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Sunday 3rd October 2021

Cantillon charges to the front to win second Masters Historic Formula One race at Spa

Cantillon charges to the front to win second Masters Historic Formula One race at Spa

Mike Cantillon came from the back of the grid to claim victory in the second Masters Historic Formula One race at the Spa Six Hours meeting. Spinning and still winning, the Irishman was chased home by pre-78 class winner Lukas Halusa whose McLaren M23 also started from the back.

?It was very eventful from start to finish!? said a jubilant Cantillon. ?And then at the end I hit the oil in the Bus-Stop chicane but I had a comfortable lead by then. I?m glad we finished!?

?It was a game of attrition?, said Halusa. ?Lots of people spinning? I was lucky that I was in the race before this one, so I knew where the grip was, and was one of the few not to spin.?

In third, Steve Brooks (Lotus 91) survived the mayhem in the opening laps to pip Christophe d?Ansembourg (Williams FW07C) to third right at the end. Ken Tyrrell in the Tyrrell 011 survived to take fifth from Mark Hazell who won the post-82 class in his Williams FW08.

?Two cars spun in front of me, and then another one!? said Brooks about the hectic opening stages. ?Very tricky conditions out there ? there were cars everywhere!?

Nick Padmore led early on but was forced to retire with a broken throttle on his Lotus 77, while Saturday?s winner Jamie Constable (Tyrrell 011) was marred by a damaged wheel and could only finish seventh.

By the time of the start, a steady drizzle had made track conditions even more treacherous, as the rain was now mixing with all the oil left behind from Saturday night?s Spa Six Hours endurance race. A safety-car start was deemed the safe way to go, with Mark Hazell?s Williams FW08 leading away the reversed grid for the top-four from Saturday, followed by Steve Brooks in the Lotus 91, Nick Padmore in the Lotus 77 and Saturday?s winner Jamie Constable in the Tyrrell 011. Meanwhile, after an overnight engine replacement, Lukas Halusa?s McLaren M23 returned to action from the back of the grid, having missed race one.

The green flag was waved after a single lap behind the safety car, and almost immediately Felix Haas in the Lotus 92 was the race?s first casualty. At the front, Padmore quickly adapted to the conditions to power past Hazell, the former multiple FIA Masters Historic Formula One champion setting purple sectors to lead by a massive 9 seconds from Jamie Constable who in the second part of the lap had too nipped past Hazell. Also from the back of the grid, Cantillon in the Williams FW07C was already up into fourth, with Halusa following suit, while d?Ansembourg in the second FW07C that retired from Saturday?s race was chasing Ken Tyrrell?s 011 for sixth.

On lap 3, however, it was all change ? Cantillon was into the lead, as Padmore?s early charge came to a halt through a broken throttle cable. Meanwhile, Constable?s race looked over too, a damaged front wheel taking the Tyrrell 011 out of the equasion. And that wasn?t all, as Warren Briggs went missing as well, his McLaren M29 stopping at Rivage. The result was that Halusa was suddenly up into second, 8 seconds adrift, with d?Ansembourg in third ? so after four laps, the three that started from the back of the grid were the top three! Fourth was Brooks, with Ken Tyrrell holding his own against Hazell in fifth and sixth, with Georg Hallau?s Theodore N183 now seventh and Paul Tattersall?s Ensign N179 in eighth.

On lap 6, Cantillon had increased his lead over Halusa to 11 seconds, with d?Ansembourg now 42 seconds behind, nine ahead of Brooks, but the Lotus 91 was closing rapidly on the Belgian. Then, as the clock wound down, Cantillon survived a late spin to still beat Halusa by four seconds, the Austrian in the process also claiming pre-78 class honours. In a close fight for third, Brooks pipped d?Ansembourg right at the end, with Ken Tyrrell taking fifth ahead of post-82 class winner Hazell. Constable, who got going again after his earlier mishap, salvaged seventh ahead of Tattersall, while Hallau failed to complete the final lap.



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