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Just rewards

09.10.15 275 (640x427) Morris and Holden are worthy title recipients.

After several seasons at the top of the class, Mat Morris has finally claimed a BAS title.
Equally exciting is the number of younger drivers who have made their mark on the class this year. Though Morris’s championship-winning margin is huge, there are several drivers who have proved themselves as ones to watch in coming seasons.
Morris was by far the most consistent scorer and is hugely deserving of his win, though remarkably he did so without winning a final, and indeed he even missed the main race at round four. Matthew Sawyer was the winner there after two wins and a third in the heats, the 2013 champion – a title that Morris was a contender for too – making his second appearance of the season after an uncharacteristically poor run at South Wales.
Joe Pipe started the year on superb form and took what would be his best score of the year after a thrilling and memorable battle for the lead. A comparatively lacklustre performance at rounds three and four hurt his tally, but a third place overall in the standings is a just reward. Like Dan Owen, Pipe will be a driver worth following in future; Pipe finished third in the last final of the season behind Morris, but it was Owen who finished the year on a high. Not only did he take the win in the final, but also the victory in the only Champion of Champions race of the season; the York club choosing to run the race that has long been abandoned in the BAS.
This excellent performance resulted in a second overall in the championship standings for Owen, though it had been Ollie Sole who held the position prior to the final round.
His brilliant run at round four underlined his rising profile, but his challenge for a strong finish in the title race came to an unfortunate end at York. Trying a little too hard, the wheels of the Micra dug into the ruts and bumps and he suffered a fairly spectacular roll. The team managed, remarkably, to repair the car for heat three, but the damage had been done. He dropped to fifth overall behind John Gadsby, who only took part in one final but nevertheless is two points above Sole by virtue of some solid heat performances.

Sophie Morgan and Aimee Holden are arguably the two stars of the class this year. After three rounds Morgan found herself in a strong position as she had outscored her Forest rival considerably, but in the end Holden’s season would take the same shape as had her Nationals final, with a tremendously strong run towards the end that brought success.
Her patient wait behind the leaders in the National final can be compared to her consistent scoring through the year, then finally benefiting in the late stages after holding a secondary position in the classification. As she found a gap on the last bend to become National champion, so she also found a run of even better form at the final round, outperforming her closest rivals to take this title too by only nine points.
Holden only won one final, but it was the last one where it mattered most. Outgoing champion Vicky Sole had taken round four, and Morgan round three, but the season had started with two victories by Bobbie Neale who looked for a while like the driver to beat. She only contested two rounds however, which handed the advantage to her rivals thereafter.
Leanne Huschka made a return to the Series after a year in the UKAC, finishing 48 points behind Morgan and 22 points ahead of Sole, who did a great job at the final round to take her highest score of the year with the car looking severely battered from her brother’s rollover.

Main: Morris started the year with a Nova and then switched to the Micra with equally successful results. Above: Holden was one of the stars of the year, taking both the National and the BAS title.