Making the Most of.

Race Report: V8 Supercars 2019.
19 December 2018.
Rockingham.

After a hugely enjoyable season, the V8 Supercars once again provided the entertainment for the now traditional season ending, pre-Christmas race night. Once something of a crash-fest, this class now provided some great racing since the cars were fitted with JS Flex chassis in 2018, and the 2019 races were no different.

Class of the field

As was the case when we last raced these cars back in the summer, the yellow #36 Holden was the class of the field – you’d have to have a lot of crashes and/or bad luck not to win in your turn with this car. It’s what you do with the other cars that would decide the overall winner on the night. He who made the most of the machinery at his disposal would prevail at the final chequered flag of the season.

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As race one got underway, it became clear that there was a problem with the #9 Ford. The car, which was recently fitted with a new motor, had been fine in free practice, but once the lights went out for the first race, inconsistent power delivery rendered it somewhat uncompetitive. So, as Lee and Scott pulled away at the start, Cliff quickly went backwards. It was Scott into an early lead, but a spin dropped him behind Anthony into third. By lap 12, Scott had re-passed Anthony for second and set off in pursuit of Lee.

Cushion

With the first stops completed, everyone rejoined in their previous positions, with Lee around half a lap ahead of the hard-chasing Scott. Lee appeared to be controlling the race, maintaining this gap back to Scott,  who in turn had a similar cushion back to Anthony. Lee was starting to look marginal on fuel, however, and was forced to make a late splash-n-dash with two laps to go. This allowed Scott through to grab the lead and the race win.

Race One Result: 
1st Scott – Holden Commodore #36
Laps: 40; Grid: 3; Pit stops: 3
Fastest lap: 10.524
2nd Lee – Ford Falcon #17
Laps: 40; Grid: 1; Pit stops: 4
Fastest lap: 10.738
3rd Anthony – Holden Commodore #3
Laps: 39; Grid: 4; Pit stops: 1
Fastest lap: 10.849
4th Cliff – Ford Falcon #9
Laps: 37; Grid: 2; Pit stops: 1
Fastest lap: n/a

Falcon Raceway scalextric V8 Supercars Ford Holden Slot Car Racing Digital club essex

Scott was keen to build on his success in race on, but a bad start from pole saw him drop behind both Anthony and Darren at the start. Darren lead for the first few laps, but was passed by Anthony as he struggled with the inconsistent pace of the #9 Ford. Scott too, was to pass the ailing Ford soon after, and was to inherit the lead when Anthony crashed the yellow Holden on lap 8. Scott too was to crash on lap 12, handing the lead back to Anthony.

Spin

Scott was the first of the leaders to pit, but any plans for a strategic, shorter stop were scuppered as he parked-up behind the long-stopping Cliff. With his main rival for victory delayed, Anthony’s lead grew to two laps, and when he finally made his stop, he was able to comfortably stop and rejoin in the lead, where he would remain for the rest of the race. Behind the leading duo, Darren was able to grab the final podium place when Cliff suffered a late spin.

Race Two Result: 
1st Anthony – Holden Commodore #36
Laps: 40; Grid: 3; Pit stops: 1
Fastest lap: 10.765
2nd Scott  – Ford Falcon #17
Laps: 39; Grid: 1; Pit stops: 2
Fastest lap: 10.642
3rd Darren – Ford Falcon #9
Laps: 37; Grid: 2; Pit stops: 2
Fastest lap: 11.022
4th Cliff – Holden Commodore #3
Laps: 37; Grid: 4; Pit stops: 2
Fastest lap: 10.589

Falcon Raceway scalextric V8 Supercars Ford Holden Slot Car Racing Digital club essex

Race three saw some trends laid out in the first two races continued. The yellow Holden was once again the class of the field, with Cliff leading from start to finish. Darren gave chase for much of the race in the other Holden, but could do no better than second. The other continuation from the previous races was that the #9 continued to get worse. This time it was Steve trundling round at the back, way off the pace.

Race Three Result:
1st Cliff – Holden Commodore #36
Laps: 40; Grid: 3; Pit stops: 2
Fastest lap: 10.259
2nd Darren – Holden Commodore #3
Laps: 40; Grid: 4; Pit stops: 4
Fastest lap: 10.454
3rd Anthony – Ford Falcon #17
Laps: 39; Grid: 1; Pit stops: 2
Fastest lap: 11.016
4th Steve – Ford Falcon #9
Laps: 37; Grid: 2; Pit stops: 2
Fastest lap: 11.050

Falcon Raceway scalextric V8 Supercars Ford Holden Slot Car Racing Digital club essex

The problems with the #9 Ford had ruined race three for Steve, and it was Lee’s turn to suffer in race four. The issues with the car appeared to have worsened, however, with the car very slow off the line at the start. This not only delayed Lee, but also Steve, who started behind him on the grid. Both drivers were a lap down by the time the leaders started their second lap!

