With a race at Oulton Park the day before and this being a non-championship race not surprisingly only 15 cars made it to Thruxton. After practice pole position went to James Hunt although there was some scepticism as to the time he set, his March had a new Holbay fitted in an effort to cure the misfire that blighted his race at Oulton. After only a few laps the misfire returned and still suspecting the injectors a spare set were borrowed from Andy Sutcliffe. Second quickest was Roger Williamson from Chris Skeaping, next up was the
unusual sight of a front engined machine, Ray Mallock in his U2-Holbay Mk11B, basically it was a Clubman’s chassis fitted with bag tanks and a rear wing. The chassis had only had a brief shakedown at Silverstone so this was the first run it had had in anger.
Brian McGuire headed Peter Lamplough whose Palliser was running well now it was Holbay powered, Alan Jones was next followed by Richard Longman who was happier now that he had a new head on his Novamotor engine. David Purley was in dire handling problems in what he hoped was his last outing in his BT28 and Tom Walkinshaw, returning to F3, had engine problems but at least he was better off than Alan Sutcliffe who blew his Holbay mill, luckily he was able to borrowed a spare from Holbay’s for the race. Chris O’Brien had a soft tyre, Tim Goss a misfire and Alan Joy had gearbox problems. Last was series newcomer John MacDonald who only managed two laps before his gearbox failed in the ex-Walkinshaw March 713M.
Hunt led away followed by Williamson and Skeaping with Lamplough, Jones and McGuire close behind, the two Marches and the Palliser gradually pulling away from the other three. Then on lap 5 McGuire tried Campbell, Cobb and Seagrave faster than his Brabham wanted and immediately spun, Skeaping couldn’t avoid him and he went off hitting a marshalls post wiping off a corner at the rear. McGuire continued for a couple of laps until he decided that the handling of the Brabham had become too bad to continue. Lap 8 saw Williamson with a lead of about 75 yards until he arrived at the chicane where he locked the brakes heavily immediately dropping to eighth place allowing Lamplough to lead the race.
Lap 13 saw Longman, who had shaken off the attentions of Mallock, and Jones catch up with the leaders and on the next lap Jones took the lead. Meanwhile Williamson had passed O’Brien and was catching Mallock fast while up front Hunt took the lead on lap 14 just in time for his dreaded misfire to start again soon dropping him to the tail of the field. Lap 18 saw the impossible, Williamson had caught up with the leaders again and Mallock had come with him. On the following lap Jones and Lamplough both tried to share the same piece of track at the chicane which resulted in some light contact with each other and the Armco, this put Longman into first place. Williamson made his move on lap 20 and took the lead and in the remaining five laps increased his advantage to 4 seconds, a delighted Longman was second in by far and away his best F3 race with Jones third and Mallock in the amazing U2 coming home fourth.