Congratulations to Martin West for winning the driver of the month for November. Martin had always been close to winning in the competitive Locost series having finished on the podium 10 times previous. At Brands he came within 0.03seconds of winning! Snetterton 200 held the final two races of the Locost championship in glorious autumnal sunshine. Martin qualified in 4th place, a great place to start when slipstreaming would be the key. In the first race Martin got off to a great start and was up to 2nd, lap 3 he took the lead from Mark Burton, the pair trading places. It was three for the lead with David Winter leading on the penultimate lap, Martin put in a great display and crossed the line 0.23seconds ahead for his first victory. The second race was as tight as the first race, with Mark Burton, Martin and this time Paul Clark trading places at the front. Lap 7 saw Martin in the lead which he never gave up to take double victory at the last meeting of the year. Nice boast going into the winter break..
November - Martin West
October - Graham Gant
Congratulations to Graham Gant - Formula Vee driver for winning Driver of the Month. Considering Graham hasn't competed in all the rounds this year, he is still up there in the championship table. Graham started his weekend at Donington by qualifying third behind Ben Miloudi and Daniel Hands. The first race saw an epic battle for the win between Miloudi, Hands, Gant and Pollard. The lead swapped with Gant out from for the first few laps before Miloudi took the lead, with Gant falling to fourth. He fought his way back to the front by lap 7 and stayed there to hold on to a well deserved victory. Sadly race two only lasted 4 laps due to red flags. Gant led the first two before finishing just 1.4 seconds behind in 4th showing just how close the field is in Vee's. Gant will be looking to end the season on a high at the Snetterton 200 circuit in a couple of weeks.
Congratulations to Dan Larner - RGB Driver, for winning Septembers Driver Of The Month.
Dan has had an impressive run so far this year. Silverstone by far was the best round of the season. Consistency was the key, in qualifying he qualified in 4th place, a good place to start, to have a good weekend. In race one Dan made a great start to end up second behind his team mate Paul Smith. He put up a close fight to Paul while also keeping Chippy at bay. Chippy did get past on the penultimate lap, but it was still a great result and meant Mittell achieved its first ever 1-2-3 finish. Race two again Dan made a great start and moved up to second by lap 4. It was tricky weather conditions with a damp track in places. Lap 14 saw David Watson make his move into second but Dan held onto third. Brilliant double podium weekend, Dan will be looking to build on this form as the season draws to a close on the Snetterton 200 circuit in a few weeks time.
September - Dan Larner
August - Mark Balmer
Congratulations to Mark Balmer - Clio 182 Driver, for winning driver of the month!
Mark has had a consistent few month with victories at Rockingham, Pembrey and now Cadwell. At Cadwell the conditions were challenging, with the rain coming down from the off. The qualifying session saw the first challenge as it was red flagged early on due to a cow getting rather close to the circuit! Mark qualified in 2nd behind Andrew Tibbs by just 0.06sec.. In the first race Mark got ahead of Tibbs and withstood race long pressure in treacherous conditions to hold on for a well deserved victory. In the 2nd race in slightly drier conditions Mark led from the off with a commanding lead he looked set for another victory. However a stranded car at Barn led to a red flag. Upon the restart Patrick Fletcher made the better start and moved into first. Mark still finished 2nd just 0.19secs behind. It was a good solid points hall for Mark. Well done Mark! The Clio races next up at Donington at the beginning of September.
Congratulations for Steve and Matt who compete in the Club Enduro Championship for winning drivers of the month!
They compete in Class C of the Club Enduro and they have had some brilliant results this season. This has led them to lead the Class C championship and currently the overall championship as well. Victories as Oulton Park and Rockingham where they beat some Class A and B cars! Most recently the trip over to Spa which saw two 100 minute races take place. In the first race luck wasn't with Steve and Matt with the safety car periods, they still managed to get 4th in class. Race 2 however was a different story, the safety cars were in their favour with Steve starting out setting fast lap times, before handing over to Matt who drove a great race to bring the car home in P1 and 10th overall. Well done guys for a top effort so far, look forward to seeing you on the grid at the next round at Silverstone.
