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Event 17 at Loton Park on 25/09/2016

2016 British champion elect Scott Moran ended his sixth title year in style with the opening run-off win and FTD at Loton Park's series finale. But in a closing run-off in intermittent squally drizzle, and with the clock edging past 6.00pm, he had to settle for third place behind Will Hall and eventual winner Wallace Menzies in the closest battle of the year, which saw each of the top three separated by a hundredth of a second. Menzies and Hall had chased Moran home in the opening shoot-out, although at a somewhat greater distance, and while it was good to see Hall back on form in the troublesome Force-AER to record his best combined finish since Craigantlet at the start of the season, the top six overall championship positions, which he rounded off, remained unchanged.

His second place overall confirmed, a relatively modest six point total in Will Hall's Force ( his own car was not ready after the previous weekend's Doune upset) was immaterial to Trevor Willis. After two mid-field finishes in the GWR Raptor, Richard Spedding hung on to fourth place overall in the series, the best championship finish in the 'modern' era by a normally aspirated, pure motorcycle engined car. Despite chasing the three leaders home before lunch and finishing fifth in the afternoon, Dave Uren's points deficit in his Force turbo was too great to make up and he had to settle for fifth overall after what had been a challenging season for both drivers. Fifth early on, Sean Gould caught one of the short, sharp showers in the afternoon, but even ninth place would ensure he stayed clear of his GR59 co-driver Eynon Price despite the former rallyman, revelling in the damp conditions, edging out Uren for fourth place in the final run-off of the year. Crucially, this would be enough to overcome his closest championship rival, Ed Hollier, by a single point for eighth place on the series table. A big tailslide at Museum during the opening run-off could have cost the Westcountryman that vital two places; he finished ninth, three hundredths behind Oliver Tomlin's Pilbeam-Judd and just eight hundredths behind Spedding before blowing his chances of a comeback with a spin on his second qualifying run.

The duel for the final 'number' of the year between Jason Mourant and Alex Summers, who was again driving Graham Wynn's Gould-HB, ended in stalemate after the opening run-off when neither scored a point. So with just two points between them in Mourant's favour going into the final round, Summers needed to finish three places ahead of his rival. He finished seventh in the borrowed car but Mourant chased him home for eighth, so the outgoing champion will begin his 2017 season in his new V6 DJ Firestorm without a permanent number on the car. Mourant, on the other hand, will become the first Jerseyman to wear one.

In the class runs, Colin Satchell secured his second consecutive Hillclimb Leaders title, ahead of Uren and Spedding, in the best possible way with the day's only class record in his Peugeot 205.

Avon Tyres/TTC Group MSA British Hillclimb Championship, Loton Park

FTD: Scott Moran (3.5 Gould-NME GR61X) 44.89s

Championship run-off, round 33: 1 Moran 44.89s; 2 Wallace Menzies (3.5 Gould-NME GR55B) 45.05s; 3 Will Hall (2.0t Force-AER WH) 45.74s; 4 Dave Uren (1.3t Force-Suzuki PC) 46.09s; 5 Sean Gould (1.6 Gould-Suzuki GR59) 46.47s; 6 Trevor Willis (2.0t Force-AER WH) 46.54s; 7 Richard Spedding (1.6 GWR Raptor-Suzuki) 46.75s; 8 Oliver Tomlin (4.0 Pilbeam-Judd MP97) 46.80s; 9 Ed Hollier (1.6 Empire Evo-Suzuki) 46.83s; 10 Eynon Price (1.6 Gould-Suzuki GR59) 46.86s; 11 Jason Mourant (4.0 Gould-Judd EV GR55) 47.75s; 12 Alex Summers (3.5 Gould-Cosworth HB GR55) 48.52s.

Championship run-off, round 34: 1 Menzies 46.44s; 2 Hall 46.45s; 3 Moran 46.46s; 4 Price 48.21s; 5 Uren 48.33s; 6 Spedding 48.69s; 7 Summers 49.46s; 8 Mourant 50.63s; 9 Gould 57.27s; 10 Willis 53.26s; 11 Tomlin 55.92s; Simon Marsh (1.3s DJ Firehawk-Suzuki) DNF.

Final British Championship positions: 1 Moran 271pts; 2 Willis 248; 3 Menzies 236; 4 Spedding 159; 5 Uren 148; 6 Hall 123; 7 Gould 103; 8 Price 89; 9 Hollier 88; 10 Mourant 70; etc.

Scott Moran ended his sixth title year with FTD at his home hill (Jerry Sturman)

Richard Spedding took a fine fourth overall in the 2016 Championship (Jerry Sturman)

Jason Mourant will wear a number 10 on his car next year (Jerry Sturman)

Colin Satchell secured a second consecutive Leaders title (Jerry Sturman)


Event 16 at Doune on 18/09/2016

To make a winning comeback after 28 years must be pretty rare in any sport, let alone motor sport. But Sean Gould did exactly that, winning the second British run-off at Doune and in a car of his own construction. It was his second ever run-off win, his first being at Fintray in 1988 driving the Gould 84G alongside his father, company founder David Gould.

The signs were there from the start. Sean had already set the outright pace in practice aboard his 1600cc bike engined GR59 ahead of the V8s of Trevor Willis and Wallace Menzies who, with new champion Scott Moran not making the Scottish trip, were now disputing second place overall in the series. In fact Willis put the eventual outcome beyond doubt with the win, ahead of his rival, in the opening run-off. His time would stand as FTD with Menzies, thus assured of a Championship third place, next up. Third FTD, with all three in the 36-second bracket, was Gould...

Light, intermittent drizzle made the second runs tricky and the 1600cc bike powered cars filled the top four qualifying places for the closing run-off. Gould recovered from a grassy moment at the notorious East Brae to qualify third with his co-driver, Eynon Price, qualifying top ahead of Southwestern ace Ed Hollier's Empire Evo. From a lowly seventh place qualifier Willis, true to form, was not about to slacken his pace even with his umpteenth Championship runner-up spot confirmed, but sliding wide after glancing off the inside barrier at the fast Oak Tree bend the OMS slid wide and hit the outside barrier, removing the front wing and damaging the offside wheels and suspension as it slid up the road. After a long delay (one of many during the day for similar reasons) Menzies was next to run. A timing glitch prompted an immediate re-run and although he was one of only two drivers to record a sub-40 run, albeit three seconds slower than his morning time, he couldn't approach the 38.07 set by the first car away which, with Price qualifying top, had been Gould. Neither could anyone else, so Sean took a famous victory. 'I knew this was a now or never situation,' he said, 'and the car, normally very stable, was sliding all the way up. I'm still surprised at the result, though!'

Over a second and a half behind Menzies, Dave Uren brought the Force turbo home in third place, some consolation after spinning out at East Brae during the morning run-off. It meant that he slipped a further five points behind Richard Spedding in their championship battle for fourth overall and fifteen points is an almost impossible deficit to overcome in the two remaining rounds at Loton. Spedding, sharing his GWR Raptor with constructor Graeme Wight Jr at Doune,was happy enough with fifth and fourth places in view of the problems they'd had. Despite qualifying fifth for the opening run-off, Wight declined to run as the car was overheating and when a cracked engine mounting was found at lunchtime, he sat out the afternoon runs as well to save the car for his co-driver.

In his own Raptor, Scottish champion Les Mutch ran half a second clear of Spedding in the first run-off and chased him home in the second. Likewise, Hollier kept the 1600cc flag flying with two mid-field placings while 1100cc class winner Steve Marr was in the points each time with the tiny PCD Saxon-Suzuki designed, like the Raptor, by former Team Lotus F1 man Martin Ogilvie. His classmate Steve Owen also bagged a couple of points in the afternoon aboard Harry Pick's 1-litre OMS, matching Lee Griffiths' morning performance in his much later, turbocharged model and Jason Mourant scored a point on his Doune debut with the 4-litre Gould-Judd.

Avon Tyres/TTC Group MSA British Hillclimb Championship, Doune

FTD: Trevor Willis (3.2 OMS-RPE 28) 36.12s

Championship run-off, round 31: 1 Willis 36.12s; 2 Wallace Menzies (3.5 Gould-NME GR55B) 36.17s; 3 Sean Gould (1.6 Gould-Suzuki GR59) 36.80s; 4 Les Mutch (1.6 GWR Raptor-Suzuki) 37.26s; 5 Richard Spedding (1.6 GWR Raptor-Suzuki) 37.72s; 6 Ed Hollier (1.6 Empire Evo-Suzuki) 39.17s;7 Eynon Price (1.6 Gould-Suzuki GR59) 39.23s; 8 Steve Marr (1.0 PCD Saxon-Suzuki) 39.59s; 9 Lee Griffiths (1.3s OMS-Suzuki 25) 40.32s; 10 Jason Mourant (4.0 Gould-Judd EV GR55) 41.02s; Dave Uren (1.3t Force-Suzuki PC) DNF; Graeme Wight Jr (1.6 GWR Raptor-Suzuki) DNS.

Championship run-off, round 32: 1 Gould 38.07s; 2 Menzies 39.21s; 3 Uren 40.90s; 4 Spedding 41.91s; 5 Mutch 42.21s; 6 Hollier 42.34s; 7 Price 42.57s; 8 David Seaton (5.0 Pilbeam-BMW MP43) 45.82s; 9 Steve Owen (1.0 OMS-Suzuki 2000M) 46.02s; 10 Marr 46.14s; Willis DNF; Kelvin Broad (1.3s Pilbeam-Suzuki MP101) DNS.

