In less than 3 weeks the Future Classics Championship for 2017 will be decided. Just like last year when the ever quick Timothy Duggan became the champion in his superb Seat Ibiza the Leinster Trophy weekend will provide the winner and runners up for 2017.
There have been some great moments in the season so far in a class which was intentionally set up as budget racing to a time barrier intended to put back on track a lot of cars considered to be at the end of their racing life and now contains many makes of cars of all shapes, sizes and horsepower, all of which are excellently prepared and presented.
The popularity of the class continues to grow and to date experienced and respected drivers have graced the class and raced very well indeed. Barry Rabbit who has won in all classes he raced, not forgetting the famous Leinster Trophy itself and Richard Kearney, former Fiat Punto Champion, 7 times Phoenix Park winner, formula Sheane front runner and one time nominee for Motorsport Ireland’s young driver of the year have both demonstrated their ability to compete against horsepower in smaller cars, Richards exception being the win in David Owens superb Alfa Romeo 155 on its debut last year. More recently Kevin Doran of ITCC and Fiesta ST’s discovered that racing to a controlled time is not as simple as it sounds and we hope he had great fun in the trying with his superb Honda Civic.
The 2017 season departed from its Mondello home for the first time to contest 2 rounds of the championship at Kirkistown in Northern Ireland and whilst the attendance was down on the Mondello average the weekend was never the less a fantastic experience, in fact, those of us who did travel very much look forward to racing there again given the wonderful welcome received from the officials and visitors we met.
Who will be the champion for 2017 on Sunday 17th September? It’s a very close run thing and whilst this is not the very funny movie blazing saddles we do in fact have quite a few participants of the same name. Aidan, Tommy and Ken Byrne, all brothers, Daniel Byrne also related and Ger Byrne who is no relation are all in strong positions in the championship with Aidan and Tommy in particular pushing for positons one and two. Ken and Daniel are closely contesting positions three and four and Ger in the BMW has the potential to spoil the party if results fall his way. Sandwiched between all the Byrnes is David Walsh in the very quick Mitsubishi FTO who also has a wonderful mathematical chance. In fact everyone in the top half of the table has a mathematical chance of a finish in the top three of the championship although realistically for most it may be too remote. One driver who can never be ruled out is David Hammond in the lightning Fiat Uno SX and if the championship leaders did suffer misfortune in any way David is more than capable of capitalising on same.
Anticipation is growing and no doubt nearer the time some may become a little nervous, we wish all contestants the best of luck and an enjoyable weekend. Whatever the result we believe that all the Future Classic racers and supporters are winners who assist and support each other in the way only friends can, having great fun along the way.
If you do visit Mondello for the racing be sure to come and visit the Future Classic gang, you might even get a cup tea but in any event you will find the great comradery upon which the class is founded and if it’s a thing that you harbour ambitions to race or wish to return to racing why not talk to us? One thing is certain, we can get you into a car and having fun with minimum fuss at an affordable cost. If you’re not sure it’s for you, try it first by renting a car, we have a few available if necessary.
The very best of luck to all and let’s hope the weather is kind!!