Tag Archives: Motorsport

Last Night of Hot Rods at Plough Lane?

Well a couple of weekends ago I went to Wimbledon, possibly for the last time. I have been going there since before I was 10. I took mates there as a fist night out after I passed my driving test. I did the 3hr trip back for Best in Britain when i was at University and occasional other meetings as ‘research’. And it looks like this June the stadium will be pulled down to make way for flats and yet another football stadium. The last competitive motor sport venue inside the M25 – gone.

https://www.change.org/p/boris-johnson-mp-save-wimbledon-stadium-for-the-nation

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It still pulls in a decent crowd considering it is a Sunday night in February so not what anyone would call warm.

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To my regret I have never been able to photograph Wimbledon such that it is recorded the way I see it, this was my best, and most probably last, attempt.

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Look down and it is racing but look up and you can see flats and aircraft approaching Heathrow. It is the strangest experience to know that you are in the heart of South London.

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Racing wasn’t televised in ‘my’ era so here is a video of Polley & Lee racing at Wimbledon, both of whom were there for this last night along with Mick Collard and his assistant Rob (Driving the car above).

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Regis Sprint at Goodwood

Yes, back at Goodwood again! For a once mothballed circuit with heavy noise restrictions it gets used a fair bit.  photo dsc03167_zpsn8mhhcpg.jpg One of two Scimiters I saw during the day, both were reasonably quick. As yet I haven’t found an entry list so the pictures are what they are…  photo dsc03181_zpster6ct8h.jpg This was just a point and shoot as I was walking. The two eye hole balaclava instantly makes me think of Mansell.  photo dsc03180_zps3q4okiet.jpg Caterham ques up. You can clearly see the diver in these, such a change from more modern cars where you can’t see a driver let alone what they are doing! photo dsc03105_zpsv6u10quj.jpg And there is little else that looks so purposeful. And now the Defender is going out of production the longest serving basic design still in production?

Goodwood Revival 2014

Having taken a lot of pictures on Friday at the revival I intend to put up an update for each class but for now I thought I would put up a few of my favorites from a first pass of those taken. My programme has been ‘borrowed’ so I will have to be light on detail for now.

Unlike last year (pictures here)  the weather was great so I got lots of interesting (to me at least) pictures. I forget each year that you just can’t get around in a day and so missed most of the infield this time around… next year!

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I think one of the appeals of the event is that you can see the drivers working the cars. From a race engineers point of view the chassis flex of the car above is terrible but seeing the driver fight the short comings is the spectacle.

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Alonso, I have found your issue. Get the team to paint your wheels blue… and maybe fit a flat 12 engine.

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The cars are used and sadly accidents happen but I would rather this than never hear the sound or see the site of these cars sliding through the kink.

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Some drivers have so much spare capacity they are checking their mirror… coming into the 100mph Madgwick. Larger below;

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And finally you go outside to a field which on an normal day would be the best car show in the world but on revival day is just a car park

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South Downs Stages Rally Goodwood

On Sat 8th Feb it was the 10th running of the South Downs Stages Rally at Goodwood motor circuit. The weather forecast wasn’t great but there isn’t much opportunity to see rally cars at full bore in this part of the world so I decided to take a chance. Fortunately it held off for most of the day only getting really bad at the end.

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Stages were run over various configurations of the circuit during the day with the afternoon running the ‘wrong way’ around the circuit. In the above picture the 2l Mk1 Escort of Roland Brown and Terry Luckings is seen coming up from Fordwater toward Madgewick they would ultimately finish 16th overall and 8th in class.

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On what would normally be the exit to Madgwick a series of ‘wiggles’ had been put in using the tarmac run off area to form part of the course. Jack & Martin Brazil are exiting the main circuit in the 1.9 205 on the way to a 5th in class and 12th overall.

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Coming into the wiggles is the Mk2 Escort of Mark Wiltshire & Adam Dunn who would ultimately come 5th in class and 8th overall. With over 1/3rd of the entry was made up from MK1 & 2 Escorts these pictures may get repetitive if you aren’t a Ford fan. I love them and so needed no excuse to take lots of pictures!

