BIG BAD HISTORIC SANDOWN – Saturday 9th November.

Well Big Bad Sandown certainly lived up to its name on Saturday the 9th November. The program was interrupted by rain and then a number of red and yellow flags put the program back and caused the last few races to be reduced to four laps each. The morning showers during Qualifying caused a halt to things when a BMW hit a bump in the front straight while changing gear which flicked him side ways into the Armco and sent him spinning along the fence taking out three of his four corners. Luckily the weather cleared up later in the morning and things got back on track until lunch time after which the first races began. Again the flags were out when a Commodore in the group A Heritage Touring Car race hit the wall at Dandenong Rd corner and wiped out its right hand side. This brought out the red flag and finished the race. Next it was the turn of the Formula 5000s. This time two cars came together at the old Peters Corner and ended the race after only one and a half laps, luckily we arrived at the circuit early enough to see and hear them qualifying, even though two drivers were called to the stewards for excessive noise. In addition to the red flags slowing things down, there were many yellow flags, with some races finishing under yellow. Because Sandown has 6.00pm curfew many races had to be reduced to 4 laps to fit all the events in before 6pm. Despite all the drama, the weather improved markedly and we had a very enjoyable day catching up with cars and people we hadn’t seen for a while.

Speaking of cars and people, we first caught up with Glenn Campbell who was driving his Alfa GTV in SC Historic Sports Car events. Glenn was running out of rubber this late in the season and was at a bit of a disadvantage compared to where to he would usually like to run, but he still had a good race with a neat 911 in Gulf Oil colours of blue and orange. Next stop was at the pit of Craig O’Connell with his Mk 2 Escort Sports Sedan competing in the invited Sports Sedan class.  Craig was also having a good battle with another car when he went out at Dandenong Rd corner on the last lap. Another club member in the pits was Gavin Budge crewing for Russell Budge in the ex Terry Morris 1959 Zephsca Ausca entered in Lb Sports. Russell came about 7th outright against the all conquering Pantera of Rusty French and a gaggle of Corvettes and Porsches. Although not competing this time, because he has sold the MG V8, Mort Fitzgerald had his crew of Graeme Hollingsworth and Doug Armour scoping out the opposition with thought of buying another historic racer. In the display area in front of the grand stand Bob Rogers and Ray Iken were showing their Chargers along with the Mini Club, Small Fords, Mustangs and Chevs.

Being Saturday the crowd was light, the weather, qualifying and racing was good, you could move around the pits easily, and its cheaper !

John Weymouth.

Big bad Sandown

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