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HOLLIER BACK ON FORM
After a near 2-year absence from competing in a regional championship event at the East Devon venue, Ed Hollier returned to winning form at Torbay Motor Club’s Wiscombe Hillclimb last Saturday with a stunning climb for FTD in his bike-engined Pilbeam MP62. A 36.95s run, his last of the day, was 7/10ths faster than the OMS-Suzuki of Andrew Forsyth (OMS CF04) and also eclipsed the efforts of Southwestern chargers Mike Lee, Ben Bonfield and Rod Thorne, all of whom dipped below the 40 second mark.
The event ran seamlessly until early afternoon, when Luke Trotman contrived to barrel-roll his Mallock in the Esses after getting a nearside front wheel on the grass enough. His emergence from the car completely unscathed was a tribute to modern mandatory safety equipment and the combined efforts of Westcountry Rescue, the marshals and the recovery unit soon had the event back on track. Several of the classes were won by the smallest of margins, with Rodney Eyles' Alfa Romeo 4C snatching a win in just over 2/10ths of a second and Simon Glover beating Martyn Glover in their Mitsubishi Evo by just 14/100ths. The National Hillclimb Association Championship motorbikes again set an example of close competition. KTM machines dominated the solo motorcycle classes, Tommy Hodges taking the major award on two wheels with a 41.54 on his SMR version. Simon and Jayne Foster set the pace on three wheels with 44.96 on their Honda F2 outfit.
Ed Hollier was back, and on winning form in his MP62 (Howie Fowler - 569 Motorsports Media)
Class winner Martyn Pyke shaves the Esses markers (Howie Fowler - 569 Motorsport Media)
DUELLING MAZDAS DELIVER AT GURSTON
After a weekend of record breaking in their Mazda MX5s, Jason Richardson and Mark Crookall left the opening Gurston Down Championship double-header holding first and second place in the Meadens Skoda backed series.
Richardson's record 39.82 run on Saturday afternoon was followed just seconds later by a 39.58 from defending champ Crookall, which would stand as the fastest of their weekend. But Crookall's failure to score a target time bonus point on the second runs (each run counting as a round, thus four rounds over the weekend) gave Richardson, inside target on every run, a one point advantage. So with both drivers sharing the points on Sunday, Richardson took the championship lead by that single point after the first four rounds.
Crookall was not alone in second place on the table as moments after his record run on Saturday, Miles Horne's Peugeot 306 Rallye took two tenths off Adam Greenan's 3-years old 2-litre Roadgoing Series Production record to gain a bonus point. With three further class wins for Horne over the weekend he levelled with Crookall on 41 points. Two records for John Davey in his Midget over the weekend earned fewer points than he would have liked as they were slower than the class target time and he was the only registered contender in the class. The weekend's final record breaker was Tim Pitfield, who ran below the 1400cc Sports Libre record on all four runs in his DJ Firecat but again, frustratingly outside the class target time. But with 40 points he shared a championship fourth place together with Shaun Fudge, Adrian Lewis, Steve Holland and Murray Wakeham.
The meeting included the first two rounds of the Cavendish Ships Stores BARC SW Top Ten Challenge. A shortage of single seaters – just 8 competed – was the opportunity for the faster Specialist production and Sports Libre cars to score points. Paul Crute in his 3-litre Jaguar V6 engined OMS 28 was fastest on Saturday, delighted with his first ever FTD, which he celebrated the following day by finding another tenth to score his second! He was followed home on Saturday by Chris Cannell's sonorous, twin-engined Force-Suzuki SR8 and on Sunday by Andrew Forsyth's 1.4-litre OMS-Suzuki. Peter Hammock’s brand new Empire Wraith was 4th and fifth, swapping the positions with the fastest of the Locaterfields, Steve Holland’s Hayabusa engined Caterham.
Paul Crute scored his first ever FTD - and did the double! (Steve Lister)
Tim Pitfield was one of several record breakers over the weekend (Steve Lister)
Top Ten Challenge sponsor John Davey also made the record books (Steve Lister)
Croft Easter Monday Sprint cancelled
The Darlington & District Motor Club have reluctantly had to cancel the Easter Monday sprint at Croft which was to be rounds of the 2019 British Sprint and Sprint Leaders Championships. Apparently an insufficient number of entries have been received to make the event economically viable.
We have been advised that Competitors who have entered will be contacted by email and entry fees will be refunded.
Motorsport at the Palace - tickets & entries
Sevenoaks & District Motor Club are once again organising the Motorsport at the Palace event, including two Sprints, at Crystal Palace, South London over the May Bank Holiday week-end (26th & 27th).
