Silverstone Race Report - MGOC Championship

2019 MG Owners' Club - Production MG Championship



Rounds 1 and 2 – Silverstone

 31st March 2019


On a bright and breezy Spring day, an impressive entry of 25 cars assembled at Silverstone for the opening round of the 2019 season. The races would be held on the 1.85 mile International circuit, this is effectively the bottom half of the full Grand Prix circuit and uses the new Formula 1 pit complex and paddock.



Pole position was taken by the MGF of Simon Kendrick who recorded a time just 0.12 secs faster than 1996 MGOC champion Fergus Campbell who was making a welcome return to the championship in a ZR160. Row 2 was taken by the ZR160 of Dave Mellor and the MGF of Mark Baker with Steve McDermid and Will Sharpe, who was making his debut in a ZR, on row 3.

Class A was headed by the MGB of Jim Baynam who was on row 6 ahead of the MGB’s of Chris Millard, Malcolm Hill, Dave Amphlett, James Pryor and Nick Webster.

Matt Gozalves was quickest of the Road Class ZR’s and was on row 8 with Sarah Sullivan on row 11.

Round 1

When the red lights went out, the rear wheel drive MGF of Kendrick got the power down better than the front wheel drive ZR’s to lead the pack in the fast right hander at Abbey with Campbell in 2nd place ahead of the MGF of Baker.  The ZR of Sharpe was in 4th place but passed Baker to take 3rd place on lap 2 and gradually closed in on Campbell before taking 2nd place on lap 7.

Sharpe then closed in on Kendrick but the MGF slowed and retired on lap 10 leaving Sharpe in the lead.  By lap 12, Sharpe had opened up a 50 metre lead ahead of a mighty battle for 2nd place involving Campbell, Mellor and Darbey with these three ZR’s covered by less than a second.

Sharpe who was having an impressive debut in the ZR went on to take the win by 2.5 secs with Campbell, Mellor and Darbey continuing their battle for 2nd place right to the flag.

After Kendrick’s retirement, Baker inherited the lead in Class F and went on to take the Class F win from Plotnek who enjoyed a good battle with Wisbey who was having his first outing in the ex-Espinasse MGF.

In the Classic Class, Baynam made a perfect start but the rapid MGBGT of Hill retired with a throttle problem on the opening lap leaving Baynam with a clear track. As the race progressed, Baynam became embroiled in a battle with the ZR of Ferguson and gradually extended his Class A lead over Amphlett, Millard and Holland who were battling hard for 2nd place.  Baynam reeled off the laps to take the Classic Class win ahead of Millard with Amphlett taking 3rd place ahead of Webster, Holland and Pryor.

Matt Gozalves took the Class B win from Sarah Sullivan.


Round 2

Despite the best efforts of the KB Automotive team they were unable to repair mechanical damage to the MGF’s of Kendrick and Baker and neither were able to make start.  With Kendrick absent, the ZR of Mellor was on his own on the front row of the grid. There was drama even before the race started when Campbell pulled into the pits with a mechanical problem and would start the race from the pit lane.

The field got away well with Mellor making full advantage of pole position to lead into the first corner just ahead of Darbey with McDermid and Sharpe nose to tail for 3rd place on the opening lap.  The lead changed at the start of lap 2 when Darbey took full advantage of the wide track to go round the outside of Mellor at the high speed Abbey corner.

Darbey was under pressure from Mellor with McDermid a few lengths back and being challenged by the hard charging Sharpe who moved up into 3rd place on lap 4.  By this time, Campbell was making places from the back of the grid and was up to 7th place and gradually reeling in the leaders. Darbey continued to set the pace from the front but Mellor dropped to 3rd when Sharpe bravely went round the outside at Stowe on lap 4 and began to close in on the leader but his efforts were in vain as the engine on his ZR expired on lap 6 allowing Mellor to retake 2nd place ahead of Plotnek who was leading Class F by a healthy margin.

Darbey controlled the race well and went on to take the win from Mellor with Plotnek in 3rd place and taking the Class F honours a length ahead of Campbell who took 4th place.

In the Classic Class, Baynam found himself boxed in at Village but was first onto the Hanger Straight and by lap 2 had opened up a 50 metre lead over Hill with Amphlett, Millard and Holland a little further back and battling hard for 3rd place. Hill became embroiled in a battle with the ZR of Ferguson allowing Baynam to extend his lead and control the field of MGB’s. Behind Hill a battle the battle for 3rd place continued between Millard, Amphlett and Holland who were seldom more than a few lengths apart for the entire race.


Baynam went on to take the win ahead of Hill with Millard taking 3rd place ahead of Amphlett who just held off Holland on the run to the flag.



Star Drives

The Star Drive trophies were awarded to:

Will Sharpe – An excellent win and fastest lap in Race 1 in his first outing in the ZR

Fergus Campbell – 2nd place in Race 1 and an impressive drive from the back of the grid in Race 2.



Visit the MGOC Championship website to see the full race results and the 2019 Championship positions.

Race Reports
Silverstone National
Castle Combe
Donington Park
Cadwell Park
Silverstone (International)


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