Championship positions after round 32: 1 Scott Moran 266pts; 2 Willis 248; 3 Menzies 225; 4 Spedding 150; 5 Uren 135; 6 Will Hall 106; etc.

Sean Gould took his second British run-off win - 28 years after his first (Eddie Walder)

Trevor Willis's run-off win confirmed his Championship number two status (Eddie Walder)

Wallace Menzies - number three for the second year running (Eddie Walder)

Scotish champion Les Mutch chased the leaders home in the opening run-off (Eddie Walder)


Event 15 at Prescott on 04/09/2016

After reaching a personal milestone of 150 British hillclimb round wins in the opening run-off, an incredible 46 more than the next most prolific winner, his erstwhile friend and rival Martin Groves, Scott Moran went on to score a significant double win at Prescott. Significant, because with that second win the 40-year-old from Ludlow became only the second driver in hillclimb history to secure six British Championship titles, a tally only previously reached by the legendary Tony Marsh. 'The result was almost inevitable after this morning's run-off,' said his current rival Trevor Willis who had chased Moran hard all season, 'but we've had a great battle this weekend.'

'I saw the time that Trevor had set, two tenths quicker than my winning time this morning,' said Scott, 'and thought "I've got to beat that?"!' He did, by just six hundredths, to take the title in style although a second or third place would have done the job. He admitted that after his first run-off win at Harewood 13 years earlier, going on to take six titles was something he'd never envisaged.

The top three runners mirrored their championship standings in each run-off, so shadowing the two championship leaders all day was Wallace Menzies, spectacularly fast through Orchard after clocking the speed trap at 108mph. But with the title outcome decided, with four rounds remaining at Doune and Loton Park the hard-charging Scot could still deny Willis the series runner-up spot. The battle still rages for fourth overall, Richard Spedding and the incredible GWR Raptor hanging on to the position as he chased the three leaders home in the second run-off, as had his rival Dave Uren in the opening run-off. Apart from a drive chain breakage in practice, the Force turbocar driver enjoyed a relatively trouble-free weekend in the following an engine change after a cam chain had broken, with dire results, at Gurston the previous weekend. Just ten points behind Spedding and with neither dropping points, Uren's deficit, too, could be overcome in the remaining rounds. Another bonus for Uren was that after setting the pace among the forced induction 2-litres throughout during the class runs, he moved into the lead of the parallel Hillclimb Leaders Championship, a point clear of defending champion Colin Satchell.

Alex Summers' mount for the weekend was Graham Wynn's burly Gould-Cosworth V8, which he brought home seventh and fifth in consecutive run-offs and with Jason Mourant just bumped out of the points in the second run-off by Oliver Tomlin, he closed to within a point of his Jersey rival in their battle for the last 2016 'number'. Will Hall had a better weekend with the Force-AER, fifth and seventh places keeping him safely in the Championship top six ahead of a battle for seventh place on the table between 1600cc protagonists Sean Gould, Ed Hollier and Eynon Price. Points-wise, Gould came off best on the day as Hollier's opening run-off shot ended in a spin in the Esses due to a rear suspension breakage, fixed for the afternoon runs. But with a slightly different driving technique to his co-driver Gould, Price fell foul of the Prescott noise judges and was excluded from the second run-off results.

Avon Tyres/TTC Group MSA British Hillclimb Championship, Prescott

FTD: Scott Moran (3.5 Gould-NME GR61X) 36.25s

Championship run-off round 29: 1 Scott Moran (3.5 Gould-NME GR61X) 36.50s; 2 Trevor Willis (3.2 OMS-RPE 28) 36.60s; 3 Wallace Menzies (3.5 Gould-NME GR55B) 36.66s; 4 Dave Uren (1.3t Force-Suzuki PC) 37.50s. 5 Will Hall (2.0 Force-AER WH) 37.71s; 6 Sean Gould (1.6 Gould-Suzuki GR59) 37.84s; 7 Alex Summers (3.5 Gould-Cosworth HB GR55) 37.91s; 8 Richard Spedding (1.6 GWR Raptor-Suzuki) 38.06s; 9 Eynon Price (1.6 Gould-Suzuki GR59) 38.67s; 10 Lee Griffiths (1.3s OMS-Suzuki 25) 39.27s; 11 Paul Haimes (1.3t Gould-Suzuki GR59) 40.08s; Ed Hollier (1.6 Empire Evo-Suzuki) DNF.

Championship run-off round 30: Moran 36.25s; 2 Willis 36.31s; 3 Menzies 36.95s; 4 Spedding 37.19s; 5 Summers 37.36s; 6 Uren 37.37s; 7 Hall 37.57s; 8 Hollier 38.39s; 9 Gould 39.13s; 10 Oliver Tomlin (4.0 Pilbeam-Judd EV MP97) 39.23s; 11 Jason Mourant (4.0 Gould-Judd GR55) 39.70s; Price NTR.

Championship positions after round 30: 1 Moran 266pts; 2 Willis 239; 3 Menzies 207; 4 Spedding 137; 5 Uren 127; 6 Hall 127; etc.

The 'big three' - Trevor Willis, Wallace Menzies and Scott Moran after Scott's sixth Championship victory (Eddie Walder)

Moran lifts a wheel out of the Esses on his way to the 2016 title (Ian Beard)

Trevor Willis fought hard, finishing just six hundredths adrift of Moran's FTD (Eddie Walder)

Wallace Menzies could still challenge Willis for the Championship runner-up spot (Eddie Walder)


Event 14 at Gurston Down on 28/08/2016

'We might as well not have bothered to come!' joked British hillclimbing's top three contenders in the paddock after a competitive day at Gurston Down. Locked in a day-long place swapping battle during the two Championship run-offs, all three had scored an identical eighteen points at close of play. A typically hard charging run by top qualifier Trevor Willis in the opening run-off, bagged the win from Wallace Menzies by almost a second to leave Scott Moran third, a further half-second back. In the closing shoot-out, in the best conditions on a day of unpredictable weather, Moran stormed back to take FTD with a two tenths win from Menzies. Willis ran a mere four hundredths behind in third place with all three in the 26-sec bracket. Keeping a watching brief in fourth place each time, Jason Mourant mirrored his Wiscombe Park result in the Gould-Judd, regaining his tenth place on the Championship table from the absent Alex Summers.

Gurston Down's power slopes tend to favour the more powerful machinery and so it proved again, but with intermittent drizzle affecting the qualifying runs, more of the smaller cars qualified for the opening run-off. Bernard Kevill, in particular, was delighted to get into his first ever British shoot-out with the 1-litre OMS-Suzuki 28. He'd led the 1100cc class after the first runs as an early 'double driver,' before rain blunted the pace of the rest in this typically huge class. Three of the rapid 1600s, Ed Hollier, Richard Spedding and Sean Gould made the morning cut but missing was a disappointed Eynon Price, who twice failed to make the cut. Gould finished out of the points suspecting that their Suzuki engine was past its best. Gurston ace Hollier set the pace in the class all day and chased the V8s home for fifth in the opening run-off, but was the only 1600 to get in during the afternoon's drier conditions, eventually grabbing the final point for tenth place.

The forced induction 2-litres, spearheaded by Dave Uren, were expected to make a significant impression. But a dire day for Uren saw him fail to make the morning cut, the Force turbo skating head-on into the Karousel barriers during qualifying to the detriment of the front wing and a wishbone. With the car repaired for the afternoon runs he qualified seventh, but a loud bang over Burke's Rise and a finish speed of only 44mph during the run-off signalled severe engine problems, although with no immediately apparent damage Dave was still scratching his head in the paddock afterwards... Paul Haimes was in the points each time despite intermittent gearchange problems with his Gould GR59 turbocar but it was left to the Marsh brothers to provide the major class representation. Both finished in the points each time, chasing home Oliver Tomlin's Pilbeam Judd for sixth and seventh places in the closing shoot-out. This, the hundredth British Championship run-off to be held at Gurston Down, was led by for a time by Simon Marsh from his brother Peter - entirely appropriate as their late father Tony had helped design the layout of the hill which celebrates its 50th anniversary next year.

Of the remaining V8s, Terry Graves made the afternoon cut in his Gould HB, while Graham Wynn was in the points each time in his similar car, wryly observing that he must surely have got the award for the highest finishing pensioner!

Full results here.

Avon Tyres/TTC Group MSA British Hillclimb Championship, Gurston Down

FTD: Scott Moran (3.5 Gould-NME GR61X) 26.40s

Championship run-off, round 27: 1 Trevor Willis (3.2 OMS-RPE 28) 27.86s; 2 Wallace Menzies (3.5 Gould-NME GR55B) 28.03s; 3 Moran 28.51s; 4 Jason Mourant (4.0 Gould-Judd EV GR55) 28.74s; 5 Ed Hollier (1.6 Empire Evo-Suzuki) 29.27s; 6 Peter Marsh (1.3s DJ Firehawk-Suzuki) 29.66s; 7 Graham Wynn (3.5 Gould-Cosworth HB GR55) 30.20s; 8 Richard Spedding (1.6 GWR Raptor-Suzuki) 30.26s; 9 Simon Marsh (1.3s DJ Firehawk-Suzuki) 30.60s; 10 Paul Haimes (1.3t Gould-Suzuki GR59) 30.64s; 11 Sean Gould (1.6 Gould-Suzuki GR59) 31.29s; 12 Bernard Kevill (1.0 OMS-Suzuki 25) 33.68s.

