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One National Champion and three runners up for LPRC

posted 6 Oct 2012, 00:27 by Lancashire Powerboat
Saturday 22 and Sunday 23 September at Stewartby Lake in Bedfordshire was the final round of the RYA British National Powerboat GP Championship and Lancashire Powerboat Racing club drivers were all up for the challenge and set to do what they can to grab the glory. It was the last chance for all our drivers to make their mark on the National results for 2012.

First up, it was time for our junior drivers to battle it out for the GT15 victory and the National Title. Although the first place for the National title already sown-up by Ben Jelf from Kent, who has dominated the results throughout the season, the other drivers all wanted to claim the runners up prize.

After gaining the silver award at Nottingham the previous week Charlotte Newton from Lowton, was up for the challenge. She claimed second place in qualifying, and would do all that she could to keep this momentum going and secure a podium finish in the final national race. The young driver did a fine job and battled hard to claim the second spot once again. In every heat Charlotte pushed her boat to the limit and put pressure on the other drivers to maintain second place and claim the podium finish she deserved.

But it was Tiegen Goodfellow, age 11 from Staffordshire who had been consistently competitive all season who had done enough to claim the National runner-up prize, in just her second season of racing.

Tiegen said: “I am really pleased it is only my second year of racing and I had to get used to the new boat which my dad built and a different type of engine this year. My dad has worked really hard all year to try and get me going faster each race! I love racing, and the points have been so close I knew I had to try my best in the last round. My family and friends  come to cheer me on at every race and this support really helps. Both of my Grandad’s and my dad were boat racers so I feel like I am keeping it in the family!  I can’t wait for next year to get back in my boat and see all my friends again.”


Emiliy Goodfellow, Tiegen’s mum said: “We are very proud of how hard Tiegen has tried this year, it has been fantastic to watch how close the racing has been with many of the positions still to play for going into the final round. Tiegen has gained much more confidence as the season has gone on. It is great to see the GT15 class developing and increasing in numbers race after race as it is only in its second year of racing in this country, the youngsters give it their all which is fantastic given their ages. We are grateful to JPL Racing team for their continued support throughout the season.”

In GT30 Ben Morse, age 18 from Ashton-in makerfield and his teammate Kevin Hill who were both claiming the joint top-spot, with Jordan Muckles, age 16 from Tyne and Wear and Natalie Craddock all close behind and hot on their heels. But it was Kevin Hill who shone on the day, as Ben didn’t quite manage to get on the pace. It was Jordan Muckles who pushed hard battling with every wave during each race as was putting up a great challenge, but his efforts were not quite enough and Kevin Hill took the victory and with it the National title.

A fourth from Morse was enough for him to hold onto the runner-up prize and take second place on the podium ahead of Jordan. Close behind was young Natalie Craddock, age 16 from Wigan who has battled hard all season to claim 4th. Its great to see LPRC drivers claiming so many of the top spots in this up and coming class.

Ben said: “I went into the last round on level points with Kevin Hill, and I had a chance at securing the National title. But during qualifying it was obvious that my teammate Kevin Hill was flying, and he had the top-end pace to secure pole position, so I knew I was in for a tough race. After heat one and Kevin took the victory, with Jordan not far behind him, I knew Kevin had the Championship in the bag. Fortunately, my wins earlier in the season meant that although I came fourth in the last race, I had done enough and I finished the Championship in second so I’m am really pleased with the result and hope that I can do even better next year.”

Mark Williams for Lowestoft and Oulton Broad Motor Boat Racing Club, won the T850 class. But it was the runners up trophy that was up for grabs, Bill Owen and Dave James from the last of the summer wine team were using all their vast experience to put up the challenge for the silver prize. But their efforts were not enough to hold off Top Cat Racing Team’s Mike Pillow.

Although a second place in the National Championship is a great achievement, when asked to comment on his season, Mike could not hold back his disappointment. He said: “This racing season is summed up for me as so near yet so far away, with my runners up spot in the T850 for the third year running. The overall win was just one step to far for me. I would like to say a massive thank you to my sponsors Top Cat racing and hope we can go one better and get the top spot next year.”

In the headline fast and furious F2 race, the top spot was wide open with LPRC drivers Malcolm Goodman, Alan Marshall and Paul Balfour in with a chance for the top of the podium. Malcolm went into the final round with just a two point lead ahead of Alan Marshall.

With Goodman claiming pole with an impressive performance in qualifying it was important for him to have a good clean race after spectacularly crashing out the previous week at the World Championships in Nottingham.

On the first lap it was Paul Balfour and Alan Marshall who boats crashed together on the first turn. Both drivers managed to keep their boat on the water but it was only until the next lap when Ian Wright and JPL racing's Ian Andrews also had a coming together causing Ian Andrews to barrel-roll over crash out causing the race to be stopped for safety reasons.

After the race and all four drivers involved in the two incidents inspected their boats and for three of them their weekend of racing was over due to the damage they sustained. A disappointing end to the National season for Balfour, Andrews and Wright, but Marshall was able to continue.

With so many boats crashing out, it then left Goodman with the clearer water in the next two races to power ahead and take the vital victories and with it claim the 2012 crown, and the prestigious National title.

Goodman said: “Its brilliant to win the British National F2 title for two consecutive years. It’s been a tough season with engine problems at the beginning of the year, wiping out a turn buoy at Carr Mill National back in May and then crashing out at Nottingham twice in one weekend, I really thought I wasn’t going to be my year. But I have had the support of a great team in JPL racing and they have all helped me get the boat ready and back on the water with every setback that we have faced. Thanks guys your support and hard work means so much.”

Although the National racing is over, there is still the LPRC Club Championship up for grabs. Two more races will be taking place at Carr Mill Dam on Sunday 7th and Saturday 20th October. Why not come and join us? Hope to see you there.