Civil War 2019 – 13/01/2019 – Hednesford Hills Raceway
The battle lines were drawn out once again as the North took on the South in Civil War 20. The pits were packed with both teams pretty much full, and a massive crowd gathered to see if the South could finally pull it level or to see if the North could extend their lead.
Once again, the Micros would be the Light Brigade, the 2Ltr National Bangers would be the Infantry division and the Unlimiteds would be the Tanks.
Race 1 – Light Brigade Heat 1: ‘The First Engagement!’
There was a typically lively and hectic start to the opening race of the day which saw N21 Gav Robinson getting pushed into the turns three and four armco by S751 Lawrence Wells who was also getting pushed by N331 Mackenzie Whitehead.
Meanwhile up on turns one and two, N198 Tommy ‘Banjo’ Dawes was pushed into the armco by S444 Charlie Jackson. Over on the exit of turn four, N112 Daz Prestage jacked S36 Paddy Fagan.
N830 Lee White pushed S442 Ricky Deans into turn three which also took out S823 Jamie Murrell who was making his Civil War debut. This allowed the Light Brigade Northern captain N72 Billy Bond to come crashing in over the right rear wheel of S823 Murrell. The red flags were subsequently brought out for the injured Southern driver just as S747 Bradley Crandon hit N159 Callum Campbell over his rear right quarter over on the exit of turn two.
The restart saw S760 Joey Reynolds get off to a flyer and was looking comfortable out front. However, his joy would be short-lived as the red flags would come out again after S321 Keiron Fry spun out a Northern car who rolled onto its roof just after the start/finish line.
The second restart once again saw S760 Reynolds get off to a great start, however Reynolds would soon slow up and pull onto the centre after suffering with mechanical issues.
Speedway rider and occasional Banger driver S326 Edward Kennet pushed N478 Craig Royal head on into the turn four armco.
S760 Reynolds re-joined the action and spun N573 Oggie Ogden right into the path of his teammate S326 Kennet turning him head on into the home straight armco barrier. N573 Ogden got going again and was met with a big lunge by S760 Reynolds going into turn one spinning him out.
Race winner: N3 Mitchell Finney
Race 2 – Infantry Heat 1: ‘The First Engagement!’
The first race of the afternoon for the 2Ltr Infantry division saw a big push going into turns three and four from the mid-pack as the green flag dropped.
N14 Willy Walmsley attacked S917 Andrew Tew on the entrance to turn three as N60 Kyle Stevenson ‘Shakey’ jacked S921 Kieran Marshal Wilson on the exit of turn four.
The Southern captain S74 ‘Scratchy’ Adam Hitchcock gave N950 Scott Gamble a textbook following in on turns three and four. S199 Tom Pearce then delivered a shot over the rear left corner of N950 Gamble.
S503 Seymour Tucker followed in N687 Mark ‘Crossy’ Cross on turns three and four, clipping the stationary car of N950 Gamble on the way through damaging the front left suspension of N687 Cross.
After getting caught up with a Northern car on turn four, S45 ‘Lips’ Anthony Croshaw was hit hard over the rear left quarter by N311 Josh Brierly. The red flags were brought out for S45 Croshaw after that hit.
The restart was fairly straight forward for the North who had more cars left running than the Southern army after the earlier exchanges of hits.
Race winner: N129 Jono Brook
Race 3 – Tanks Heat 1: ‘The First Engagement!’
The first race of the day for the Tanks started with S66 Darren Geary getting followed in by N688 Wayne Morphett and also saw S341 Andrew Jones get followed in by N171 Tommy West – both on turns three and four.
N466 Dalton Steele put his big Lincoln Town car to good use by shoving S49 Blake Macdowell into the turns three and four armco ending the Southerner’s race.
S697 Kris Reeves went into the back of N688 Morphett’s Jaguar flat out with the red flags coming out soon after.
The restart saw S278 Shaun Brokenshire lunge into N455 Ricki Finney as the pair entered turn three. S278 Brokenshire was then hit over the rear left wheel by N800 Tom Hannah.
N455 Finney backed out and was jacked by S333 Charlie Randall who was subsequently T-boned by N466 Steele slowing up his teammate N133 Lee Kopacz.
