2012 Powerboat GP RYA British F2 Sprint Champion declared
Malcolm Goodman from St Helens powers his way to F2 Sprint Championship Title
This weekend (4/5 August) at Stewartby Powerboat Racing Club in Bedford the 2012 Powerboat GP RYA British Sprint Champions were declared after a fantastic weekends racing that saw 40 teams compete for 7 individual titles.
The F2 Class fielded a strong fleet of 12 powerboat racers all ready to challenge for the title. Lining up on the start line was 2011 British Sprint Champion Paul Balfour and F2 British Champion Malcolm Goodman as well as 2012 Championship leader Alan Marshall and 3 Times F2 World Champion Colin Jelf.
Eager to get the competition underway as the Qualifying session opened all the competitors took to the water in attempt to set the bench mark for the rest of the fleet. At the half way mark through qualifying Goodman had the lead putting problems at previous championship rounds behind him.
Despite a valiant effort from the rest of the teams he wasn’t to be caught and qualified in pole position with Ian Wright in second and Owen jelf in third and less than 10 seconds separating the whole field.
Powering from Pole
Goodman knew a good start was essential to assure him of any hopes in securing the title so as the teams lined up for heat 1 he remained focused to ensure as soon as the lights went out he was first off the line. There was little separating the fleet and as they headed into the first turn mark spectators waited with baited breath to see which racer would emerge first round the bend.
Goodman’s pole had secured him the best line and he powered round the mark and into pole position in front of fierce rival Paul Balfour who was battling strongly with Colin Jelf. Goodman held the lead to the chequered flag and Balfour and Jelf followed suit in to second and third.
Into the second heat and there was still very little separating the fleet despite a fantastic drive from Goodman in heat 1 a false move from any of the boats and their championship contentions could be over.
Heat 2 and Goodman again emerged victorious as the first boat to round the turn but this time he had 3 times World Champion Colin Jelf hot on his wake. The real battle sat just behind the two lead boats as Paul Balfour Owen Jelf and F4 World Champion Scott Curtis in his first National F2 Race entered into a three way battle for third place. Disaster struck for the former F2 World Champion as on his penultimate lap he barrel rolled and forced himself out of the race. The race was red flagged and Goodman remained victorious with Owen Jelf taking second and Paul Balfour securing third.
Down to the Wire
So into the third and final heat and a good result from Malcolm would be enough to secure the championship title. But as the start lights went out it was Owen Jelf that took the lead – a lead he was in no intention to give up. Goodman entered into a battle with Balfour, Curtis and Colin Jelf for second place but soon started to pull away to clear the chasing pack.
Owen Jelf took the win to secure second place in the championship as Balfour out manoeuvred Scott Curtis into fourth and securing himself third in the championship whilst Colin Jelf was forced to retire on heat 9 with steering problems.
Malcolm Goodman was crowned 2012 Powerboat GP RYA British F2 Sprint Champion talking to the newly crowned champion he had this to say “Going into the weekend the title was anybody’s there was a real caliber of racers amongst the fleet and it would be down to the best starts and making no mistakes. I knew no matter what I had to remain focused and concentrate on my race”
He continued “Securing the Sprint title is fantastic and will also go a long way to help me try to retain my British F2 Championship from 2011 as the round also counts to that campaigns points. So whilst we’ll celebrate just now it wont be for long as the team’s attentions will soon return to the final round of the British championship.”
2012 Powerboat GP RYA British F2 Sprint Championship Standings
1st Malcolm Goodman
2nd Owen Jelf
3rd Paul Balfour
4th Scott Curtis
5th Ian Andrews
6th Ian Wright
7th Alan Marshall
8th Graham Palfreyman
9th Sven Hamer
10th Andy Griffiths
11th Colin Jelf
12th Carl Wigg