Cadwell Park Wolds Trophy May 18 – 19 2024

HSCC/FJHRA Silverline Historic Formula Junior Championship Rounds 2 & 3

Entry & Qualifying

A super entry of 32 cars gathered in the Lincolnshire Wolds for a bright but cool May weekend. It was with some relief that the rains that had plagued much of the first quarter of the year were abating. But heavy rain on the Thursday of the event may have cast some scepticism of the forecast.  

With Sarah Mitrike hosting round 2 of the Lurani Trophy in Sicily at the Enna Pergusa circuit along with dad Duncan Rabagliati it was Robin and Sue Longdon who were handed the task of overseeing the Junior family at Cadwell Park. It was a hectic week for the Longdon’s as the container holding the cars returning from New Zealand had been delayed and it was a frantic chase to have them unloaded to reach the Lincolnshire Wolds in time.  

The Formula Junior entry was split between the Front and Rear engine cars, with 12 cars entered for the front engine grid and 20 cars for the rear engine. In the front engine entry John Sykes had entered the Merlyn Mk2.  As the commentator was keen to mention, this was actually the first car to race, the Mk1 never having surfaced. We also had the rare sight of there being three Italian cars at Cadwell Park. Peter Edbrooke bringing his Stanguellini to join Peter Fenichel and Tony Pearson with his Bandini, Tony tending to be the most popular man in the Paddock on the Friday night as he arranges the delivery of Fish and Chips for supper.

In the rear engine grid, we had four Lotus 20s, their presence being noticeable when it came to qualifying. Andrew Hibberd was in the driving seat of the family Lotus 20 whilst triple champion Nic Carlton-Smith was having his second run in his American raced car, the paint scheme on which certainly catches the eye. Nathan Metcalfe was also fielding a Lotus 20 along with Martin Aubert.

Jeremy Flann is a newcomer for the season in the ex-Ian Walker Racing Lotus 22 driven in period by Paul Hawkins. Jeremy is a competitor in VSCC with a Frazer Nash (how appropriate he joined the HSCC) and was looking for a car for his son to race. Jeremy’s son is a successful Kart racer and they were looking for a car class he could move into that would be competitive without being aggressive and would be fun to drive.

They had looked at a number of classes, many being written off because of the cost, non-ownership of the car and ease of preparation. The family are hands on mechanics being used to the pre-war cars so they wanted something they could work on themselves. They met with Duncan and Sarah at Goodwood, and once ensnared Jeremy bought the Lotus and was thoroughly enjoying the racing and the companionship that comes with the Championship.

 The 22 came with some history and Jeremy has been enjoying researching further himself, getting to talk to the car’s second owner, Peter Boshier-Jones who he found through a tennis web site, Peter being the UK over 85 Tennis Champion.

Our other newcomer first time out is Ralph Carter. He is driving a Lotus 22 from the Speedsport workshop. Still acclimatising, he was a little off the pace at Cadwell, a difficult circuit to learn, but he was very pleased with the welcome he received in the paddock.

Front Engine Qualifying.

Sadly the entry was to lose James Owen following Friday testing, James reporting suspected diff failure in his Gemini Mk II. He did stay on for the weekend to watch the racing also finding time for a 30km bike road on the backroads and bridleways. He reported ‘scenery stunning, hills very hilly.’

In qualifying on track there were distinct groups with Alex Morton and Mark Woodhouse coming through first then Graham Barron and John Sykes whilst father and son Guarino seemed to be shadowed by Peter Fenichel. Tony Pearson and Peter Edbrooke were both finding their Italian cars to be very temperamental. Tony stopped without completing a lap with a points problem and Peter retired to the pits after 3 laps with a broken propshaft coupling.

Following qualifying Peter made the decision to switch to his trusty Lotus 18 being given permission to stay with the Front Engine grid as sole Class C1 car and start from the back. Tony having resolved his problem was allowed to complete his 3 laps to qualify with the rear engine cars and then had a further run behind the safety car to be sure the car would be up to racing. Graham Barron having established 3rd fastest time on lap 7 retired to the paddock. 

The final grid order being, Alex Morton from Mark Woodbridge, Graham Barron, John Sykes, Justin Fleming, Andrea Guarino, Peter Fenichel, Eduardo Guarino qualified 8th but would not start in the first race as he had a broken rear upright that needed replacement, the preparer citing hooligan behaviour as a possible cause of the failure. The gentlemanly Bernard Brock would therefore be promoted to 8th on the grid with Peter Edbrooke and Tony Pearson bringing up the rear.  