The track blockage started to form as race leader S570 Jordan Cumming managed to squeeze his way through.
S43 Luke Maynard was not going to slow up however as he went ploughing into the back of N9 Tom Jordan. N200 Steve Noon was another driver who wasn’t going to slow up either as he went in hard on S440 Macauley Mills.
The road cleared by the time race leader S570 Cumming came around again but was met by N275 Joe Morgan who was trying to slow the Southern man up. Cumming piled in on Morgan spinning him out.
Meanwhile, S278 Brokenshire gave a ‘roof-raising’ hit to N200 Noon with a monster jacking. S43 Maynard ground to a halt on the apex of turn one and was hit in the back by N9 Jordan.
S570 Cumming was followed in by N800 Hannah and spun into a small pile up. Cumming managed to escape but was spun again on the exit of turn four and was met on the nose by Hannah. This gave the lead to the North and ended not only the Southerner’s race, but his entire day.
N800 Hannah was then hit by S327 Mikey Maskell over the rear right wheel.
Race winner: N179 Shaun Rushton
The North had sailed into a massive lead after the first three races after winning all of the ‘First Engagements’. The South would need a big points haul in the next three races to try and cut down the Northern armies lead.
Race 4 – Light Brigade Heat 2: ‘The Heat of Battle!’
The second heat of the afternoon for the Light Brigade division saw a big push going in turns three and four from the mid-pack leading to N537 Paul Mason being on the wrong end of a very fast and hard following in. Other cars from both armies were also caught up in the action including N182 Reece Tingle and S821 Jamie Rogers who momentarily went up on two wheels after he had clipped a parked car.
S440 Lennon Phillips was also followed in by his captain S321 Keiron Fry after he was picked up going down the back straight by N248 Jamie Blything who subsequently was hit over the rear right wheel by S622 Stuart Davis.
The red flags were brought out to check on S321 Fry after those early heavy exchange of hits on turns three and four.
The restart saw N410 Jake Calvert get picked up by S28 Craig Cooper going down the back straight. Luckily for N410 Calvert however, his Northern teammate N182 Tingle picked up S28 Cooper and followed him into some parked cars on turn three with the Southerner rolling on impact. The red flags were quickly brought out just as S28 Cooper rolled back onto his wheels.
The second restart saw S84 Jack Ansell pick up N182 Ross Stewart and spin him out on turns one and two leaving him vulnerable to a jack up from S135 Jamie Batchelor. N182 Stewart managed to get going again whilst S135 Batchelor got stuck on S78 Lee Macey’s dead car on the exit of turn two.
Race winner: N3 Mitchell Finney
Race 5 – Infantry Heat 2: ‘The Heat of Battle!’
The second race of the afternoon for the 2Ltr Infantry division saw S720 Kenny Jo Gabriel follow in N18 Ash Law on turn three. S208 Kieran Barrett then went in on N18 Law and was in turn jacked by the lively as ever N60 of Kyle Stevenson.
N12 Paul Deane got caught up on S208 Barrett’s dead car and received a shot over the rear left wheel by S262 Rob Bugler who was then hit by N132 Chris Cullum.
Meanwhile on the exit of turn four, a pile up started to form with some big hits being exchanged yet again by the two armies.
S83 Ben Styles went into the pile up and accidently caught N100 Callum White’s driver’s door. S83 Styles immediately apologised to N100 White who was then hit in the back by S275 Jonny Tomlinson.
N132 Cullum went in on S83 Styles just as S365 AJ Marsh was pushed into the back of S208 Barrett’s car by N374 Chris Collings.
The track was becoming increasingly blocked on turn four with drivers continue to pile in: S114 Liam Lake jacked N47 Dan Wright whilst S74 Adam Hitchcock had nowhere to go but into teammate S114 Lake. S74 Hitchcock was jacked by N366 Nathan Wren with S74 Hitchcock also getting done through the passenger doors by N312 Brad White.
More cars piled in with N60 Stevenson hitting S921 Kieran Marshal Wilson over his rear right wheel with N73 Dean Cruickshank going in slowly to the rear of the Southerner’s Ford Mondeo.
S114 Lake hit N312 White in the back pushing him through a gap that had opened up, but was hit over the rear left wheel by N60 Stevenson.
