Race Reviews – 2017
ASHCROFT’S ACE IT!
The 2017 Formula Grasstrack Association’s season kicked off last Saturday with Round one of the championship organised by the Whitchurch Motor Cycle club at the well liked Rally Site venue near Malpas, Cheshire.
In fantastic, sunny conditions to open the British Grasstrack season, it was to be Maximum points throughout the heats for the winners of each category.
In the youngest class, the Auto/cadet’s, it was Oliver Binns who took the top rostrum spot continuing his form from last season’s final round. 2nd was George Colvin in his debut FGA meeting with a run of 5 seconds and a 3rd in the heats. Last year’s champion in this class, Charlotte Arthur, took the bronze medal on the day with 3rd.
The Cub class which caters for 9-12 year olds was mixed with the Junior category with points being scored for their respective classes. The Cub winner was Billy Budd taking a full 36 point maximum too, with some close racing against his elder rivals in the Junior class. 2nd in this class was Joe Crewe who was making his debut in this class.
The Junior’s produced some fantastic racing. With last year’s joint champion, Sam Hall from Whitchurch taking maximum points in the heats but suffering mechanical gremlins in the final still taking the top step. Second place went to Junior newcomer and 2016 Cub champion Aidan Arthur. It must be said that Hall had shown true sportsmanship by lending Arthur his spare machine to finish the meeting when arthur’s went sick mid-meeting. To decide the final rostrum spot, Katie Gordon & Somerset mascot Eli Meadows had to face a race-off in the final as both were tied on points. And it was female racer Gordon who took it with a consistent, smooth ride.
In the Top Class, the Senior’s, it was Maximum points and A final victory for the elder Ashcroft bother Ryan. He turned in a fantastic performance on the day winning all his heats with style and comfort. It was to be a 1-2 for the brothers from the west midlands with younger brother Liam taking second place on the day, dropping his only points when meeting his elder brother in the heats. 3rd place went to Shropshire man Martin Adams who consistently finished in the top three in his heats. There was a tie on points after the 6 heats between Marcus Crutchington and Glyn Stanton for 4th place. Crutchington continuing his form from 2016 was impressive all day whilst veteran Stanton was left rueing an unforced and unusual fall in his 2nd ride. They would have to face a Final decider to see who earned 4th and 22points for the championship.
The FGA continues to go from strength to strength with 6 newcomers to the sport this season and a total entry of 35 competitors on the day. Some of the best racing came in the finals. This season there will be a final for every rider decided on the points scored in their 6 heats. In the Senior D final, newcomer Mark Mulvey raced through the field to take the win. But the race of the day was the Senior B final with Stephen ‘sarge’ Mace racing a smooth wide line to come from the back nearly taking the win from Andy Binns but for a slight mistake on the last corner. Binns took the win from Mace with Whitchurch Chairman John Higham taking third place after a tough days racing. The A final saw a mid-pack battle between Elvis Jones and Shropshire racers Glyn Stanton & Martin Adams. With plenty of elbows and handlebars it was Jones that followed the Ashcroft’s home for third with a pass on Marcus Crutchington on the last lap. Leaving Stanton to edge out Adams for fifth.
The next FGA meeting takes place on 6th May organised by Minsterley Motor Club.
1st O. Binns 36pts 2nd G. Colvin 29pts 3rd C. Arthur 25 pts 4th J. Crewe 18pts
1st B. Budd 36 2nd J. Crewe 30pts
1st S. Hall 36pts 2nd A. Arthur 32pts 3rd K. Gordon 30 pts 4th E. Meadows 30pts 5th N. Alder 24pts
1st R. Ashcroft 36pts 2nd L. Ashcroft 34pts 3rd M. Adams 32pts 4th M. Crutchington 30 pts 5th Glyn Stanton 30pts 6th E. Jones 29pts 7th M. Furley 29pts 8th A. Binns 24pts 9th J. Higham 24pts 10th K. Murfin 24pts.
Minsterley Motor club held round 2 of the formula Grasstrack association championship last Saturday near Shrewsbury, Shropshire. After a week of sunshine, a light drizzle Saturday morning made conditions tricky at the start of the day. There was a bumper entry with 41 riders across 4 classes.