July - Steve Hewson and Matt Nossiter
June - Mark Burton & Marcus Ward
In an SJN first for driver of the month we have our first double winners of the award!
It was really difficult to choose just one driver as May had some marvellous racing. This is Marks second award after winning driver of the month for April. Marcus won driver of the month last July, this is also his second award.
Mark Burton - well what can we say! Mark arrived at Croft leading the championship after a successful Castle Combe and Brands Hatch. Testing was held in wet conditions which proved tricky to find a nice balance. Qualifying was always going to be tricky, Mark qualified in 4th. Race one was a waiting game, Mark timed his move to perfection staying with the leading duo he slipstreamed past them and on the final lap he crossed the line in 1st. Race 2 Mark tried to make a break, Martin West and Mark exchanged places until Mark managed to break away for his 2nd win. Race 3 again Mark led for most of the race until 'Slippy' Ian made a comeback from a poor start and took the lead on the penultimate lap. Mark made his move at 'Sunny In' regaining the lead, they ran side by side for a while with Mark coming out on top to take the treble! This is amazing in Locost racing as it's very difficult to break the tow. Congratulations Mark for winning driver of the month again...
Marcus Ward - After a difficult Brands Hatch meeting, Marcus Ward looked to make amends at Mallory. In his own words he "had a word with his motor" and gave it some TLC. Well it certainly worked! Qualifying 4th but starting 3rd due to Pip Hammonds engine expiring. Race 1 and Marcus led from the start leading every single lap of the race and claiming the fastest lap. He went on to win by 3.37 seconds. Race 2 wasn't as straight forward. Reigning champion Lee Scott led off the line and held a slim gap to Marcus. A red flag caused a 5 lap restart this was his chance, Marcus got the jump and led for the second half the race crossing the line just 0.73 seconds ahead of Lee. He also added another fastest lap. Congratulations Marcus!
May - Ben Powney
Ben Powney - Congratulations to Ben Powney for winning driver of the month for May.
Ben came into the weekend looking for wins, after finishing 2nd and 13th in the opening rounds of the season at Castle Combe. Qualifying 6th in the first race and 5th in the second Ben was right in the mix.
Race one and Ben moved up to 4th, the slipstreaming around Brands providing some excellent racing. By lap 7 he was up to 3rd behind Mark Burton and Jack Coveney. Lap 11 he was 2nd and then on the penultimate lap made the move for top spot, Ben hung on to take victory by 0.6sec from Coveney.
In race 2 turned into a dominant display from Ben, moving up from 4th on the first lap he was in the lead by lap 5 and never looked back! Winning this time by nearly 6 seconds which is amazing in a Locost field so competitive. Well done again Ben! Next stop will be Croft at the end of May for a triple header.
Mark Burton - Congratulations to Mark Burton - Locost Championship. Mark has only recently started racing with the Locost championship having contested two rounds last year. Mark arrived at Combe in his SRB4 with hopes of a dry weekend having contested the last two rounds in the wet, however this wasn't to be!
This didn't put Mark off, a fantastic qualifying saw him claim his first pole position and 2nd place for race 2, in what were some of the trickiest conditions and juggling a track with 40 other Locost drivers on isn't an easy feat. Race 1 the start didn't quite go to plan causing Mark to bog down and end up down the pack. Mark never gave up, he carried on lap after lap climbing back up to a creditable 6th place.
Race 2 the weather had eased, Combe was no longer resembling a lake. A better start this time Mark was in the front pack, Louis Wall and Mark traded places but he regained 1st place on lap 7 and never look back until the last lap when back markers caused a scare and the gap closed by 7 tenths! Mark was glad to see the checkered flag. Not bad for a driver who still has the novice cross on the back and only in his 5th Race! Well done again Mark..
