Blake-Baldwin ends Roche's run!

James Blake-Baldwin was the star of Cadwell. Photo:

The quality of the competitors in the BRSCC Mazda MX5 Championship was to plain to see at Cadwell Park as it unreservedly stamped its right to be the premier Mazda MX5 Championship in the UK.....

With the pre event expectations that Tom Roche would extend his run of 5 outright wins so far, this was proved wrong with Roche coming away with a solitary win but a second and third place in each of the other races would still see him maintain his lead in the championship.  The man stepping up to the mark to deny Roche the top step of the podium was none other than James Blake –Baldwin who came away from Cadwell Park with two outright wins.

With a massive 34 entries for the iconic marque, races would be run in the new A and B format which would see the best competitors battle it out over the weekend. In arguable the wetter of the two qualifying sessions Roche laid an early marker down by taking pole for the first of the weekends races.  Alex Preston joined him on the front row, but the quality of the grid behind the lead pair, which included Charlie Charman, Alan Henderson, James Blake-Baldwin, Ed Gay and Brett Smith, showed the talent in depth in the championship.

Race 1A saw Roche take and early lead but a mechanical failure quickly saw him caught by Blake-Baldwin and Preston with these two overtaking Roche and dropping him to third.  Whilst Blake-Baldwin would proceed to take the race victory, Roche somehow even with an ailing car got passed Preston on the last lap to take second.

With Blake-Baldwin on pole for Race 2A, it was a case of revenge for Roche who took the lead on the first lap and was never headed for the race.  Brett Smith showed his form setting fastest lap and was just 1 second behind Roche at the chequered flag.  Blake-Baldwin finished third but only just as Alex Preston fought hard with him throughout the race and was just 0.136 seconds behind at the line.

Race 3A was with doubt the race of the weekend at Cadwell Park.  With the rain holding off Brett Smith took the lead on the first lap, which he would hold for all bar the last 3 laps.  Roche and Blake-Baldwin had a titanic battle for the last 5 laps with Blake-Baldwin finally taking second and then taking the lead and the win from Smith. 

Not to be outdone the B races also proved exciting with Sam Smith totally dominating the a very wet first race leading home his nearest rival Dan O’Connor by 21 seconds.  The second B race was won by Matt Robinson from Callum Edwards with Stephen Craggs a distant third. The final B race saw Dan O’Connor make a blinding start from the second row of the grid to take the winners spoils. John Kinghorn and Will Phillips followed him home.

All the race results can be viewed at and an in-depth report on the meeting will appear in the ‘Race Reports’ section of this website later this week.



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