- Race 1 Article 1:
- STS Racing Inc earn incredible 1-2-3-4 finish; Hamilton earns first win
The dominant ways of Team Kwik Fit were ended in an emphatic way as Megan Hamilton lead all three of her teammates across the line as STS swept the top 4 in the first race at Toddring. Carl Astor, the Rockingham winner, was leading with the white flag in hand, but Hamilton made a move with two corners to go, and despite a charge from Harold Smith, who will be taking over the #6 Super Touring car in time for the start of the American tour, Hamilton held on to take her first career triumph. Astor had to settle for third, while out of shot Joey Clagett finished fourth, with damage, and well off the front three.
"It was close. I tried at the end but Megan's car was just too powerful" said Harold Smith, "She got the move right. I was hoping we'd finish 5-6-7-8 in that order but hey, there's another race to win yet."
Points leader Perrie Forrester only lasted one lap as a giant accident swept up over half the field in the second turn, but her main title contender, Oak Treediee, was also swept up in the accident. However, third place finish Carl Astor is now emerging as a last minute threat as he leapfrogged Treediee in points, and reduced Forrester's lead to 137 entering the second race.
- Race 1 Article 2:
- Giant, vicious first lap accident takes out 14 cars in second turn
A large accident which seen three cars on their roofs and another airbourne on the first lap marred the first race of the standalone Toddring weekend for Oval Stocks. After this crash, only 14 of the 29 cars running stayed in the race, with the entry of Matilda Dillinger being the only retirement not involved in the crash as her engine blew on the pace laps.
Franc Jansing, Nausika Lagunov and Mauricio Gallardo all were sent for rolls in the accident, but it was the airbourne car of Madison Peniall that sparked the melee.
Peniall's car did not roll over, but was struck several times as it landed on its wheels and slid back up into the banking. The car was sent airbourne after contact with Harold Smith, who was trying to pass the 18 car, owned by Peniall, on the low side.
Dash Cup officials have allowed extra time between race 1 and 2 for teams to bring in back-ups if needed, with teams such as Team Kwik Fit able to bring out the backups straight away.
- Race 2 Article 1:
- Smith ensured weekend sweep with first Dash Cup sanctioned win since 2007
Veteran Harold Smith proved to be the only driver that the STS Racing Inc team could rely on in the second race, and he did not let his team down as she held off the Team Kwik Fit duo of Oak Treediee and Matilda Dillinger to take his first Oval Stocks win, and his first Dash Cup sanctioned win since the Monaco Grand Prix in 2007.
Smith was dominant for the majority of the race, leading 18 of the events 20 laps en route to winning the event.
"This is bloody incredible, don't you think?" said a jubilant Smith, "I'm one of those guys that... I'll get a car to the end of the race. I've hit my peak and I'm not sure I'll run like I use to, but to have runs like that gives me hope that there's still something left to me."
Smith recently agreed a deal with Big Bang Racing which will see him team up with Team Kwik Fit Oval Stocks ace Perrie Forrester for the 2016 season. This will be Smith's first full time attempt since 2014, where he finished 54th in points with backmarker team Proline GP without scoring any top 10's. Smith last top 10, excluding Oval Stocks, was in 2013, over two years ago, at the infamous Sussex Grand Prix, where he scored a 6th place finish with Tom Delgado Racing.
While Smith was left in a good mood, other drivers on the podium were not, namely Matilda Dillinger.
Dillinger, who has her own Super Touring stint sorted with STS ATK Racing for the 2016 season, was not left happy after the event as she claimed her teammate Oak Treediee "didn't try". Dillinger was seen pulling out of line to the low side exiting nearly every corner for the final two laps, but Treediee did not co-operate, and as a result, Dillinger was left to finish in third.
"We're teammates. I don't understand why he didn't want to go for the win" said Dillinger, "It's like he didn't trust me to be reliable with my move. I knew what I was doing. If he went with me, one of us would have won, but instead he gifted it to Harold by not making a move."
- Race 2 Article 2:
- Violent crash sees Clagett out for season
Fans of Dash Cup were hoping that the melee on the first lap of the first race would be the worst crash of the weekend, however this was not to be the case.
Joey Clagett was left injured after a violent accident seen him make heavy contact with the turn 1 catchfence at well over 160mph. Clagett, who was well inside the top 10 in points, was racing with Hannagan Enterprises' Mauro Vilar when Vilar and Clagett got together. Clagett's car went onto the apron, when he overcorrected back towards the outside wall. The car tipped over before rolling up the banking then making contact with the catchfencing. The back of Clagett's car was ripped from the rest of the car, and the rest of the car came to rest in turn 1 right side up.
Clagett tried to climb out of the car under his own power, but alerted the marshalls who attended the accident of an arm injury that he has sustained. Clagett was taken by ambulance to a local hospital where he was diagnosed with a brake in his upper left arm. Clagett was due to become a Super Touring rookie in 2016 for Team Kwik Fit, but there are fears his plans may be on hold if his injury does not heal up in time.
Clagett has since updated his Twitter account, saying "Doing just fine! Only thing I can think about isn't the injury, it's when I can get back in my car!!!", and is expected to fly over with the Super Touring team to spectate his sister, Amber, in the rest of her season.
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