Christmas Stages– Barry & Michael Lindsay finished 18th OA and winning the class. Tim Finch finished 20th OA 7th in class in the JDM Motorsport Evo. Geoffrey Harkness & Caroline Lodge were 32nd OA 7th in class. Just behind were Michael Lawson & Nick Young in the Sierra in 33rd (6th in class). Nigel & Helen Harkness were 43rd (11th in class) Brian Hodgson navigated David Miller to 61st OA (16th in class) in the Mk1 Escort.
By Mark Talbot
The Jack Frost Stages was our first time ever competing in a car. Despite years of motorcycle racing the nerves came flooding back days before the event. The flurry of last minute preparation, issues with the car and then 6″ of snow to top it off whilst trying to load the service car and get the rally car on the trailer.
After a few hours sleep and a 4 o’clock start we made our way towards the A66 with fingers crossed it wouldn’t be closed. Fortunately it wasn’t and we arrived on time, only to realize how packed the service area was and how difficult it was to find a space. Pushed for time due to the car not starting after suffering Frost Bite during the night, we managed to be the last car to scrutineering with only seconds to spare. Read More
By Jon Stynes (Co-driver!)
After an eighteen year wait, it’s 5am on a frosty Sunday morning and we are setting off to the Jack Frost Stages for Kieron’s first rally in the driver’s seat (and dad in the silly seat!). The 205 has been prepared by Barrie Thomson at ALS Performance who is also servicing for the day, so we just have to arrive and have fun.
Kieron being his normal laid back self is showing no nerves, whereas I am slightly anxious to what is going to happen today and still wondering whether it’s too late to swap places! In reality he has only competed in autotests and has been on the road for 3 months mainly driving a 1.1 Metro. So sitting b ehind the wheel of a 200hp rally car is definitely going to be an experience.
Stage one, sitting on the start line, me tightening my harness one more time and Kieron giving it plenty of revs, 5,4 3,2,1, go! and we’re off. I was hoping for a cautious start from Kieron, but no, he was testing the track limits and his own ability straight off. Lap two of the stage saw us in the gravel at the end of the pit straight, but he kept it going and powered off at maximum attack up the back straight, locking the wheels at the the top corner and shunting a tractor tyre out of the way and destroying the front valance on the Pug. Next to go was my door as he attacked the bale chicane. By now I was glad to see the finish line. As we returned to the service area, Kieron’s comment was “don’t worry dad, I was just finding the limits”. I hope he realises it is the driver that does the repairs after the event!
By Barry Lindsay
After being announced ANECCC Champion and after the hard fought battle of 3 drivers all season I finally got my reward. The Jack Frost Stages were to be the SG Petch Prize drive and after a very interesting conversation was told it wouldn’t be the Evo that I had last year. So for 2016 I was to have the one that Steve Petch himself drove and had a more powerful engine, bigger brakes and a sequential gearbox. WOW that could take some driving I thought… Panic, for a minute. Then they agreed a test during the week before to get me comfortable with the car.
Testing.. Tuesday the week before. Teesside was the venue for the test 10am Myself, Dad & Caroline went over. Caroline was to miss the Jack frost for an important Rescue training course, so as 2nd placed Co-driver Caroline would get the honor of (have to put up with) quite a few laps of Teesside in the Evo with myself. I didn’t hear any complaints!
Seat fitting took a short while as ‘Short Arse’ wanted the seat forward, then up! Then to top it all when the seat was up & forward the seat belt had been trapped, so the seat was to slacken off again.
Once comfortable instructions were given on how to use the two levers in the middle. One goes back and forth. The other when you pull it the car goes round to face where you come from… Got that. Diff settings, Anti lag not allowed that (hmmm so they say) How to start it!
With Dad strapped in, so he can just see out, we ventured onto the track to warm it up and the tyres then 4 or 5 laps getting the hang of LHD.
Back in for a quick break and let them check some stuff then Caroline was strapped in. Another 4 or 5 laps and was getting the hang of it managing to get it drifting through a 90 left into 90 right over a crest.
Back into the service area Richie wanted us to go back out on new slicks and bed them in, they’ll be what you’re using on Sunday now that you’re up to speed in the car. I said I’d like to do some handbrake practice in the tight twisty go kart infield…Oh not with these.
So 4 steady laps later back in the pits they bolted the old tyres back on. Go and do your infield test! More play time… Handbrake and tight stuff was fun drifting round hairpins etc. but after a while it was time to call it a day before damage was done!.