In the auto cadet class maximum man last time out Oliver Binns had a fall in practice which knocked his confidence at the start of racing. The winning was done by 2016 champion Charlotte Arthur who was unbeaten throughout the heats. Oliver Binns came second after narrowly outscoring the fast improving Jack Crewe. In the final it was the fast starting Binns who eventually took the win after working hard to fend off overall winner Arthur.
In the cub class it was Billy Budd who took maximum points again with Joseph Crewe finishing second. Budd who had a busy day after competing in a football final in Chester that morning, made the trip south to Shropshire to take victory. The cubs were one again mixed in with the Junior class with both riders giving a good account of themselves amongst older competition. Budd also took home the Tom Thomas memorial trophy for the cubs.
In the junior class it was Eli Meadows from Evesham who took victory dropping 1 point to Sam Hall in his second ride. In second place was round 1 winner and joint junior champion Sam Hall, third place and final rostrum spot went to Nathan Alder after he took 3 wins throughout the day. Lady rider Katie Gordon finished 4th despite an awkward fall in her last ride battling for the 1st place. Hard luck stories in this class go to Aidan Arthur and Thierry Atkinson. Both suffering mechanical gremlins hampering their results. Unfortunately for Arthur his bike gave up the ghost in practice and was unable to race. In the junior Tom Thomas memorial final it was as you were with Eli Meadow taking victory for the second year in a row fending of Sam Hall and Nathan Alder.
In the senior class it was Shrewsbury man and 350cc stalwart Wayne Broadhurst who took the win and Tom Thomas memorial trophy. Broadhurst showed his true class and was only beaten once by round 1 winner Ryan Ashcroft. Second place on the day went to the younger of the Ashcroft brothers Liam, only dropping 2 points all day. Third place went too FGA senior champion Graham Thomas. The former 250cc british champion not having it easy on his return to FGA racing. Round 1 winner Ryan Ashcroft looked to continue his winning race heading Phil Thomas in their first race of the day but slipped off entering turn 4 on lap 3 giving the race victory to Thomas. The elder of the Ashcroft would be left regretting this as he went on to only drop 1 point throughout the rest of the day giving him 4th overall instead of a possible victory. 5th place went to the younger of the Thomas brothers, Phil. Starting off with 3 wins, he went on too score consistently in the second half of the meeting tying him with elder brother Graham and Ryan Ashcroft on points leaving the finishing order in the Tom Thomas final to decide their finishing order. In 6th place was Martin Adams who scored consistently all day after winning his 1st ride.
Race of the day had to be the Tom Thomas senior final with the top 8 point scorers going to the tapes. It was Ryan Ashcroft making a fantastic start from the outside gate but was squeezed out exiting the first corner by Graham Thomas and his younger brother Liam Ashcroft denying him any chance of victory leaving Shrewsbury man Broadhurst too exit the first ccorner on the inside and allowing pull clearer of the chasing pack and take victory in fine style. The younger of the Ashcrofts , Liam, fought off senior champion Graham Thomas for 2nd place whilst senior championship leader Ryan Ashcroft finished 4th.
A special mention has to go too Marcus Crutchington for his consistency and vast improvement at the start of this season. Hard luck story of the day goes to former senior champion Elvis Jones. But for a fall in his first race would have made the A final after consistently finishing in the top two in his remaining rides. Jones would have to take consolation with a B final Victory.
Round 3 of the FGA championship organised by the Wrekin club takes place on 20th May At Chetton.
