Stock car racing: Cowdenbeath Racewall

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Stock car fans are in for another exciting season at Cowdenbeath after the official fixture list for the BriSCA meetings were published at the recent Motor Show at Birmingham.

Prior to the start to the season are the practice meetings at the opening one, which is usually restricted to new drivers has been extended to cover white grade drivers as well.

However taking the headlines that day will be the 2 litre saloons who are having a sort of “legends” day where drivers who maybe not as young as they think are taking part in a meeting to raise funds for the Joan Purdie Cancer Appeal.

Amongst those who are intimating that they will race are Harry Burgoyne, Stuart Shevill and Kenny Purdie whilst from south of the border are George Boult Snr. Phil Morgan and John Halifax whilst Winton Weir is heading over from Northern Ireland. There will be more details posted on the website and in this column as they unfold.

The opening meeting takes place on the 12th March and along with the formula IIs and 2 litre saloons the ORCi stock rods and prostox are scheduled to race. Dave Borthwick told me that “I am very optimistic about the saloons this season as there would appear to be five new drivers with cars whilst amongst two drivers returning is Stevie Honeyman. The introduction of the Zetec engine seems to be one of the main reasons but then it is one of the most exciting categories in stock car circles”.

The following week the formula IIs and saloons are joined by the lightning rods and minis and again Dave was quite upbeat about the latter two formulas in as much as” we have at least two new lightning rod drivers and three ministox drivers this year.”

The National Hot Rod drivers make their first appearance during the meeting of the26th March as they continue their World Championship qualifying rounds.

The first of the Championship events comes in the form of the BBA Unlimited Banger World Cup which brings numerous top names in the sport to the Racewall and their races normally heralds plenty of action. Dave commented “ We already have had plenty of enquiries about the meeting, more than usual, and we are hoping to have a field of upwards of 60 cars”.

At the end of the month the saloons have round 2 of the Celtic Challenge where the Scottish and Irish drivers have a series of rounds to determine the winner. “This could be quite an interesting series of races” quipped Dave “ and we have high hopes of some good racing between the drivers”.

The Prostox drivers have their first championship meeting when they lock horns with their Irish counterparts for their European Championship and hopefully this year the title will stay in Scotland.

Over the 14/15 May weekend the fans are going to be treated to a weekend of all out action although there will be a somber note when the minis race for the Kier Millar memorial.

Chris Burgoyne will be defending his Scottish formula II title on the Saturday night whilst the saloons and stock rods will contest their British Championships qualifying heats on the Saturday night before the championship finals are decided on the Sunday. The saloons will also be racing on Sunday for the Raymond Gunn Tribute race.

The following week it’s World Championship qualifying round time for both the formula IIs and hot rods. The following day the formula IIs head to Crimond for another World Championship qualifying round.

May ends with the first of the 20/20 Scotland v England 2 litre banger event . “Startrax are organising the English team” Dave told me” and we are going to organize the Scottish team. You never know their might be a couple of mavericks in one of the teams!”.

June looks to be a relatively quiet month that is until the 25th when the BriSCA formula I drivers head north to complete their World Championship qualifying series. Who knows how many Scottish drivers, apart from Paul Ford will be on the grid? There are plenty of rumours going around that there might be another three on the grid! After that there is the holiday break where the formula IIs and saloons head to Skegness for the UK challenge and then the twos head to Northampton for their European Championship.

The stock cars return to Cowdenbeath on the 23rd July with the microbanger drivers contesting their banger Supreme title.

On the 13th August it’s the Siamese banger Scottish Championship and the spectators who saw them race last year know that they are in for a spectacular meeting. The following day is Legends day 3 where the drivers from the past get their turn to race speedway style and it is a great fun day for the drivers and fans.

On the 20th August the formula II drivers contest the Chapman trophy whilst round 4 of the Celtic challenge takes place.

On the 27th August the formula IIs contest the Geo Mac Memorial trophy with Chris Burgoyne defending and making their annual trip north will be the BriSCA Heritage formula IIs where Phil Hiles will be defending his Scottish title. There is also a real possibility that the heritage formula IIs could well be on the programme. This will be confirmed soon.

The microbanger return on the3rd September for their Massacre event which will be another exciting affair.

The formula II World Final takes place on the shale at Mildenhall on the 10th September whilst the saloon World Final takes place at Skegness on the 17th September. Who knows both titles may well end up in Scotland!

Back at Racewall the Lightning rod drivers have their Scottish Championship to defend on the 24th .

October looks as if it is going to be a rather busy month for the drivers starting off on the 1st with the final of the 2 litre saloon Celtic Challenge whilst the following week the saloon drivers contest their Scottish Championship where Luke Grief will be looking to make it back to back wins.

On the 15th the 2 litre banger drivers have a Scottish Championship to decide whilst the following week it’s Michael Bethune’s turn to defend the ORCi stock rod Scottish Championship.

The season ends over the weekend of the 29/30 October when the saloons meet to decide the Superbowl whilst the formula IIs have the Champion of Champions and James Clarke Cochrane Memorial trophy to decide.

On the Sunday the saloons will contest the Gordon Barclay memorial trophy whilst there are the track points titles to decide.

Yes it is going to be another busy season with plenty of action to keep the fans happy.