Shepherd is Formula Ford 2000 guest star

Guest driver Murray Shepherd showed his class in both Historic Formula Ford 2000 races as Benn Simms and Ian Pearson fought over the points.

Shepherd, who is leading the Classic Formula Ford championship and won the 750MC Locost series last year, was driving Tony Hancock’s Van Diemen RF82 and showed he was not intimidated by a big grid of Historic cars with drivers used to racing each other, week in week out.

It was Benn Simms who set the pole time in his Reynard SF77, but Shepherd wasted no time in pushing ahead on the second lap, where he stayed for the rest of the race, despite the best efforts of Simms, who has only a tenth of a second behind at a couple of points. Sadly, his car ran out of fuel late on, assuring Shepherd of a win and himself of a back-of-the-grid start in Race 2.

Ian Pearson (Royale RP30) picked up full championship points for Race 1, finishing safely ahead of Graham Ridgway’s Reynard SF78.

It was a different story in Race 2, apart from Shepherd being in front at the end. Pearson, buoyed by his Race 1 performance, passed him on the opening lap and stayed in front for another 14 laps, until his car got stuck in gear and dropped him down to sixth.

Simms was already up to seventh before the end of lap 1 and was soon fairly close behind Pearson and Shepherd. Pearson’s mishap promoted him to second after an impressive recovery.

Ben Glasswell had a good weekend in his SF77. His chief rival was Ridgway, whom he passed for third place in Race 2. He had been fourth in the first race, with his father Stephen just behind in his 1979 Reynard. Stephen Glasswell had been seventh in Race 2, just behind Pearson. Fourth and fifth were taken by Ridgway and Royale driver Nathaniel Cooper.

Class B winner Fraser Collins was eighth in Race 1, behind guest driver Andy Lancaster in a Pilbeam MP52. He did not finish Race 2 and Lancaster claimed eighth.

Molly Dodd had an indifferent weekend in her Royale RP27, remaining on the lead lap in both races but only managing a ninth and tenth place. Jennifer Ridgway in her SF78 was ninth in Race 1.

Full results at TSL Timing

By Rachel Harris-Gardiner

Rachel Harris-Gardiner is the editor of Vintage Formula Ford and former Historic editor for She is a regular contributor to Autosport and Motorsport News and writes her own blog about women in motorsport, Speedqueens.

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