Full Results from Round 2 –
1st Charlotte Arthur 48, 2nd Oliver Binns 40, 3rd Jack Crewe 38
1st Billy Budd 48, 2nd Joseph Crewe 42
1st Eli Meadows 47, 2nd Sam Hall 45, 3rd Nathan Alder 44, 4th Katie Gordon 32, 5thThierry Atkinson 31
1st Wayne Broadhurst 47, 2nd Liam Ashcroft 46, 3rd Graham Thomas 45, 4th Ryan Ashcroft 45, 5th Phil Thomas 45, 6th Martin Adams 43, 7th Marcus Crutchington 40, 8th Glyn Stanton 38, 9th Elvis Jones 37, 10th John Higham 35, 11th Simon Jones 35, 12th Andy Binns 34, 13th Keith Murfin 34, 14th Mark Furley 31, 15th Mick Keeling 28, 16th Steve Mace 24, 17th Glyn Pye 21, 18th Kieran Swindells 20, 19th Russell Hall 18, 20th Neil Murfin 16, 21st Mark Mulvey 16, 22nd Dave Meadows 16, 23rd Nigel Bowkett 16, 24th Lewis Bates 15, 25th Colin Pritchard 15, 26th Gary Hollingsworth 14, 27th Zoe Keeling 14, 28th Luke Keeling 11, 29th Peter Evans 10, 30th Mike Flynn 0.
Sam’s Super Seven! – Formula Grasstrack Round 3 Report.
Wrekin Grasstrack club hosted round 3 of the Formula Grasstrack Association’s Championship on Saturday at the Chetton venue in Shropshire. Whilst the weather wasn’t the kindest, with showers throughout the afternoon it didn’t affect the racing on track!
Once again, the winners in all four categories came away with wins in all their race’s. In the Auto Cadets, it was Oliver Binns who took top honours and extended his Championship lead over Charlotte Arthur who pushed Binns in every race but the boy from Cheshire had the edge in tricky conditions. Rounding out the top three was youngest of the Crewe brothers, Jack who is improving each meeting.
In the Cub class, once again Billy Budd from Ellesmere Port put in a fine performance to take top honours ahead of elder Crewe brother Joe who, like his brother is also showing huge improvement in his riding and will be one to watch out for in the future.
The Junior class produces some fantastic racing at every meeting and this time was no different. With five riders all evenly matched there was plenty of overtaking in each race. It was Whitchurch schoolboy Sam Hall who showed why he’s Junior champion and went unbeaten. Making superb starts in 7 rides and was never headed. The consistent Eli meadows went on to finish 2nd with 5 2nd places and a 3rd before finishing behind good friend and rival Hall. Taking the last rostrum spot was Aidan Arthur. Arthur, who experienced bike problems in the first two Championship rounds seemed to have these solved this time and went on to show some great race craft to take 3rd place. Knutsford racer Katie Gordon pipped Nathan alder to 4th place overall after some consistent gating throughout the Day.
The Senior’s Produced great racing as always despite the slightly depleted entry. It was Ryan Ashcroft who showed his talent and put on a masterclass to take the win and reclaim the series lead from his younger brother Liam, who has chosen to sit out the meeting due to school exams. 2nd Place went to Grasstrack stalwart Glyn Stanton who only dropped two points throughout the heats to tie with Shrewsbury’s Martin Adams. Stanton edged out Adams in the final to take silver medal after an elbow to elbow dice for 4 laps! 4th place went to newcomer and father of Oliver, Dave Binns who was competing in his first ever Grasstrack! An incredible performance in the first 3 rides saw him sitting joint first with Ashcroft after taking the scalps of some of the more experienced seniors. Binns whose brother Andy has been an FGA rider for many years, went on to drop 4 points in his last three rides putting a rostrum finish out of reach. 5th place went to Darren Jukes who was putting in his first outing of the year edging out Welshman Rob Cuffin, who finished 6th.
Lower down the finishing order was front runner Marcus Crutchington from Solihull. Crutchington unfortunately missed his first 3 rides due to late work commitments but managing 17 points from a possible 18 in his last 3 races put him 15th overall.
Full Results –
Auto Cadets –
1st O. Binns, 2nd C. Arthur, 3rd Jack Crewe
1st B. Budd 2nd Joe Crewe
1st S. Hall 2nd E. Meadows 3rd A. Arthur 4th K. Gordon 5th N. Alder
1st R. Ashcroft 2nd G. Stanton 3rd M. Adams 4th D. Adams 5th D. Jukes 6th R. Cuffin 7th A. Binns 8th M. Furley 9th S. Mace 10th J. Higham 11th G. Pye 12th K. Murfin 13th L. Bates 14th K. Swindells 15th M. Crutchington 16th N. Murfin 17th R. Hall 18th N. Bowkett 19th G. Hollingsworth 20th M. Furley 21st M. Flynn
Formula Grasstrack weekender report
Whitchurch MCC Hosted the 2017 FGA two day event last weekend at their Gresford venue in North Wales. Round 5 of the championship kicked off proceedings on Saturday in the sunshine with the track in great condition despite a week of rain leading up to the meeting.