Championship run-off, round 28: 1 Moran 26.40s; 2 Menzies 26.60s; 3 Willis 26.64s; 4 Mourant 27.63s; 5 Oliver Tomlin (4.0 Pilbeam-Judd MP97) 27.84s; 6 Simon Marsh 28.18s; 7 Peter Marsh 28.27s; 8 Haimes 28.41s; 9 Wynn 28.51s; 10 Hollier 28.67s; 11 Terry Graves (3.5 Gould-Cosworth HB GR55) 29.80s; 12 Dave Uren (1.3t Force-Suzuki PC) 31.10s.

Championship positions after round 28: 1 Moran 246pts; 2 Willis 221; 3 Menzies 191; 4 Spedding 127; 5 Uren 115; 6 Hall 96; etc.

Scott Moran took FTD and his fifteenth round win of the season (John Hayward)

Jason Mourant twice chased home the top three for the second time this year (John Hayward)


Event 13 at Shelsley Walsh on 21/08/2016

Highlight of the August Shelsley meeting was the battle for supremacy between Scott Moran and Wallace Menzies. Menzies finished a half second clear of the Championship leader in the opening run-off to set a time that would stand as FTD until the very last run of the day, when Moran snicked off a further three hundredths to win the second run-off and set the day's best time. 'I really had to dig deep for that one,' said Moran, 'especially as it was spitting with rain'. Light drizzle spattered drivers' visors throughout the second shoot-out, although times were unaffected as it immediately exaporated and the top four drivers were all in the 23-second bracket, as they had been in the earlier run-off held in sunshine. Barrelling through the Kink in a shower of sparks, Trevor Willis trailed the two leaders early on, but was edged out to fourth place in the afternoon by Dave Uren, the Wiscombe run-off winner delighted to set third FTD in the Force turbo which survived its second chain breakage of the season during the qualifying runs.

Will Hall was back on form with the Force-AER for fourth place in the opening run-off, but electronic problems struck yet again and he failed to make the afternoon cut after stalling the car after the start. 'We made the mistake of dropping the launch control by 400 revs to make it quicker off the line,' he said. Also charging up in a firework display of sparks, Alex Summers really enjoyed his first competitive outing in Mark Coley's Gould GR55, enthusing about the V6 engine which he will be eventually be using in his new DJ and finishing fifth each time as the quickest of the 24sec runners. That was enough for the defending champion to retrieve his tenth place on this year's table from Jason Mourant, the Jerseyman finishing eighth and sixth in his Gould-Judd.

Richard Spedding tried his utmost in the little Raptor-Suzuki, but despite being edged out to tenth in the morning shoot-out by Graham Wynn, ninth each time in the Gould-HB, the Yorkshireman got the better of class rival Sean Gould in the afternoon to snatch seventh place by seven hundredths, maintaining his fourth place on the series table ahead of Uren. Gould's co-driver Eynon Price had a fruitless day in their Gould-Suzuki, finishing out of the points each time, and the fourth 1600 racer to make the cut each time, Ed Hollier, fared little better. Just out of the points in the opening run-off, the Empire Evo driver stalled off the line with throttle electronics problems.

Avon Tyres/TTC Group MSA British Hillclimb Championship, Shelsley Walsh

FTD: Scott Moran (3.5 Gould-NME GR61X) 23.03s

Championship run-off, round 25: 1 Wallace Menzies (3.5 Gould-NME GR55B) 23.06s; 2 Moran 23.54s; 3 Trevor Willis (3.2 OMS-RPE 28) 23.86s; 4 Will Hall (2.0t Force-AER WH) 23.97s; 5 Alex Summers (2.5 Gould-Cosworth KF) 24.06s; 6 Dave Uren (1.3t Force-Suzuki PC) 24.07s; 7 Sean Gould (1.6 Gould-Suzuki GR59) 25.12s; 8 Jason Mourant (4.0 Gould-Judd EV GR55) 25.22s; 9 Graham Wynn (3.5 Gould-Cosworth HB GR55) 25.27s; 10 Richard Spedding (1.6 GWR Raptor-Suzuki) 25.35s; 11 Ed Hollier (1.6 Empire Evo-Suzuki) 25.49s; 12 Eynon Price (1.6 Gould-Suzuki GR59) 25.75s.

Championship run-off, round 26: 1 Moran 23.03s; 2 Menzies 23.22s; 3 Uren 23.55s; 4 Willis 23.67s; 5 Summers 24.19s; 6 Mourant 24.90s; 7 Spedding 25.04s; 8 Gould 25.11s; 9 Wynn 25.76s; 10 Simon Marsh (1.3s DJ Firehawk-Suzuki) 25.82s;11 Price 25.96s; Hollier DNF.

Championship positions after round 26: 1 Moran 228pts; 2 Willis 203; 3 Menzies 173; 4 Spedding 124; 5 Uren 115; 6 Hall 96; etc.

Scott Moran extended his championship lead with a win at Shelsley (Derek Hibbert)

Wallace Menzies chased Moran hard, finishing just three hundredths adrift for second FTD (Derek Hibbert)


Event 12 at Wiscombe Park on 31/07/2016

With Scott Moran missing his first British Championship event of the year, Wiscombe Park joint hill record-holder Trevor Willis knew that with two run-off wins at the Devon venue he could close to within a single point of series leader Moran's total. After setting the pace in practice, he qualified top for the opening shoot-out. In the run-off itself, he was well on course to achieve the first part of his ambition when in the fast, swerving dash up through the woods towards Sawbench hairpin, his OMS V8 snapped sideways and hit the bank. A front corner was torn off and Willis's motor sport was over for the day. 'It all felt perfectly under control and suddenly let go, said Trevor. 'After checking the damage I suspect the offside rear wheel broke up and pitched the car round.' His sole consolation was FTD, set during that opening qualifier, and with it Woolbridge MC's Sir Nick Williamson Trophy.

In a time just eight hundredths adrift of Willis's FTD, penultimate qualifier Wallace Menzies stormed the tight confines of Wiscombe Park to take his second run-off win of the year in the Gould-NME ahead of a close duel between Richard Spedding's tiny GWR Raptor and Dave Uren in the turbocharged Force-Suzuki. The battling trio were at it again in the second shoot-out but this time Uren, fired up after setting the top qualifying pace, saw his chance and with a brilliant drive that used every inch of Wiscombe's narrow, tree-lined tarmac ribbon, edged out Menzies by six hundredths to take a maiden British run-off win. 'I heard Wallace's split time over the PA, 'said Dave, 'and that spurred me on. I'm absolutely delighted to take my first win after a few problems this year.'

After coming so close at Harewood to his own first win, Spedding was disappointed to miss out once again, but with a second and a third, the Yorkshireman held on to fourth place on the series table, with Uren closing in to fifth as he leapfrogged the absent Will Hall. Fourth in each run-off, Jason Mourant had another good weekend in the white Gould-Judd and took over tenth place on the table from Alex Summers. The defending champion, confessing to 'just doing it for fun this year because I enjoy it', was happy enough with seventh and eighth run-off places and a another new class record in the much campaigned family DJ Firehawk 1100. Local man Ed Hollier chased the leaders home with fifth each time in the Empire Evo and Gould sparring partners Eynon Price and Sean Gould swapped sixth places, Eynon getting the edge in the second stanza after clouting the bank at Wis in the first one and scrabbling up for the final point.

Kelvin Broad scored the first British points for both himself and for the Pilbeam MP101 with ninth and tenth places while in his first British run-off appearance of the year, 1991 Leaders champion Mike Lee collected five points after scoring in each run-off. Unfortunately, despite climbing at record pace during the class runs, defending Leaders champ Colin Satchell was unable to retrieve his 2016 series lead from the absent Scott Moran since, as sole runner in his class, his potential score was drastically reduced.

Avon Tyres/TTC Group MSA British Hillclimb Championship, Wiscombe Park

FTD: Trevor Willis (3.2 OMS-RPE 28) 34.06s

Championship run-off, round 23: 1 Wallace Menzies (3.5 Gould-NME GR55B) 34.14s; 2 Richard Spedding (1.6 GWR Raptor-Suzuki) 34.63s; 3 Dave Uren (1.3t Force-Suzuki PC) 34.82s; 4 Jason Mourant (4.0 Gould-Judd EV GR55) 35.13s; 5 Ed Hollier (1.6 Empire Evo-Suzuki) 35.36s; 6 Sean Gould (1.6 Gould-Suzuki GR59) 36.16s; 7 Alex Summers (1.1 DJ Firehawk-Suzuki) 36.39s; 8 Mike Lee (1.6 OMS-Suzuki 2000M) 36.58s; 9 Kelvin Broad (1.3s Pilbeam-Suzuki MP101) 37.01s; 10 Eynon Price (1.6 Gould-Suzuki GR59) 37.48s; 11 Chris Guille (2.0 OMS-Vauxhall CF04) 37.52s; Willis DNF.

Championship run-off, round 24: 1 Uren 34.58s; 2 Menzies 34.64s; 3 Spedding 34.84s; 4 Mourant 35.19s; 5 Hollier 35.47s; 6 Price 35.68s; 7 Gould 36.11s; 8 Summers 36.28s; 9 Lee 37.21s; 10 Broad 37.25s; 11 Guille 37.26s; 12 Graham Wynn (3.5 Gould-Cosworth HB GR55) 38.06s.

