Knockhill End of Season

Bob GrantThe traditional end of season Jock Taylor meeting, incorporating the Scottish and Regal championships, never disappoints in the excitement and entertainment stakes and on this occasion the weather actually contributed to the spectacle.

Regular world series sidecar competitors Stuart Muldoon and Trevor Crone ran out the winners of the feature 15 lap Taylor race, after a thrilling slip sliding dice with former Euro Sidecar champions, Jock Skene and Neil Miller. In fact it was Skene and Miller who looked like taking the prize, but hats off to the Muldoon and Crone partnership, who never gave up the chase and in the final few laps took and held onto the lead for a popular victory.

No one could have written the script for the final two Regal 600 championship races. Les Shand, who took a healthy lead into the final round, dramatically went out in the first leg. Craig McClelland and especially Torquil Paterson were the main beneficiaries of Shand’s misfortune. Tyre selection on a drying track was the biggest problem for the riders before the second leg and the choices were wide and varied. As the race got under way, it was the familiar four of Shand, McClelland, Paterson and Roger Bennett who put on a race long regal battle. However, the final outcome of the race and the series winner was in the hands of the race stewards after one of the lower order riders fell on the exit of the hairpin. As Shand headed the leading four into the hairpin, Paterson was adjudged to pass riders under a yellow flag. The judgement unfortunately resulted in Peterson’s exclusion, ensuring Shand a dramatic and well-earned championship win.

No controversy was required for Shand to be crowned the 600cc Scottish supersport champion, doing what was required to gain the necessary points. Andy Laidlow and Darren Dodgson had already tied up the Scottish sidecar championship but the battle was on for the number two plate and it was Alan Shand and Robert Semple who got the better of Duncan Hendry and Steve Wilson. Mark Wright wrapped up the Regal Production series for the second year, but not after a close run thing with that man Sandy Christie, who incidentally, never finished a race lower that second since joining the series in the third round. The crowd was on their toes as Wee Bob Grant pushed Christie, quite literally, to the point of falling off and in the end it was Grant who was to fall in the final race, extinguishing his chance of second place in the series.

William Monie came good and held on for the Scottish 250 championship and it was Monie who also won the inaugural Aprillia Challenge Series, but not after a hard fought tussle with second place rider Bruce Birnie. Bob Grant again lifted the 400 series with Stuart Sturrock pushing Grant all the way. Series sponsor Brian Neilson showed he was not out to make up the numbers by taking third overall. Young 125 rider Tony Czyzewski, who’s season looked in tatters after breaking his leg early in the year, came back to take the 125 series in fine style. But not after a great end of season dice with Lisa Ross that proves this sport isn’t just for the boys.

Harvey T.

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