The red flags came out and the restart saw just three South cars left running allowing them to claim their first victory of the day.
Race winner: S349 James Guppy
With a top-three finish for the Southern army, the gap was slowly shrinking and those Southern fans were starting to dream of an almighty comeback as the meeting entered half-way.
Race 6 – Tanks Heat 2: ‘The Heat of Battle!’
The second Tanks heat started with N171 Tommy west following in S246 Ryan Sparks hard into the turn three armco with both cars bouncing back into the traffic causing a track blockage.
Some heavy hits went in including N169 James Rushton on S246 Sparks and N133 Lee Kopacz on S278 Shaun Brokenshire.
N133 Kopacz was then jacked by S383 Rory Adams at high speed getting some air time and wrecking the Northerner’s Lexus.
The Southern captain S194 Steve Anscombe went in on N179 Shaun Rushton with his battered Jaguar and was subsequently hit by N652 Gareth Griffiths.
N169 Rushton then came around again and jacked S383 Adams with S278 Brokenshire trying to cause some damage by hitting N169 Rushton over his rear right corner.
N652 Griffiths then jacked S252 Nemo Llewellyn on the home straight with a massive hit breaking his front left suspension in the process. N652 Griffiths didn’t let that stop him however as he came around the next lap and done the exact same thing.
With all the other Southern cars dead, S278 Brokenshire put in an amazing performance trying to block the track to stop the three remaining Northern cars from getting through, however because he gave a head on to N440 Peter McVay on the apex of turn three, he was loaded for the remainder of the meeting and cost the Southern army a few hundred points. However, it was an amazing performance from the Southerner.
Race winner: N195 Reece Marsh
The Northern army had maintained their lead meaning the Southern army needed three points hauls in the Finals.
Race 7 – Light Brigade Final: ‘The Coup De Gras!’
The Light Brigade ‘Coup De Gras’ gave way to a fast and frenetic start as the majority of the field went crashing into the turn three armco as the green flag dropped.
S444 Charlie Jackson followed in N410 Jake Calvert on turn three before pushing him into a big group of cars that were stationary by the turn four armco after the opening lap shenanigans.
S38 Jon Waite got caught up in the wreckage and was hit over his rear left wheel by N182 Reece Tingle. More cars piled in with the majority managing to find a way through relatively unscathed. N55 Tam Melrose came through clipping the N43 car of Nicky Bishop who had given S444 Jackson a head on rolling onto his side. This brought out the red flags.
The restart saw N248 Jamie Blything sit stationary on the home straight where he was jacked by S36 Paddy Fagan.
One of the front-runners in the race S787 Marc Key rolled on turn three after tangling with N60 Dan Croskell, again bringing out the red flags. At the time, many thought this would deny the Southern army what would have been some valuable points, however they still had a few cars left running.
The second restart saw S327 Mikey Maskell go on the offensive, firstly spinning out N159 Callum Campbell before jacking N478 Craig Royal on the entrance to turn one. S327 Maskell was then attacked by N355 Martin Mullins who was in turn hit over the rear right wheel by S305 Alfie Cornish.
A few laps later, S327 Maskell then jacked N830 Lee White after he attempted to spin S821 Jamie Rogers on turn two.
Race winner: S442 Ricky Deans
With no Northern finishers and the South having five cars complete the distance, the gap decreased furthermore but there was still a long way to go before the South could pull level.
Race 8 – Infantry Final: ‘The Coup De Gras!’
A big grid assembled for the Infantry ‘Coup De Gras’ with the Southern army still hoping to fight their way back into the contest.
Yet again, there was another big push from the mid-pack going into turns three and four just as the green flag dropped with multiple cars from both armies involved.
N132 Chris Cullum came charging in and delivered a brutal shot to the rear of S262 Rob Bugler’s Ford Mondeo. S341 Andrew Jones also came charging in and want in hard over N16 Ryan Shuttleworth’s rear right corner.
On the exit of turn four, S262 Bugler was met head on by N577 Scott Graves. Shortly after, N14 Willy Walmsley was hit hard over his rear left wheel by S503 Seymour Tucker bringing out the red flags with the Northern driver slightly winded after the big impact.
