Driftcup headed north of the border to Driftland for Round 4 of the 2015 championship. It was great to return to the venue where the first ever round of Driftcup was held.
The track layout gave the drivers a good run up to the first corner where they would have to run the wall past clip 1, running out wide to the edge of the track for clip 2.
They would continue to drift to the right as they slowed into a tight hairpin with clip 3 located on the exit of the turn, a transition to the left would put them back onto the straight and clip 4 which was back on the wall.
It was a technical track that challenged the drivers but allowed the chase car to close in at many points of the track.
The judges for this round featured an all Scottish lineup of David Waterworth, Steven Donnelly and Fraser Stark.
The morning practice session started under grey skies with the track already soaked from the early morning rain. A few drivers would be caught out by the lack of grip in the wet conditions, some span whilst others needed a tow out of the gravel trap.
Once the rain stopped the track started to lose some of the standing water, this resulted in more predictable grip levels, the drivers soon took advantage and started to put together some great laps.
The track would be at its driest point during qualifying, it was still damp but toward the end of the session a few cars would start to create some smoke.
Qualifying would be run in the usual format where each driver had two non-consecutive runs, this gives a fair chance to everyone in changing conditions.
Danny Grundy would get the top spot in qualifying with his runs scoring 88.0 and 92.3, he had been running well throughout practice so he was expected to qualify well.
Oliver Lewis managed second place with runs of 87.3 and 89.7, it was looking good for him to get a good result for the second round in a row.
Mark Illand would get third place with his runs scoring 84.0 and 81.7, this is the first time we have seen Mark compete this season.
The Top 16 qualifiers looked like this, the Top 3 score extra points towards the championship –
The Top 32 started under dark skies with some great battles, Jason Clark and Stuart Lawson would see two generations of RX7 battling each other with Stuart taking the win.
Circuit owner, Jeek, would win his first battle against Sean Chessum.
The Top 16 would see Andi Halkett and Shay Kavanagh battle, they went for a One More Time after the judges couldn’t decide between them.
On their second battle Shay would get on Andi’s door from the first clip, giving him the advantage and the win.
Number 1 qualifier, Danny Grundy, would exit the competition in the Top 16. Tom Horabin managed to overtake coming through the final clip giving him a big advantage, Danny had been consistently running well all day but couldn’t match Tom on his chase run.
After a few more battles we would see the Top 4 drivers emerge, the Wizards of Lock team had two drivers make it this far with Oliver Booth in the Skyline and Oliver Lewis in the E36.
On the other side of the tree would be Alexis drew in another Skyline and Stuart Lawson in the RX7.
The two Wizards of Lock teammates battled for a place in the final with Oliver Lewis taking the win and advancing through.
Stuart Lawson and Alexis drew would then battle to see who would take on Oliver Lewis, Alexis pulled a small gap on his lead run giving him the win.
The battle for third place between Oliver Booth and Stuart Lawson was close, going One More Time. On their second battle the judges decided that Stuart had gained the advantage, taking the final place on the podium.
The final battle would see Oliver Lewis maintain close proximity to Alexis Drew on his chase run, as they swapped over Alexis couldn’t run as close, giving Oliver the advantage and the win.
The top four drivers parked their cars in front of the podium and took the opportunity to celebrate their results, all four have earned their chance to compete at the next round of the British Drift Championship at Anglesey on the 19th & 20th of September.
Shay Kavanagh would be awarded the Aford Awards Hard Charger Trophy for his committed driving style throughout the day, running the wall and getting onto peoples doors.
The championship standings have been shaken up again, Oliver Lewis now leads the way with 61 points, Andi Halkett is in second with 56 and Alexis Drew is in third with 50.
The next round of Driftcup heads south to Lydden Hill, join us on the 10th of October as the drivers battle for the championship.