Croft Circuit in North Yorkshire will welcome the drivers of the Legends Cars National Championship with MRF Tyres next weekend, 7th/8th August, for the fourth meeting of the season – a potentially crucial event in the increasingly exciting and action-packed title race.
Marking the halfway point of the 2021 campaign, the visit to Croft promises absolutely sensational action as the championship battle begins to develop and take shape. With six tremendous races in store over the course of rounds seven and eight, remarkable racing is guaranteed.
After a fantastic start to the 27th season of Legends Cars action in the UK, former champion Miles Rudman (Sutton Coldfield) leads the way at the top of the championship and by some margin too, with a lead of 550 points over closest challenger Will Gibson (Camberley).
Rudman, title winner in 2019, has taken five race victories thus far and has rarely been outside the top three finishers in the first 18 races of the season. As things stand heading to Croft, the pendulum is most certainly swinging in Rudman’s favour.
Gibson too has been impressive, and especially during the two most recent race meetings which were both held at Brands Hatch Indy Circuit in Kent – his local track. Moving ahead of five-time champion John Mickel (Horsham) in the standings last time out, Gibson has three wins so far.
Fourth in the table is Sean Smith (Marlow), putting together a strong season after a year on the sidelines in 2020, with Jack Parker (Wolverhampton) fifth – he has one victory this year – and Nick Bridgeman (Baldock) rounding out the top six. Bridgeman claimed his maiden Legends Cars race win during the season opening event at Cadwell Park and has consistently racked up the points all year.
Other race winners this season so far include double victor Steve Whitelegg (Bury), multiple Masters Cup winner Paul Simmons (Lingfield) and former Superkart ace Chris Needham (Altrincham). There are, of course, many more drivers among the 30-plus entry who are very capable of winning races.
Reigning champion Daniel Clark (Darras Hall) arrives at his ‘home’ track eighth in the standings, just behind Marcus Pett (Boston), and will be determined to not only climb the points table but to also challenge for his first victory of the season. Whitelegg is ninth in the championship with Mike Schlup (Cuckfield) rounding out the top 10.
This season’s Rookie Cup battle is proving to be a terrific one, with some absolutely fantastic talent debuting in Legends Cars. Former Pick-Up Truck Champion Scott Bourne (Worthing) currently leads the way in the standings, but his advantage was cut to just 75 points by Chris Brockhurst (Westgate) last time out at Brands Hatch after a great weekend for the latter.
Other names to look out for in the Rookie class include ex-Superkart star Andy Bird (Wiltshire), former Ginetta and Mini racer Charlie Budd (Henley-on-Thames), Chris Dewey (Wisbech) and ex-motorcycle racer Tom Brown (Stevenage).
In terms of more local interest, Elby Clark (Darras Hall) – wife of 2020 champion Daniel – will be continuing her first full season in Legends Cars while racing brothers Kieran Beaty (Hexham) and Mark Beaty (Gosforth) will be aiming for season best results on home ground.
“Croft is always a track enjoyed by the drivers with two long straights promoting the bump-drafting Legends Cars is so famous for, plus some fantastic technical sections”, commented Phil Cooper, owner of the Legends Cars National Championship with MRF Tyres, “It’s a challenging circuit and one where we always see incredible races.
“We’ll reach the end of the first half of the season next Sunday, so it will be intriguing to see if Miles Rudman has maintained, or perhaps even boosted, his championship advantage. Will Gibson, John Mickel, Sean Smith and many more will be determined to close him down though, and they’re all more than capable of doing that. What a weekend we have in store.”
Qualifying for round seven of the Legends Cars season will get underway at 09.30 on Saturday, 7th August, with Heat One beginning at 11.25, Heat Two at 13.10 and the round seven Final following at 15.25. Due to Croft only being able to operate track action on a Sunday from midday as a result of local restrictions, Heat One of round eight will also be staged on the Saturday – starting at 17.40.
On Sunday, 8th August, Heat Two will begin at 12.00 with the round eight Final at around 14.25. As always, live timing will be available via www.tsl-timing.com
Provisional 2021 Legends Cars National Championship with MRF Tyres Points:
1st Miles Rudman, 3210pts; 2nd Will Gibson, 2660pts; 3rd John Mickel, 2545pts; 4th Sean Smith, 2225pts; 5th Jack Parker, 2160pts; 6th Nick Bridgeman, 1700pts