The restart saw S53 Chris James sitting vulnerably on the home straight where he was jacked hard by N299 Dale Locker. The Northern Captain Locker then spun out S503 Tucker on the entrance to turn one.
N100 Callum White was jacked hard by the start/finish line by S199 Tom Pearce.
The Southern Captain S74 Adam Hitchcock was still trying to take out as many Northern cars as he could with his teammates falling like fly’s behind him. He latched onto N577 Graves as they headed into turn one but was in turn hit and spun by N60 Kyle Stevenson.
Race winner: N47 Dan Wright
Race 9 – Tanks Final: ‘The Coup De Gras!’
Given the fierce levels of action in the two previous races for the Tanks, only one Southern driver made it back out against around 15 Northern Tanks who showed some fantastic pit work to get that many back out. The hero for the South was S625 Josh Gooch.
Fair play to the Northern army too who allowed S625 Gooch to get a few racing laps in before ending his day.
It was N9 Tom Jordan who laid out the first attack picking him up going down the back straight and pushing him into the turn three armco before getting spun out and being dealt a head on from N275 Joe Morgan.
Race winner: N455 Ricki Finney
Race 10 – Tanks DD: ‘Dogs of War!’
The majority of the Northern army who made it also stayed on the track to compete in the Destruction Derby. However, after many blue flags and with only a few spins, the red flags were brought out and the result was void. But well done to those Northern drivers who at least gave it a go!
DD result: Void (North win)
This all but sealed victory for the Northern army with a fantastic performance from start to finish. However, with just two events remaining, there was still a few Southern soldiers who wanted to fight for some pride in a War to forget.
Race 11 – Light Brigade DD: ‘Dogs of War!’
A decent grid gathered for the Light Brigade DD with a fairly even split of both Northern and Southern army cars.
It began with S38 Jon Waite going in on the rear of N3 Mitchell Finney on the exit of turn four. S38 Waite was subsequently jacked by N164 Gary Shaw.
N537 Paul Mason then clipped the rear of S751 Lawrence Wells Ford Fiesta damaging his front right suspension. S751 Wells was then hit over the rear right wheel by N429 Joey Stav.
Over on turns one and two, S583 Dan Weeks hit N537 Mason over the rear right wheel.
N269 Tom Morris then met S622 Stuart Davis with a monster hit on the nose on turn four which saw the red flags come out.
The restart saw N164 Shaw attack S327 Mikey Maskell on turn four. A small wrecking train occurred on the home straight with N291 Aaron Witton, S28 Craig Cooper and N246 Dylan Ward.
N573 Oggie Ogden and N246 Ward backed off and exchanged some small head on’s on the home straight.
DD winner: N246 Dylan Ward
Race 12 – Infantry DD: ‘Dogs of War!’
The final ‘hoorah’ of Civil War 20 saw the Infantry division back out on track to see which army could take the afternoon’s final points.
After a few small hits, it came down to three drivers, N16 Ryan Shuttleworth, N60 Kyle Stevenson and N136 Ben Woodward. N136 Woodward jacked N16 Shuttleworth with N60 Stevenson attacking Woodward over the rear right corner. N60 Stevenson then turned it around and delivered a T-bone through the passenger doors of Woodward.
DD Winner: North (Red flag)
Overall, it was a great meeting with loads of great hits and some awesome team driving and pit work from the Northern army who thoroughly deserved the victory.
Well done to all the Southern drivers who raced as well and tried their very best to help retain the Civil War crown and retain the series, but in truth, the damage was done early on.
Civil War 20 Champions: The Northern army
At the end of 20 meetings the North now lead the series 11-9, but I’m sure the Southern army will be back stronger than ever for Civil War 21 in 2020.
194 ‘Cecil’ Steve Anscombe – South Tanks Captain: “The North were awesome, they had a good game plan executed brilliantly with some very keen pit work. A few of us got slaughtered early on and so loaded, once drivers saw this their heads went down. Hats off to the North, they well and truly deserved the win.”
74 ‘Scratchy’ Adam Hitchcock – South Infantry Captain: I feel a bit downbeat to be honest, but we’ve got to go again and see if we can beat the mighty North in the Mondeos next year!”