Tickets to spectate and competitor entries can now be found at https://www.motorsportatthepalace.co.uk/
Palace action. Justin Andrews (courtesy Mike Stokes)
The Pre-94 Formula Ford Register 2019 Challenge
The organisers of the 2019 Pre-94 Formula Ford Challenge have announced the dates of this year's events:
Gurston FF Fest
Gurston FF Fest
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Pre-94 FF Hill Climb
Pre-94 FF Hill Climb
If you would like to learn more about the planned events, or wish to be added to the Register, please contact Charlie Reilly via charlie.reilly @sky.com
Supercar Fest at Shelsley Walsh
A Supercar Fest is to be held at Shelsley Walsh on Saturday July 9th 2019.
"Supercar Fest is a supercar themed summer festival featuring both modern day and classic supercars. The
event will include a full day of track action, a supercar paddock, a
number of motorsport demonstration runs, a classic & sports
car show, concours, trade stands, live music and great food & drink.
Camping in the Orchard next to the paddock is also available so why not
make a club weekend out of it! The 1-day event in this beautiful part
of the English countryside is also a great destination for a ‘drive out’
for your club members.
All car clubs will receive half price tickets (£12.50pp) and a privileged parking area right next to the track."
March Combe & April Anglesey entries open
The 2019 season is beginning to get under way with entries open for (probably) the first event of the year - Bristol Motor Club's Great Western sprint at Castle Combe on March 23rd.
Entries for the 2019 SBD HSA Speed Championship open now
Entries are now open for the 2019 SBD HSA Speed Championship. Full details, including draft regulations, classes, calendar and how to enter can be found here.
A new suite of Championship web pages has been developed for each of the three Championships the HSA will be organising in 2019 - the HSA Speed, the British Sprint and the Sprint Leaders. Details for the other two Championships will be published in due course
The 2019 SBD HSA Speed Championship
Saint Goueno Masters Entries Open
The St Goueno Masters hillclimb has become a firm favourite with competitors from the British Isles - nearly 70 taking part in 2018. The 3.2Km track is located south west of St Malo in Brittany and entries for the 2019 event, to be held on 31st May to 2nd June, can be pre-registered on the St Goueno web site.
The Motor Sports Association (MSA) recently launched a new identity, Motorsport UK, as it transitions from a traditional governance-led association to a modern membership-focused organisation as part of an ambitious new phase for motorsport in the United Kingdom.
At the annual HSA awards lunch at Prescott on Sunday November 23rd Motorsports UK Chairman, Dave Richards, said a few words about the changes taking
place at the UK's motor sport governing body and re-iterated his support
for and commitment to grass roots motor sport.
Motorsport UK's vision of the future can be seen in this video.
British Sprint, Sprint Leaders and HSA Speed draft calendars announced
The calendars for the 2019 British Sprint, Sprint Leaders and HSA Speed Championships have been published. These dates should be regarded as provisional until the regulations (to be published in draft form shortly) receive a permit.
Last updated 16/12/2018
Geoff Stallard crowned 2018 SBD HSA Speed Champion at Prescott lunch
Geoff Stallard was crowned, 2018 SBD HSA Speed champion at the awards lunch, held in the Prescott clubhouse on Sunday November 23rd 2018 in the presence of a large gathering wihich included Dave Richards, Chairman of Motorsport UK, British Hillclimb and British Sprint champions, past and present, most of the award winners from the HSA's 2018 season and many other guests.
A gallery of Jerry Sturman's images from this event can be found here.
Geoff Stallard receives the HSA trophy from SBD's Kim Broughton
BILL GOULDTHORPE, 1936 – 2018
It is with much sadness that we have to report the passing away of the well known and much loved Sprinter, Bill Gouldthorpe. Bill had been suffering from cancer for some years and received major surgery in 2016. Bill quickly returned to the cockpit of his OMS CF06 and completed a full season in 2017, qualifying for the British Sprint Top 12 Run Offs twice at Anglesey at the close of the season and again at Lydden in 2018. In spite of his illness and on going treatment it was the mark of the man that he continued to compete successfully and cheerfully until he no longer had the strength to cope with the g-forces produced by his single seater.
Bill had always been a driver with a love for motor vehicles. During his National Service days he was the driver of a General’s car and later became a long distance lorry driver. He once mentioned that his longest trip was 12,000 miles and had travelled across Europe and the Middle East regularly. He became involved in motorsport and drove race cars in various forms for many years. He drove Jody Scheckter’s motorhome and even helped James Hunt in his early days. Bill was married to Doreen who sadly died in 2016.
