Mellorbrook racer claims third title to equal F2 Sidecar record

Just champion: John Holden and Andy Winkle
Just champion: John Holden and Andy Winkle
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Mellorbrook’s John Holden and partner Andy Winkle took their record-equalling third British F2 Sidecar Championship in emphatic fashion, securing the championship with three races still remaining.

The event at the Croft Race Circuit North Yorkshire kicked-off with the closest qualifying session of the year, with the top three pairings covered by just 15 hundredths of a second.

John and Andy qualified last of these three, behind Conrad Harrison/Lee Patterson and Ian and Carl Bell, showing that their quest for a third crown was going to be no easy feat.

This did not deter the boys as they only required a fourth place to take back their trophy from father and son pairing Ian and Carl Bell.

The first of the two races started in chaos when a crash on the first corner almost wiped out the championship leader, but luckily they managed to make it through the first lap unscathed in third.

The remainder of the 13 laps consisted of the leading three outfits breaking free from the rest of the field and swapping positions between themselves.

Harrison and Patterson eventually came out on top after a last-lap battle with John and Andy which went down to the last corner, giving them the win by just 0.36 seconds.

Second place, coupled with the Bells finishing third, ensured the championship returned to Mellorbrook.

With the pressure now off in the second race, John and Andy, despite a poor start, picked their way through the field into the lead and a healthy advantage. They achieved the fastest lap, yet this was to prove problematic for the duo as they ran into backmarkers.

John and Andy took to the grass to avoid a collision, demoting them to third in the race.

However, they fought back to regain the lead on the penultimate lap and taking the win by just over a second.

John and Andy both wish to thank their sponsors for all their support, and they now travel to Assen in the Netherlands for a round of the F1 Sidecar championship in late September.