Pembrey provides classic season opener
The first round of the 2CV championship kicked off at Pembrey, with a decent grid of 17 cars for the 2 hour race. Gary Adnitt and Simon Leith took the win, but it was a close run thing as both Shaun McLaughlin/Phil Myatt and Steve Panas finished within 5 seconds of the first car home after 84 laps and the mandatory 3 pitstops. 4th place went to Hollis Motorsport, one lap behind, followed by Savage/Yates/Thompson/Thompson and Cardell-Williams/Smith. The opportunity for 4-driver teams gave the perfect base for several newcomers to try out the cars ahead of the 24hr race in less than two weeks time.
Matt Hollis (17.4.2006)
2CVTV Race Report - The Race
End lap 2 Adnitt, Myatt, Panas; cars 2 and 15 came into the pits after making contact, both continued after some attention, car 2 lost half a lap, car15 lost a lap.
End lap 4 Myatt, Panas, car 91 Adnitt came in to do an early compulsory pit stop – the view was that he had done this to get some space around him on the track.
End lap 5 Myatt, Panas
End lap 7 car 76 running very slow and lots of smoke, came into the pits, the fan had worked loose and the engine had overheated.
Car 28, which was going well, came in for an early driver change with Pete Sparrow taking over from Paul Robertson. On the next lap it came in again to do its second stop (three were compulsory) and was a lap down as a result. Pete brought it in again for the third stop, the idea being that he would be able to drive until the end of the race. However, on the next lap something was wrong and he entered the pits once again, where a loose exhaust manifold was diagnosed and repaired. By now 28 was five laps behind the leaders and faced with an impossible task.
At the 30 minute bulletin car 5 was in the lead followed by car 7, both on 21 laps. Then 90, 30, 9, 48, 91, 14, 67 and 66 on 20 laps; 66, 2, 40, 15, 88 and 68 on 19 laps and 28 on 17 laps.
After 25 laps 5 was leading,, just a fifth of a second in front of 7, which was followed by 90 – Gary Byatt.
Then the driver changes came thick and fast. Car 30 came in with Neil Thompson handing over to wife Christine Thompson. Car 15 came in and Simon Turner took over from Trevor Williams. The leading two cars 5 and 7 came in together, 5 was away first followed by 7. As a result Gary Adnitt in car 91 which had taken an early stop was able to catch up with the leaders.
Car 9 came in with Matthew Hollis at the wheel, no change of driver, but a very fast pit stop.
Car 91 set the fastest lap and passed car 7.
Car 90 was in the lead driven by Gary Byatt, but it hadn’t made any stops yet.
On lap 39 Matthew Hollis in car 9 made his second stop, the next stop will be the driver change.
In lap 39 car 2 Rocket Dog passed car 90 and unlapped himself.
The leading car, 90, came in for a pit stop, but smoke was seen coming from the engine compartment. Oil was spraying out because the oil filler cap was loose. This was sorted out and Oliver Hall took over at the wheel to rejoin the race, but was 3 laps down in 11th place.
Car 9 came in Richard Hollis took over from Matthew.
Car 66 came in for a driver change, followed by cars 40 and 14 (Zoe
Cardell to Gillian Doyle).
After one hour Gary Adnitt in car 91 lead from Phil Myatt in car 5 and Steve Panas in car 7; all three had completed 41 laps. Then followed, on 40 laps, 2, 30, 48, 67 and 9, with 90, 15, 66 and 14 on 39 laps, 40 and 68 on 37 and bringing up the rear.28 on 36 laps.
Car 30 came in for a driver change.
After 48 laps car 91 was leading from car 5.
After 50 laps cars 91 and 5 came in together, 91 was away first with Simon Leith at the wheel, in car 5 Shaun McLaughlin took over from Phil Myatt. At this point car 7 – Steve Panas - was in the lead.
Car 7 came into the pits, after this car 91 was back in the lead, with 7 second and 5 third.