He was a gentleman and always had time for everybody he met. He was keen to encourage new drivers into the sport and was always quick to laugh, even at himself. He will be sadly missed by everybody who knew or competed with him. Our thoughts are with his Sister, Rita and the rest of his family.
Bill, in familiar, cheerful pose
At speed in his OMS CF06
Bill doing his National Service
Some exciting developments are in progress for a new initiative in the 2019 Midland Hillclimb Championship.
HSA committee member Les Buck has teamed up with championship co-ordinator Bill Pardoe and existing competitors to create 600 Challenge, a new initiative to promote a clubman-friendly, cost conscious series for entry level slicks and wings racing in hillclimbs and sprints.
“The concept is simple,” explains Les, “our aim is not only to rebuild the 600cc class, but also introduce some basic technical guidance that keeps costs at a sensible level and prevents the cost escalation that has been seen in the up to 1600cc and 1100cc classes in recent years. Our hope is that these basic control measures will encourage more competitors to participate or make the switch to formula-type cars. Also the class makes an ideal potential step-up for kart drivers into cars.”
There are quite a number of eligible cars out there, and we want to get them out on the hills together in one class. The 600cc cars are typically 300kg all up weight, with 110-120bhp, super soft slick tyres, wings, and sequential-gearboxes, making impressive statistics, outperforming even the most extreme offerings that a road legal vehicle can provide.
The technical guidance we are offering is to both control cost and not to ruin performance, the emphasis being to make this as inclusive as possible and prevent big-budgets taking over.
As guidance these will be (in addition to the standard MSA rules):
- No Carbon fibre chassis – steel spaceframe and aluminium monocoque only.
- Aerodynamic floors to have MAXIMUM surface area restriction of 1.2 sq/m
- Mechanical gearchange mechanism compulsory (no pneumatic / electronic shifters)
- Standard engine manufacturers ECU only (if applicable)
- For modern injection engines - Standard engine manufacturers induction system only (alternative air box / filters permissible), for older carb engines or two-stroke types induction is free e.g alternative carbs etc.
- No Forced induction (no turbo or supercharging)
- No methanol fuel
- Soft hillclimb tyres - slicks and wets
The plan is to concentrate our events within the friendly and competitive Midland Hillclimb Championship visiting Loton Park, Prescott and Shelsley Walsh. But in addition, it is hoped that other sprint and hillclimb events will also see additional support from 600cc racing cars as a spin-off benefit. The SBD HSA Speed Championship will also welcome entrants to its class of 600cc cars.
At this stage we would welcome expressions of interest from anyone. We already have five competitors committed and sixteen interested parties, some of whom have cars in build, and two manufacturers have also pledged support for the series.
More details are available through Les Buck – tel 07850 287780
2018 SBD HSA Speed Championship award winners
The full list of the 2018 SBD HSA Speed Championahip award winners has been published and can be downloaded here.
The awards will be presented at annual Awards Lunch will be held in the Prescott Club House on November 25th in the company of MSA Chairman, Dave Richards.
You can book tickets here.
We look forward to seeing you in November.
2018 SBD HSA Speed Champion, Geoff Stallard
Geoff in the Vixen at Loton (Rob MacDonald)
Bennett & Lillington take inaugural FTDs at Watergate Bay
The first hillclimb to take
place on a closed public road since the passing of a law in Parliament
in 2017 which enabled the suspension of the Road Traffic Act for
motorsport took place at Watergate Bay on 15/16 September. The event, jointly organised by Truro and District Motor Club, Newquay
Auto Club and Plymouth Motor Club took place on the B3276 coast road between
Padstow and Newquay and attracted bumper crowds who watched a diverse range of cars
tackle the 720-metre course.
For the first event the entry was limited to closed wheel cars only so it was no surprise to see the Libre cars competing for the top honours.
On the Saturday it was Doug Bennett in his higly modified and large engined Striker who took FTD on his first timed run with a 24.74s time. On the Sunday, in Bennett's absence, FTD went to Stewart Lillington's Radical SR4 with a 23.57s run.
After a successful first event with 90 competitors appearing on both days and thousands of spectators attending plans have already been announced for the 2019 event which is scheduled to take place on 14/15 September.
Public road hillclimbing back in England
Doug Bennett, FTD on Day 1 (Howie Fowler)
Stewart Lillington, FTD Day 2 (Howie Fowler)
2019 BRITISH HILLCLIMB DATES
The 2019 MSA British and Leaders Hillclimb Championship dates are shown below. All events host counting rounds of both Championships except for those marked *, which are not Leaders rounds.