Rear Engine Qualifying

All 20 of the entries took part in the rear engine qualifying. Initially it was Andrew Hibberd who set the opening pace, the Class D2 drum brake class battle determining who would be on Pole position. The reply from Nic Carlton-Smith placed him at the head of the field for several laps before first Nathan Metcalfe then Andrew Hibberd finally took pole position. It looked like a close competition was in prospect between the Lotus 20s.  Martin Aubert ensured a Cheshunt lockout of the front two rows of the grid with his Lotus 20 albeit a few seconds back from the top trio.

The first of the non-Lotus cars and leader of the Class E1 group would be Alan Schmidt who had graduated up from the Speedsport Lotus 22 into the Brabham BT6 that has been hugely successful for the team. Alan himself was finding he was far more comfortable in the car being rewarded with 5th overall. 6th would be Adrian Holey who continues to understand better the Australian Rennmax. With plenty of advice and encouragement from Samuel Harrison, the prediction of a top 6 placing proved entirely accurate netting him second in class despite only completing two laps in qualifying when he pulled off. Jeremy Flann in the Lotus 22 was less than 4 tenths behind Adrian in qualifying, how it would be in the race we would have to wait and see.

Stuart Monument’s Lotus 18 headed John Hutchison Jnr in the Envoy, John being just 1 tenth behind the Lotus, so close racing was promised throughout the pack. Gary Thomas at last looked to have a reliable car in which to enjoy some racing, having his second run out in Mark Haynes’ Elva 200.

The qualifying came to a slightly early close when Nathan Metcalfe spun and stalled at Mansfield due to a seizure in the transmission and the safety car was quickly followed by the red flag  to conclude the session. Having qualified in second place Nathan’s weekend would sadly end there. The team thought they had a solution, but the diff had locked solid and nothing was going to free the back wheels to allow them to turn.

The ever resourceful Formula Junior paddock did find a solution when it came to loading the car back onto the trailer on Sunday night. Paul Booth donated some plastic buckets which were then cut into sections to go under the locked wheels. This enabled the reluctant Lotus to be pushed and dragged onto the trailer. Paul ‘Bucketman’ Booth has placed an order of ten buckets for the next event in the eventuality of other competitors finding themselves in difficulty at subsequent events!

Front Engine Juniors Race 1

From Pole position Alex Morton made the perfect getaway, whilst alongside, Mark Woodhouse made a slow start dropping four places behind Graham Barron in second place, Justin Fleming in third who had recovered from his poor qualifying position and John Sykes in   fourth place.

Alex Morton was proving himself to be the class of the field with a 7 second gap at the end of lap one, which he continually extended to be 23 seconds ahead of his rivals at the chequered flag on lap 11.

Tony Pearson’s Italian affair did not last a lap with the Bandini pulling away sounding like it was a two stroke and when it expired halfway up the climb on the paddock entrance billowing smoke from the exhaust you would have thought he was planning on joining the Super Karts later in the day. The issue was traced to a head gasket and after being towed into the paddock Tony set about trying to coax the car into giving him a race on Sunday.  

On circuit there was definitely a race taking place. Justin Fleming having passed Graham Barron into second place headed the chase after the flying Condor. John Sykes was the third fastest man on track closing down Graham Barron but behind him Mark Woodhouse was a man on a mission lapping 4 seconds faster than the Merlyn, and he was trying to recoup some time on the disappearing Alex Morton. By lap 3 Mark had passed the line of cars in front of him to take second place, but alas, there was no catching the Condor. Andrea Guarino would be the second retirement of the day when his points failed on lap 2.

Whilst the order remained static the race between Justin Fleming, Graham Barron and the irrepressible John Sykes was great to watch as they trailed through the Esses launching over the Mountain trying to out manoeuvre each other into Hall Bends.

Mark Woodhouse, despite having broken clear to give himself a two second gap, found the battling trio behind were matching him on lap times as they pushed each other on. John Sykes looked like he would pass Graham Barron on Lap 8 but Graham fought back to retain fourth place. On lap 9 Justin Fleming put in a quick lap to gain on Mark Woodhouse extending his margin over the Barron/Sykes battle. On lap 10 John finally passed Graham at Coppice. The tale of this race would have one final cruel twist.

Entering into Barn on the last lap, Mark Woodhouse ran out of brakes and pulled off the circuit. After a brilliant drive he would receive no reward, with a non-finish. The final order was a dominant win for Alex Morton, with Justin Fleming second, John Sykes third and Graham Barron fourth, taking Class B1 honours. Fifth and second in Class B1 was Bernard Brock from Peter Fenichel in the sole surviving Stanguellini, also claiming class A honours with Peter Edbrooke being the last of the finishers, now in his Lotus 18.