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Other cars running on the day were top to bottom Chris Selfe & Paul Lowman in a BMW M3. John Taylor and Lindsey Watson in the Talbot Sunbeam finishing second in class. Dean Thomas & Rich Knowlton in the Davrian Dav-Tec which sadly retired after SS7 with, what looked like to a spectator, an overheating issue.

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And showing that you don’t need flash machinery to take part Oliver and Simon Howard in a K11 Micra which won first in class beating the Talbot and Astra amongst others. My Mum’s never went like that… unless possibly when my Dad was driving.

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What was noticeable wandering around the paddock was how relaxed people were compared to a race paddock. There were far more groups of people chatting and no way near the amount of ‘mines bigger than yours’ nonsense going on.

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Just before lunch when the paddock pictures were taken John and Sharon Mills go the right way through Madgewick in their class B Citroen C2.

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The 1600 Mk1 Escort driven by Tony Rendell and co driven by Sed Simeone gets the power down going through the run off section used as part of the rally stage. They would ultimately finish second in class and 24th overall ahead of the Citroen above as well as a 205 and other Escorts.

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The 205 GTi of Philip and Robert Smith makes steady progress through the wiggles. Believe it or not this is not cropped at all, I managed to frame it just so… of course I haven’t posted all the pictures I have of half a car…

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Apart from this one of Mark Wiltshire trying to spot his turn in point.

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Stephen Hall looks like he is enjoying his rally co-driven by Lee Williams in the 1700 Mk1 Fiesta.

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The last stage of the day ran into darkness and eventual winners Simon Mauger and Melanie Holmes are seen here doing the only sensible thing you can do with excess fuel. They seemed to be really on it on every run being totally committed as the car squirmed under braking.

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I grew up on images of rally cars running in the dark so to get to see them in the flesh was quite special even if there were no Group B monsters. Russell Davies and Andy Thomlinson show they are trying really hard with the brakes glowing to get a 3rd in class.

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Escorts Stuart Cogger & Lee Bezuidenhout (top – 2nd in class) and Richard Lewsey & Irene Lewsey (lower – 4th in class) pushing on into the night, even in the wind the sound is unmistakable. Finally the point I decided I wanted to be warm and dry;

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Sorry no credit to the driver/car of this one but I can’t see who you are in that rain. Free print of your choice if you can prove it is you!

Motorsport at the Palace 2013 – Monday

With dates now scheduled for 2014 (25th & 26th May) this will be the 5th consecutive year of this event run in the grounds of the old Crystal Palace. The show is put on by Sevenoaks & District Motor Club with a lot of hard work to turn this piece of south London parkland back into a motor sport venue it was back at the end of the 1960’s. They also have a number of sponsors but of course the marciels and the park grounds keepers should also be noted for their hard work.

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The cars are parked among the trees between runs creating a peaceful paradox to the track just the other side of the bushes.

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Unlike a lot of events there is a mix from the very earliest cars though to pre-production models. I remember seeing a prototype Lotus spinning into the hay bails a few years ago at this event.

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Although they don’t get a run up the hill bikes do get demonstrated within the show.

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And finally, no matter how expensive the car or the venue, one must never underestimate the importance of gaffa tape…

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2013 Brand Hatch Caterhams

Caterham racing at Brands Hatch Indy circuit with a few other formulea to break up the flow, mid August 2013.

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There is always guaranteed action with the Caterhams. They are so closely matched that they run in tight packs.

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And sometimes they end up with a few bits missplaced.

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Porsche’s were one of the support races, the expensive cars were out front but by far the better racing was with the older cars.

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And more Caterhams charge through Paddock hill bend

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MX5’s were another support but there weren’t really enough to make the races spectate-able.

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Brighton Speed Trials 2012

With the news that Brighton Council may refuse permission for the 2014 event I thought I would post some pictures from the 2012 Speed trials. Brighton and Hove Motor Club are trying to save it here, http://www.savebrightonspeedtrials.com/index.php .

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A direct link to the petition http://tinyurl.com/qjtbmub
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