WITHOUT doubt the meeting that attracted the spectators was the 2 Litre Saloon World Final which was held at the Cowdenbeath Racewall over the weekend of August 17/18 and the action didn’t let the fans down, writes Racewall reporter Jim Turner.

There were a few new faces and cars over the season with Holly Glen, Ross Watters (Windygates) and Tam Rutherford Snr appearing with new cars.

New faces saw Brian Hogg Jnr and Alisdair Smith appear at the start to the season whilst Kenneth Scollon, Zak Gilmour and Andy Ainslie were to appear later. Regulars Kyle Irvine (Glenrothes) and Raymond Dick (Glenrothes) were late starters to the season, Ross Donaldson was to have a brief outing in the ex-Hogg Jnr car which he soon sold to Adam Cockburn. Barry Russell turned out to be the most travelled Scotsman taking in many meetings south of the border and even ventured to the Netherlands.

However, early on we lost Aaryn Triggs and Luke Grief due to a suspension with Greg Honeyman also falling into the bad books later on.

The drivers qualify for their grid positions over the season through Championship events and track points. Over the season the top driver was Diggy Smith and he was to start the race from pole position but alongside him was Russell from Aberdeen whilst other Scottish drivers well placed were Graeme Shevill, Watters and Ian McLaughlin.

There were 60 cars at the Racewall for the World Final meeting and included past World Champions Diggy Smith and Stuart Shevill Jnr joining the defending champion Max Stott on the grid. The practice was held in dry conditions but afterwards the drivers had to combat a wet and greasy track. The drivers took their cars onto the grid where the fans could meet the drivers and get autographs.

The last chance qualifying race gridded 28 cars and as expected there was no shortage of action with a few drivers seeing their chances of World Final success disappear.

Paul Honeyman led the field away but within a lap the race was stopped after a shunt had left a car stranded at the end of the main straight. In the end Shevill Jnr won from Ryan Santry, Paul Honeyman, Graeme Anderson, Andrew Mathieson (Lochgelly) and Scott Greenslade who all took their places on the back of the World Final grid.

The cars then lined up on the grid for their Gilmore Engineering/Motorsport with Attitude World Championship Final. A typical Cowdenbeath roar greeted the sound of “Drivers start your engines” as the cars set off on their parade lap.

Smith made the better of the starts with Russell slotting in behind and whilst his early bid for the lead saw the Smith car bounce off the wall the leader was able to continue. Stott was an early casualty whilst Watters and Shevill Jnr were making up ground. Cars were dropping out but Smith was clear of Russell and starting to lap back markers.

Then on lap 12 the race complex changed after a race suspension and with the rain beginning to fall it gave Russell another chance of removing Smith from the lead. However, Smith held on and was slowly easing away when there was another stoppage. Again Smith had to survive another visit to the wall as Russell looked to go ahead. Over the last few laps Russell began to close but it was a jubilant Smith who clambered onto the roof of the car to accept the plaudits from the fans.

Russell ended up as the runner up with Watters in third.

The following day the main race was for the Raymond Gunn Memorial Trophy with D. Smith turning up with a gold roof on his car. Formula II driver Chris Burgoyne was a having a run in G. Shevill’s car. Watters, Marc Honeyman and Willie Mitchell were the heat winners to set up a cracking final. However it was M. Honeyman who dominated the proceedings going on to win final from Watters and Deane Mayes.

The Scottish Championship attracted a good field of cars and next to the World this is the race that the Scottish drivers want to win. Grid positions are by a public draw with white grader Alisdair Smith on pole with Eck Cunningham (Leven) alongside whilst behind were the defending champion McLaughlin and Holly Glen. Russell was to start from row four, Watters row eight and Graeme Shevill on row nine.

The race had a dramatic start with A. Smith leading but McLaughlin tried to sneak through on the inside only to be squeezed into a marker tyre, career across the track and as he spun bounced onto the bonnet of Watters sending the latter into retirement.

On the back straight A. Smith spun as Dick charged through into the lead, only to be greeted by waved yellows. Dick led on the restart but then lost out to Marc Honeyman but a few laps later there was another stoppage. M. Honeyman led for another couple of laps before G. Shevill took over but after his first lap episode McLaughlin was now in seventh and closing. As the laps began to dwindle the drivers were finding grip difficult after fluid had been dropped onto the track. G. Shevill and B. Glen bounced off the pit bend wall with McLaughlin now second. However, when McLaughlin made his bid for the lead he and G. Shevill bounced off each other allowing Anderson to slip through into the lead.

McLaughlin got alongside going down the straight with Shevill making a last ditch lunge but he only made contact with Anderson and it was McLaughlin who grabbed the win amid a typical Cowdenbeath roar with G. Shevill just getting to the line ahead of Anderson with only seven cars making it to the finish line.

Honeyman then went through to win the White/Yellow final but by then most drivers were thinking about the Superbowl weekend and what a weekends racing it turned out to be!

There were 41 cars at the track for the Superbowl with the field split into three with each driver racing twice and the points scored determining grid positions Not long after the first heat started that it was suspended after Ben Murray was spun then collected by a group of cars and rolled.

Watters then went on to win heat one but heat two saw the first of Stevie Honeyman’s exploits when Shevill Jnr sent him crashing into the wall and his car came to rest at the pit gate. Stevie stepped out of his car with a smile! This time it was Ryan Santry who won. S. Honeyman appeared for heat three but this time it was G. Shevill who sent him crashing into the wall and this time he rolled spectacularly. Holly Glen led the race for most of it and ended up third behind Diggy Smith and Kyle Irvine.

As a result of points scored D. Smith was on pole position with Santry alongside whilst the first Scottish driver was Ian McLaughlin starting from row 3. When the race started D. Smith went straight into the lead and with his chasers getting tangled up emerged with a big lead. However H. Glen was edged wide and before she could move was collected by the pack and rolled. On the restart D. Smith had Watters on his tail but he was sent wide and into the wall and out of the race. Shevill Jnr appeared in second whilst McLaughlin had Burgoyne trying to get ahead. D. Smith began to ease away before going through to win from Shevill Jnr and Deane Mayes.

The first Saloon race of Sunday afternoon was the Gordon Barclay memorial trophy and was to be the meeting final. This meeting was part of their National Series.

There was an early stoppage to the race but Roff led the for a few laps but in the end Matty Stirling moved into the lead but was under pressure from Santry, Mayes made it a three way dice for the lead on the penultimate lap but Stirling went through to win whilst Mayes was sent Santry spinning across the finish line but was still third with Watters and Irvine in close order.

The track points was up for grabs and was between McLaughlin and Watters. McLaughlin had led for most of the time but towards the end Watters had caught up and going into the least meeting had taken the lead. Watters managed to outscore McLaughlin over the last weekend to win his first Saloon track points championship.