Ollie Binns continued his winning form going unbeaten throughout the day in the Auto Cadets followed home by Jack Crewe. In the Cub class it was looking like Billy Budd was going to extend his lead in the championship until he crashed out in his second outing. Despite beating Joe Crewe in his remaining 4 rides it wasn’t enough to stop the consistent Crewe taking the win. In the Juniors Sam Hall once again took to the top step despite dropping 2 points in his last ride. 2nd place went to Katie Gordon who seems to have got used to her new machine and went on to win her last ride. Gordon would unfortunately crash out of the Junior final at the end of the day. Taking the final spot on the rostrum in this class was Eli Meadows. 4th Place went to Hereford’s Nathan Alder. Thierry Atkinson was due to take part but had mechanical gremlins in practise and was unable to compete. Meadows would go on to take the victory in the final after the original running was stopped due to Gordon’s crash.
In the Premier class, the Seniors, it was 350cc ace Wayne Broadhurst who took maximum points in only his Second FGA meeting of the year. 2nd Place went to the younger Ashcroft brother Liam who only dropped one point throughout the heats to Broadhurst. The elder Ashcroft, Ryan, took the last podium spot dropping two points to Broadhurst and former FGA champion Richy Guest. 4th place went to Phil Thomas who was adjusting to his brother’s machine which he had borrowed. Guest took 5thspot after sliding off whilst dicing for the lead with Liam Ashcroft in his 5th ride. Rounding out the top 6 was Martin Adams who has invested in a new machine. The Senior A final lived up to its expectations with the top 7 point scorers going to the line. Glyn Stanton took the final position on the start line. With 4 riders battling for the win for 3 laps it was Ryan Ashcroft who broke away to steal victory and deny Broadhurst of a full house, who came in 3rd. Guest separated the two.
Sunday’s Team event saw a slightly smaller entry than the previous day but the racing was just as fierce. The winning team which was decided but combining the points scored throughout all the classes was made up of Speedway rider Gavin Parr who was enjoying his first taste of FGA but struggled with misfire. Shrewsbury duo Wayne Broadhurst and Phil Thomas scored a good chunk of points too. Craig Pye was having his first go at racing FGA also joined the winning team with Nigel Bowkett and Youth riders Nathan Alder and Oliver Binns contributing their scores.
The last race of the day saw a stellar line up in the seniors with Thomas, Ashcroft Bros, Broadhurst, Guest & Parr. With two stoppages due to Liam Ashcroft sliding off in a close first corner and then an unsatisfactory start. Eventually it was Phil Thomas who put 4 smooth laps together and stormed to victory ahead of Ryan Ashcroft and Wayne Broadhurst. It was a Fantastic race to finish a successful weekend off.
The FGA Championship continues on 29th July at Hampton Hall near Malpas. More details can be found on www.formulagrasstrack.com
Formula Grasstrack Round 6 & Jonathon Rodgers Memorial 2017 Results & Report
Whitchurch MCC hosted FGA championship round 6 and the 2017 Jonathon Rodgers memorial finals at their Hampton Hall venue last Saturday.
Using a new track at the venue proved to be an unknown quantity to the competitors which kept the racing even closer than normal & with the forecast rain not showing all day the racing was fast and action packed.
In the Auto cadet class it was Oliver Binns who capitalised on the absences of his fellow young racers to take a full 7 ride maximum and take a step closer to sealing the Championship up for 2017.The FGA are keen to welcome any Auto cadet racers aged 6-8 years who compete on fixed gear 50cc machines to come and join them.