Apr 20/21 LOTON PARK Hagley & DLCC
Apr 27/28 PRESCOTT Bugatti OC
May 4 CRAIGANTLET* Ulster AC
May 11/12 HAREWOOD BARC (Yorks)
May 25/26 GURSTON DOWN BARC(SW)
Jun 1/2 SHELSLEY WALSH Midland AC
Jun 15/16 DOUNE Lothian CC
Jul 6 BARBON MANOR Liverpool MC
Jul 7 HAREWOOD BARC (Yorks)
Jul 17 BOULEY BAY* Jersey MC & LCC
Jul 20 LE VAL DES TERRES* Guernsey MC & LCC
Jul 27/28 WISCOMBE PARK Woolbridge MC
Aug 10/11 SHELSLEY WALSH Midland AC
Aug 24/25 GURSTON DOWN BARC (SW)
Sep 7/8 PRESCOTT Bugatti OC
Sep 14/15 DOUNE Lothian CC
Sep 28/29 LOTON PARK Hagley & DLCC
Championship rivals Trevor Willis and Will Hall after Willis's third title win this year. Can Hall turn the tables in 2019? (Tim Wilson)
Robert Kenrick took the 2018 Leaders title in a record-breaking year with his GWR Raptor-BMW (Brian Taylor)
Brtiish Sprint Championship announcement
The MSA and Hillclimb and Sprint Association (HSA) are pleased to announce that the HSA will be taking over the organisation of the British Sprint Championship from 2019. Paul Parker has successfully run the series for 20 years, but is retiring at the end of the 2018 season and the HSA, already set to run the revived Sprint Leaders Series in 2019, will take over the British Sprint Championship, ensuring the continuation of this important series. A full calendar will be published as soon as available. Sporting Regulations and Scoring System are currently under development. The HSA Speed Championship will continue in its present guise, with SBD as sponsors of this, the British Sprint Championship & Sprint Leaders Championships. If you would like to be kept up to date with details please look on the HSA’s website www.hillclimbandsprint.co.uk
CROOKALL TAKES SECOND GURSTON TITLE
Defending Gurston Down champion Mark Crookall secured a second hill title at the Wiltshire hill's closing meeting of the season. The series had gone down to the wire with James Moore (Empire-Suzuki) and Paul Dickinson (Honda S2000) tied for the lead coming to the final rounds. But with neither driver entered, two class leading runs by Crookall were enough to ensure that the Mazda MX5 driver surpassed their total to take a second consecutive title.
Already confirmed as the winner of Gurston's parallel Top Ten Challenge series in July, Peter D Smith was sidelined, together with co-driver Dick Gaylard, when their Force-Suzuki broke a driveshaft in practice. This allowed the non-registered Neil Coles to step in and take his first Gurston FTD in his OMS-Suzuki 25. Chris Cannell finished second overall in his twin-engined Force-Suzuki sportscar, moving up to second place in the Challenge series and edging out Gaylard by a single point.
Mark Crookall successfully defended his Gurston Down Championship title (Ian Beard)
Neil Coles took his first Gurston FTD (Ian Beard)
Support for the 600cc Racing Car Class in Speed Events
Following some recent discussion on the 600cc Race Cars site on Facebook, I have offered to create a register of runners and riders for the 600cc racing car class.
Over the last 3 years, a small team led by Charlie Reilly, including myself, has done this for Pre-94 Formula Fords and there are now about 50 cars and drivers on that register. This has been used to help promote about 6 special events each year (3x2 one day meetings) at which we have gathered between 10 and 20 FF entrants per event. This in turn has helped rejuvenate general interest in FFs and led to stronger entries at a variety of speed events up and down the country.
Can we do the same for 600 racing cars? Both the HSA and Midland Hillclimb championships are keen to see the class build again, and contrary to what some of the commentators say, a competitive 600 is a lot cheaper than a competitive 1100, particularly when capital and depreciation costs are considered on top of normal running costs. I would like to think that we could also attract newcomers to the sport who don’t need or want to go down the road car route.
With space frame chassis and mechanical gearchanges, we can avoid much of the 1100 class expense, but still enjoy slicks and wings. I dont think you can go quicker for less investment than in a 600cc racing car. If we can summon enough interest via a register, we can then use that to communicate with each other to help pick events where we can turn out in sufficient numbers to avoid being merged with the 1100s.
