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As 2007 nears an end one of the final 1/10th scale meetings came to a close. The 3rd round of Rug Racers was on December 16th at Ware (near Stevenage) and it attracted a strong showing from a number of top UK drivers, including fellow XRAY teammate Ben Cosgrove.

The doors opened at 7:30AM sharp on a fresh morning with all drivers seeking to do well. Practice was on a track laid out for a very competitive and enjoyable race, covering an area 16x30m. The venue of the day included 3 qualifiers and 2 finals with the best time counting. By the end of the first qualifier Elliott was in 4th place and by close of the 2nd qualifier Elliott had slipped back to 5th after getting wrapped up in some loose tape. The final qualifier was a very clean round and saw Elliott step back up to 3rd on the grid.

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There was a strong field in the final, with Andy Moore on pole, Olly Jefferies 2nd, and behind that was Elliott, Chris Grainger (4th) and teammate Ben Cosgrove (5th). It was going to be a challenging race. Ben had mixed fortunes in qualifying but was able to take 5th place in qualifying with his time in round 2.

The first final saw Elliott slip back a place by corner 2 but the T2’008 showed great resilience and pounced back and recovered by the next corner to retain 3rd place. Elliott chased after Andy Moore and Olly Jeffries, catching them by lap 5 when a slip by Andy let Elliott through and onto the heels of Olly. Off sped the two, separated by no more than a few feet for the remainder of the race. Just behind this action, Ben took the opportunity to slip inside first Chris and then Andy to take over 3rd place. Team XRAY was looking very strong, as the handling of the T2’008 was faultless and Elliott crossed the line only 7/10ths of a second behind the leader, followed closely by Ben in 3rd place.

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(click to enlarge)

The second final again saw a Chris Grainger take a direct move inside Elliott, nudging ahead on the bend and also allowing Ben Cosgrove to step into 4th as Elliott slid wide falling back to 5th. Ben was pressuring Chris and clearly had the pace with Elliott close behind. Ben made a move on Chris but was just too quick and clipped the side throwing Ben off track and spinning Chris letting Elliott squeeze through and retake 3rd place and again. Elliott set off after Olly Jeffries and Andy Moore. With about a third of the race down Andy got caught up on a backmarker and Elliott stole 2nd place and after closing the gap kept up the pressure on Olly and this is again how it finished with about 8/10ths of a second separating the 2 drivers as they crossed the line. Elliott finished with two 2nd places for the day taking 2nd place overall. Ben finished the final in 9th with an overall 5th position, and new XRAY driver Brian Eldridge finishing off the trio of XRAY cars in the final.

Overall Top 10:
1st - Olly Jefferies
2nd - Elliott Harper (XRAY T2’008)
3rd - Andy Moore
4th - Jon Bowden
5th - Ben Cosgrove (XRAY T2’008)
6th - Chris Grainger
7th - Rob Fox
8th - Chris Delves
9th - Stu Noble
10th - Brian Eldridge (XRAY T2’008)

Regards Elliott Harper

Elliott Harper Set-up sheet.