The Micro Nationals are gaining more and more popularity after every meeting and it was the turn of the hugely popular Hereford club to entertain the micro masses at their brilliant facility in Leominster. The Hereford Micro Open in August was probably the best micro event held over the last few years and the track design for the Micro National would need to be out of this world to better that. The team at HRCC certainly lived up to expectations with a fascinating track full of drift sections, technical infield sections, a HUGE wall ride, HUGE table top and a monster set of jumps just in front of the rostrum.
Such is the reputation that the Hereford club hold that a number of 1/10th Offroad racers switched classes for the day and had ago at 1/18th scale racing. CML/Microtech’s Keith Robertson turned up on the day with a Factory Team version of the Associated RC18T, a car that has so far not seen the levels of support from drivers as the more popular FTX Blaze, and all eyes would be on Keith to see what the RC18T could do in such talented hands!
Fabien Simonini entered the Modified Class with his KMRC Half 8, another car that has seen little support here in the UK, a carbon fibre conversion of the 1/16th scale Kyosho.
Atomic-Carbon entered a modified LRP Shark ST piloted by Craig Harris, sporting afew essential carbon upgrades, whilst Jonathan Clark showed off the prototype ‘Slimferno’ conversion for the Kyosho Mini Inferno.
Team o0ple, returning to the micro scene from there appearance at UK Micro Challenge 3, turned up with Jimmy ‘o0ple’ Storey running a gorgeous Tamiya GB02 in striking red and white livery, with John Price sporting an LRP Shark ST for his maiden outing with an 18th scale.
After practice it was evident that, once again, tyre selection would be critical to generate any kind of grip on the slippy gym flooring and lino sections with the Gecko foams coming across as the racers favourites from the look of things in the pits!
Pro-Stock qualifying was a four way battle between Steve Davis, Chris Bottle, Craig Harris and Keith Robertson all day with Steve eventually taking overall FTD by only 4 seconds to Keith’s RC18T!
Craig brought home his ST in 3rd to round off the top 3 just in front of Chris.
All four drivers were the only people to qualify on 16 laps, proving once again that these lads are the pinnacle of micro racing excellence!
1st – Stephen Davis – 16/310.65
2nd – Keith Robertson – 16/314.77
3rd – Craig Harris – 16/315.29
Modified saw Championship leader Cris Oxley on course to take TQ until Stu Harlow took the top spot in Round 3. Cris suffered at the hands of the backmarkers in the final round of qualifying leaving Fabien Simonini to take TQ from Cris by a second.
Stu was only one second back from Cris with Bede Constantinides rounding out the top 4.
1st – Fabien Simonini – 15/304.61
2nd – Cris Oxley 15/305.86
3rd – Stuart Harlow – 15/306.58
Pro-Stock A final:
The Pro-Stock A final was an exciting and nail-biting affair from the off with Steve, Keith and Craig split by only one second as they passed over the loop for the first time.
Two uncharacteristic mistakes in as many laps by Steve saw him bumped down to third with everything to do as Craig and Keith took advantage of the situation and drew out a healthy lead on the Championship leader.
Keith took the lead until a crash on Lap 5 put paid to his chances of taking the top step on the podium, leaving Craig out in front by quarter of a lap.
As the race passed the halfway point Keith, Chris (who had taken advantage of Steve’s crashes to move upto third place) and Steve all managed to close the gap on Craig with the top 4 drivers only separated by six seconds!
In the dying seconds of the race a small error by both Chris and Keith would put paid to their chances of sneaking the race win as Craig crossed the line only 3 seconds in front of Keith. Driving the micro race of his life, Steve managed to pass fellow Hereford ace Chris but couldn’t rectify the earlier errors that had cost him so much time and the race finished with Keith, Steve and Chris separated by only one second!!
1st – Craig Harris – 16/316.94 – LRP Shark ST – Atomic-Carbon, Body Paint, MTroniks, Trackside Spares.
2nd – Keith Robertson – 15/300.94 – AE RC18T – CML Distribution, Microtech.
3rd – Steve Davis – 15/301.27 – FTX Blaze – CML Distribution, Team Scream.
Modified A final:
After setting TQ with his KMRC chassis, all eyes were on Fabien to see if he could repeat the times he was setting earlier on in the day and claim the Modified A final win.
The top 3 drivers raced in formation until Lap 5 as Cris came up behind back markers on the tight and slippy ‘drift’ section of the track losing his 7 seconds to Fabien and Stu who charged off into the distance.
As the race progressed it was obvious that Fabien was feeling the effects of the dreaded grip-roll as Stu sailed passed and looked certain to take his first Micro National race victory.
As time ticked away superb drives from Bede Constantinides, Allan Davies and Tom Hudson saw them all get within only afew feet of a struggling Fabien as Stu started to feel the heat at the other end of the track.
Crashes on the two penultimate laps saw Stu hand the victory to Cris with seconds to spare as Cris crossed the line one second in front of Stu.
Modified A Final Results:
1st – Cris Oxley – 15/313.12 – FTX Blaze – UKMRC, Tekin, Gecko Foams, Team Scream.
2nd – Stu Harlow – 15/314/30 – FTX Blaze – CML Distribution, Team Scream, Tekin, UKMRC, Bill’s Cut’n’Shut Shack.
3rd – Fabien Simonini – 13/272.16 – KMRC Half 8 – Tekin.
The Micro Nationals are now having a break until Round 4 of the Championship at Tamworth on January 6th, and at the half way point in the Series the feeling coming back from all that have entered so far is very positive indeed!
A big thanks has to go to the Hereford club for organising such a good meeting, Wim at Action Model Centre for supplying a shop on the day and Simon Osborne, Carl Venter and Olly James for the photos used in this report!
For more information on the BRCA Micro Nationals please go to our Official website www.ukmicrox.co.uk
Written by Cris Oxley