HERBERT AND SMITH READY TO FACE OFF AT SUPERCUP FINALE AT BRANDS HATCH

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One of these two drivers will leave Kent the 2020 SuperCup champion - who will it be? - Photo: Jon Elsey

In spite of everything that’s been going on in the world, the BRSCC Mazda MX-5 SuperCup can class 2020 as a successful year all round. Even though the number of races has had to be greatly reduced in order to allow the season to be completed, it hasn’t stopped the reunified Mk3 MX-5 paddock from packing the grids and producing sensational action on track. Now with the final rounds coming at the legendary Formula Ford Festival at Brands Hatch, it enhances the grandeur of the climax to this year.

The main headline is the championship battle between three time defending champion Luke Herbert and his main challenger Samuel Smith. Herbert entered 2020 on a whim after not originally expecting to race at the beginning of the year. Going into race weekends with little to no testing, Luke is certainly proving that whatever conditions he enters, he can still effortlessly race at the front. With his plans to run his own race team in 2021, this might well be the last time we see him on track in this championship for a while, and how fitting it would be for him to capture an unprecedented fourth consecutive title.

As for his main rival, Smith has been contesting his first full season since 2018 when he came so close to the Mk1 title, but saw his chances become beached in a gravel trap. Two years later in his debut SuperCup campaign with BC Cars, he has come out of the blocks sprinting and hasn’t finished a race lower than 4th so far with a single win at Cadwell Park. His adaptation to the Mk3 has been incredibly quick and now he stands on the brink of potentially winning his first title once again. He will ultimately hope to win both races and outscore Herbert enough to overhaul him, but Samuel knows the task ahead of him will be incredibly tough.

There should be an equally exciting scrap over who gets the last podium spot in the standings as Patrick Fletcher and James Cossins enter Brands Hatch just six points apart. Fletcher has finally had a taste of the podium this year and has more than once shown he has the pace to win, so could this weekend finally be a chance to reach that next landmark? As for James, his first full year in SuperCup has certainly been an education, but it appears he’s learnt a lot driving Aidan Hills’ regular race car from the past couple of seasons (more on him shortly). Jack Sycamore and Simon Baldwin come next having also made podium visits at least once this year, followed by Declan Lee, Brayden Fletcher, Chris Richardson and David Henderson. All of them have been consistent in their scoring and find themselves sitting in the top 10. They could find themselves in a totally different order come Sunday afternoon, but watching them dice it out will be fascinating.

Other notable drivers on the grid will include Martin Plowman and Kelvin Fletcher for their self-run Paddock Promotions Motorsport team, last year’s Mk1 champion John Langridge with a rebuilt car after a shunt at Silverstone, and a return to the grid for Aidan Hills, albeit he is one of five driver that will be on the reserve list heading to Kent in the hopes of making it on to the grid. Plus former double Mk1 champion Will Blackwell-Chambers makes an intriguing switch to race a Mk3 for the first time, effectively choosing to forfeit his MX-5 Championship title chances to assess a possible move up for 2021.

That’s the Pro Class top 10, and over in the Club Class it’s Xavier Brooke who holds a 15 point adjusted lead ahead of Liz Walton, with Seamus Heaney, Duncan Harris and Clive Powles trailing in the top five. In the Masters, Simon Baldwin looks on course to pick up that crown for himself but will have Simon Fleet, Nick Rutter, Matt Pickford and Xavier Brooke chasing him down.

Scott Woodwiss

 

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Brands Hatch (Indy) 24th - 25th Oct 2020

Pro Class

Club Class

Masters

Current Standings

Pro Class

Driver Accrued Points Adjusted Total
1 Samuel Smith 982 888
2 James Cossins 837 837
3 Jack Sycamore 780 774

Club Class

Driver Accrued Points Adjusted Total
1 Xavier Brooke 972 882
2 Liz Walton 920 840
3 Seamus Heaney 722 722

Masters Championship

Driver Accrued Points Adjusted Total
1 Simon Fleet 936 850
2 Nick Rutter 835 835
3 Xavier Brooke 880 804