Car 90 came in for its second stop.
There was a great battle for second place, Shaun McLaughlin passed Steve Panas.
66 came in for a driver change, it was two laps behind the leaders.
14 came in for its last change, with Lynn Sparrow taking over from Katrina Sparrow.
88 came in with Rob Wilkey taking over from Geoff Turrall.
Richard Hollis in car 9 got past Andy Smith in car 2 to move into 4th place.
Car 28 was getting a tow from leading car 91 and nearly hit it!
After 1 hour and 30 minutes car 91 was in the lead, followed by 5 then 7; all on 62 laps; then 9, 2, 30, 48 and 67 on 60 laps followed by car 15 on 59 laps and cars 66 and 90 on 58 laps, 28 and 88 on 57 laps, 14, 40 and 68 on 56 laps.
Car 67 came in followed by car 40 for a driver change.
Car 48 came in with Christian Callander handing over to Graham Harper.
Simon Turner in car 15 came in.
Simon Leith in the leading car came in for his final stop – no driver change.
Cars 5 and 7 came in for their final stops; Steve Panas got the drop on Shaun McLaughlin, but a couple of laps later Shaun passed Steve
Car 90 came in for its final stop and lost a position to car 28.
2CVTV Snippets from the Meeting
Car 68 (BRMs) was number 99 in 2005; it has a new chassis, new exhaust and new suspension.
Car 90 (Stingray) was damaged in the 2005 24-hour race at Snetterton, so they bought another car – a very old racing car – combined the two and painted the result silver. The old car was owned by Tony Schulp it was originally built by the 2CV Racing Club for Autosport to race at Mondello. It was left in a car park in Teddington for seven years and was dirty, rusty and covered with leaves. Driven this year by Oliver Hall and Gary Byatt.
Car 91 was number 1 in 2005 and was owned by Philip Myatt, who sold it to the current owner Simon Leith. Simon is driving with Gary Adnitt in 2006.
Hollis Motorsport has a new set of car numbers for 2006. Richard’s car number 5 is now number 9, it has new front arms and new valve springs. Mathew’s car 4 is now number 10 and Adrian’s car number 45 is now number 11. All three will be racing this year.
Zoë Cardell’s car is number 14 in 2006 (was 57). Zoë is driving with Gillian Doyle, Katrina and Lynne Sparrow in the 24-hour race.
Trevor Williams’ car number 6 is
renumbered 15 for 2006.
Car 40 – Crisis Racing (the clue is in the car’s number). Brian Doherty, High McCurrich, Nick Roads, Simon Gue.
Car 76 – Team Fine Print - Ben Allan, Jamie Lister and Craig Glass – had a lot of problems before the race. The battery died, it blew a spark plug and had an engine change. Then there was a slipping clutch! Dyson Watkins will join the others for the 24-hour race at Snetterton.
Car 88 Geoff Turrall was driving with Bob Wilkey, who used to be a Phantom pilot. Geoff’s car was prepared by Mark Whitwell who also prepared Steve Panas’s car.
Car 14 Simply the Breast This team is raising money for Breast Cancer Care at the 24-hour race so Pembrey was the only opportunity to get some race practice before Snetterton. Zoë Cardell looked her usual cool and elegant self, but her team-mates - three lady rookies - were visibly tense before the qualifying sessions. They looked a lot better after a few laps. Gillian Doyle said she enjoyed it. “I was on my own for a while, which was great, but then there was some traffic and I started thinking about it too much!” Katrina Sparrow looked absolutely terrified before getting into the car; she said; “Once I was in the car I felt like someone had pushed me into the labour ward and I had no choice but to go through with it! I forgot everything I had been told about the racing line and how to take corners and was in all the wrong places, but on my third lap I followed someone who knew what they were doing and learned where the racing line was.” Lynn Sparrow, whose knees had gone numb before the race said; “I absolutely loved it, once my knees had come back to life”.
Yvette Asscher (17.4.2006)