A collision between James Clarke and Ross Howe during the first Scottish Formula Ford race has been declared a racing incident following an investigation by Knockhill’s clerk of course.
The first race of the weekend featured a tight battle for fourth place involving Clarke, Howe, Gary Sykes and Matt Chisholm
Howe had been at the rear of that train of cars and attempted a move around the outside of Clarke at the hairpin early on, trying to take advantage of Clarke being stuck behind the duelling Sykes and Chisholm.
Clarke’s left-rear wheel came into contact with Howe’s car, mounting his nosecone and ripping it off.
“You don’t have much vision behind you in these [cars]. He was behind enough not to be in my peripheral [vision] and then I got a kick of oversteer and felt a bang,” said Clarke.
“The kick of oversteer is probably what caused it at that point.
“He’d backed off to the point that he wasn’t far enough alongside so that I could see him. If it had been wheel to wheel contact I’d have anchored up and tried to crawl round the corner but I couldn’t see him.
“He put himself in that position where he was in my blindspot and he kept his nose in”
Though Howe admitted it was a racing incident after the clerk of the course’s decision had been made, he felt Clarke could have left him more space.
“I left him plenty of space on the apex kerb and he’s moved out to the exit kerb as if nobody’s there,” said Howe.
Howe did concede the circuit clerk’s decision was fair despite initially lodging the complaint.
“You can’t really see him in my camera and you can’t see me in his camera, so I get it.
“Is it a racing incident? I guess it is. He’s trying to defend, he’s not seen me. I don’t believe it’s intentional.”
Clarke confirmed he had not intentionally closed the door on Howe exiting the hairpin but suggested he would not have lodged a complaint had he been in the same position.
“If you can’t see what someone’s doing, you can’t react to it. I can understand why he was a bit upset but if it had been the other way around, I’d be thinking I’d put myself in that situation.”