Championship positions after round 24: 1 Scott Moran 209pts; 2 Willis 188; 3 Menzies 154; 4 Spedding 119; 5 Uren 102; 6 Will Hall 89; etc.

Dave Uren scored the first British run-off win of his career (Eddie Walder)

Wallace Menzies took the opening run-off win at Wiscombe (Eddie Walder)


Event 11 at Le Val Des Terres on 16/07/2016

Championship leader Scott Moran was back on winning form at the second of the two Channel Islands events, making up for last year's rare indiscretion on Guernsey's Le Val des Terres coast road with two identical runs for FTD and victory in both run-offs. Local airport fireman Darren Warwick, who won the second run-off last year after finishing second to Moran earlier on, was on top form once again and shadowed Moran each time, both runs just over a tenth of a second adrift of the Gould V8 in his Dallara-Vauxhall. With only four rounds on the board, Warwick already lies eleventh on the Championship table but with a busy programme of other events this year, including continental hillclimbs, that standing will be at best temporary.

In dusty conditions after recent rain on the public road course, Jersey's record pace was unlikely to be matched on the adjacent island, but after a superb top qualifier for the opening shoot-out, Richard Spedding made the most of the conditions to run third ahead of Wallace Menzies. As the field closed up in the afternoon he had to settle for fifth but with Will Hall absent, after being called home on urgent family business, Spedding overtook the Midlander to leave the Channel Islands in fourth place on the series table.

Despite the closeness of the competition, with the top five covered by less than a second each time, Trevor Willis could not match his Jersey form and had to settle for fifth and third places, finally edging out Menzies by six hundredths of a second. Eynon Price and Dave Uren enjoyed a see-saw midfield scrap, with Uren getting the verdict by just two hundredths for seventh place in the second shoot-out where local man Nick Saunders, always quick on his home hill, had the legs of them both by a tenth. Once again aboard the Firehawk-Suzuki, Alex Summers kept a watching brief to bring his total Channel Islands haul to nine points and retain his tenth place on the table. After being out of luck on Jersey, Paul Haimes edged out Paul Le Messurier's Lemtech-Suzuki for ninth early on and brought the turbocharged GR59 home in the points each time.

Inevitably, Moran and Willis left the Islands way out front in the Championship. But with Scott not attending the Wiscombe Park rounds in a fortnight's time, most of his 21-point lead could evaporate if Trevor maintains his usual form at the Devonshire hill.

Avon Tyres/TTC Group MSA British Hillclimb Championship, Le Val des Terres

FTD: Scott Moran (3.5 Gould-NME GR61X) 27.11s;

Championship run-off, round 21: 1 Moran 27.11s; 2 Darren Warwick (2.0 Dallara-Vauxhall F399) 27.24s; 3 Richard Spedding (1.6 GWR Raptor-Suzuki) 27.55s; 4 Wallace Menzies (3.5 Gould-NME GR55B) 27.91s; 5 Trevor Willis (3.2 OMS-RPE 28) 28.10s; 6 Eynon Price (1.6 Gould-Suzuki GR59) 28.21s; 7 Dave Uren (1.3t Force-Suzuki PC) 28.52s; 8 Alex Summers (1.1 DJ Firehawk-Suzuki) 28.62s; 9 Paul Haimes (1.3t Gould-Suzuki GR59) 29.37s; 10 Paul Le Messurier (1.4 Lemtech-Suzuki DB03) 29.58s; 11 Chris Guille (2.0 OMS-Vauxhall CF04) 29.80s; 12 Nick Saunders (1.6 Reynick-Suzuki) DNF.

Championship run-off, round 22: 1 Moran 27.11s; 2 Warwick 27.28s; 3 Willis 27.72s; 4 Menzies 27.78s; 5 Spedding 27.97s; 6 Saunders 28.56s; 7 Uren 28.66s; 8 Price 28.68s; 9 Summers 29.13s; 10 Haimes 29.24s; 11 Sean Gould (1.6 Gould-Suzuki GR59) 29.69s; 12 Guille 30.16s.

Championship positions after round 22: 1 Moran 209pts; 2 Willis 188; 3 Menzies 135; 4 Spedding 102; 5 Hall 89; 6 Uren 84; etc.

Scott Moran led the field throughout at Le Val des Terres (Eddie Walder)


Event 10 at Bouley Bay on 14/07/2016

Trevor Willis blitzed the opposition at one of British Championship hillclimbing's oldest venues, Bouley Bay, winning both run-offs with a time well inside Wallace Menzies' 2013 hill record. In a superb demonstration by hillclimbing's top contenders the old record was bettered no less than five times, Menzies himself and Scott Moran both inside it as they chased the OMS V8 driver home in the opening run-off, while both Willis and Moran stormed the hairpin-strewn Jersey road course at similar pace in the final shoot-out ahead of local driver Jason Mourant, delighted with his best-ever British performance in the ex.Lane/Merrick/New Gould-Judd. But top honours had already gone to Willis, whose decisive obliteration of the old mark by well over a second had been established by the conclusion of the opening run-off.

Menzies' final bid to regain his record was blown as a rear wheel nudged the high brick wall on the inside of the first bend, Café, in the afternoon shootout. With a deflating tyre, his pace was severely compromised and he finished out of the points. Another fine performance by Harewood hero Richard Spedding saw his tiny GWR Raptor on the tail of the leading three V8s and heading rapid Channel Islander Darren Warwick in the opening stanza, although Warwick's ex.Haimes Dallara-Vauxhall went one better in the afternoon, as did Will Hall in the Force-AER turbocar, and Spedding had to settle for sixth place. Dave Uren brought the Force turbo home seventh in run-off one, ahead of Mourant who was not yet in his stride, but a mistake at the notorious Radio Hairpin second time up left Uren out of the points behind Menzies' stricken Gould.

Continuing his 'laid back' season, Alex Summers was out in the family Firehawk 1100, lowering the 14-year-old class record by over threequarters of a second and making the cut each time. Both run-off shots were well inside his new record and the reigning BHC champion just failed to match the 1600 Gould of Eynon Price, back after a 5-year Channel Island lay-off, for the final point in the morning. Eighth in the afternoon, Summers closed to within four hundredths of his Welsh adversary as they held off Guernseyman Nick Saunders' Reynick-Suzuki and Sean Gould, making his first Channel Island visit for almost 30 years.

Avon Tyres/TTC Group MSA British Hillclimb Championship, Bouley Bay

FTD: Trevor Willis (3.2 OMS-RPE 28) 36.48s (outright hill record)

Championship run-off, round 19: 1 Trevor Willis (3.2 OMS-RPE 28) 36.48s; 2 Wallace Menzies (3.5 Gould-NME GR55B) 37.39s; 3 Scott Moran (3.5 Gould-NME GR61X) 37.47s; 4 Richard Spedding (1.6 GWR Raptor-Suzuki) 37.78s; 5 Darren Warwick (2.0 Dallara-Vauxhall F399) 38.05s; 6 Will Hall (2.0t Force-AER WH) 38.48s; 7 Dave Uren (1.3t Force-Suzuki PC) 39.10s; 8 Jason Mourant (4.0 Gould-Judd GR55) 39.22s; 9 Eynon Price (1.6 Gould-Suzuki GR59) 39.26s; 10 Alex Summers (1.1 DJ Firehawk-Suzuki) 39.32s; 11 Paul Haimes (1.3t Gould-Suzuki GR59) 39.75s; 12 Graham Wynn (3.5 Gould-Cosworth HB GR55) 40.87s.

Championship run-off, round 20: 1 Willis 37.14s; 2 Moran 37.57s; 3 Mourant 38.54s; 4 Warwick 38.58s; 5 Hall 38.74s; 6 Spedding 38.95s; 7 Price 39.31s; 8 Summers 39.35s; 9 Nick Saunders (1.6 Reynick-Suzuki) 40.08s; 10 Sean Gould (1.6 Gould-Suzuki GR59) 40.42s; 11 Menzies 41.71s; 12 Uren 49.54s.

Championship positions after round 20: 1 Moran 189pts; 2 Willis 174; 3 Menzies 121; 4 Hall 89; 5 Spedding 88; 6 Uren 76; etc.

Trevor Willis reigned supreme in Jersey (Eddie Walder)


Event 9 at Harewood on 03/07/2016

In a dramatic start to the second half of the season, Scott Moran denied local ace Richard Spedding his first ever British run-off win with a new Harewood hill record on the final run of the day. A mere hundredth inside his own mark set last year, it was Moran's third hill record and his eleventh run-off win of the season. GWR Raptor driver Spedding was on top form all day on his home hill, qualifying and finishing third in the opening shoot-out and after qualifying a whisker astern of Moran for the second one, was disappointed to lose out when the final run by the 5-times champion snatched away a possible maiden victory. 'I'll get one of those winners stickers one day!' he grinned. 'I had to go for it after seeing Richard's time', said Moran, who had been watching the digital display coming to the line. 'I've never been so quick round Quarry,' he admitted, after all but losing the Gould-NME round the tightening, blind right-hander before the finish.

Trevor Willis's commitment round the fast, sweeping Farmhouse bend earned him the opening win ahead of Moran, but even the 2012 champion couldn't match the inspired Spedding's time in the second run-off. Wallace Menzies and Will Hall swapped fourth and fifth places, Force-AER driver Hall happy with his first trouble-free weekend of the year in the car (apart, that is, from his faux pas at Barbon the previous day!). But Dave Uren had a terrible day in the Force-Suzuki turbocar, a recurrent wiring fault preventing the car from crossing the finish line on any run attempted by Uren and his co-driver Nicola Menzies. His failure to score points meant that Dave dropped two places on the Championship table, overhauled by Hall and Spedding.