If you would like to be included, please write to me at “Ask the Expert at the HSA” via the HSA website with your name, your car chassis/engine/capacity and an email address. Not everyone uses Facebook so I propose that once the register has been set up, we communicate mainly by email with news/ideas etc. This is how the Pre-94 FF register works. If you know someone else who might be interested, please pass this message to them.
I don’t believe we need another club or a championship - just a spreadsheet which holds the above contact data. If we get enough names of people who want to compete in 2019, I will be talking to some of the event organisers. Lastly for now, can I suggest that we try to come together before the end of the 2018 season and enter one or both of the Curborough meetings on 13 and 14 October?
Les Buck , OMS Hornet, Loton Park, May 2018
ROY LANE'S HILL RECORD BROKEN AFTER 43 YEARS
4-times British champion Roy Lane’s outright record at Scammonden hillclimb, set in his Championship-winning McRae-Chevrolet GM1 in 1975, the year in which he won the first of his four BHC titles, was finally broken last Saturday by James Baxter in his ex.Tony Marsh/Tony Wiltshire 2.5 Gould-Cosworth GR55 V6 at Pendle District MC's event. Lane’s record for the dam-side course alongside the M6 stood at 21.97s, and with two practice and no less than ten timed runs on offer, Baxter was under the record on seven of his eight timed runs finally leaving it at 21.26s. Equally meritorious was David Tatham’s 21.81s on the final run in his 1-litre OMS-Suzuki, which would have left him with the new hill record had Baxter not entered!
James Baxter in the Gould at Harewood (Steve Wilkinson)
Roy Lane in the McRae (Steve Wilkinson)
FORMULA E AT SHELSLEY
Former GP3, GP2, Le Mans and Formula E driver Mitch Evans drove the Panasonic Jaguar Formula E car at Shelsley in a successful attack on the famous hill's electric car record at the recent British Championship event. Evans had never driven in a hillclimb event before and after a shakedown run late on Saturday, he did two successive runs on a still damp track before the first BHC run-offs on Sunday morning, Although the track was slightly drier than when the qualifiers for the opening run-off had run, his 30.46s run, with a 103mph Ess approach speed and a low 2.0s launch, would have qualified tenth for the run-off as Evans set a new electric car record for Shelsley.
Mitch Evans cuts it fine at Kennel in the Jaguar Formula E (Ian Beard)
A few images from the 2018 FoS
The 2018 Goodwood Festival of Speed was held on 12th to 15th July and saw the Pikes Peak record breaking VW IDR of Romain Dumas win the Sunday shootout with a time of 43.86s on the 1.16 mile hill.Another electric car - Peter Dumbreck's NIO EP9 was runner up, a half a second slower.
Photographer, Mike Stokes of www.tracksideimages.uk.com was on hand to take these images and more will appear in Speedscene magazine.
The VW IDR of Romain Dumas
Jenson Button in the Honda RA301
A 1962 Ferrari 250GTO
Bernd Schneider in the Mercedes W196
HSA Awards Lunch - Book Now
We would like to remind all HSA members and competitors that the 2018 SBD HSA Speed Championship annual Awards Lunch will be held in the Prescott Club House on November 25th and that you will be able to book your tickets here shortly.
We are pleased to announce that we will be joined by the new MSA Chairman, Dave Richards, who has kindly agreed to say a few words and has been showing great interest in our branch of motor sport.
We will also reveal more details of the 2019 MSA Sprint Leaders Championship, an exciting opportunity for Sprinters in many classes to take part in a National Sprint Championship.
You can book tickets here.
We look forward to seeing you in November.
Special guest, MSA Chairman, Dave Richards
The Prescott Club House
SMITH'S GURSTON CHALLENGE TITLE
With an unbroken run of six outright wins in his Force-Suzuki PT, Peter D Smith secured his first Gurston Down Top Ten Challenge title at the Wiltshire hill's July weekend double. His bid for consecutive FTDs came under fire from driver Paul Crute on Saturday, the OMS-Jaguar V6 driver closing to within eight hundredths of Smith's winning time before bettering it (unofficially)by the same small margin during Sunday's practice. But he couldn't match the time during the actual competition and Smith's co-driver Richard Gaylard elbowed through for second overall as the new champion set a weekend best of 29.57sec.
The event also hosted Gurston's annual Formula Ford Festival, with 16 and 18-strong fields over the two days. Castle Combe circuit ace Shaun Macklin reset Simon McBeath's class record on Saturday, going on to lower it still further the following day despite the best efforts of the former holder in his similar Swift SC92, who had to settle for the runner-up spot each time.
