Reliving Bellerby’s historic 2WD Easter Lydden win
by Hal Ridge |
For a second year in a row, restrictions around the Coronavirus Pandemic mean there is no rallycross at Lydden Hill on Easter Bank Holiday weekend this year, which in ‘normal’ times is a traditional mainstay for both the British Rallycross Championship and the Kent venue.
The Easter Monday (and sometimes Sunday) events have long been popular with fans and drivers alike, and while many of the series’ biggest moments have happened on Easter weekend, few have been as momentous or surprising as the 2007 edition, the event where rallycross celebrated its 40th anniversary on April 8.
17-year old Andrew Jordan dominated qualifying with three fastest times to secure pole for the Supercar A final, driving Will Gollop’s G Tech Motorsport Ford Focus.
Jordan won the Supercar A final to secure pole for the Superfinal, but it was Irish driver John McCluskey that took the lead at the start of the Superfinal, before Jordan sunk the Focus back inside McCluskey’s ex-Kenneth Hansen Citroen Xsara in Chesson’s Drift.
However, in the move the Focus lost drive. McCluskey hit Jordan’s car, which was then collected by Steve Hill’s Mitsubishi Evo.
The race was halted, and from the re-start McCluskey led the similar car of Mark Watson and another Irishman, George Tracey – debuting his new WRC-derived Peugeot 307 CC – on lap one.
In a race of attrition, McCluskey had contact with another compatriot, Dermot Carnegie, putting both out of contention, while Lotus Exige driver Dave Bellerby quietly picked up places throughout – having dominated qualifying in Super Modified and passed a fast-starting Jamie Bird for the lead of the category final to win the two-wheel-drive class and make the Superfinal.
By the penultimate tour of the Superfinal, Bellerby had overhauled all of the Supercar contingent, finally passing Watson up Hairy Hill with more than a lap to go en route to a historic win. Tracey also passed Watson in the closing stages to steal second.
Belgian visitor Luc Maris meanwhile finished fourth in a Volvo 240, ahead of Julian Godfrey’s Stock Hatch specification Peugeot 205 and Pat Doran’s Supercar Ford Fiesta.
Bellerby’s outright win was the first for a two-wheel-drive car in over 20 years, and with the Superfinal being dropped from the British Championship event format for the 2011 season, it’s a feat unlikely to be repeated any time soon.« Previous Post Next Post »