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Snetterton Circuit
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Hottrax MotorSport R2 at Snetterton 300 on 21st & 22nd April - 19 Mar 2012

Phill Haynes (Sweatshop Racing manager and guru) remarked that the opening round at Brands Hatch was "a good day at the office; quickest in practice and qualifying, led the three hour race from start to finish and set the fastest lap". So, what of the challengers? We lost TANC Racing at quarter distance but we can expect to see them aim for a win soon after the team has been re organised over the winter. Newcomer's TEC-Supplies soon got the hang of endurance racing and could spring a surprise in Norfolk. Splitlath Redmond 4 have moved up from being Clubmans champions to join the Nationals and just for Brands had a torrid time - this is not the norm from the well put together team so again. Expect far more to come in the future. Insignia and Ridgeback are almost old hands at this type of racing and will always be up for going for a podium place.

We also saw Brand Brothers, who dominated 2011 Clubman 600s, move up a gear for 2012 and uncharacteristically the two lads were down and out very early in the three hour race last month - they will bounce back, they are not here for places - only a win will do. Power2connect won at Brands but are unlikely to do a whole season so we strongly recommend you watch out for previous champions and runners up in March Pit Stop Racing. After moving from Hondas to Kawasakis they is no lack of speed and another pair of riding brothers will be making the 2012 championship their sole aim. Another team who will push these guys are AARD Racing whose riders have been drafted into Pit Stop in the past. Flexnet have loads of experience and are consistently quick as well as constant finishers and they will be in the mix with Ducks Cross Racing. Ducks X are running two bikes this year and at Brands they snatched a third and seventh place - again a team that will going for podiums and a win in their endeavour.

Clubman 600s were poorly supported at the opening round and no doubt there will be more to come; that shouldn't detract from the great effort put into the three hours by Team XG Group who took their first win of this campaign - expect to see second in class J & B Racing, a very quick and improving father and son duo.

The Clubman 1000 class was stacked at Brands and Team Traction Control were just ace; much of the time, working their way from fourth on the road to third before a mischievous puncture plummeted the team down to tenth on the road and second in class. With only minutes to make amends Keith Flint rung the neck of his Suzuki to leap over Anglia Interiors and to retake the class win. These three were separated by around a minute or 1 lap of the Brands Indy circuit, so expect this to be repeated somewhere this season. Whilst it is far too early to predict champions, other strong contenders should be; Splitlath Redmond 200 who will just want to forget the first race of 2012 and move on. Keep a weather eye out for N.I. Racing, In the Doghouse and Seven Racing - a blend of new talent and old faithfulls 

The MotoGrande was bursting at the opening round and whilst honours may have been taken by talent which sometimes drop in to gain track time under race conditions, many of our regulars are close to the front and pushing. Steve Mercer and Jonathon rail ton two wins a piece but still had talent in their wake. Simon Gardner who was masterful in the Michelin Power Cup 600s a couple of seasons ago is back with a spanker ZX10 and netted a load of points for his campaign, Si was also part of the winning line up in the National 1000 Endurance. Grant Wagstaff who also peddles endurance bikes to great effect swaps his R6 for a ZX10 and is very rapid - Wag aims to get as much track time as poss in preparation for his TT debut in May. Throw into the mix Lee Weston, Phil Brooks, Daniel Fowler, Rhalf Lo Turco, Julian Hughes, Greg Allsop and Dominic De-Leon and you have a wide variety of pilots all capable of shining on the day.

Down the pitlane the MotoGrande 600s paint a similar picture; Piers Hutchins did the double last month but this class is really wide open - stick a pin in any of this list and you could have chosen a worthy winner; Nathan Dyke, Paul O'Connor, Matty Bruce, Mark Trowell, Scott Adam, Roger Slater, Reece Baldwin or Colin Norris. There are probably a few more I have missed but you get the picture.

The Michelin Power Cup is now in its third season and expectations are high - action will have to be good to eclipse 2011, champs from last have to move on so we are starting to see some new talent on board. The current form book shows that whilst James Cox made it three out of three at Brands, he may well not be in it for the duration. Blasts from the past include BMW powered Shaun Champion, Andy Rouse, Tony Kielty, Lewis O'Regan, Gaz Evans and Greg Allsop are not there to look at the scenery. Grid numbers should rise as the season progresses but nevertheless close racing is still the order of the day for these riders running on French rubber.

The 600 division was rammed with almost 30 riders coming forward, again a healthy mix of old faces and new blood. Top Rookie from last year Richard Charlton is back giving the top three some grief, the Dilks brothers with Ady Allsopp, also from Nottingham are out scalp hunting but it was new kids on the block; Brett Carter and Wayne Humble who stole the show. William White, Adam Reeve, Stephen Bridle and Jamal Mahmood will want to build on their 2011 results whilst top traffic cop Mark Roxborough has dropped out of endurance racing to go sprint racing for this season.

Refreshing and new for this year is for Modern Classic Superbikes, bikes might be ten years old but they are close and the riders push hard. At Brands Mark Dicken threw his R6 around to win the inaugural race before Dean Skipper romped to a brace of top steps with his very effective Suzuki 750. Variety is the key word and we had Triumphs, MVs, Aprilias and Ducatis all out to humble Japanese machinery. Sounds are glorious especially Wayne Crossman's MV which also carried him to two third places and a fourth.

Finally the race card has time for no less than three Ducati races, with over thirty of those beautiful machines to keep you entertained. Andy Challis, Matthew Lawson and Andy Pike seem the trio to beat in the future so we shall see.

Racing is on Saturday and Sunday with ACU testing on the day before.