ORC Stock Rods 2014
Whistlin' Jack Smith >> Features >> ORC Stock Rods 2014
Stock Rods under the umbrella of the Oval Racing Council look set to go from strength to strength in 2014, where there is a refreshed landscape for the formula. Whilst there have only been some minimal changes to the rules and regulations of Stock Rods, with regards to car specifications, there is very much a newness to the tracks which will run racing for Stock Rods this year.
The westcountry remains relatively unchanged, with a dozen race meetings split evenly between St Day in west Cornwall, and Smeatharpe in east Devon. Indeed, it is at Smeatharpe that the British Championship will be contested, with that particular title event returning to the circuit for the first time since 2006.
In the south east of England, Arena Essex have reported an exciting surge of interest in Stock Rods for 2014, no doubt boosted greatly by the announcement that the World Championship will be held there on August Bank Holiday Sunday. This will be the first time that Arena Essex has hosted the race for the gold roof, for Stock Rods.
Elsewhere in England, Buxton will welcome Stock Rods back to the Peak District. Indeed, the ORC Championship will be raced for there in early July. Moves are afoot at Buxton to progress towards combining assorted Rod classes at the venue, into full blown ORC Stock Rods at some point in the future. That some process is much further advanced at Barford in the north east of England. This year is the last at which some independent Rod cars will race in with the Stock Rods, at Barford, where numbers continue to increase regularly, and the standard of car preparation has also advanced markedly. The English Championship will be held at Barford in September.
Fears of the demise of Stock Rods in Northern Ireland have proven to be unfounded with both Ballymena and Nutts Corner set to stage racing for the class. The highlight will be the two days of action in June – when the European title will be contested at Ballymena, and then the Irish Open the next day at Nutts Corner.
To complete the season, the National Championship is going to be contested over a Grand Prix series, with drivers due to be rewarded with attendance points for each of the rounds they compete in, and for their results in those National Championship series rounds.
A further bonus for Stock Rods has been the move to encourage drivers from independent venues, such as Grimley and Ringwood, to join in with the mainstream formula. Accordingly, there are some dates at both of these independent venues, where National Championship series points can be accumulated. This is a trial move for 2014, the benefits of which can only be evaluated much later in the season.
Crispen Rosevear - 04.04.2014