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Rugby chief is a race ace
8:55am Friday 25th April 2014 in Sport
Romsey Rugby Club president Eric Bailey entered his Royale RP27 Formula Ford 2000 historic car into the Thruxton Revival Meeting over the Easter weekend.
Friday morning in bright sunny weather was spent fixing a new head to the engine and later running the car through three practice sessions – clocking a fast lap time just outside his personal best at the fastest race track in the UK.
On Sunday morning on a damp track and the threat of heavy rain later, the local businessman qualified in ninth place in the field of 20.
Having to wait until race 17 out of scheduled 18, the heavens opened with a torrent of rain forcing the race officials to stop racing and wait for the flooding of the track to subside.
The meeting resumed after 45 minutes, all cars now running on rain tyres. Bailey was making some good lap times in appalling conditions, moving to a position just behind the leaders when he had a front wheel puncture – a repeat of the bad luck from his last race at Donington, meaning he was unable to complete the race.
Bailey (63) is pictured during his qualifying run, leading (33) Richard Atkinson-Willes and (9) Antonio Armelin, both driving Reynard SF79 cars.