LAY TREBLE TAKES HIM TO THE TOP OF THE TABLE

LAY TREBLE TAKES HIM TO THE TOP OF THE TABLE

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With three pole positions, three fastest laps and three victories, RAW Motorsports James Lay left Snetterton as the new leader in the Radical Challenge.

From lights out in the opening sprint race Lay started to go clear and had a whole second in hand over Breakell Racing’s Noah Degnbol by the end of the opening lap, with Mectech’s Anthony Ayres settling in third.

“I made sure I led into Riches and was good on cold tyres, so just nailed it and enjoyed the solo run,” said Lay.

“I managed to stay close for a while but was searching for that last bit of speed,” Degnbol replied.

The order stayed fairly dormant throughout the 14 laps, with Lay taking the first of his weekend wins by over three seconds.

“I got clear in third early on but just couldn’t get anywhere near the two in front,” said Ayres. In fourth DW’s Jason Rishover did his best to hold onto Ayres, I stayed with him briefly but suffered for it later,” he admitted, having slipped back 14 seconds into a solid fourth.

In the closing laps 360’s James Sweetnam had started to close on Rishover, but it was too little too late. “I was up to sixth into Riches at the start and then got John Macleod into Oggies too for fifth, but had a slight touch which damaged my suspension and put the handling off a bit,” he explained after settling for fifth.

RAW’s Macleod held onto sixth, “I got held up at Agostini’s on the first lap when Rishover slowed and Sweetnam got a run on me,” he said.

DW’s Peter Tyler, RAW’s Chris Preen and Valour’s Andy Lowe rounded off the top 10. “I spun at Coram with a lap to go and Preen got me,” said Lowe. “It was just a lack of confidence for me,” Preen added.

“I had an awesome first lap around the outside at Riches, then preserved my tyres,” Tyler reckoned.

In 11th Chris Short was out of luck, “I lost two places at the start and spun at Agostini’s, bit of a disaster really,” he admitted.

Chris Myhill survived a late spin and Mark Williams completed the finishers after Ben Stone retired.

The start of the second race was almost identical to the first, with Lay heading Degnbol and Ayres into Riches.

“I had to defend a little more this time, but didn’t feel any real threat,” said Lay as he cruised to a nine second plus victory.

“If I had a chance I knew I had to it in the first half lap, but then locked up at Wilson Hairpin and it was my only real chance,” Degnbol replied, as he had to settle for second again.

“It was just the same as in the first race for me, on my own in third, couldn’t close so I need to work on my technique,” Ayres admitted.

It was much better race for Preen however, “I went from sixth to fourth at Riches and managed to maintain it, I just felt more confident this time and proved it,” he said.

Although Rishover was in fifth, he came under pressure from Short in the final laps. “Preen got me at the start, but I managed to stay with him until I overheated my tyres and lost ground,” he explained.

“I made good progress and after getting Matt Jones on lap eight, I got Macleod into Brundle a couple of laps later and just needed another lap to challenge Jason for fifth. Sixth is OK and it was a great race,” he said.

Macleod and Jones retained seventh and eighth, with Lowe and Williams rounding off the top 10.

Myhill had another spin but was still 111th, but after running as high as seventh on the opening lap, Sweetnam took the flag in 12th, “I was struggling with understeer and then got hit at Wilson by Lowe, so it was just bring it home,” he explained.

Stone completed the finishers after he hit Tyler at Murrays a few laps from home.

Lay had led Degnbol and Ayres at the start of Sunday’s Enduro, but there were two early safety car interventions.

Jones had spun out exiting Riches on the opening lap, which also delayed Rishover, before Short ran wide exiting the same corner on lap four from sixth place.

There was only a couple of racing laps before the pitstop window opened, as Lay led Degnbol and Ayres, from Macleod, Sweetnam and Lowe.

Degnbol was first in but was forced to pit again for a stop-go penalty after an infringement.

Lay rejoined after his stop still in the clear, but Macleod was in second, under pressure from Ayres, with Degnbol mounting his recovery from seventh place.

Having latched onto the battle between Lowe, Preen and Sweetnam for fourth, Degnbol then tapped Sweetnam. “He hit me as we went under the bridge,” Sweetnam confirmed, which gave the former Championship leader a drive through penalty.

It was plain sailing for Lay as he took win number three, “Apart from fluffing the restart from the second safety car and giving Noah a chance it was great and have to admit I surprised myself this weekend,” he said.

But second went down to the wire, with Ayres mounting a do or die lunge through Hamilton, “I expected it but was surprised where he did it. We touched, but I made a little mistake earlier allowing him to close. But although he nosed ahead through Oggies he was offline and slow exiting, I was online caught him and he spun,” Macleod explained.

Ayres still managed to recover to retain third, with Lowe, Williams and Tyler all retaining top six places after Degnbol finally came in seventh.

Sweetnam recovered to take a late eighth, from Preen and Myhill, while the SR1’s finished in the order Bolger, Caisley and Ockenden.

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DE LEON DOES THE DOUBLE

Daryl De Leon proved unbeatable at Snetterton, as he took his Valour Racing Radical SR1 to comfortable victories in both SR1 Cup races.

Having almost doubled in his lead over the first two laps of race one, De Leon eased his way to an untroubled 10 second victory.

Track Focused’s Frazer McFadden was his nearest challenger, having escaped from the duel for third between Dougie Bolger and Ben Caisley early on.

“I had a go at Dougie at Riches but he cut me off, but finally got him when he made a mistake three laps from the end,” Caisley explained after completing the podium.

George Knutton retired from fifth on lap three, which promoted James Hadley, while looking set for sixth, Chris Astley lost out in a late sort out as both James Ockenden and Sally Erdmann got by while he regained his momentum.

The lead pair went clear again from the opening lap of race two, with McFadden proving much sterner opposition. The gap had stayed between 0.5 and 0.8 secs until the last couple of laps.

Caisley and Bolger were fairly evenly paced in the battle for third, but this time Caisley retained the upperhand. “I had good pace near the end, but we made a few changes and they didn’t work,” said Caisley.

Ockenden and Hadley were the rest of the top six throughout, with Erdmann and Darren Knutton completing the finishers.

Published by Peter Scherer for Radical Sportscars, June 28th 2022