Halfway through a laid-back season, Alex Summers had a great weekend in Simon and Peter Marsh's supercharged Firehawk-Suzuki. A weekend's steady development by the reigning British champion, driving on his own, transformed the car. He took FTD at Saturday's club event, before bagging sixth place in each of the two run-offs on Sunday. 'The difference between now and Saturday morning is like night and day,' he said after Sunday's event. 'The car now handles better than my own Firehawk did.'

Sean Gould and Eynon Price continued their evenly matched struggle in the GR59, and while classmate Ed Hollier split the pair with his Empire Evo in round 17 and led them both in round 18, that final shoot-out saw Gould and Price set identical times for a share of eighth place, a fitting result to end the weekend. Plagued once more by problems with his GR59 turbocar, Paul Haimes was forced to sit out the opening shoot-out after qualifying twelfth, leaving Lee Griffiths to secure the final point ahead of Simon Fidoe's Empire Wraith. A partial fix enabled Haimes to grab the single point later in the day at the expense of Graham Wynn, Fidoe non-starting with brake problems that had dogged the car all weekend.

Avon Tyres/TTC Group MSA British Hillclimb Championship, Harewood

FTD: Scott Moran (3.5 Gould-NME GR61X) 48.80s (outright hill record)

Championship run-off, round 17: 1 Trevor Willis (3.2 OMS-RPE 28) 49.25s; 2 Moran 49.64s; 3 Richard Spedding (1.6 GWR Raptor-Suzuki) 49.93s; 4 Will Hall (2.0t Force-AER WH) 49.95s; 5 Wallace Menzies (3.5 Gould-NME GR55B) 50.25s; 6 Alex Summers (1.3s DJ Firehawk-Suzuki) 50.59s; 7 Sean Gould (1.6 Gould-Suzuki GR59) 51.09s; 8 Ed Hollier (1.6 Empire Evo-Suzuki) 51.12s; 9 Eynon Price (1.6 Gould-Suzuki GR59) 53.11s; 10 Lee Griffiths (1.3t OMS-Suzuki 25) 53.68s; 11 Simon Fidoe (1.0 Empire Wraith-Suzuki) 54.66s; Paul Haimes (1.3t Gould-Suzuki GR59) DNS.

Championship run-off, round 18: 1 Moran 48.80s; 2 Spedding 49.58s; 3 Willis 49.95s; 4 Menzies 50.18s; 5 Hall 50.33s; 6 Summers 50.87s; 7 Hollier 50.97s; 8= Gould & Price 51.49s; 10 Haimes 51.79s; 11 Wynn 53.30s; Fidoe DNS.

British Championship positions after round 18: 1 Moran 170pts; 2 Willis 152; 3 Menzies 111; 4 Hall 78; 5 Spedding 76; 6 Uren 72; etc.

Scott Moran closed a dramatic second shoot-out with a new hill record (Eddie Walder)

Richard Spedding led the run-off until Moran's final run (Eddie Walder)


Event 8 at Barbon Manor on 02/07/2016

On the most hectic weekend on the British hillclimb calendar, the trans-Pennine north country double at Barbon Manor and Harewood, Championship leaders Scott Moran and Trevor Willis traded wins on Saturday''s Barbon visit as intermittent rain swept across the Cumbrian fellside venue. Willis got the better of the weather to set FTD in first qualifying on a damp track, but in the wetter run-off, a big tailslide exiting Lafone hairpin, yards before the finish line, blunted his attack on Moran''s time set moments earlier and the series leader took the win by four hundredths. Behind the wheel at Barbon for the first time in 28 years, Sean Gould took a fine top qualifying place for the second shoot-out, with Moran settling for a cautious seventh place in the batting order. But Willis made no mistakes this time. Spectacular as ever in the OMS V8 through the fast Richmond left-hander, he took the win from Wallace Menzies, who had shadowed the two series front-runners in his Gould-NME in the opening run-off. Another fine drive from Gould, the top 1600 runner on the day, put the bike-engined GR59 in third place, while Moran''s GR61X was left in a safe fourth place, there being no need for heroics as his series lead over Willlis was still 16 points as they left for the following day''s Harewood meeting.

Will Hall bagged a useful fourth place in the opening run-off,but it all went wrong in the second qualifying session as with only intermediates on the back, he got a wheel on the grass at Crabtree just after the start and spun the Force-AER into the barrier, fortunately without damage although he''d scuppered his chances of a run-off place. With fifth and sixth place finishes, Dave Uren maintained his edge over Hall on the Championship table and co-driver Nicola Menzies also made the cut each time, but Ed Hollier got the better of the Force-Suzuki turbocar in the second, wetter, shoot-out after just failing to qualify his normally aspirated Empire Evo-Suzuki for the opening bout.

His PCD Saxon sidelined with engine problems, Steve Marr was sharing Richard Spedding''s GWR Raptor for the weekend, qualifying the car for the opening shoot-out. Eighth place left Spedding in the top six on the table despite neither driver making the cut second time up. Paul Haimes took a couple of low scoring places, the occasionally recalcitrant Gould-Suzuki turbo trouble-free at Barbon, while Eynon Price made sure that the ''works'' GR59, shared with Gould, was in the points each time although in the constantly changing conditions, even his wet weather prowess didn''t allow him to capitalise on his early third place qualifier. Championship co-sponsor Graham Wynn kept his burly Gould-HB V8 in the series top ten with two ninth places. In his first ever British run-off, Darren Gumbley finished just out of the points in Simon Fidoe''s 1000cc Empire Wraith, leaving his co-driver to bag the final point in the closing shoot-out.

Avon Tyres/TTC Group MSA British Hillclimb Championship, Barbon Manor

FTD: Trevor Willis (3.2 OMS-RPE 28) 22.34s

Championship run-off, round 15: 1 Scott Moran (3.5 Gould-NME GR61X) 23.69s; 2 Willis 23.75s; 3 Wallace Menzies (3.5 Gould-NME GR55B) 24.18s; 4 Will Hall (2.0t Force-AER WH) 24.32s; 5 Dave Uren (1.3t Force-Suzuki PC) 24.64s; 6 Eynon Price (1.6 Gould-Suzuki GR59) 24.73s; 7 Sean Gould (1.6 Gould-Suzuki GR59) 24.86s; 8 Richard Spedding (1.6 GWR Raptor-Suzuki) 25.30s; 9 Graham Wynn (3.5 Gould-Cosworth HB GR55) 26.04s; 10 Paul Haimes (1.3t Gould-Suzuki GR59) 26.70s; 11 Nicola Menzies (1.3t Force-Suzuki PC) 27.74s; 12 Steve Marr (1.6 GWR Raptor-Suzuki) 28.47s.

Championship run-off, round 16: 1 Willis 23.40s; 2 Wallace Menzies 23.64s; 3 Gould 23.69s; 4 Moran 24.00s; 5 Hollier 24.16s; 6 Uren 24.23s; 7 Price 24.82s; 8 Haimes 25.02s; 9 Wynn 25.29s; 10 Simon Fidoe (1.0 Empire Wraith-Suzuki) 26.38s; 11 Nicola Menzies 26.51s; 12 Darren Gumbley (1.0 Empire Wraith-Suzuki) 27.45s.

British Championship positions after round 16: 1 Moran 150pts; 2 Willis 134; 3 Menzies 98; 4 Uren 72; 5 Hall 65; 6 Spedding 59; etc.

Trevor Willis set the pace at a wet Barbon (Eddie Walder)

Sean Gould was outstanding on his first Barbon drive for 28 years (Eddie Walder)


Event 7 at Doune on 19/06/2016

Rarely have two run-offs been as contrasting as those at the British Hillclimb Championship's first visit of the year to the daunting Carse of Cambus hill at Doune. In fine weather on Sunday morning it had all run according to the form book, with top qualifier and series leader Scott Moran taking the win from his 2016 'shadow' Trevor Willis. Cheered on by the crowd, local driver Wallace Menzies held off the increasing threat from Will Hall's sometimes troublesome Force-AER turbocar for fourth, while fifth place went to the first 1600cc racer home in a brave effort by constructor Sean Gould, who only a week earlier had missed the Loton Park rounds following a nasty hand injury sustained in an accident at work.

The afternoon run-off was very different. It was starting to rain as Gould's co-driver Eynon Price opened the action and running slicks on a now slippery track, he put four wheels off at the notorious East Brae. At unabated speed he pushed on to the top in the Gould-Suzuki, convinced that he'd blown the run. Next up, Simon Fidoe just failed to match the former rallyman's time in the little 1-litre Empire Wraith. But the next runner, John Mackenzie, was unfortunate to hit the barriers in his OMS-Suzuki. He was removed to hospital for a precautionary check and after a long delay for barrier repairs the run-off resumed in what was by this time heavy rain. With all runners now on full wets, none could match the times of Price and Fidoe and the Welsh former rallyman took the third wet-weather British run-off win of his career. Even a typically determined attack on the streaming wet tarmac by Willis could only net third place ahead of Menzies while with his healthy championship lead, Moran decided to err on the side of caution with a safe fifth place ahead of top 1600 runner Richard Spedding. Hall, though, was again out of luck, stalling the Force off the line in the wet and with all four wheels having crossed the line, recording a failed run.

