A blistering hot day welcomed the Modstox to Birmingham Wheels for their first meeting under new promoters PRI Birmingham Wheels as part of the 2nd installment of iFactor round 2. Finding themselves at the top of the hill in the pits would mean some pretty exhausted pit crew by the end of the evening!
A grid of 15 cars took to the track for the opening race with new Modstox racer Billy Higgins (129) sitting on pole in the ex 40 car, beautifully liveried as one would expect with Billy running Fly Signs (like the plug?!). At the rear of the grid were two novices, Sam Tennant (300) and Andy Loakes (68) looking to get to grips with their modstox.
At the drop of the green, Billy Higgins surged away from the other whites whilst Jonathon Clare (294) made his way from the rear of the grid along with fellow superstar Jason Scattergood (37) although blue top Alex Langdell (19) had the jump on them. Langdell and Clare were up to 2nd and 3rd by lap 5 chasing down Higgins who held a lead by a straight. Unfortunately Higgins was impeded when lapping a car, allowing Clare and Langdell to go by. Clare held off Langdell on the last lap to take the win with Scattergood coming through for third, Higgins dropping behind Adam Perkins (6) just before the line.
Heat 2 lined up with all 15 cars on track again. This time Higgins took a flag to flag victory controlling the race and not getting caught up with any back markers. Langdell again coming through the field for second, Clare following him for third. The action was behind the top three with Dave Kilby (63), Paul Heath (343), Adam Perkins, Jason Scattergood and Johnny Hall (326) all battling for 4th to 7th. Jason Scattergood had held 7th but spun himself, being collected by Pete Walford (205) whilst trying to make the infield.
With the heat still strong, the final arrived with Tennant trying a start from the front of the pack. Walford and Higgins lead the field off at the drop of the green with Higgins creating a few car lengths breathing space to Walford over the first 5 laps. Squabbles were going on behind the lead pair with Tennant being spun as Langdell forced his way through into the top 5. The race was stopped when Paul Heath took the airborne route over another cars front end, barrel rolling end over end before coming to rest facing the turn 4 fence on his side. We're happy to say Paul emerged unscathed and on closer inspection there was cosmetic damage to the cars bumpers and nerf bars only. On the restart, with 10 laps left to run, Higgins broke clear and Langdell took no time in chasing him down with Clare in close attendance. As the laps wound down, Clare made the front only for Langdell to nudge him wide and take the win, Clare then Higgins completing the rostrum. Perkins had a quiet run into 4th and Walford rounded out the top 5. Tennant completed the distance to score his first modstox points in one of the lower places.
A return to the Wheels Raceway was greeted with a superb evening of racing - hard but fair - that showcased how good Modstox can be at the tarmac oval in the midlands. Interestingly, Jonathon Clare recorded the same order of results as he did 2 weeks ago at Taunton for the heats and final.
Modstox return to Birmingham Wheels on Saturday 29th August, so here's hoping for more of the same action on track.
Full results - here