasy after morning showers Thierry Atkinson took it all in his stride and carried of the maximum points on offer in Round 4 of the 2014 Championship. He went through the card unbeaten, another fine display from this little Welsh Dragon who is not quite ready to hand over his title just yet ! Runner up was the little Sam Hall, who continues to make great strides in the first tier of FGA racing (8-12yrs) he kept Atkinson honest all day. Katie Gordon our current lone youth lady rider put in another fantastic performance. Fast gating got her right in the mix to take a very credible third rostrum spot.

Cubs Finishing Order        1st: Thierry Atkinson

                                            2nd: Samuel Hall

                                            3rd: Katie Gordon

Without doubt the star of this Round in the Junior class (12-16yrs) was Liam Ashcroft, obviously fathers advice is really starting to work for this young man as he was riding way beyond his years and often putting in lap times comparable to that of the Adults ! Current champ Jack Walton had no answer to his main challenger for this years title, he finished as runner up. Having a steady day by his own high standards i am sure he will want to reverse this result at the next one in a couple of weeks time. Third on the podium was Luke Postlewaite who continues to make great strides and is really adapting to the FGA racing in only his first full season after switching from schoolboy grass. The lower places were a real battle over their six races and could have gone either way but it was Brandon Gutteridge who eventually got the drop over Tommy Astbury and Jack Budd. Credit to all in the youth classes who made light work on a difficult circuit !!

Juniors Finishing Order   1st: Liam Ashcroft

                                           2nd: Jack Walton

                                           3rd: Luke Postlethwaite

Where can you start with the Senior report ?? After practise it really was anyone’s guess who was going to be the victor at this one and so it proved as the afternoon unfolded. It went down to the very last batch of heats to decide the outcome but Heat 32 proved to be a pivotal race for the current FGA Champion Elvis Jones. Needing a race win to keep him on track for the outright win, drama then unfolded on lap 3. A coming together with Ryan Ashcroft brought out the red flag and caused the race to be stopped in the interest of safety, a very tough decision for the clerk of the course but after deliberation the result was called to put jones back a place. Tough racing, a close call, no one really at fault, great to see both riders shaking hands after the race !! Series leader Phil Thomas had to settle for 2nd in heat 45 from the stylish Richie Guest who made a welcome return using a new motor after blowing up his old faithful that had took him to many title’s. Another race win for Tommy Crewe in heat 47 left it then for the lapscorers to find the winner and it needed a recount to be sure ! A joint top score for 4 riders all on 34 points Guest, Jones, Thomas, Crewe – his best display for many years by far. Just a single point behind the leaders was usual front runner Ross Wharton and the evergreen Mark Evans who really is starting to enjoy his racing again. Both put in fine display’s but such was the class of this field, they only took away 21 championship points. Making up the top eight were young pretenders Rocco Casale and Ryan Ashcroft – surely its only a matter of time before these two lads are challenging for their maiden Senior FGA crowns !

Seniors Finishing Order   Joint 1st: Phil Thomas, Richard Guest, Tommy Crewe and Elvis Jones

                                           Joint 5th: Mark Evans and Ross Wharton

                                           7th: Rocco Casale

Gearbox trouble and a slowing motor kept Bantam Legend Graham Thomas down in a uncharacteristic 13th place, his first outing aboard a 125 showed all he has not lost any of his true class ! Others that also deserve a mention, good to see Glynn Edwards back out there right in the mix, Andy Binns who is re writing the form book this year, Ade Guest who aboard the Chris Moseley ex machine is really enjoying his racing this season and a fine performance was put in by mainsteam 1000cc sidecar driver Garth Tregilgas.


Warm and Sunny


Dry and Dusty

Using a unique formula of combined Youth / Senior squads based on current league form, known ability and a finger in the air ! The WMCC staged the annual FGA team event on Sunday for the second part of their 2 dayer meeting over the border at Gresford, Wrexham.

After Saturday’s damp and greasy condition’s, the sun beat down all day transforming the 280 meter track with 26 degree temperatures. Producing near perfect condition’s for the 35 riders in attendance and also for the biggest crowd seen for many years. With the inclusion of three wildcards against the usual FGA regulars, it was always going to be interesting and once again it proved to be the case.

Each and every FGAer produced their finest displays of the season but a few riders stood head and shoulders above the rest. Team Ashcroft – Junior Liam and Dad Phil both produced faultless displays, Phil Thomas who went through the card unbeaten, Cheshire’s Andy Binns, who rode this meeting as if his life depended on it ? A detached fuel line in Race 20 left him cursing. Graham Thomas was back on form after burning the midnight oil to rebuild his sick motor and finally to Tommy Astbury. His vital win with his last ride made all the difference to his team at the final countdown.