Peter D Smith - unbeaten in 2018 (Steve Lister)
Shaun Macklin twice reset Gurston's Formula Ford record (Steve Lister)
Motorsport at the Palace to return in 2019
Held over the traditional Bank Holiday weekend of Sunday 26th and Monday 27th May 2019, the two day non-championship speed event will be run along similar lines to previous years where classes are decided by year of manufacture rather than engine size. This attracts a wide and varied entry of historic, classic and modern competition vehicles.Sevenoaks Motor Club Event Co-ordinator Karen Webber said, “Sadly we were not able to run the event in 2018 due to the change of date, but at our AGM the club voted unanimously that we should go ahead for 2019. We have therefore begun the task of putting everything in place and trying to attract a sponsor.”
Sevenoaks & District Motor Club have run the Crystal Palace sprint weekend since 2010 with an average public attendance figure of 4,500 people. The sprint entry usually attracts around 100 entries per day split into the 20 classes. The sprint course is roughly 740 meters long and uses a good percentage of the original Crystal Palace motor racing track. The outright course record for the Sevenoaks sprint event is currently held by Andy Greenen driving an Empire EVO2 single seater in a time of 31.30 seconds set in 2017.
Palace action with David Seaton's Pilbeam (Mike Stokes)
Thorne's FTD at Impney hillclimb
Malcolm Thorne took FTD at the annual Chateau Impney hillclimb in his immaculate Lotus 35 improving on the 2107 record by half a second with a 38.86s run. He was followed by Martin Jones' Brabham BT21B and Justin Maeers Lola T70.
Held in glorious weather over the week-end 7/8 July over 200 competitors gathered for the action.
All images courtesy of Mike Stokes of Trackside Images.
Malcolm Thorne on his way to FTD
Mark Woodhouse's class winning Elva FJ 100
Geraint Lewis' Frazer Nash passes the Chateau
The class winning Cooper Monaco T49 of Justin Maeers
The MSA Sprint Leaders Championship
The MSA Sprint Leaders Championship is to be revived for the 2019 Sprint Season, organised by the Hillclimb and Sprint Association. Drivers and entrants who wish to be registered for the Championship will need to be in possession of a valid current National A Speed Licence (minimum) or equivalent issued by the MSA, or National A (Open) Speed Licence for Classes G & L. We are making you aware of this requirement so that you can obtain the necessary signatures during the 2018 Season if you would need to upgrade your licence to enter this competition.
The series was last run in the early 1990's and the MSA are currently dusting off the impressive trophy ready for the series revival next year. There will be approximately 12 rounds around the UK, a full calendar will be published as soon as available. Sporting Regulations and Scoring System are currently under development. If you would like to be kept up to date with details please register your interest by email at slc@hillclimband sprint.co.uk
SMITH AGAIN AT GURSTON
Venue expert Peter D Smith swept the board at Gurston Down's second home championship weekend of the year, the Tony Marsh Memorial event, taking FTD both days in his Force-Suzuki. He left it until the very last minute at Saturday's event, as both Ben Wheeler's Empire-Suzuki and Neal Coles' OMS-Suzuki led the field until Smith's very last run, when he snatched a narrow win from Wheeler by just seven hundredths of a second, stopping the clocks at 30.12sec . 'I was disappointed it wasn't a 29', said the man who has several times set Gurston FTDs with sub-half-minute runs. His ambition was thwarted by the narrowest possible margin the following day, when he beat Coles by a quarter of a second to take the outright win with a run in exactly 30.00sec. But the two wins left him with a clear lead in the Cavendish Ships Stores BARC (SW) Top Ten Challenge series after four rounds, seven points clear of a tie for second place between his co-driver Richard Gaylard and Chris Cannell, in his twin-engined Force-Suzuki SR8 sports libre car.
The only driver now undefeated in all eight rounds of the class-based Meadens Skoda Gurston Championship (with each class run a counting round) is 2-litre Roadgoing contender Paul Dickinson in his Honda S2000, who now takes sole charge of the Championship lead which up to now has been tied by several drivers. Defending champion Mark Crookall is a little down the order having failed to secure an unbroken run of wins, but he did lower his own Mazda MX5 class record on the Saturday event, to win the Tony Marsh Memorial Trophy for the second year in succession.
Aside from the 4-wheel action, there was a sterling performance by NHCA rider Tom Short, the only man on two wheels to set sub-33sec runs over the weekend. The 600cc KTM rider went on to win the Top Ten motorcycle run-off each day, his best run of 32.86 giving him victory in Saturday's shoot-out.