Front Engine Juniors Race 2

For the second of the Front Engine races we were unfortunately without Mark Woodhouse, his brake issue unable to be resolved. However, we did have both Andrea and Edoardo Guarino in their Elva 100s competing again. Tony Pearson was also hoping the Bandini was now race ready and good for 20 minutes racing around Cadwell Park.

If Alex Morton’s first race had been considered dominant, the way in which he won the second race would have you believe the Condor had been re-engineered by Red Bull because the Condor looked like it had sprouted wings. At the end of the first lap his lead was over 14 seconds and by the end of the race his advantage back to Justin Fleming was 43 seconds.

However, it did look like we were going to be treated to another battle featuring Graham Barron and John Sykes. Unfortunately, in the excitement John had managed to hook second gear by mistake on lap 2 and “buzzed” the engine elevating Andrea Guarino into fourth place with Bernard Brock fifth. Peter Fenichel had Edoardo on his heels.

Tony Pearson did manage a lap again before the Bandini declared race over. The climb into the paddock once again required assistance from the waiting recovery crew. The following lap would see the retirement into the pits for Peter Fenichel’s Stanguellini and for this race there would be no more Italian participation.

The final place change came on lap 6 when Edoardo Guarino passed Bernard Brock for fifth place.  The final order was Alex Morton first, Justin Fleming second, Graham Barron third and Class B1 winner, fourth was Andrea Guarino who finished third in Class B2 with Edoardo finishing second in Class B1 with Bernard Brock sixth. Completing the finishers was Peter Edbrooke.


Rear Engine Juniors Race 1

It was 19 cars that left the assembly area with just 18 making it to the grid for the start of the first Formula Junior Rear engine race. It was not a weekend to be named Metcalfe. With Nathan’s Lotus 20 withdrawn, Tim Metcalfe got as far as the green flag lap before coming to a halt with no oil pressure.

It was a clean start for the three Lotus 20s with Andrew Hibberd leading Nic Carlton-Smith with Martin Aubert in third. Fourth was Adrian Holey in the Rennmax who had got ahead of Alan Schmidt in the Brabham with Stuart Monument sixth in the Lotus 18 followed by Jeremy Flann. Robin Longdon made a slow start, recovering to only lose two places.

As much as Alex Morton’s two victories had been dominant, Andrew and Nic were very much in a class of their own. Andrew progressively extended his advantage over Nic to almost 16 seconds popping in the fastest lap on the last lap of the race. Nic for his part had an almost similar advantage back to the race for third place.

Adrian, in the early stages of the race having passed Martin Aubert, looked set for a possible podium finish behind the two Lotus 20s and also a class win for the Rennmax. His position being made more secure by a battle between Martin Aubert and Alan Schmidt.

Further down the field there was a good scrap for eighth place featuring Jeremy Flann in the Lotus 22, Gary Thomas in the Haynes Elva 200, Robin Longdon and completing the chain Crispian Besley. After 6 laps Robin Longdon had cleared the train of cars and was in pursuit of John Hutchison Jnr in the Envoy lying second in class C2 to the Lotus 18 of Stuart Monument.

The following lap Robin had passed John and was now closing on Stuart, whilst Gary Thomas had worked his way up to 9th place after Jeremy Flann dropped two places with Crispian Besley following in the Elva’s wheel tracks to take tenthh place.

There were dices everywhere with Paul Booth in his Lotus 20/22 coming under the close attention of Jeremy Bouckley in the Cooper Mk2 who had Andrew Gemmill’s similar Lotus following him.

On lap 8 into Hall bends Alan Schmidt pulled off a brave overtake to pass Adrian Holey for third place and the lead of Class E1. It was on this lap that John Hutchison Jnr had a big spin at Barn completing a 360 degree turn, dropping him 3 places to 11th behind Jeremy Flann.

With Alan Schmidt looking to be clear in third place Adrian Holey was now coming under pressure from Martin Aubert.

On the last lap at the foot of the Mountain the race came unstuck for two drivers. Alan Schmidt being the first, dropping two places whilst John Hutchison Jnr found some fluid relegating him to 14th place. In all the excitement Martin Aubert managed to slip through to claim the last place on the podium to make it a Lotus 20 one, two, three.

At the prizegiving post event, Andrew Hibberd noted this could be a historic podium believing it is probably the first time since the early sixties that there has been an all Lotus 20 podium. I am sure our historians will comeback with names and location for the last time this happened.

For the writer, in his memory, it is certainly the first time in a long while since there has not been a Class E1 car in a podium place. So probably this is one for the history books.

