Spa 4H Classic: Race Blog and Result
Posted: 1st July 2017
Red Flag - Race Result
The Spa 4 Hour Classic round of the European Classic Series endurance racing championship has been won by Neate Racing (Honda Magnum) with Team Taurus (Suzuki XR60 Replica) second, Sweatshop Phase One No.4 (P&M Suzuki) third, Team Force (Suzuki F1) fourth and Kaiser Classic Endurance (Bakker Kawasaki) fifth.Neate Racing
Team Alf's Kawasaki were sixth, the Team Classic Suzuki Katana of Guy Martin and Pete Boast was seventh, Roadrunner were eighth, SCERT ninth and Ride 4 Fun Ducati tenth.
The race was red flagged after an incident brought the safety car out. Oil spills had left the track unsafe and the decision to end the race early was taken.
Congratulation to everyone who finished – to everyone who took part in – this gruelling race.
There has been a lengthy safety car session in the final hour after a crash by Dynotech, closing up the field so that with thirty minutes to go the top four teams were on the same lap with just seconds separating second, third and fourth position; had those teams ended up behind the same pace car as Neate Racing the result could have been very different. The race was thrown into further confusion when some teams needed to pit while the safety car was still out.
With 23 minutes to go the race was red-flagged and brought to a stop. More to follow...
Hour 1 and 2
Alf's take early lead – Team Force move to first at halfway point – Rain stops, mist rolls in – Neate Racing take the lead – It's a war of attrition...
The Spa 4 Hour Classic round of the European Classic Series endurance racing championship began this evening under atrocious conditions, with the rain that has been been falling all day showing no sign of letting up. Mike Edwards on the Alf's Kawasaki took the lead on the first lap and managed to stretch out an advantage as he was riding on a clear (although very wet) track. Behind him Neate Racing, andweatshop Phase One No.4 also pulled clear of the field, with Guy Martin on the Team Classic Suzuki slowly slipping back from the leading teams.
The first round of pit stops allowed the riders to convey just how bad it was on the track. Mike Edwards: “It's hideous. The bike is in constant state of sliding; there's just no bite to the track surface.” Pete Linden: “It's tricky. Once I got clear of the other riders it was easier but the bike was just stepping out everywhere.” Guy Martin also explained why his bike was below par: “The fuelling is way off; it feels like it's sucking in too much water with the fuel mixture. Not a misfire just incorrect fuelling.”
After the first hour Alf's were leading from Neate Racing, Phase One No.4, Team Force, Team Taurus, SCERT, Kaiser Classic and Team Classic Suzuki.
Over the course of the next hour the rain gradually petered out bringing with it the next meteorolgical challenge; mist rolling in from the surrounding hills. Team Force moved into the lead at the end of the second hour, ahead of Neate Racing, Team Taurus, Phase One No.4, Alf's and Kaiser Classic.
Words: Martin Gelder, Photos: Martin Gelder