There was more drama at Arlington on Wednesday night, as the result of this year’s Banger World Series event was hotly disputed.
In front of the now customary large crowd for events such as this, proceedings began normally. By the end of the evening the temperature had certainly risen, with home town favourite Steve ‘Cecil’ Anscombe in the thick of things.
Having raced all types of formulas for over 20 years around Arlington Stadium and other oval circuits across the country, Anscombe is one of the sports ‘famous’ names.
His popularity and notoriety both increased last year when he and his team The Dreamers, featured on the History Channel’s documentary series ‘Banger Boys’.
This season though has been a mixed one for Anscombe, with both incredible highs and equally severe lows.
Back in the summer, Anscombe excelled across the Spedeweekend held at Foxhall Stadium, Ipswich, with success in both the banger and 2 litre stock car classes.
A couple of weeks later, his sterling reputation was shattered, when race officials adjudged him to have effected an illegal hit on another car, whilst racing in the domestic bangers at his home track of Arlington.
The citation read that he had ‘knowingly driven the full of the straight and hit his opponent on the driver’s side’. This was not how many in the crowd saw the events, but the stewards held him to account.
Whilst in the heat of competition passions run high, such a suggestion of impropriety levelled against Anscombe would be unjust. Instead, he received a three month ban for his alleged sins that on appeal was expunged just before Wednesday’s meeting.
With the last two Wild Card slots on the World Final grid up for grabs, the action was always going to be brutal.
Having not been allowed to earn his usual qualifying points over recent months, Anscombe knew he had to go all out for the win to get one of the Golden Tickets.
In the night’s Final, Anscombe thought he had done enough to come in second and snatch the last berth on the grid. Race officials thought otherwise, recording him as third finisher.
Instantly, Anscombe lodged an appeal that was later decided in his favour, elevating him to a Wild Card spot. The question is now can he finish off the season with a good performance at the World Final in October?
Only time will tell.