In typical Silverstone fashion, thirty-six cars would take to the road in the Grand Final. In what became a typically classic event, local driver Michael Moyers in the Spectrum 011C broke through to win the 2017 Walter Hayes Trophy.
Moyers had started third and remained out of trouble during the opening lap, ensuring he was in the leading group with a few laps to go. A controversial move on Josh Fisher allowed Moyers into the lead to take a win, six years after his debut.
Fisher and James Raven would join him on the podium as the Kevin Mills Racing squad came away with the biggest prize in Formula Ford.
Joey Foster would line up on pole having won the only Semi-Final without a red flag, but had to wait for an extra few minutes as Jamie Chadwick messed up her grid position and stalled it on the tarmac, causing the marshals to push her into the pitlane as the field went round for another lap.
As the lights went out, it would be Fisher who made the strongest start, taking the lead into Becketts as Oliver White followed him through. White was soon into the lead on the second lap as Josh Smith, held off a hoard of five cars for the final podium place.
The podium was far from set, with White using the opportunity to break a small gap.
Disaster came on lap five as Jonathan Kotyk spun Stuart Gough in the midfield saw a chain reaction behind with a number of cars retired. This finally opened up the gaps as the two McArthur’s and Cameron Jackson dropped out.
While there was no safety car, constant yellow flags ensured that the top three could not be separated, while polesotter Joey Foster‘s Walter Hayes ended in the pitlane with technical issues.
White, Fisher and Moyers became the three breakaway leaders in the final laps as James Raven inherited fourth. Meanwhile, Josh Smith found himself holding off the ensuing pack in fifth.
Drama in the final two laps saw White punted off, after an incident with J. Smith, giving Moyers a golden opportunity to break through and narrowly cross the line ahead of the chasing Fisher. Appeals would be had though, with Fisher believing Moyers had overtaken under yellows though nothing came of the call.
This would promote Raven to third in a quiet but impressive race from the the Ray GR08 making it three different models on the podium. Kevin O’Hara from eighteenth put in the race of the Trophy to take fourth as Chris Middlehurst stayed out of trouble to jump up to fifth from Kotyk.
Luke Cooper was another driver making up ground to take seventh as Heat 1 winner Matt Round-Garrido had a relatively lonely race to eighth. After starting fifth, Roger Orgee will be disappointed with ninth as Michael Eastwell battled a fading engine to take tenth place in only his second ever WHT.
In the end there were eleven drivers who retired, with twenty-five finishers of which Chadwick crossed the line last.
TCF caught up with Moyers on the podium. “My fifth year with Kevin Mills Racing, sixth in total, we’ve just come so close for so many years, it’s just a bit overwhelming. A massive thanks to the team, they gave me a fantastic car, it was a great race.
“Me and Josh have been racing each other like that all year and it hasn’t always ended nicely to be totally honest with you. We had such a good run down the straight on him and I knew it was the last lap, so what happened, happened.”