Billy Budd was the only Cub representative on the day and was put in the mix with his elder junior racers once again. Budd would go on to score a maximum in his own class but also set the cat amongst the pigeons in the Junior category taking a number of 3rd places and finally edging out Junior Champion Sam Hall in the final heat of the day to take a win! Hall would also go on to take a full house of wins in his class, including the Junior Jonathon Rodgers Memorial final. He didn’t have it easy with Eli Meadows battling hard in the later heats to try and take points off Hall but failed to deny the reigning champion of his maximum. Meadows saw off Hereford racer Nathan alder for 2nd place with Katie Gordon and Thierry Atkinson finished 4th and 5threspectively.
In the Premier class, the Seniors, it was once again the Ashcroft’s who stole the show & it was elder brother Ryan who took another maximum to take the top championship points and head to the final with first gate pick. Liam, who only dropped one point to his brother in heat 8 would settle for second pick. Dave Binns who has continued to impress since joining the sport at round 3 took third place with a narrow 2point lead over top Shropshire man Martin Adams. For 5th it was a tie after 6 rides between Rob Cuffin and Veteran Glyn Stanton. Both would let the final decide their fate. 7th Place and last A final place went to Jack Budd. The elder Budd brother has really impressed since returning to racing after his exams and went about his business quietly racking up 31 points. John Higham would have to take his B final victory as consolation for missing out on the A final by a single point.
The Senior A final was a Cracker. 7 of the Day’s best riders made their way to the start line for The Jonathon Rodgers Silver Salver. As the 7 Honda powered machines stormed away from the start it was Liam Ashcroft who inched ahead of his brother and Binns to get fresh air and win the dramatic final with the fastest time of the day. Ryan kept him honest by pushing him all the way to the finish whilst Binns had the best seat in the house to watch and take 3rd place. Rob Cuffin took 4th with Martin Adams getting between him and Stanton with Budd following them home in 7th.
Hard luck stories of the day go to Steve Mace who was the victim of a close first turn in heat 8 and bit the dust. Mace battled on to take a top 10 finish. Glyn Edwards had mechanical gremlins all day and will be looking to fix these ahead of round 7. Championship front runner Marcus Crutchington will also be thankful for the 4 week gap to fix his blown motor and was grateful to team Alder for the loan of Nathans spare machine & finally Mark Mulvey will be left wondering what could have been after his first bend high-side in the C final, thankfully walking away from the awkward looking tumble.
The FGA Championship returns to Shropshire for Round 7 at Minsterley on 26th August where the John Broadhurst & Geoff Adams memorial finals will be competed for.
1st O. Binns 42 pts
1st B. Budd 42pts
1st S. Hall 42pts, 2nd E. Meadows 35, 3rd N. Alder 31, 4th K. Gordon 20, 5th T. Atkinson 6
1st R. Ashcroft 42pts, 2nd L. Ashcroft 41, 3rd D. Binns 38, 4th M. Adams 36, 5th R. Cuffin 34, 6th G. Stanton 34, 7th J. Budd 31, 8th J Higham 30, 9th A Binns 26, 10th S. Mace 23, 11th 37 K. Murfin 21, 12th L. Bates 21, 13th M. Crutchington 20, 14th R. Hall 18, 15th M. Mulvey 18, 16th C. Pritchard 16, 17th N. Bowkett 13, 18th G. Pye 11, 19th G. Edwards 0
Formula Grasstrack Scorcher in Shropshire!
The sun was shining down on Formula Grasstrack’s stars as Minsterley Motor Club held round 7 of the 2017 Championship in the heart of the Shropshire countryside.
Using a track that hadn’t seen Grasstrack action in some 33 years at the venue of Minsterley Showground, it proved to be a leveller as no one managed to dominate the Senior class.
This was not the case in the Auto Cadets as once again Ollie Binns Stormed to a 7 – ride maximum over his two fellow competitors. Returning to FGA action to take 2nd place was Jack Crewe who fought hard with FGA newcomer Harry Fletcher. Crewe heading home Fletcher in 4 of the 6 Point scoring rides. Fletcher went on to take 2nd in the final to Binns after swapping positions with Crewe in the Final.
In the Cub class, which again was mixed with the Juniors, it was Billy Budd who took maximum points over the Elder Crewe sibling, Joe. Both Cub riders giving a credible account of themselves against the elder Junior Class.