The day… After an afternoon of snow the day before, getting to the rally looked like it could be fun but I was getting there whatever. Arriving at Croft for the meeting time, the car had been scrutineered so we went and signed on then had a quick look round bits of the track before getting ready. Tyres we had lots of options but settle for an Intermediate that would warm up quickly. First stage, surprised how much grip I had braking for the first two corners but then accelerating hard out of the third in front of the spectators the back came out to quick and we were facing the field a quick hard brake and spin it 360 and we were away now the tyres were warm! The rest of the stage was good, clear track no cars. Turned out to be third fastest only 5 seconds down and “ If Only… we hadn’t spun” Dad was impressed, shaking at the end but I’d been warned. Don’t get used with this.
New years eve can only mean one thing, Pirelli Autotest. This year saw an almost full entry, 19 drivers in a very varied selection of cars from MG Midget & Escort Mk1 to a BMW 5 series.
With 10 tests planned and a cracking entry, our marshals Michael Lindsay & Ian Robinson would be kept busy and only time for a quick brew while tests were changed round and walked.
First tests was the out going years route the 15. Jack Palmer from West Cumbria was soon showing the regulars that the Ka would be the car to beat with a 53sec. Barry Lindsay & John Ross were as close as you can get though on 54sec Then Andrew Graham on 55. Wrong tests for Joe Herring, James McWhir, James Boothroyd and John Barber.
Test 2 was a re-run. Jack was again quickest with 51sec ahead of Barry on 52sec then Kenton Pattison on 53 despite fighting back from hitting two cones on the previous test. Andrew Graham next on 54sec ahead of the Stephen Dixon now with a LSD in the Corsa.
Rally Wales – Carl & Rob Tuer took there rebuild MG Zr, but Retired on day 2
Galloway Hills – Rory Young & Allan Cathers finished 10th OA (3rd in class) in the Evo.
Grizedale Stages – Peter Taylor was back in the Focus after a few months away from rallying, and finished 4th Overall, (4th in class), Stuart Egglestone & Brian Hodgson finished 13th OA (1st in class) in the Astra. Barry Lindsay & Caroline Lodge finished 17th Overall (1st in class), Darren Martin & Martin Steele were 26th Overall (17th in class) & James Coxon navigated Mark Shaw to 34th Overall (3rd in class)
By Barry Lindsay,
Grizedale was the final round of the SG Petch ANECCC Championship. Three drivers were separated by 5 points, Steve Bannister, Barry Lindsay & Matt Smith. While in the co-drivers Caroline Lodge was 3rd behind Louise Rae & Giles Dykes.
In order to improve the Spadeadam pair knew when they entered that it had to be a class win…but then when the entry list went online they knew it was going to be difficult. Top 1600 on the entry list at 25 but the 206 had struggled against Alex Curran / Heather Grisedale in the rapid Corsa this year and they were Scottish 1600 champions down at Grizedale for a fun day!
The event was based in Skelweth Fold for the first time which made the Pre event more compact. The stage format was just the same, 2 Dunnerdale, 2 Grizedale, Service repeat 2 Grizedale, Finish. The previous wet weather had relented for the event and caught some out with a snap of frost, but this prevented the stages cutting up.
Barry & Caroline were on the pace straight away showing they were up for a fight, after the two short stages had a 3 second lead. A quick management service then a road section round Caroline’s old area.
Spadeadam members were also in their own battles after stage 2, Peter Taylor & Andrew Roughead were 2nd Overall 5 seconds behind in the Focus after a few months concentrating on a new side to the family business. Stuart Egglestone & Brian Hodgson were also getting back into it after crashing as Course car back in July but held a 2 second class lead. Darren Martin & Martin Steele were thinking they had chosen the wrong tyres. Mark Shaw & James Coxon were also finding the conditions tricky in the Sunbeam. Read More
By John Ross,
On the 23rd November a team of 8 Spadeadam members gathered to learn how to handle themselves on ice. The only thing was there were no studded tyres, revving engines or the smell of Castrol-R.
Earlier this year on “The Run To The Sea” organised by Helen, several silly beach games took place by a group of members way old enough to know far better. After playing beach football a rather daft game of throwing nicely shaped rocks into a ring shaped target developed. This was dubbed by Mike Lindsey as “Beach Curling”. This struck a chord with my wife Christine who over the last couple of weeks has spent more time at Lockerbie Ice rink than she has at home. Would any of those present be in an evening’s curling, proper curling on ice, rather than the mud and sand of the Solway at Southerness. The general consensus was yes.
