The first round, which should have taken place at Yarley at the end of March, will now run on Good Friday, at Owslebury hosted by Winchester MCC, followed by round two on Easter Monday, hosted by Frome and DUMC&LCC at Asham Woods.
This year’s Clubman’s Championship boasts 37 registered riders which bodes well for a good season. Some teams are new to sidecar-cross, or at least to competing in this series, including a group of six riders and passengers from Cornwall, including Seemond Stephens, who can more usually be found on a speedway track!
Other entrants are familiar teams or well known names but in new pairings. Four of the riders, before this season, would normally have been found racing in the Twin-shock class including Rob Wilkinson, who, with Dug Woods in the chair, has plenty of experience to show the new riders and passengers the way.
Dave Keane, who has shown to be very versatile on a sidecar, has changed back to the driving side of the outfit after a season and a half as a passenger. Not that being a passenger was new to him as he rode with Stuart Brown back in the 1990s!
Talking of Stuart brings us to the newest driver but with the most recognizable name to the followers of sidecarcross – Luke Peters. Luke, having retired as a passenger at the end of last season has turned to driving with his nephew, Sam Harris, in the chair.
Supporters will remember last year’s Championship being very exciting with the top four being made up from some very talented youths. Due to the eligibility to ride in the series Jack Etheridge and Ryan Humphrey as winners in 2010 cannot take part and Alfie Hyde who finished second also ended the season in the top ten of the British Sidecar Championship which means he is also not eligible.
It is all change for third placed Steve Pannell with a new passenger in Jo Reynolds for this year. There are no changes for the fourth place team, Neil and Michael Franks, except they will be aim to take the top spot on the podium at the end of the year awards ceremony.
There may be a few changes but hopefully with the wealth of experience coupled with new blood the 2011 British Sidecar Clubman’s Championship looks like it should just as exciting as 2010. Bring it on!
Rd 1: Whaddon Farm, Owslebury – SO21 1JJ.
Signposted from the B2177 near Marwell Zoo. First race 11am.
Rd 2: Asham Woods, Leighton, near Frome – BA11 4PN.
Signposted from the A361 Frome to Shepton Mallet. First race 10.30am.
Both meetings offer free overnight camping and the day’s racing only costs £5 for spectators.
The Frome club is looking for marshalls who will be paid and fed for their assistance.
Please contact Jim Webb on 01985-840257 if you can help.