Ben doubles up at classic Combe finale
MOTORSPORT Castle Combe Circuit's 2012 season closed in style, with a dedicated Classic race meeting on Saturday and Grand Finals race day on Sunday.
Saltford's Steven Jensen and Bratton's Ben Norton went head-to-head for the Castle Combe Formula Ford 1600 Championship title, with the former needing to win the race and for his rival to finish lower than eighth.
The pair qualified alongside each other in third and fourth places but Norton went on to finish as runner- up, a quarter of a second behind the man he subsequently succeeded as champion, Rob Hall.
Jensen, meanwhile, was embroiled in a race-long duel with Nathan Ward from Coventry and had to be content with fourth spot.
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Norton said: "Steven gets stronger every year and this year he pushed me close. He's always fair and I've enjoyed racing with him."
Yatton Keynell's Luke Cooper overcame a qualifying mishap in his Swift to overtake Langport's Roger Orgee for fifth place.
With the pressure of the championship removed, Norton went on to repeat his unique 2009 achievement of the championship title and victory in the Carnival race.
Starting his Spectrum from pole, Norton took an immediate lead from Hall before a heavy accident involving 16-year-old Will Goodhew at the exit of Camp on lap 14 brought the race to a premature end. Classified fourth, though running third at the time of the incident, was Timsbury's Oliver White, with Orgee taking the third spot and Jensen fifth.
Bath's Guy Parr qualified third for the Vadabar Sports and GT race and was in the midst of a three-car battle for most of it, eventually claiming fifth position in his Nemesis.
Trowbridge's Andrew Shanley won the race after launching his Radical Prosport away from the line and into a commanding lead.
Corsham's Will Di Claudio was already Combe's Saloon Car champion so did not need to enter the final round and might have wished he had not when he spun his class B Peugeot 106 on the opening lap at the Esses.
Able to continue, albeit a long way behind, the youngster fought back brilliantly to win his class and finish third overall.
Melksham's Tony Hutchings took the outright win in his Audi TT. Parr came fifth and was second in class B.
Many drivers from the circuit championships took part in the GT Academy saloon versus sports car race which rounded off the day.
Steve Putt in a Mazda RX7 was a clear winner but Di Claudio's ran second before his engine gave way on the last lap. Bath's Angus Gorringe was fifth overall and third in class.