Sunday, 9 April 2017

Gould takes the points at Pikes Peak

Reigning champion Martin Gould got his Britpart MSA BCCC title defence off to the best possible start when he won at the opening round of the 2017 championship at Pikes Peak.

In contrast to the blizzard at last year's event, the crews were greeted by unseasonably warm and sunny conditions as they headed out to tackle the first run of what would prove to be a very challenging course.

Gould was immediately on the pace, setting the fastest time on run one ahead of Ben Duckworth's Milner LRM-1 and Adrian Marfell, who was making his BCCC debut in his Fouquet Nissan. The opening run didn't go well for some crews with Mike Moran stopping on the course with a broken propshaft and Justin Birchall dropping over a minute to Gould after issues with his Lofthouse Freelander.

After day one's five runs Gould held a lead of just over a minute from Marfell, with Birchall in third despite further problems when an oil pipe came off causing an engine fire.

The sunny conditions continued for most of day two and with a healthy lead Gould set consistent times to maintain his lead, despite a puncture on the final run.

"It’s been a great weekend,” said Gould. “There were a lot of unknowns with all the new cars and drivers in the championship this year so it was good to be on the pace. We tried to be consistent to build up a lead and then we eased off slightly on the second day. The plan worked well, it’s an excellent start to our season."

Birchall set some very quick times on day two and he moved up to second place on the penultimate run.

"We had a great scrap," commented Birchall. "We lost around two minutes with our problems on day one so we pushed hard on day two to try and get to second place. The mist came down for our later runs and the track became very slippery in places but we did enough to get the position. It's going to be a great battle at round two!"

Marfell completed the event in third ahead of Ryan Cooke's Milner LRM-1 and Adam Evans, who was giving the BRP Can-Am Maverick it's BCCC debut.

In the BCC Trophy it was Simon Adams, also in a BRP Can-Am Maverick, who took the win. Paul Rowlands was second in his Yamaha YXZ1000R despite a roll on day one and Joe Quirk, also in a Yamaha, was third.

Defending champion Pat Masters won the Freelander Challenge with Challenge debutant Michael Smith in second and Graham White in third.

Justin Brooks won the Clubman class in his Yamaha YXZ1000R ahead of Martin Cox and Toby Jefferson, both of whom were in GSR 206s.

The next round of the BCCC is on 13/14 May at Radnor forest.

BCCC Results
1. Martin Gould/Simon Kerfoot (Buxton 4x4 Rivet) 01:29:38 
2. Justin Birchall/Jonny Koonja (Lofthouse Freelander) 01:30:42
3. Adrian Marfell/Paul Bartleman (Fouquet Nissan) 01:31:04
4. Ryan Cooke/Darren Cooke (Milner LRM-1) 01:35:22
5. Adam Evans (BRP Can-Am Maverick) 01:36:36
6. Mark Jacques/Tom King (Lofthouse Freelander) 01:37:16
7. Richard Coleby (Polaris RZR XP Turbo) 01:39:24
8. Darren Johnson (Yamaha YXZ1000R) 01:40:33
9. Lee Mansfield/David Roberts (Milner R5) 01:41:01
10. Mike Moran/Tony Coid (Lofthouse Evo) 01:41:26