January 15, 2016 3 min read
During the winter months, the big races keep coming at the fantastic indoor facility in Padova, and this time it was the Italian Job race that saw some of the European big hitters blow the Christmas cobwebs off with another great race.
Practice showed that Darren Bloomfield had hit the ground running with both his Agama A215 and the all new A215E and was immediately on the pace in both classes and mixing it with the top Italian drivers and also European Champion Elliott Boots who is currently living in Italy.
Fellow NEMO Racing drivers Callum Niblett and Jonny Skidmore were also competing in the Pro class, while William Skidmore was entered in the Sport class as he gains experience. Jon Hazlewood was also having a run out with the new A215E as he is becoming a E-buggy convert.
Qualifying saw Darren consistently at the front challenging for TQ in each round of both classes, and after all was completed he would emerge with the overall TQ in the E-buggy class with the new A215E…a fantastic achievement. In the nitro class Darren would take the 3rd overall after a series of consistent scores. Jonny Skidmore was on excellent form and was able to qualify directly into the semi finals and give himself a great chance to bump to the main. Callum just missed out on a semi placing, and would pit his wits in the quarter finals.
The team had settled on using the new Volante tyre and in the new Ultra Soft compound, finding they could use these without additive and still be a match for the other guys who were using the additive on their tyres from other brands.
The E-buggy finals saw a couple of scrappy starts that saw Elliott tangle with Darren a couple of times, and put Darren down the field. He was able to salvage a 3rd and a 2nd in legs to take an overall podium position in 3rd place. A good result no doubt but a little bit disappointing when circumstances out if his control has meant he couldn’t make the most of his pole position.
In Nitro, William Skidmore drove excellently to place second in his semi final in the sport class to give himself a good chance at a podium in the main final. In the main final William was running well and at the front when fuel spilt on the servo saver and reduced its friction preventing him from getting full lock and left him unable to challenge after an impressive drive.
The Pro class saw Callum Niblett challenging at the front in his quarter final but a servo started to give up and he would eventually fall away from the bump up spaces, a real shame as his pace was good. Jonny Skidmore was performing brilliantly in his semi final and was just holding on to a bump up spot, but a couple of incidents cost him dearly and he would just miss out after a great weekend.
Darren drove an excellent semi final to take the win, and in the fastest time to ensure he would start from the pole in the Nitro class as he had done in the Electric also.
Darren and Elliott got away with Ongaro at the start after the first lap pile up gave those 3 a break, and Darren and Elliott battled for the lead for the first 20 minutes, when a small error from Darren allowed Elliott into a lead he would not lose. Darren pushed hard to try and close the small gap, but a few little errors coming from charging hard blunted his edge and he fought off a late charge from Ongaro to take second after a very high quality 45 minutes from the leaders.
Despite just missing out on the win, the team came away in high spirits as the package had performed excellently and the new BETA treads and compound had proven to be very competitive on the low grip surface straight out the packet and just as every customer can buy, just like all our products.
The next bog event will be the Montpellier GP in the South of France in February.