No answer

While Lee struggled round at the back, Darren and Cliff dueled at the front. In between both battles, Steve attempted to play catch-up, posting a succession of quick laps as he fought to get back in contention in what was the second-best car on the grid. In the end, he had no answer for Darren’s pace in the other Holden, but grabbed second when Cliff was forced to make a late pit stop.

Race Four Result: 
1st Darren – Holden Commodore #36
Laps: 40; Grid: 3; Pit stops: 2
Fastest lap: 10.378
2nd Steve – Holden Commodore #3
Laps: 39; Grid: 4; Pit stops: 2
Fastest lap: 10.381
3rd Cliff – Ford Falcon #17
Laps: 39; Grid: 1; Pit stops: 3
Fastest lap: 10.450
4th Lee – Ford Falcon #9
Laps: 35; Grid: 2; Pit stops: 3
Fastest lap: 10.683

Falcon Raceway scalextric V8 Supercars Ford Holden Slot Car Racing Digital club essex

Darren lead away from pole in race five, but with Steve – now enjoying the pace of the yellow Holden – in hot pursuit. The latter’s enthusiasm got the better of him on lap four, punting Darren off the track on the entry to the in-field section. This dropped Darren back by two places and Steve and Lee cruised by. Steve would subsequently crash (completely unaided, one should stress) two laps later, handing the lead to Lee, and also dropping to third. A further two laps went by, and it was now Lee who crashed letting both Darren and Steve by.

Narrow

With the crashing seemingly put behind them, the leaders settled in their current places, with Darren holding a narrow lead over Steve, and Lee a little further back. Scott was running fourth, but again the #9 Ford (albeit a different #9 Ford) still off the pace of the leaders. The race win was ultimately decided in the pit lane, with Darren short-fueling in an attempt to stay ahead, but requiring an extra stop late on and dropping behind the 2018 V8 winner.

Race Five Result: 
1st Steve – Holden Commodore #36
Laps: 40; Grid: 3; Pit stops: 2
Fastest lap: 10.291
2nd Darren – Ford Falcon #17
Laps: 39; Grid: 1; Pit stops: 4
Fastest lap: 10.772
3rd Lee – Holden Commodore #3
Laps: 38; Grid: 4; Pit stops: 2
Fastest lap: 10.482
4th Scott – Ford Falcon #9
Laps: 38; Grid: 2; Pit stops: 3
Fastest lap: 10.894

Falcon Raceway scalextric V8 Supercars Ford Holden Slot Car Racing Digital club essex

Anthony made a good start from the front row in the Falcon in the sixth and final race of the night, and he was swiftly followed by Lee, who had passed the slow-starting pole-sitter, Steve. Lee’s pursuit of Anthony ended with the former punting off the latter, and taking both out. Steve gratefully accepted the lead, but he would be caught and passed by Lee but two laps later.

Progress

The lead fell to Steve once more on lap six when Lee once more crashed out, but the lead would again be retaken by Lee a handful of laps later. Over time, the superior pace of the Holden at Lee’s disposal saw him pull away at the front. Meanwhile, Steve’s attention was shifted to the challenge of Scott, who had made steady progress in this race. Indeed, as the pressure from Scott mounted, a late crash for Steve handed him second place.

Race Six Result: 
1st Lee – Holden Commodore #36
Laps: 40; Grid: 3; Pit stops: 2
Fastest lap: 10.175
2nd Scott – Holden Commodore #3
Laps: 40; Grid: 4; Pit stops: 2
Fastest lap: 10.171
3rd Steve – Ford Falcon  #17
Laps: 39; Grid: 1; Pit stops: 2
Fastest lap: 10.578
4th Anthony – Ford Falcon #9
Laps: 37; Grid: 2; Pit stops: 3
Fastest lap: 10.591

So, in a very tightly contested event – in which each of our drivers secured a race win – it was the best performance in the worst car (a third place in race two) that secured the overall win for Darren!

Falcon Raceway scalextric V8 Supercars Ford Holden Slot Car Racing Digital club essex

V8 Supercar 2019 Final Standings: 

Points
1 Darren
277
2 Scott273
3 Steve268
3 Lee268
5 Anthony263
6 Cliff259

At the end of a long season, our other winners from throughout the season were presented with their trophies:

Lee: 
LMP/GT Endurance
Classic Saloons
Daytona Prototypes
BTCC

Darren:
V8 Supercars
Trucks
DTM

Steve: 
Club NASCAR
SCX NASCAR

Anthony:
Club F1

George:
NASCAR Challenge