Earlier, during the dry first runs, Steve Marr was pleased to qualify his PCD Saxon-Suzuki for the opening shoot-out, but disappointed to see his 1100cc class record blitzed by Alex Summers on another of his occasional 2016 drives, this time in the family DJ Firehawk. The defending champion's time qualified him eighth for the opening shoot-out, but crossing the line on his record-breaking run the car's gearbox cried enough and he was unable to take his place in the lineup. Marr's consolation prize was a double qualification and a subsequent four point total for the day. Another Scots ace, Les Mutch, brought his Raptor home sixth in the opening bout ahead of Dave Uren's Force. With seventh each time the Force turbo driver maintained his fourth place on the series table but, just three points behind, if Hall hadn't stalled out of the closing run-off things might have been different. The remaining runner, local driver Stewart Robb, made his annual British hillclimb appearance aboard his Pilbeam-Judd. He finished just in the points in the morning but decided not to run in the afternoon downpour.

Avon Tyres/TTC Group MSA British Hillclimb Championship, Doune

FTD: Scott Moran (3.5 Gould-NME GR61X) 35.51s

Championship run-off, round 13: 1 Moran 35.51s; 2 Trevor Willis (3.2 OMS-RPE 28) 35.99s; 3 Wallace Menzies (3.5 Gould-NME GR55B) 36.59s; 4 Will Hall (2.0t Force-AER WH) 36.91s; 5 Sean Gould (1.6 Gould-Suzuki GR59) 36.97s; 6 Les Mutch (1.6 GWR Raptor-Suzuki) 37.22s; 7 Dave Uren (1.3t Force-Suzuki PC) 37.53s; 8 Richard Spedding (1.6 GWR Raptor-Suzuki) 38.39s; 9 Steve Marr (1.0 PCD Saxon-Suzuki) 39.11s; 10 Stewart Robb (4.0 Pilbeam-Judd MP88) 39.17s; 11 Eynon Price (1.6 Gould-Suzuki GR59) 39.93s; Alex Summers (1.0 DJ Firehawk-Suzuki) DNS.

Championship run-off, round 14: 1 Price 43.14s; 2 Simon Fidoe (1.0 Empire Wraith-Suzuki) 43.29s; 3 Willis 44.93s; 4 Menzies 45.10s; 5 Moran 45.53s; 6 Spedding 45.58s; 7 Uren 46.74s; 8 Gould 47.05s; 9 Marr 54.70s; John McKenzie (1.6 OMS-Suzuki 2000M) DNF; Hall DNF; Robb DNS.

British Championship positions after round 14: 1 Moran 133pts; 2 Willis 115; 3 Menzies 81; 4 Uren 61; 5 Hall 58; 6 Spedding 56; etc.

Eynon Price took a career third British run-off win (Eddie Walder)

A record-breaking Alex Summers was forced to retire from the opening run-off (Eddie Walder)


Event 6 at Loton Park on 12/06/2016

On a day of treacherous track conditions, Trevor Willis's opening run-off win from a lowly sixth place qualifier was not entirely unexpected as the determined OMS V8 driver got to grips with a sinuous, slippery Loton Park. His main rival, Championship leader Scott Moran, failed by just two tenths to get on terms. The skies miraculously cleared for the second shoot-out when, in late afternoon sunshine and on an almost dry track, virtually every run was a new FTD. But once penultimate runner Willis had taken his run to top the charts, that was where it rested. Once again Moran failed to match his time, this time by just fifteen hundredths, and Willis had taken his first double win of the season. 'I realised I should be quicker round the bottom part of the hill,' said Trevor. 'I've been there so many times when Scott's just done enough on the last run so I had to set him a target!' Close at hand each time, Will Hall and Wallace Menzies swapped third and fourth places as they continued their Championship recovery with Hall's 1G launch matching Moran's as the best of the day. In between them on the series table, Dave Uren had a mediocre day with 8th and 7th in the turbocharged, bike-engined Force and now lies only two points ahead of Hall's 2-litre AER powered version.

Once again the 1600s showed well against the bigger cars, class winner Richard Spedding qualifying fourth and finishing fifth ahead of rival Eynon Price in the slippery morning runs, although as conditions improved for the final shoot-out, the press-on style of former rally man Price, whose driving partner Sean Gould was absent due to a hand injury, paid off as he reversed their positions. Ed Hollier, the third member of the leading 1600 trio, had to settle for exchanging finishing positions with Uren. Although his supercharged Force failed to make the cut in the afternoon, Lee Griffiths claimed the scalp of fifth fastest qualifier and eventual class winner Paul Haimes for ninth place in the morning. In the afternoon run-off's much improved conditions, Haimes' attempt at improving on his disappointing single point score for the day came to an end when the Gould turbo spun out, damaging the aerotunnel.

After finishing just out of the points in the morning, Jason Mourant's ninth place qualifier in the afternoon came to an untimely end when he lost control of the Gould-Judd after the finish line, hitting the tyre barrier to the detriment of the car's front end. So with one retirement and one spinner in the second run-off, everyone else would score. After finishing out of the points in the opening shoot-out, Championship co-sponsor Graham Wynn bagged ninth place in his Gould-Cosworth, but none was more delighted than Martin Jones. After a surprise win in what has become the biggest and most hotly contested class of the day, for 1100cc racers, against traditionally stiff opposition, Jones not only qualified for what was only his second ever British Championship run-off but also scored his first point.

Avon Tyres/TTC Group MSA British Hillclimb Championship, Loton Park

FTD: Trevor Willis (3.2 OMS-RPE 28) 46.15s

Championship run-off, round 11: 1 Willis 51.94s; 2 Scott Moran (3.5 Gould-NME GR61X) 52.15s; 3 Will Hall (2.0t Force-AER WH) 52.33s; 4 Wallace Menzies (3.5 Gould-NME GR55B) 52.66s; 5 Richard Spedding (1.6 GWR Raptor-Suzuki) 52.69s; 6 Eynon Price (1.6 Gould-Suzuki GR59) 53.81s; 7 Ed Hollier (1.6 Empire Evo-Suzuki) 54.14s; 8 Dave Uren (1.3t Force-Suzuki PC) 56.05s; 9 Lee Griffiths (1.3t OMS-Suzuki 25) 56.13s; 10 Paul Haimes (1.3t Gould-Suzuki GR59) 56.76s; 11 Jason Mourant (4.0 Gould-Judd EV GR55) 57.05s; 12 Graham Wynn (3.5 Gould-Cosworth HB GR55) 57.07s.

Championship run-off, round 12: 1 Willis 46.15s; 2 Moran 46.30s; 3 Menzies 47.11s; 4 Hall 47.84s; 5 Price 48.32s; 6 Spedding 48.49s; 7 Uren 50.24s; 8 Hollier 50.58s; 9 Wynn 53.35s; 10 Martin Jones (1.0 Force-Suzuki PT) 56.01s; Haimes DNF; Mourant DNS.

British Championship positions after round 12: 1 Moran 117pts; 2 Willis 98; 3 Menzies 66; 4 Uren 53; 5 Hall 51; 6 Spedding 48; etc.

Trevor Willis scored his first double win of the year at Loton (Jerry Sturman)

Championship leader Scott Moran had to settle for the runner-up spot each time (Jerry Sturman)


Event 5 at Shelsley Walsh on 05/06/2016

Scott Moran continued his march towards a potential sixth British title with another double win, this time at a scorching Shelsley, to bring his win total this season to eight. But with Trevor Willis shadowing him, as ever, at arms length another threat is beginning to emerge in the shape of Wallace Menzies. Back on top form with the re-engined Gould-NME, the Scot chased Moran home each time, putting pressure on him in the closing run-off by taking the lead with the day's best time so far. Moran responded in typical fashion on the last run of the day, another inch-perfect ascent on Shelsley's power slopes taking the win and FTD by seventeen hundredths. 'You've got to get the points while you can!' he said afterwards, fully aware of the mounting challenge from Menzies. After qualifying top for the morning shoot-out with third FTD, Willis got the OMS V8 well out of shape in the Esses and had to settle for third place. With the top three all finding more time in the afternoon the finishing order was the same, but Willis still holds a strong second overall on the table.

Dave Uren shaded out Will Hall by a hundredth before lunch to trail the leading trio, but with his Force-AER now apparently problem-free and, as at Gurston, topping the charts on outright speed with 147mph over the line, it was Hall's turn to chase the leaders in the second run-off. Despite qualifying fourth, Uren suffered another cruel blow when Force turbo's engine expired and he failed to make the startline, losing his third place on the Championship table to Menzies as a consequence.

After qualifying fifth for the opening run-off, a gearbox electronic glitch selected sixth out of Kennel in the opening run-off and Paul Haimes had to settle for tenth place, edging Lee Griffiths out of the points. But there were no such problems in the afternoon and he was happy with a strong fifth place aboard a Gould-Suzuki turbocar which at last seems to be realising its potential. Four 1600cc runners made the cut each time, class winner Ed Hollier nailing the Empire Evo to set the outright pace from Sean Gould by a couple of hundredths, although it was Richard Spedding who managed the biggest points haul with eight, one more than Eynon Price, which moved him back up to fifth on the series table. After heading the battling quartet in the opening run-off, Gould's challenge was blown in the final shoot-out after brushing the right-hand bank exiting the ultra high speed Kink. He made a miraculous recovery and pressed on, but finished out of the points. After clouting the bank at Top Ess in the morning and also dropping out of contention, Graham Wynn recovered to bring the Gould-HB home seventh in the afternoon ahead of Simon Marsh, who scored the first British points for his supercharged Force-Suzuki.

