Paul Sheard Autos


Posted by Paul Sheard Autos - Friday, 15 Aug 2014 13:57

A return to form for the Paul Sheard Racing team at the picturesque seaside circuit of Anglesey saw two podium finishes for the 6-car team. Though the championship title is out of reach, Paul Sheard Racing continues to prove itself as the leading team in the MX-5 SuperCup.

After missing the previous round at Snetterton, team manager Paul Sheard made his return as a driver and immediately put his #18 car on the front row of the grid, qualifying 2nd alongside Abbie Eaton. Next up was Anthony Nield in 6th place, driving the car vacated by former championship contender David Chapman who has withdrawn from competition due to financial constraints. Adam Brindle continued his good form by qualifying 10th, ahead of Geoff Gouriet, Julian Taylor and Jim Hart in 15th, 16th and 17th, respectively.

Race one on Saturday afternoon started well - Paul Sheard took the lead at the first corner and looked comfortable in first place, but a car had stalled on the grid and was stuck in a dangerous position. The safety car was deployed at the last minute, with the drivers unaware of the situation, and as the pack rounded the final corner at racing speed they found the safety car parked in the track in front of them. Quick reactions from Paul and the following drivers prevented a major accident, but the race would have to be stopped to sort out the confusion. When it resumed, Abbie Eaton made sure to keep Paul behind her on the first lap which put him into a battle with Tom Roche and Mike Comber while Eaton made her getaway. Paul began to struggle with a lack of grip and a slipping clutch, but he fought hard to keep within reach of Roche and Comber. In the end, Paul would finish 4th with Anthony Nield just behind, but they were both promoted up one position after Comber was disqualified for a technical infringement. Adam Brindle, who had made a good start and was challenging for 6th place, had his progress halted when another driver spun him around and left him second-from-last. After another spin late in the race, he finished 11th just behind Geoff Gouriet. Julian Taylor was also the victim of another driver’s mistake, finishing 13th after being spun out on lap 2. Jim Hart’s car developed engine troubles which kept him in 15th place and would also prevent him from starting either of Sunday’s races.

By Sunday morning the sunshine had gone and was replaced by dark skies and rain showers. Tyre choice for race two was difficult - Paul Sheard went 50/50 with two wet and two dry tyres, while Anthony Nield opted for a full wet setup hoping the rain would continue. As it turned out, the weather improved and allowed Eaton and Roche - both on dry setups - to take 1st and 2nd again. Paul Sheard and Anthony Nield got involved in a 4-way fight for the last podium spot, swapping positions constantly between themselves and Matt Davies and Mike Comber. Paul held everyone off to finish 3rd, slithering across the slippery kerbs and crossing the line sideways with Comber practically pushing him along. Anthony dropped to the back of the group as his tyres overheated, finishing a respectable 6th. Adam Brindle was making up for his first race disappointment, running in 11th until a spectacular spin on the start/finish straight. He finished 12th overall, ahead of Julian Taylor and Geoff Gouriet who had been racing so closely they even swapped paint!

The final race of the weekend took place in dry, but windy, conditions and once again dominated by Abbie Eaton. Paul Sheard was part of the leading group in the early laps, but again struggled with a lack of grip and spent the first half of the race alone in 4th place. He was later caught by Anthony Nield whose times were getting quicker as the race went on. On lap 12 Paul allowed Anthony to take his place in 4th without much opposition and they would hold their positions until the finish. Everything fell into place for Adam Brindle who spent much of the race in a 3-car dice for 8th place, narrowly missing out and settling for 9th in the end, also setting his fastest lap of the weekend in the process. Julian Taylor and Geoff Gouriet resumed their battle from race two, this time finishing 12th and 13th without any on-track altercations.

With three rounds remaining in the championship, the team’s leading driver is still David Chapman in 6th with Paul Sheard in 10th, though both are unlikely to make any more appearances this year. Adam Brindle moves up to 13th, with Julian Taylor in 16th and Clint Bardwell - keen to return for one more race this year - in 17th.

Round six of the MX-5 SuperCup takes place at the Cheshire circuit of Oulton Park - Paul Sheard Racing’s home circuit - on Saturday August 30th. Last year’s Oulton Park races were fast and furious and this year promises to be even better.

Race Results

Race 1 (14 laps)

1. Abbie Eaton 18m47.612s (69.27 mph)

2. Tom Roche + 5.835s

3. Paul Sheard + 9.791s

4. Anthony Nield + 10.276s


10. Geoff Gouriet + 1:00.972s

11. Adam Brindle + 1:04.926s

13. Julian Taylor + 1:09.293s

15. Jim Hart + 1 lap


Race 2 (15 laps)

1. Abbie Eaton 20m26.542s (68.24 mph)

2. Tom Roche + 7.542s

3. Paul Sheard + 15.719s


6. Anthony Nield + 16.835s

12. Adam Brindle + 46.670s

14. Julian Taylor + 59.642s

15. Geoff Gouriet + 1:05.147s

DNS. Jim Hart Not started (engine)


Race 3 (15 laps)

1. Abbie Eaton 20m02.864s (69.58 mph)

2. Tom Roche + 1.713s

3. Mike Comber + 7.606s

4. Anthony Nield + 13.317s

5. Paul Sheard + 15.734s


9. Adam Brindle + 35.452s

12. Julian Taylor + 50.524s

13. Geoff Gouriet + 55.418s

DNS. Jim Hart Not started (engine)


Championship Standings (minus 3 lowest scores)

1. Abbie Eaton 875pts

2. Tom Roche 869

3. Matt Davies 844


6. David Chapman 776

10. Paul Sheard 644

13. Adam Brindle 554

15. Julian Taylor 528

16. Clint Bardwell 526

18. Darren Standing 502

21. Geoff Gouriet 390

24. Justin Newnam 348

25. Jim Hart 324

26. Anthony Nield 278.


By David Chapman