MOTORSPORT: BANGER team racing returned to Arena Essex on Sunday with the Rookie Micro Banger Team event, in memory of track founder Chick Woodroffe. And the day attracted a huge entry of 90 cars, writes Matt Bull.

Amongst the entry, the all-woman team dubbed ‘Chick’s Chicks’ performed very well during the day, with Claire Jones being their leading performer, winning a heat and duelling with banger world champion, Jason Jackson.

Debbie Woodroffe, Remi Gay and Stacey Ruskin similarly all gave as good as they got during the afternoon, resulting in an eventual fifth place finish.

Jackson went on to win heat and final, securing the Team title win for his team which also featured Paul Ring, Micky Hamer and John Avery.

In heat one Jackson grabbed the first win of the day.

Heat two saw a few of the racers going a little over the top.

Simon Peters followed Remi Gay into a number of parked cars on the QE2 bend before a head on between Matt Lewis and Davey Hammond.

Claire Jones took the win.

Heat three saw a big crunch at the end of the home straight with Jamie Barnard taking a big hit from Jamie Harding, Barnard then taking further damage from Danny Mitchell who was spun into his parked car by Lee Johnson. Claire Jones's rollover was nearly matched by Steve Haines, who only just managed to keep his car on its wheels. As Paul Whiteman took the win, Jamie Harding rolled his car on the QE2 bend bringing about a rather more hasty red flag.

The final saw an incredible 69 cars on track, one of the biggest races of recent times. Unsurprisingly carnage ensued with an early restart needed after the car of Paul Harrison fell over on the pit bend.

A heavy shower ensured that the restart saw car after car join a pile up at each end of the track with the race falling eerily silent for a moment until a complete track blockage at the QE2 end was remedied by a few cars managing to barge their way through the blockage.

Lewis Barber was not one of them, having chosen to bury himself well in the back of Micky Vincent instead.

Not many of the 69 cars made the finish, only a half dozen, but one of them was winner Jason Jackson, who secured his team the overall title.

The Destruction Derby saw Brett Jackson overcome TJ Powers and Sean Chapman to take the win.

The Chick Woodroffe Memorial final for the Lightning Rods was dominated by Anthony Lawrence.

The 6-11 year olds had an outing in the Ninja Karts with Alfie Witherall winning the final. Harvey Hendy and Jack Simmons completed the podium places. The next action at Arena Essex takes place on July 13 with the annual Caravan Race.

For motorsport see the Thurrock Gazette every Thursday.