Avon Tyres/TTC Group MSA British Hillclimb Championship, Shelsley Walsh

FTD: Scott Moran (3.5 Gould-NME GR61X) 23.26s

Championship run-off, round 9: 1 Moran 23.25s; 2 Wallace Menzies (3.5 Gould-NME GR55B) 23.53s; 3 Trevor Willis (3.2 OMS-RPE 28) 23.78s; 4 Dave Uren (1.3t Force-Suzuki PC) 24.03s; 5 Will Hall (2.0t Force-AER WH) 24.04s; 6 Sean Gould (1.6 Gould-Suzuki GR59) 25.26s; 7 Eynon Price (1.6 Gould-Suzuki GR59) 25.29s; 8 Richard Spedding (1.6 GWR Raptor-Suzuki) 25.48s; 9 Ed Hollier (1.6 Empire Evo-Suzuki) 25.59s; 10 Paul Haimes (1.3t Gould-Suzuki GR59) 25.65s; 11 Lee Griffiths (1.3t OMS-Suzuki 25) 26.40s; 12 Graham Wynn (3.5 Gould-Cosworth HB GR55) 26.43s.

Championship run-off, round 10: 1 Moran 23.26s; 2 Menzies 23.43s; 3 Willis 23.71s; 4 Hall 24.53s; 5 Haimes 24.89s; 6 Spedding 25.15s; 7 Wynn 25.52s; 8 Price 25.57s; 9 Hollier 25.60s; 10 Simon Marsh (1.3s DJ Firehawk-Suzuki) 26.02s; 11 Gould 29.96s; 12 Uren DNS.

British Championship positions after round 10: 1 Moran 99pts; 2 Willis 78; 3 Menzies 51; 4 Uren 46; 5 Spedding 37; 6 Hall 36; etc.

After two runner-up finishes at Shelsley, Wallace Menzies is charging back up the British Championship table (Derek Hibbert)

Will Hall is also making up for lost time in the Force-AER (Derek Hibbert)


Event 4 at Gurston Down on 29/05/2016

With both drivers already firmly in charge in the British Championship standings, Scott Moran and Trevor Willis traded run-off wins at Gurston Down, where Moran had the last word takng the win and FTD in the closing shoot-out. In the opener, with both on identical times to the mid-way split at Karousel, Willis nullified Moran's power advantage on the fast upper reaches with a committed attack on the hill's twisty centre section to grab the win by seven hundredths. 'I thought I'd left the door open for him,' said Moran after winning the second bout by fifteen hundredths, 'but he didn't go through it!'

Having missed four rounds after his engine failure at Craigantlet, Wallace Menzies was back and on top form with a new Nicholson McLaren V8 to chase the two leaders home each time, moving back into contention with fourth place on the Championship table behind Dave Uren. The Force turbocar driver charged up the order despite a difficult weekend which had seen two chain breakages, the first in practice with the car in the hands of his co-driver Nicola Menzies - who went on to score for the third time this year with eighth place in the closing shoot-out - the second coming as Uren launched the car for the second run-off. Sterling work by Ian Dayson saw a new chain fitted in record time and Uren was able to take his run and complete a pair of fourth place finishes.

After a strong fifth place in the morning, just half a second behind the winner after a phenomenal Hollow Bend trap speed of almost 140mph, Will Hall, like Menzies, looked set to bounce back into Championship contention. But his tale of woe continued as the Force-AER locked up and speared the Ashes barrier head-on during second qualifying. Fortunately the damage appeared minimal but Hall's chance of a run-off place had gone. After another class win in the bike engined Empire Evo, Ed Hollier hung on to his fifth place on the British Championship table with a couple of mid-field finishes. In the top six each time, Jason Mourant figured well on only his second British outing in the ex.New Gould-Judd V8, while Paul Haimes was delighted with two points-scoring finishes in the previously recalcitrant Gould-Suzuki turbocar. After being eased out of the opening shoot-out by co-driver Sean Gould, Eynon Price turned the tables in the afternoon to bump Gould out of the points, levelling on ninth equal place with Graham Wynn who was now back in his GR55 V8 with replacement gearbox parts courtesy of Tony Wiltshire.

After electrical problems had stymied their bid for points in the opening run-off, Peter and Simon Marsh had to retire their supercharged Firehawk-Suzuki. This allowed Kelvin Broad, aboard the ex.Mike Tregoning Pilbeam-Suzuki 101, to make the afternoon cut on his debut in the car.

Full results here.

Avon Tyres/TTC Group MSA British Hillclimb Championship, Gurston Down

FTD: Scott Moran (3.5 Gould-NME GR61X) 26.10s

Championship run-off, round 7: 1 Trevor Willis (3.2 OMS-RPE 28) 26.12s; 2 Scott Moran (3.5 Gould-NME GR61X) 26.19s; 3 Wallace Menzies (3.5 Gould-NME GR55B) 26.50s: 4 Dave Uren (1.3t Force-Suzuki PC) 26.54s; 5 Will Hall (2.0t Force-AER WH) 26.63s; 6 Jason Mourant (4.0 Gould-Judd EV GR55) 27.84s; 7 Ed Hollier (1.6 Empire Evo-Suzuki) 28.41s; 8 Graham Wynn (3.5 Gould-Cosworth HB GR55) 28.47s; 9 Sean Gould (1.6 Gould-Suzuki GR59) 28.82s; 10 Paul Haimes (1.3t Gould-Suzuki GR59) 28.87s; 11 Peter Marsh (1.3s DJ Firehawk-Suzuki) 32.36s; 12 Simon Marsh (1.3s DJ Firehawk-Suzuki) 37.80s.

Championship run-off, round 8: 1 Moran 26.10s; 2 Willis 26.25s; 3 Wallace Menzies 26.73s; 4 Uren 27.05s; 5 Mourant 28.17s; 6 Hollier 28.62s; 7 Haimes 28.65s; 8 Nicola Menzies (1.3t Force-Suzuki PC) 28.80s; 9= Wynn and Eynon Price (1.6 Gould-Suzuki GR59) 29.02s; 11 Gould 29.40s; 12 Kelvin Broad (1.3s Pilbeam-Suzuki MP101) 30.60s.

Championship positions after round 8: 1 Moran 79pts; 2 Willis 62; 3 Uren 39; 4 Wallace Menzies 33; 5 Hollier 30; 6 Richard Spedding 29; etc.

Wallace Menzies was back in contention with the re-engined Gould (John Hayward)

Dave Uren survived two chain breakages to move up to third place on the Championship table (John Hayward)


Event 3 at Harewood on 08/05/2016

Scott Moran continued his winning streak at Harewood to make it five straight British Hillclimb run-off wins in a row, stretching his Championship lead over Trevor Willis to 17 points. 'I had to make him work for it!' said Willis after fighting back in the closing run-off, when he'd hurled the OMS V8 up on the penultimate run of the day to set the outright pace so far. But Moran effortlessly snicked a further eleven hundredths off his new target for yet another win by the most successful car/driver combination in the sport.

As Moran and Willis stretch their advantage in the title chase, their pursuers appear to be wilting under the strain. Although present at Harewood, Wallace Menzies was temporarily without a car as his engine problems at Craigantlet the previous weekend had proved terminal, although a replacement unit is a possibility. Perhaps the leading duo's greatest threat, he slipped down the table to equal seventh equal alongside Will Hall, another potential challenger who left Harewood with a zero score on the day. After a superb showing at Craigantlet where he'd put Moran under severe pressure, Hall's turbocharged Force-AER suffered an identical re-run of the throttle electronics problems at Prescott and slowed to a halt in the opening run-off and second qualifying. Dave Uren was the third top contender who'd made a fruitless trip to Yorkshire. He set a fine qualfying time in the morning, only to have it disallowed for exceeding the course limits at the notorious Quarry exit before the finish. An attempt to make amends in the afternoon failed when the turbo Force-Suzuki stuttered to a halt during second qualifying.

All this opened the doors for the smaller racing cars, particularly in the 1600cc class, whose drivers had a field day. After qualifying third for the opening shoot-out in his GWR Raptor-Suzuki, Richard Spedding even managed to topple Willis in the run-off itself for a career-best second place. Later, with a run at class-record-breaking pace in the second stanza, he chased Moran and Willis home for a fine third place in his GWR Raptor-Suzuki, delighted to move into third overall on the series table. Spedding's guest driver for the weekend, flying Scot Steve Marr, also got the car in the points in the afternoon. Ed Hollier's 'recce' trip to April's Harewood clubbie clearly paid off as he netted two fourth places in his Empire Evo-Suzuki to leave Yorkshire for the West Country holding fifth overall on the table. Although constructor Sean Gould just failed to edge out Oliver Tomlin's big Gould V8 for fifth place in the morning, the tables were turned in the afternoon as he demoted Tomlin to sixth.

Whether the 'smaller fry' will continue to make inroads on Gurston's power slopes in three weekend's time remains to be seen, but if their early season problems are sorted, you can be sure that messrs Menzies, Hall and Uren will be determined to redress the balance in Wiltshire.

