Swift Rallycross Championships

Swift Rallycross Championships

Mullen on a Mission at Knockhill

The sun rose over the Scottish hills as the drivers of the Swift Rallycross Championships were already preparing themselves for Round Three of the British Rallycross Championship at Knockhill Racing Circuit.

 

Chris Mullen, fresh from his win at Valkenswaard, was in high spirits and looking to repeat his performance however, reigning champion Graham Rodemark and round one winner Tristan Ovenden were keen to ensure that 26-year-old Mullen would not have it all his own way.

 

As the competitors headed out for practice, they all had their first glimpse of the track conditions and what challenges the day had in store.

 

The impending result was anybody’s guess as the cars took to the grid for their first heat. Mullen, Rodemark and Rob Maynard made up the front row, with Ovenden, Jack Brown and Mark Dodsworth completing the grid.

 

After two abandoned starts, the lights went green and Rodemark snatched the lead into the first corner. Mullen and Maynard were not letting the black and dayglow yellow car escape as Ovenden joined in to make it a four way scrap for the lead by the end of the first lap.

 

As the heat reached its halfway point, a battle for the lead had emerged between Rodemark and Mullen, with Ovenden now working hard to defend third from Maynard, followed by Brown and Dodsworth both racing on the Rallycross course at Knockhill for the first time, who kept pace.

 

As the race entered its final lap, Mullen, who was still to take his joker lap, looked to have his work cut out to beat Rodemark. but as Mullen accelerated out of the joker lap towards the line, he got the jump on Rodemark and just edged him out for the win.

 

With remaining heats shortened to three laps due to incidents delaying proceedings, as the lights went green for Heat two, it was Ovenden who got the lead into the first corner from Mullen.  Ovenden left his joker lap to the last minute, but Mullen had done enough, taking the chequered flag from Ovenden and Rodemark. Jack Brown impressed with fourth, even after a half spin on the final lap, ahead of Maynard and another strong performance by Dodsworth.

 

A different story in Heat Three, Ovenden led as the cars took to the mud and gravel for the first lap, hotly pursued by Maynard, Brown, Rodemark and Mullen, who was attempting to work his way through to the front.

 

Maynard suffered a heavy landing on the final lap as he negotiated the loose section resulting in damage to the front left suspension dropped him back behind Brown and Mullen, but he still managed to bring the car home for fifth.

Ovenden won, pushed hard all the way by Rodemark. Mullen just stole third on the last lap from a hard-charging Jack Brown.

 

The Final was where it all mattered. Mullen, Rodemark and Ovenden lined up on the front row with Maynard, Brown and Dodsworth ready to pounce from behind. 

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