Adrian Holey brought the Rennmax home fourth claiming class E1 victory from the unfortunate Alan Schmidt in the Brabham BT6. Sixth and winning class C2 was Stuart Monument in the Lotus 18 whilst following was Gary Thomas in the Elva 200 with Crispian Besley in the Cooper T56 ninth rounding out the C2 podium. Paul Clark tenth in the Lotus 20/22 completed the E1 rostrum.

It was a good race and a great performance from all concerned. 18 cars started the race and 18 cars finished.


Rear Engine Race 2 Barry Westmoreland Trophy Race

The 18 cars that had formed up for Race 1 assembled in their qualifying order for the start of Race 2. For many this second race was that little bit special as many will have memories of Barry who sadly passed away at the wheel whilst racing his Lotus 22 at Cadwell Park.

The start of Race 2 looked very much like a repeat of Race 1. Again, Andrew Hibberd led away from Nic Carlton-Smith and Martin Aubert for a repeat of the previous days’ podium. Alan Schmidt came through in fourth place in the Brabham, with Jeremy Flann fifth from Stuart Monument and Gary Thomas. Adrian Holey had made a dreadful start being swamped off the line and was lying in 11th place at the end of lap 1.

Adrian was quick to remedy his tardy start moving up into sixth place by lap 3. Andrew Hibberd built up an early lead over Nic Carlton-Smith, the gap ebbing and flowing as they moved through the traffic but Andrew always seemed to be able to find that quick lap soon after to maintain a healthy lead.

Alan Schmidt however had his eye on a podium place this time with the Brabham displacing Martin Aubert for third place on lap 3. The pair remainedclose, matching each other’s lap times for the following laps as they too moved through the traffic.

In the Mountain grandstand there was a lot of excitement as Gary Thomas was again putting up a stirring performance in Mark Haynes’ Elva. Mark was almost sympathising with his wife when he confessed to finding it more stressful watching his car than racing it.

For Adrian Holey in the Rennmax, once he had passed the Lotus 18 of Stuart Monument, he could not match the pace of Alan Schmidt in front and looked set for a fifth place finish in the race. Robin Longdon after his slow start in Race 1 was having a much better time in Race 2, which is when the Mountain stand came alive as he and Gary Thomas had a great dice for the closing laps of the race.

Jeremy Flann after his flying start did settle back into tenthh place ahead of the class C2 dice between Crispian Besley’s Cooper and Trevor Griffiths’ Emeryson. For a while Richard Ferris with the Donford was embroiled in the fight before slipping behind in the closing laps.

On lap 11 Martin Aubert made his move to retake third place from Alan Schmidt, coming into the Mountain on the following lap Martin suddenly swung into the paddock entrance allowing Alan Schmidt to pass by. Martin was stranded with a “box of neutrals” in the Lotus 20 and his fine race was run.

As in race 1, the Mountain was also to catch John Hutchison Jnr, who after a strong pursuit of Gary Thomas entered the Mountain to find he had lost 2nd gear pitching him into a spin in the Envoy. Luckily avoiding the barriers and any following cars John was able to pick his way off the grass to finish.

The result was a second win for Andrew Hibberd in the Lotus 20 from Nic Carlton-Smith in his Lotus 20 with Alan Schmidt in third place with the Brabham BT6, and winning class E1 from Adrian Holey 4th in the Rennmax. Stuart Monument very nearly threw away fifth place and the class C2 win with a spin in Hall Bends on the final lap.  That allowed Robin and Gary to catch right up with Gary having to take to the grass as Stuart rejoined and held them off by less than a second at the flag.  So, Robin Longdon in his Lola Mk 3 took the final podium place in class D2 behind the two Lotus 20s. Hard on his tail was Gary Thomas who had thoroughly enjoyed his race to second in Class C2. Gary plans to have the Kieft race ready for Donington. Crispian Besley in the Cooper completed the Class C2 podium after his race long dice with Trevor Griffiths.

Receiving the Barry Westmoreland Trophy at the prize giving afterwards Andrew Hibberd paid tribute to Barry who, he reminded us, was celebrating his 50th year of racing when he passed away.  Stuart Monument was awarded FJ Driver of the Day.

The prize giving ending on an emotional moment when Jeremy Bouckley announced he had taken part in his last race. He recalled it was in 1963 when he came to Cadwell Park for the Formula Junior Race, sharing the track with the infamous Roy James, get-away driver in the 1960s Great Train Robbery. So, he felt it was fitting to hang up his helmet in the same location. He paid tribute to his partner Corinne and Peter Denty whose Cooper he had raced for the past 20 years. Although he did suggest there may still be a return. He intimated he was not retiring just having his last race. We will wait to see.

By Alan Jones