“This has been the best FGA event i have ever witnessed” was the statement from FGA Chairman Mark Evans. “While other forms of motorsport appear to be struggling, the FGA continues to go from strength to strength and i am really proud to be associated with this unique form of grasstrack racing”

The WMCC would once again like to thank everyone who made this event possible especially to Brian & Joan Crump, Sally Evans, John Potton, Jill Morgan, Alison Atkinson, Elvis Jones, Knutsford Scouts (event tent) and to landowner John Dutton for this fantastic venue !


   Winners: Total 167 : Tommy Astbury – 28, Ryan Ashcroft – 32, Phil Ashcroft – 36 max,

                                             Ade Guest – 27, Robin Jones – 25, Mick Hartley – 19.

   Runners Up: Total 153 : Liam Ashcroft – 36 max, Sam Hall – 25, Graham Thomas – 30,

                                                   Steve Watson – 13, Garth Tregilgas – 29, Rob Rogers – 14.

   Third: Total 148 : Jack Walton – 31, Ross Wharton – 28, John Higham – 22,

                                       Rob Cuffin – 27, Bobby Morgan – 22, G – Marcus Crutchington – 18.

   Fourth: Total 138 : Katie Gordon – 22, Thierry Atkinson – 32, Jack Hargreaves – 26,

                                          Steve Mace – 23, Arran Swindells – 17, G – Marcus Crutchington 18.

   Fifth: Total 124 : Jack Budd – 24, Mark Evans – 31, Andy Binns – 26,

                                     Katie Astbury – 9, Daz Hartley – 18, Marcus Crutchington – 18.

   Sixth: Total 123 : G – Marcus Crutchington – 18, Philip Thomas – 36max, Richie Guest – 22,

                                      Kieran Swindell – 19, Gary Watson – 15, Scott Jarman – 13.

Latest News

The FGA would like to wish Amanda Keeling a speedy recovery from injuries sustained in Saturday’s event. Badly twisting a leg has resulted in damage to an old injury. Get well soon AK !


Sunny, Overcast at times


Long grass, Dry


Thirty two riders and thirty nine races provided some of the best Formula Grasstrack battles seen in 2014. The WMCC’s new Malpas venue served up some great racing to bring this years FGA championship to a close.

The Cub class (8-12yrs) once again dished up some cracking action. Current champ Thierry Atkinson looked odds on to go through the card unbeaten – at the interval he was on a maximum closely followed by the fast improving pair of Samuel Hall and Katie Gordon. The second half was a different story with Hall getting two victories and Gordon winning her best race of the year in the last batch of heats.

Cubs Finishing Order        1st: Thierry Atkinson

                                            2nd: Samuel Hall

                                            3rd: Katie Gordon

The Cub Trophy final went right down to the wire. Katie Gordon looked to be the quickest of the group after getting a flying start and leading for most of the race but it was young Sam Hall who timed his run in to perfection, winning by the width of a tyre !!

The Junior class (12-16yrs) saw Luke Postlethwaite look all set to take his maiden win in the 2nd tier of FGA racing – he went into the interval dropping his only point to series leader Liam Ashcroft. After the break Ashcroft re grouped and was never going to be caught, winning his remaining heats plus the trophy final. Jack Budd rode steady all day to take the final rostrum place.

Juniors Finishing Order   1st: Liam Ashcroft

                                           2nd: Luke Postlethwaite

                                           3rd: Jack Budd

The Senior class (16-82yrs) was always going to be close with such a strong line up here. After the six programme rides it was the Thomas brothers who topped the standings to take the joint 1st place. Great to see Phil and Graham at the top of their game back racing together, heat 15 saw them wheel to wheel for all 4 laps one of the races of the meeting. Young pretender Ryan Ashcroft kept the pressure on all day, only 2 points behind he finished joint 3rd along with former champ Richard Guest. Good to see Dave Meredith back on a bike and not lost any of his speed, he took 5th with Association chairman Mark Evans having some good rides to make the top 6.

Usual front runner Elvis Jones suffered after the interval with a puncture and a misfire on his spare machine which saw him finishing 7th. Congratulations to Jack Walton who finished in a very creditable 9th spot in his first Senior FGA event. He rode well all day claiming the scalps of Guest and Evans for his race wins. 

Seniors Finishing Order   Joint 1st: Phil Thomas, Graham Thomas

                                           Joint 3rd: Ryan Ashcroft, Richard Guest

                                           5th : Dave Meredith

                                           6th: Mark Evans

The Jonathon Rodgers Senior Trophy Final was the last race of the year. Series leader Phil Thomas took home the spoils after a titanic battle from his brother Graham. Following the pair home was Guest, Evans, Wharton and Ashcroft.

A great meeting to end another successful year for the FGA. Fifty six riders have competed in 2014 all on 125cc Honda machines, nine championship rounds plus the team event and overnight camp…THE FUTURES BRIGHT..Can’t wait for 2015 !