By David Love
Well, I’m back to ramble on a bit more and it’s all Helen’s fault! When I told her at the club night that I was hoping to write some rubbish for the newsletter she actually looked pleased, that’s when I realised how desperate she was for something to put in the newsletter.
I never realised that the MSA was in the furniture removal business until they pulled the rug from under the feet of the BRC organisers by cancelling the championship for 2015. It would appear that very little thought was given to the consequences of cancelling it. It is not just undermining the hard work nurturing sponsors and supporters put in by all the organisers over the years but it also has a big impact on the host towns. Even though the BRC was ailing the financial boost it generated for local businesses was still substantial and much needed in the present economic climate, therefore it is not just the sport that suffers the local community is also affected. There is also the worry that the championship will not return and if it does will it be greeted with apathy. The MSA may only have one chance to get it right and on past performance I’m not holding my breath.
What about The Pirelli I hear you ask, well one of you must be asking that! The rally has existed in one form or another since 1975 and has even weathered 2 cancellations due to foot and mouth. Do you think the MSA could finish it off? Not if Brian Kinghorn has anything to do with it! For those of you that don’t know Brian is the Chairman of the organising committee and the main contact for sponsors and suppliers to the rally. He’s been involved in the rally for more years than he would no doubt care to remember and is determined not to go down without a fight. He told me that his first reaction on hearing of the championships cancellation was that “We’d had a good run and maybe it was time to call it a day” then he got angry and decided that it wasn’t up to the MSA to decide when our rally was finished. He’s been working hard behind the scenes and hopefully will soon be able to confirm details of the 2015 Pirelli Rally. In the meantime enjoy a photo of Malcolm Wilson, winner of the 1980 event at Carlisle Airport .
Reading David Coleman’s article in last month’s newsletter brought back more memories of the good old days that had been lost in the mists of time. I can still picture him in the rear view mirror of the Audi sliding from side to side. That’s what happens when you have leather seats and no seat belts. It’s good to know that I was instrumental in introducing him to hobby that has given him so much pleasure. Motorsport depends on long time enthusiasts like David to keep the sport alive, people who are in it for enjoyment rather than for out and out glory. They may put a lot of money into it but more importantly they put their heart into it. Of course coming to Spadeadam Motor Club meant he was off to the best possible start.
If any of you read Pacenotes magazine you may have been unfortunate enough to see my picture in it recently. I won the Marshal’s draw, a year’s subscription to Pacenotes, on the Greystoke Stages and they insisted on taking a photo of me being presented with the prize. I did offer a substitute for the photo in the form of a slim, blonde twenty two year old but when they discovered his name was Ben they lost interest. I enjoy marshalling on the Greystoke as the action is fairly constant. Ben Conroy, Eric Ritchie, Chris Walker and I ran 5 Flying Finish and Stop Line Controls on the day, with the only drawback being that we didn’t have time to fry bacon.
This past weekend Barry Armstrong, Ben and I went to run the FF and Stop Line on the Drumjohn stage of the Merrick. At 5:45 in the morning Barry arrived and as we were transferring his gas cylinder and camping stove to my car he uttered the words that would bring tears to any Marshals eyes “S**t, I’ve forgotten the bacon”. No time to go back for it so we had to hope that some unsuspecting pig would wander into the road at the opportune time. We arrived at Ben’s house, phoned him to say we were there only to be greeted with the drowsy words “Damn, my alarm hasn’t gone off”. A surprisingly short time later he dragged himself into the car. I told him of the bacon disaster only for him to respond, “I’ve got bacon. I always have bacon! The day was saved! I’d forgotten Ben’s definition of a BLT. ‘Bacon Layered with bacon, Topped with bacon. The bun is optional’. I can’t remember much about the day but the bacon rolls were good.