Fastest on four wheels - Peter D Smith (Ian Beard)
Fastest on two wheels - Tom Short (Ian Beard)
Hillclimber with a difference - Philip Stader's Hillman Minx (Ian Beard)
2018 FIA HILLCLIMB MASTERS
It's now been officially announced that the 2018 FIA Hillclimb Masters, the biennnial event at which Britain's top hillclimbers had such success in 2014 and 2016, will take place in Gubbio, Italy from 12 to 14 October.
Steeped in motorsport history, this medieval Umbrian town is in the region where early 1950s F1 Alfa Romeo driver Luigi Fagioli spent most of his life, and it’s in his honour that the local automobile club has been organising a hillclimb since 1966 – the 'Trofeo Luigi Fagioli' – which weaves up a neighbouring hill and through the Gola de Bottaccione archaeological site.
The 4.1 kilometre course will be shortened to 3.3 km for the Masters. The start will be higher up, but the finish line will still be at the summit of the hill where spectators have a spectacular panoramic view of the last 700 metres. As with previous editions of the Masters, live streaming coverage is planned.
For more details, visit: https://www.fia.com/events/hill-climb-masters/season-2018/fia-hill-climb-masters
The Team UK lineup in the Czech Republic for the 2016 Masters
Jason Mourant took Loton Park's first Wynn Developments Midland Top Twelve Run-off of the year in fine style ahead of his co-driver for the weekend, Alex Summers, setting FTD in the process. In the second run-off Summers, who had qualified fastest, took the win ahead of his benefactor and extended his Top Ten Challenge series lead to 12 points, with Mourant climbing up to second place ahead of Robert Kenrick and Tony Hunt.
Amid a plethora of personal best times in fine Shropshire weather, one car and driver combination stood out. Still coming to terms with his 'new' GWR Predator-BDG, Johnathen Varley clipped seven hundredths off Morgan Jenkins’ six-years-old 2-litre racing class standard and was the only driver to break a record over the week-end.
Midland Championship aspirants James Kerr and Richard Brant renewed their previous weekend's Harewood duel and Peugeot driver Kerr, the victor in Yorkshire, again got the better of the Renault driver, this time in both rounds of the Midland Hillclimb Championship. However the supercharged Vauxhall VX220 of five times Midland Champion Mike Turpin suffered two defeats at the hands of an on-form Paul Howells in his Porsche 911 RSR.
Jason Mourant set the outright pace at Loton Park (Steve Wilkinson)
Johnathen Varley re-wrote the 2-litre record book (Steve Wilkinson)
Croft Sprint on April 28th Cancelled
The Croft Sprint due to be held on April 28th was cancelled due to a lack of entries we have been informed.
'NEW LOOK' GURSTON CHAMPIONSHIP OPENS
Gurston Down ace Peter D Smith set the outright pace each day at the first double-header weekend of the BARC Southwest Centre's 'new look' Gurston Championship. Despite missing Saturday's afternoon runs with a broken front wing mounting, the Force-Suzuki driver bounced back on Sunday to take a second outright win. Co-driver Richard Gaylard followed him home, having been edged out of the runner-up spot the previous day by Chris Cannell's twin engined Force sports libre car. At the end of the weekend, which for the first time saw two rounds of the seven-round Cavendish Ships Stores Top Ten Challenge, Smith leads the series with Gaylard and Cannell tied in second place.
The weekend saw no less than four rounds of the class-based Gurston Championship. With a new format and scoring system for 2018, each class run is now a counting round with scoring on a 10-9-8 etc. basis. Three 'double-header' weekends and a one-day final in September bring the number of rounds up from 5 to 14. At close of play on Sunday, five drivers tied for the lead in the series. Defending champion Mark Crookall lost out in a Mazda MX5 tussle with Jason Richardson as they swapped places on Saturday, while on Sunday Graham Hadley got close to Crookall's class record to take the win while just three hundredths adrift, Richardson spun at Karousel. But with all three taking turns to lead the class, they failed to score maximum points and it was left to Paul Dickinson (Honda S2000), Clive Skipper (Caterham), Martin Watson (Westfield), Fyrth Crosse (Ensign) and James Moore (Empire), all of whom had stayed out front in a class of three or more all weekend, to jointly lead the Gurston Championship series after a busy and competitive two days.
A full report will follow in Speedscene 198. Results are available on: http://www.tsl-timing.com/file/?f=sprint/2018/181684.pdf
Peter D Smith set the pace throughout the weekend (Ian Beard)
Paul Dickinson was one of five drivers who ended the weekend on maximum Gurston Championship points (Ian Beard)
BARBON GROUNDWORKS COMPLETED
The groundworks at Barbon hillclimb, which has suffered many times in the past from a waterlogged paddock causing abandonment of several events and cancellation of last year's British Championship round, are now virtually complete. The picture shows the new startline access road and some of the drainage channels under construction. There is also a short paddock return road from just below the startline (behind the camera).