Sam Hall may have looked like he was going to continue his season with another win when he headed home friend and rival Eli Meadows in the first race of the day. But Hall was unable to repeat the feat again on the day with Meadows getting to grips with the track and making fast starts to take 5 out of 6 point scoring wins before going on the win the John Broadhurst Memorial Shield in the Final. Meadows seems to have a love for the Lea Cross tracks after winning the Tom Thomas Final in May. Nathan Alder rode consistently all afternoon to take 3rd spot with 5 third places with a second in his fifth ride getting the better of championship leader Hall. Knutsford’s Katie Gordon kept the Male rivals honest all afternoon to take 4th spot and add points to her championship. It must be said that the Cub/Junior Battles throughout 2017 have been top drawer.
In the Seniors, All eyes were on the Ashcroft Brothers. Ryan, leading the championship with brother Liam pushing him all the way after snatching victory in the Jonathon Rodgers final last time out at Hampton. One notable addition to the Line up was 2 time british 250cc champion Graham Thomas. The Shrewsbury man making a late decision to replace the unfortunate Rob Cuffin who was called into work at short notice. Thomas would bolster an all ready tough line up including Wayne Broadhurst, Phil Thomas, Glyn Stanton & Martin Adams to name but a few. Heat one looked like it was a sign of things to come with Ryan Ashcroft lining up with the Thomas Brothers. Ashcroft Managed to out gate the local brothers to storm to victory. Graham only Managing to pass his younger brother on the last lap. Broadhurst managed to get the better of Martin Adams to take a win in heat 2
The younger Ashcroft, Liam got off to a slow start in heat 3 and couldn’t improve on third place despite trying everything to pass Minsterley stalwart Steve Mace who raced to a superb 2nd behind former senior Champion Elvis Jones.
As the day progressed it appeared the usual suspects would line up for the Geoff Adams Memorial final. Graham Thomas wasn’t to be beaten in his remaining 5 point scoring rides. Ryan Ashcroft looked like it was his for the taking until disaster struck the Tividale man in his 4th ride on lap two with an ignition switch failure, this would be the only blot on the championship leaders copybook.
The 4th leg of heats also brought disaster to Clubman Phil Thomas, Whilst battling with brother Graham, he went down hard on the 3rd bend bringing a no score to his tally and eliminating him to the B final.
Liam Ashcroft managed to gather himself to rack up four wins and a 2nd to Graham Thomas to send him through to the A final.
Race 32 Brought controversy. Broadhurst and Graham Thomas tied on points for the win. Both had dropped one point to Ryan Ashcroft who had dropped down the order after his DNF. This meant Whoever won out of Thomas & Broadhurst would win round 7 and get first pick of gates. As the stormed into turn one with both riders not willing to give an inch it was Broadhurst left with nowhere to go but the dirt. Going down on turn one after clashing with Thomas. After much deliberation the Clerk of the Course allowed Broadhurst another bite of the cherry and deemed all riders were to re-start. The re-run wasn’t to be fruitful for Broadhurst and after he pushed Thomas hard for four laps there was no way through and Thomas went on to take victory and win the Meeting.
Included in the meeting was the Minsterley club members final for seniors. A who’s who of FGA with the top 8 Member from the two Minsterley meeting going into a winner takes all final. The younger Thomas, Phil, choosing to miss the finals after feeling second hand due to his spill. This left elder brother Graham to line up against Broadhurst, Glyn Stanton, Martin Adams, Elvis Jones, Steve Mace, Mick Keeling. Thomas Again took the win proving his decision to race the right one! Taking home the Derek Pinches Memorial Shield.
The Last race of the day was the Geoff Adams Memorial trophy. And what a Line up! Meeting winner Thomas, Broadhurst, The two Ashcroft’s, Jones, Adams, & both the Binns brother’s. It was to be Liam Ashcroft who sped away first from the tapes and led from tapes to flag to take his 2nd final win in as many meetings. It looked to be Thomas who was to chase the youngest rider in the final but Ryan had other ideas and past him but had no answer for his brother, Liam who won in front of a large crowd.
It’s worth noting that the Senior Line up featured 6 riders who will line up next Sunday at the British Final at Ledbury.
FGA Resume on 30th September when Whitchurch Host the Martin Parry memorial and the penultimate round of 2017.