Avon Tyres/TTC Group MSA British Hillclimb Championship, Harewood

FTD: Scott Moran (3.5 Gould-NME GR61X) 49.00s

Championship run-off, round 5: 1 Moran 49.22s; 2 Richard Spedding (1.6 GWR Raptor-Suzuki) 49.50s; 3 Trevor Willis (3.2 OMS-RPE 28) 49.66s; 4 Ed Hollier (1.6 Empire Evo-Suzuki) 50.65s; 5 Oliver Tomlin (4.0 Pilbeam-Judd MP97) 51.54s; 6 Sean Gould (1.6 Gould-Suzuki GR59) 51.67s; 7 Jason Mourant (4.0 Gould-Judd EV GR55) 52.55s; 8 Simon Fidoe (1.0 Empire Wraith-Suzuki) 53.90s; 9 Lee Griffiths (1.3t OMS-Suzuki 25) 53.93s; 10 Tina Hawkes (1.6 Force-Suzuki PC) 54.17s; 11 Eynon Price (1.6 Gould-Suzuki GR59) 55.89s; Will Hall (2.0t Force-AER WH) DNF.

Championship run-off, round 6: 1 Moran 49.00s; 2 Willis 49.11s; 3 Spedding 49.35s; 4 Hollier 50.34s; 5 Gould 51.85s; 6 Tomlin 51.86s; 7 Mourant 52.00s; 8 Price 52.74s; 9 Steve Marr (1.6 GWR Raptor-Suzuki) 52.78s; 10 Graham Wynn (1.3t Force-Suzuki PC) 52.99s; 11 Fidoe 53.91s; 12 Tony Hunt (3.5 Gould-Cosworth HB GR55) 54.14s; 13 Steve Owen (1.6 OMS-Suzuki 28) (1.1 OMS-BMW 28) 54.43s.

Championship positions after round 6: 1 Moran 60pts; 2 Willis 43; 3 Spedding 29; 4 Dave Uren 25; 5 Hollier 21; 6 Gould 18; etc.

Richard Spedding spearheaded the 1600cc charge at Harewood (Eddie Walder)

Ed Hollier joined Spedding's formidable attack (Eddie Walder)


Event 2 at Craigantlet on 30/04/2016

A double win at Craigantlet with two new hill records put Scott Moran firmly in the driving seat at the head of the British Championship. Early season problems for the opposition had a bearing on this, but a fourteen point lead after just four rounds is a good start in his bid for a record-equalling sixth title. Trevor Willis, as so often before, is in pursuit on the table, but gear selection problems for the first run-off on the Belfast road course led to the OMS V8 touring up in one gear to score the single point as the tenth and final qualifier. With the problem solved for his later shot, a strong second place gave him a single point Championship margin over the flying Dave Uren, third and fourth in the turbocharged Force and enjoying his most successful season to date.

The challenge from Wallace Menzies' Gould never materialised, for a camshaft rotating independently of the rest of the engine spelt dire engine problems during practice. Another potential challenger, Richard Spedding, retired his Raptor-Hayabusa with a chafed wiring loom blitzing the electrics to reduce the field to ten runners. But after his failure to score at Prescott, Will Hall was right back in the hunt. The turbocharged Force AER was at last on full song and after the only sub-2 sec launch of the day, Hall set a time to the halfway split at Mays' Cross that was even quicker than that set by Moran on his record-breaking FTD. At 126mph, the big Gould was marginally quicker over the finish but second and third run-off places put Hall's Force right back in the hunt with fourth equal in the Championship stakes.

The wide variety of cars making up the remaining six maintained their finishing pattern throughout, with the Gould of Alastair Crawford leading Graham Wynn, out in his 'second string' Force-Suzuki following his Gould-HB's CWP problems at Prescott a week earlier. Nicola Menzies scored her best ever combined result with sixth and seventh in the Force shared with Dave Uren, but perhaps the most significant result came from Scots journo David Finlay. His new class record in this weekend's Multi Car Hillclimb Challenge mount, a factory fresh Honda Civic Type R, celebrated his history making achievement earlier in the day as the driver of the first roadgoing production saloon to score points in the 69-year history of the British Championship!

Avon Tyres/TTC Group MSA British Hillclimb Championship, Craigantlet

FTD: Scott Moran (3.5 Gould-NME GR61X) 39.12s (outright hill record)

Championship run-off, round 3: 1 Moran 39.40 (hill record); 2 Will Hall (2.0t Force-AER WH) 41.16s; 3 Dave Uren (1.3t Force-Suzuki PC) 42.14s; 4 Alastair Crawford (2.8 Gould-NME GR55C) 42.95s; 5 Graham Wynn (1.3 Force-Suzuki PC) 46.15s; 6 Nicola Menzies (1.3t Force-Suzuki PC) 48.18s;7 Kevin Creaven (1.0 OMS-Suzuki SF42) 50.57s; 8 David Finlay (2.0t Honda Civic Type R) 55.81s; 9 Peter Herbert (3.6 Porsche 911) 57.09s; 10 Trevor Willis (3.2 OMS-RPE 28) 91.46s.

Championship run-off, round 4: 1 Moran 39.12s (hill record); 2 Willis 39.80s; 3 Hall 39.85s; 4 Uren 41.81s; 5 Crawford 42.84s; 6 Wynn 44.88s; 7 Menzies 46.96s; 8 Creaven 49.10s; 9 Finlay 55.21s; 10 Herbert 57.17s.

British Championship positions after round 4: 1 Moran 40pts; 2 Willis 26; 3 Uren 25; 4= Hall, Wallace Menzies and Alex Summers 17; etc.

Scott Moran extended his Championship lead with two new hill records at Craigantlet (Raceline Photography)

David Finlay and the Honda Civic Type R scored the first ever British Hillclimb points for a roadgoing production saloon (Raceline Photography)


Event 1 at Prescott on 24/04/2016

Former champions Alex Summers and Scott Moran battled it out at Prescott's opening Avon/TTC British Hillclimb event to share FTD, but this time driving different cars. In what it appears will be a one-off drive, Summers took Alastair Crawford's 2.8-litre Gould-NME to top spot in qualifying for the opening run-off, but in the shoot-out itself, he couldn't prevent Wallace Menzies taking his third consecutive Prescott run-off win in the red Gould-NME that he ran last year. Three hundredths adrift of his 2015 co-driver, Moran began his 2016 campaign quietly with third place in the ultra-successful GR61X, but his win in the afternoon run-off, with an identical time to Summers' opening qualifier, secured joint FTD and he left the venue with a one point lead in the series ahead of Menzies and Summers, who tied for second place.

Running smaller wheels and tyres on his OMS-RPE this year, Trevor Willis played himself in with fourth place in the morning, but after qualifying top in the afternoon ran a tenth behind Moran in the run-off to net a championship fourth place at the end. A fine fifth on the table, after finishing fifth each time in his normally aspirated GWR Raptor-Suzuki, Richard Spedding chased the big guns home with his tiny 1600cc machine to get the better of Dave Uren's turbocharged Force-Suzuki each time. After numerous winter modifications to his Gould-Suzuki including an F1 inspired front wing, Sean Gould traded seventh places with classmate Ed Hollier's also much developed Empire Evo which, together with two ninth places from Gould's co-driver Eynon Price, meant that three normally aspirated 1600cc cars featured strongly in the season's opening forays.

Will Hall had a miserable day, the turbocharged Force-AER retiring from the first shoot-out with throttle electronics problems and failing to make the second after they struck again during afternoon qualifying.

It's very early days yet, but the indications are that Moran will have a sixth title in his sights, challenged hard by Menzies and Willis. Willis could once again pose the major threat as after his one-off drive in the Crawford Gould, Summers has stated his intention to step down until his new DJ Firestorm-Opel V6 is ready and Menzies, too will be set to change course once his own new car, the Gould-Cosworth XD, appears.

Avon Tyres/TTC Group MSA British Hillclimb Championship, Prescott

FTD: Scott Moran (3.5 Gould-NME GR61X) and Alex Summers (2.8 Gould-NME GR55C) 36.61s

Championship run-off, round 1: 1 Wallace Menzies (3.5 Gould-NME GR55B) 36.84s; 2 Alex Summers (2.8 Gould-NME GR61X) 37.00s; 3 Scott Moran (3.5 Gould-NME GR61X) 37.03s; 4 Trevor Willis (3.2 OMS-RPE 28) 37.18s; 5 Richard Spedding (1.6 GWR Raptor-Suzuki) 37.82s; 6 Dave Uren (1.3t Force-Suzuki PC) 38.18s; 7 Sean Gould (1.6 Gould-Suzuki GR59) 38.63s; 8 Ed Hollier (1.6 Empire Evo-Suzuki) 38.09s; 9 Eynon Price (1.6 Gould-Suzuki GR59) 39.19s; 10= Alastair Crawford (2.8 Gould-NME GR55C) and Oliver Tomlin (4.0 Pilbeam-Judd MP97) 39.82; 12 Will Hall (2.0t Force-AER WH) DNF.

Championship run-off, round 2: 1 Moran 36.61s; 2 Willis 36.71s; 3 Summers 36.98s; 4 Menzies 37.15s; 5 Spedding 38.42s; 6 Uren 38.47s; 7 Hollier 38.80s; 8 Gould 38.85s; 9 Price; 39.20s; 10 Tomlin 39.68s; 11 Crawford 39.70s; 12 Lee Griffiths (1.3t OMS-Suzuki 25) 41.98s.

British Championship positions after round 2: 1 Moran 18pts; 2= Menzies and Summers 17; 4 Willis 16; 5 Spedding 12; 6 Uren 10; etc.

Scott Moran leads the championship after Prescott's opening rounds (Eddie Walder)

Alex Summers set joint fastest time with Moran in a borrowed car (Eddie Walder)

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