Entries for Liverpool Motor Club's Regional Multi-Championship hillclimb on June 9 and for their British Championship meeting on July 7 can now be made on-line. Go to: http://www.liverpoolmotorclub.com/barbon-hillclimb/
Harewood April 15th Cancelled
Just received from the Harewood organisers:
"It is with great regret that we have to cancel the Spring National Hillclimb at Harewood on Sunday 15th April.
This difficult decision was made following a site inspection yesterday. The recent wet weather has made a lot of the land unusable and whilst the paddock and track areas are in reasonable condition, we do not have sufficient dry ground to cater for the large number of cars, trailers, motorhomes, etc. Anyone who was at Harewood on Practice Day will appreciate how bad the ground conditions were, especially in the main car park, with numerous vehicles, including 4x4’s becoming stranded and having to be towed out with a tractor. You will also be aware that we invested heavily in drainage a few years ago to alleviate what was a regular problem. This has proved successful over the last few years but clearly the extensive period of wet weather has proved too much for the drainage to cope with.
On behalf of BARC Yorkshire Centre, I offer our sincere apologies for the obvious inconvenience and disappointment it will cause to you. I hope that you will understand our decision and look forward to seeing you later in the season.
Clerk of the Course
New Hillclimb proposal from the FIA
The FIA have recently released details of a new proposal for closed vehicle classification for the FIA European Hillclimb championship based on a 'performance factor' in place of the more traditional methods such as engine capacity.
The objectives are to improve competition, increase the number of eligible vehicles and simplify/minimise regulations. Initially for closed cars, it will be interesting to see how the proposals are received and then work if they are put into practice.
Full details are available here:
GREEN LIGHT FOR PUBLIC ROAD HILLCLIMB
The MSA has recently given approval for the first competitive closed road hillclimb on the British mainland to be held since 1925, after the passing of a new law that allows local motor clubs to apply for permission to temporarily close public roads and suspend the Road Traffic Act in order to host motorsport events.
Jointly organised by Truro and District Motor Club, Newquay Auto Club and Plymouth Motor Club, the Watergate Bay Speed Hillclimb will take place on 15/16 September this year over a stretch of the B3276 coast road just north of Newquay. A maximum of 90 cars will start the course at Watergate Bay, one of Cornwall's most popular tourist spots, and head south towards Newquay on a 720 metre (787 yard) course.
Truro & DMC comp.sec. and deputy event director Dave Brenton, put forward the original proposal to the Watergate Bay Hotel, who were very supportive. All profits from the inaugural running of the event will be donated to the Cornwall Air Ambulance and the Cornwall Food Foundation, which includes Jamie Oliver’s apprentice training scheme at Watergate Bay’s Fifteen restaurant.
More details on: http://www.trurodmc.co.uk/watergate-bay-update/
A section of the Watergate Bay coast road
2018 Palace Sprint cancelled
Unfortunately, the 2018 'Motorsport at the Palace' Sprint has been cancelled. The event, which was due to return to its normal May Bank Holiday date this year, saw the promoter pull out, leaving insufficient time to re-organise. Located in South London, the event is a major undertaking but the organisers are hoping that it will return in 2019.
Graham Thomas' Alfa at the Palace in 2016 (Mike Stokes)
HSA News update
It's a New Year and a new season is approaching.
Our National Calendar page is beginning to take shape as many (but not all) championships have published their calendars. If you are looking for an event to fit in to your schedule you can find one here.
It is also the time of year when competitors may be on the look out for a new car and you can find an interesting selection on the For Sale page.
It may only be early in the New Year but the 2018 SBD HSA Speed Championship is already attracting plenty of competitors across all classes See who has already entered on the Competitors Gallery page.
Michael Calvert has recently taken over as editor of Speedscene magazine and his first issue is due out at the end of March. Chris Howard-Harris is shortly(mid March) due to take over the chairmanship of the HSA from Les Buck.
The AGM for the Hillclimb and Sprint Association Ltd will be held at the Cromwell Lodge Hotel, Banbury on March 14th 2018 6:30pm. The agenda can be downloaded as a WORD or pdf document and all members are welcome to attend.
Finally the Annual Awards lunch for the 2018 SBD HSA Speed Championshipwill be held at at the Prescott Clubhouse on November 25th.
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