The awesome foursome of Ryan Ashcroft, Sam Hall, Billy Budd & Ollie Binns continued to dominate their respected classes last Saturday as the 2017 Formula Grasstrack championship enters its closing stages. A meeting which was plagued with rain all afternoon made for tricky conditions but the competitors battled through to get a full programme of races completed at Whitchurch Motorcycle club’s Malpas venue. All 4 winners went unbeaten in the heats to move closer to clinching their titles.
Binns Jnr used his fast gating to chalk up 6 wins in the Auto Cadets with Jack Crewe & Harry fletcher dicing it out for 2nd and 3rd. Crewe managing to get the better of Fletcher as the meeting wore on. In the final Binns was unable to take a full house of wins when he slipped off his machine on lap one of the final. Victory went to the fast improving Crewe with Fletcher taking 2nd whilst Binns remounted to take 3rd place.
In the Cub class, the ever present Billy Budd went on to score another maximum ahead of Joe Crewe. The two cubs were once again mixed in with the Juniors and both gave fantastic accounts of themselves with Budd finishing 2nd to Junior Champ Sam Hall in all 6 legs.
Sam Hall used his superb gating to win all his rides, including the Martin Parry Junior Trophy. Evesham youngster Eli Meadows had to withdraw after 3 rides due to a rugby injury which returned to force him out of the meeting leaving Katie Gordon to take 2nd place and boost her points tally in the Championship
The Senior battle between the championship top three wasn’t to be when Liam Ashcroft crashed out in his first ride, causing the fuel tank to split ruling him out of the meeting and affecting his championship hopes. Martin Adams who was sitting second to elder Ashcroft, Ryan also crashed out in his first ride missing the next ride to then take a win in his third but only to have another crash in his fourth ride ruling him out of the rest of the event. This left Ryan Ashcroft to extend his lead at the top of the table by putting on another masterclass and storm to another maximum. Ashcroft’s glory was to be short lived when machine gremlins struck in the Martin Parry memorial final. Ashcroft’s misfortune would be Glyn Stanton’s gain. The veteran from Shropshire went on to take the victory and seal second place on the day after tying with Marcus Crutchington and Dave Binns before the final. Crutchington threw a chain dashing his hopes of 2nd place whilst Dave Binns fell shortly after taking the lead when Ryan Ashcroft withdrew in an action packed final leaving Whitchurch chairman John Higham to take 2nd place to Stanton in his best result of the year. Crewe’s Keith Murfin took the last rostrum spot in the final. Murfin’s fast gating helping him to take 5th place on the day.
A fantastic effort by the club and volunteers to get the meeting on in such terrible conditions & a huge well done to all the competitors who battled through the mud and rain.
The final meeting takes place on the 14th October organised by Wrekin Grasstrack Club at Alveley near Bridgnorth. More info at www.formulagrasstrack.com
1st O. Binns 42, 2nd J. Crewe 34, 3rd H. Fletcher 33
1st B. Budd 42, 2nd J Crewe 36
1st S. Hall 42, 2nd K. Gordon 33, 3rd E. Meadows 18
1st R. Ashcroft 42, 2nd G. Stanton 40, 3rd D. Binns 40, 4th M Crutchington 40, 5th K. Murfin 34, 6th J. Higham 33, 7th S. Mace 32, 8th R. Hall 29, 9th S. Murfin 27, 10th J. Budd 26, 11th C. Pritchard 25, 12th G. Pye 25, 13th T. Murfin 25, 14th R. Cuffin 23, 15th G. Hollingsworth 22, 16th M. Furley 20, 17th L. Bates 19, 18th A. Binns 18, 19th M. Adams 7, 20th L. Ashcroft 0 .
Wrekin Grasstrack Club brought the curtain down on the 2017 Formula Grasstrack championship on Saturday. The Alveley venue produced some fantastic racing to finish the season and didn’t hold any surprises with the championship leaders sealing their respective championships.
Ollie Binns continued his successful year with a full maximum to take the Auto Cadet title to go alongside his silver British championship medal. Jack Crewe improved all day as he has all year to take 2nd place and 2nd in the championship. Crewe will be looking to move up to the cub class to join brother Joe in 2018.