April - Mark Burton
2017 saw the start of the SJN Photography Driver Of The Month award. This was awarded to the driver that stood out to me across a race weekend in the month. Below are the winners of the 2017 awards, the feature is coming back for 2018
April Winner - Rob Armitage
Rob Armitage - Congratulations to Rob Armitage of JLR racing, for winning driver of the month! Rob competed in the 750mc road sports race at Donington, up against tough competition he finished 7th overall and 2nd in class finishing above the more powerful BMWs, Hondas and Lotus.
May Winner - Tim Penstone - Smith
Tim Penstone - Smith - A superb drive from Tim at Silverstone in the Locost championship saw him finish on the podium for the first time in his locost career. A fine 2nd place and 5th place has put Tim in 6th place in the championship.. Well done Tim!
June Winner - Oliver Batten
Oliver Batten - Well done to driver of the month Oliver Batten, racing in his no. 11 locost he qualified in 6th place.. Race 1 - Oliver was in a battle for the lead and eventually finished in 2nd his best finish in locost, Race 2 - again Oliver was in a battle for the lead and finished 2nd again. Unfortunately mechanical issues led to a non start in race 3.. lets hope theres more trophies to come!
July Winners - Ben Rushworth & Marcus Ward
Marcus Ward & Ben Rushworth - Well I couldn't choose just one driver this time! Congratulations to Marcus Ward - Classic Stock Hatch and Ben Rushworth - Hot Hatch..Marcus had difficult competition in the form of ex BTCC legend Anthony Reid, Marcus was leading in race 1 until the red flag, upon the restart Anthony Reid managed to claim victory... Race 2 saw a dominant display from Marcus to claim the race win and hold of Reid beating him by over 5 seconds..Ben in his Honda Integra grabbed pole position from the dominant fiestas, race 1 was a hard fought contest in the heat and Ben finished a fine 2nd, Race 2 was were Ben took control and took a well deserved victory, the first driver to beat the fiestas this season.
August Winner - James Harridge
James Harridge - Congratulations to James Harridge who is this months, driver of the month.. After terrible luck throughout the first part of this season, James had a trouble free weekend and won the 50th Anniversary races in some style.. Completely dominating qualifying and both races.. Lets hope this is the start many more victories.. Well done James!
September Winner - Jason Ballantyne
Jason Ballantyne - Jason had a strong weekend at Silverstone qualifying 3rd for the first time, for the two races on Saturday afternoon.. Race 1 was a hard fought battle with Mark Grice, Jason just missed out on victory but still finished a fine 2nd place. With the reserve grid for race 2, Jason started P9 but worked his way up to take the win and his first victory in the Civic Cup.. oh and also managed to break the lap record as well! Congratulations Jason!
October Winner - Steve Hewson
Steve Hewson - Congratulations Steve Hewson, who dominated the Roadsports race, starting in P3 for the race, Steve would of been hoping to hang onto a podium with some class A cars behind. Then the rain came causing the safety car to be released, as rivers began to form on track. Pit stops took place once the window was open and Steve went for the lead on lap 14, never looking back he drove away in the wet conditions to win by 22 seconds.. beating the more powerful class A cars, winning the race outright and class B. Well done Steve!
November Winner - Ben Miloudi
Ben Miloudi - Congratulations to Formula Vee champion Ben Miloudi, who is this months driver of the month! After a tense battle at Donington, Ben came out on top, with 3rd and 5th place finishes in his Sheane which began to sound very sick towards the end of the 2nd race creating some nervy moments! Adam Macaulay tried all he could to overhaul the points deficit. Bens consistency through the season meant the troubles of the Anglesey meeting didn't scupper his chances of becoming the Formula Vee champion in the championships 50th year.
December Winner - Stefano Leaney
Credit to Joshua Barrett Photography