The race meeting was running late but no previous races had their race time cut.
The organisers rearanged the race order during the course of the afternoon and put another race on ahead of the fiesta's (I think it was a dry racing only Nascar type with BIG SPONSORSHIP and that the rain was foreseen) Had the Fiestas had their original slot they would have had a dry race.
As soon as the Fiesta's had passed the first hairpin on their sighting lap the barriers were lifted into place for the PUT's, the organiser already had no intention of allowing them to race.
AWsponsor it smacks less of unsportsmanlike behaviour than of frustration at BIG MONEY and BIG BUDGETS being put first. Damn the little man....he can't afford lawyers.
Different teams and drivers were told different stories.
I hope AMG TV caught the exchanges between the officials and drivers because there already seems to be a diference in opinion as to what was said and done.
Considering the costs involved I can understand the drivers frustration and even the BRSCC awarding a refund of part of the entry fee is just a drip in a bucket.
Saturdays race was equally wet with close racing and no major accidents.
I can certainly appreciate that there would have been a lot of frustrated and very annoyed Fiesta drivers and that's very understandable.
But that doesn't excuse their behaviour. The correct way to have dealt with the situation would have been a collective complaint to the BRSCC, MSA and Rockingham management and probably a statement by the championship organisers not to go back there in the light of their treatment. The latter would have hurt Rockingham's reputation and they wouldn't like that.
In effect this is a breach of contract between the BRSCC and the drivers. They paid expecting two races but only got one. Had they kept their cool then they would have been much better placed to get their money back plus - I would argue - some compensation.
Now - having as I understand it apparently screwed up the PUT race - they've lost the high ground and that's a pity.
I've seen some of the AMG TV footage but I think it is safe to say that it won't make it to air.
As I understand it, the decision had been made not to run/delay the Fiestas before they were released out onto the circuit and there was a miscommunication (or non-communication) of this information to the officials on the ground. In other words, the Fiestas should never have gone onto the track in the first place.
The Fiestas were a support category to the Pickups - which enjoy top billing these days - and therefore unfortunately they wouldn't have had priority. Rather like Clios getting moved around the BTCC schedule to suit the Touring Cars and their TV slots.
I'm not sure even if the protest hadn't gone ahead that the drivers would have received any more than a partial entry fee refund, and there's no obligation to give that.
It happened to the S+S grid about 4 years ago, the last race of the season, we went out did a green flag lap, then another, then brought us into the pits and the meeting was over. It was due to the rain and fog and the marshals unable to see the next marshals post along so they cancelled the rest of the meeting.
They used to cancel meetings due to the massive puddle just before the hairpin before KH sorted the drainage out. They deemed it unsafe to race.
It is there - final column (left hand column on p99).
Incidentally, Autosport (and MN) don't automatically cover every race now - instead we cover some or most of the races properly and leave the rest to the results, rather than covering every race with little in the way of detail.