Once more the Cubs were joined by their elder rivals the Junior class in each race. Champion elect Billy Budd used his fast gating to mix it at the front with Juniors Sam Hall, Eli Meadows and Katie Gordon. Budd taking a heat win in his 5th race and racked up a full maximum in his category to win the meeting, take the Mary Dudgeon trophy & win the Cub championship. A superb year from the youngster from Ellesmere Port. Joe Crewe continued his improvement despite mechanical problems to take 2nd in the cub championship.
Sam Hall went on to clinch the Junior title with a full maximum in the Junior class. After sharing the title in 2016 with Jack Budd, Hall put on a masterclass in 2017 winning 7 of the 9 rounds on his way to the title. He had to work hard for the victory on the day, having to pass Meadows and Gordon in some rides. Meadows and Gordon taking 2nd and 3rd respectively on the day and in the championship.
Ryan Ashcroft was odds on to take the Senior championship despite a tough line up in the Senior class including Graham & Phil Thomas, Richard Guest & Colin How returning to the FGA for the final meeting. Ashcroft started the day off in immaculate form and was looking to be favourite to take the Sheila Reece trophy reeling off 3 straight wins whilst younger brother Liam also matched him going unbeaten to the interval. Disaster struck for the championship leader when leading his 4th ride, his Honda engine cried enough three races short of finishing the season. For his fifth outing Ryan was lent Wayne Broadhurst’s machine (Broadhurst spectating at the meeting bringing his bike along for friend Martin Adams for a spare) and duly took the race win before disaster would strike again in his final ride when Broadhurst’s machine would give up on him. Leaving Ryan with 7th on the day and leaving him without a machine for the finals. Despite his nightmare meeting the Tividale man went on to Clinch his 1st Senior title in a season which has seen him develop as a front runner on the Main Grasstrack seen in both the 350 & 500 Classes. Younger brother Liam went on win his last 3 rides to give him a 6 ride maximum going into the final. This was enough to project him from 4th to 2nd in the championship. Former 250cc champion Graham Thomas dropped one point to Liam took 2ndplace with Richard Guest and Phil Thomas tied for 3rd before the final. Shropshire veteran Glyn Stanton was consistent all afternoon to take 5th place and take third place in the championship from fellow Minsterley member Martin Adams who struggled despite a race win. Solihull’s Marcus Crutchington race to 6th overall and moved himself up to 5th in the championship after some impressive rides.
In the Sheila Reece final Liam Ashcroft made another great start to take a tapes to flag win. A fantastic performance to finish off a great season for the youngster. 2018 may prove interesting as the brother’s from Tividale are evenly matched on track. Former FGA champion Richard Guest claimed 2nd place with Shropshire’s Phil Thomas taking third. Graham Thomas came home in 4thafter challenging Ashcroft in the early stages of the final with Stanton and Crutchington come home in 5th and 6th.
Notable performances by young men Jack Budd and Nathan Alder. Budd in his first full season in the adults is looking more confident each meeting whilst Alder was making his debut in the Adults after stepping up from the Juniors and but in some great rides.
The 2018 Formula Grasstrack season commences with the 2017 Awards night on the 20th January with the race season starting in Early April.
Round 10 Results
1st O. Binns 36 2nd J. Crewe 30
1st B. Budd 36 2nd J. Crewe 30
1st S. Hall 36 2nd E Meadows 27 3rd K Gordon 27
L. Ashcroft 36, 2nd G Thomas 35, 3rd R. Guest 33, 4th P. Thomas 33, 5th G. Stanton 28 6th M. Crutchington 27, 7th R. Cuffin 26, 8th R. Ashcroft 26, 9th D. Binns 25, 10th 34 C. How 23
FGA Final Standings 2017
1st O. Binns 200, 2nd J Crewe 166, 3rd C Arthur 96
1st B. Budd 200, 2nd J Crewe 169
1st S. Hall 199, 2nd E. Meadows 191, 3rd K. Gordon 182
1st R. Ashcroft 189, 2nd L. Ashcroft 174, 3rd G. Stanton 170, 4th M. Adams 164, 5th M. Crutchington 144, 6th D. Binns 142