Keeping on course

08.07.15 133 (640x426) An excellent MAP Open signifies a potentially brilliant BAS round.

Part of the unrest and ill feeling between rounds one and two last year was because of the cancellation of the MAP Open and the long wait endured by drivers eager for competition, but denied it by the persistent bad weather.
Fast forward a year and a bit, and we have had two excellent rounds of the Series and – most importantly ahead of the coming weekend – an excellent MAP Open to whet our appetite for round three.
It was difficult to predict the attitude drivers would take ahead of the prestigious and iconic event: whether the event would have been missed after several years of being cancelled, so the turnout would be huge; or would numbers be smaller, the track’s reputation as a tyre-eater and a difficult one on which to find more than one racing line still discouraging them from attending.
The result was an incredibly well-supported event – one of the biggest of the year’s standalone, non-series fixtures – which reinforced its status as one of the most popular meetings of the year and gave a clear indication that their third round could be something exceptionally good.
The track was superbly maintained and the racing excellent – not always the single-file, follow-the-leader style of competition that the circuit is rather unfairly known for. Always a venue to quickly suffer if there’s rain prior to the event; thankfully because the forecast is good for the next few days, you can expect the track to withstand a whole weekend of racing and polish up as usual. Not the most popular surface for some, but for all drivers there’ll be very little unpredictable about it.
The layout is the same as always, with enormous camping areas, ample space for the trade stands, a huge pit area and sensibly organised holding and rerun lanes. To continue the high standards we expect from the organising clubs/leagues now too, it’s easy to predict that the marshalling will live up to the benchmark set by Stroud at the start of the season, and we will be reporting early next week on yet another event that has delivered on the promise of the standing and ability of its host.