Several weeks later Christine said, I have a session booked at the ice rink for SMC, so with the aid of social media our little group was brought together. Eric & Linda, Nigel & Helen, Caroline & Jonathan and Christine & myself met up at Lockerbie Ice Rink to learn how to slide on ice, sweep and deliver 8 stones into the house (the rings of the target marked out at each end of the sheet of ice. Read More
By Phil Jobson,
Having just missed out on a class win on the RAC Championship in 2014, though Arwel Jenkins won the Navigator Class, we decided to have a crack at the BHRC that for 2015 was being run by RAC Motor Club.
Historic rallying divides cars by year of manufacture. Pre-1968 being Category 1; post 1974 Category 3, but Snowy being a Mk1 Escort, we’re in Category 2. Each Category is further divided by engine size and number of cams etc. So in our Category we have C2 for 1968-1974 up to 1600cc; C31601-2000cc (Pinto etc) & C5 for 2000cc twin cams (eg. BDAs).
Following an eventful RAC Rally in 2014 where we finished 22nd despite running in the top twenty until a last stage puncture, Snowy was refettled in time for the first round. The beginning of February, South Wales was still in the grip of winter. Though the Llandeilo start venue was free from ice, the first stage higher up was treacherous. Nevertheless we pushed on as best we could and managed a Class C3 win and 35th overall. A solid start.
The gearbox received attention before the next round Mid Wales Stages. What a pleasure seeing the friendly face of Andy Graham at the foot of Pikes Peak. For those not so familiar, that stage starts uphill through wide open hairpins on perfect gravel surface. Escort country!! This time Arwel made sure I kept pedal to metal, preparation of the Notes was paying off. Although we were still suffering from gearbox maladies, we managed a 2nd in Class and 39th overall.
The gearbox stuck in 3rd for 3 miles on SS3 of the Pirelli, and we had a HUGE moment on SS4 (see You Tube), flat over crest, 50 into square right….. Apart from the laundry bill, this cost us only 55 seconds, and we secured 2nd in C3 and 32nd overall. We were leading C3 in the Championship. Read More
By David Love,
Thought this 1974 advert might stir the memories of our more mature members and surprise our younger ones. Look closely at the car (Morris Marina) and you’ll also see it didn’t have door mirrors either. We didn’t worry about what was behind us in those days! Come to think of it I don’t even pay a lot of attention now!
By David Love
You know how it is when you’re in the pub, conversation soon turns to the topic of cars and so it was for me the other week. I was leaning on the bar talking to Stephen the landlord when I asked him how his new car was going, “Great! It’s comfortable, fast and economical. I did 300 miles down country and it only cost me £40 to fill up. My last car would have cost double that!’ With that he put his hand in his pocket and pulled out a key fob. “Here give it a hurl and see what you think”. I grabbed the fob before he had time to come to his senses and change his mind. I know what you’re thinking ‘Who would let someone drinking in their pub loose in their new car?’ I wasn’t drinking in there, I was working, hard to believe I know! Okay, I also know what else you’re thinking now “Who would let David loose in their new car?’ “It’s keyless start so just press the start button and you’re good to go” said Stephen. With that Ben, who was working with me, and I shot out the door and into the car park.
There was our prey, the sun glinting off the immaculate silver body, ‘I hope it’s still immaculate when I get back’ was my first thought. My second thought was ‘Where the hell is the door handle?’
Ben, the mind reader, said ‘The handle’s hidden under the back edge of the door’. He was correct, a quick pull on the handle and the door rose majestically, ‘Cool’. Next problem, how to get in? The seat was the same height as the very wide sill, I tried left leg first but that made my eyes water so it was, sit on the sill, push back, drop into the seat then pull my legs in. Not very elegant but at least I was in. I would like to see a leggy super model get in. Boy, would I like to see that! I pressed the Start button and a blue rev counter and speedometer appeared on the LCD screen behind the steering wheel, ‘Cool’. Just then my phone rang, it was Stephen, “ Have you got it started?” ‘I think so but I can’t hear anything!’ “Is the Start button glowing blue?” ‘Yes’ “Then it’s started, when you get on a decent bit of road push the gear lever to the left, that’s Sports mode and the engine and the electric motor work together” ‘Cool’ Read More
We’re delighted to report that an SMC Member has won The Clubmans Challenge of the British Historic Rally Championship along with Class C3 and finished 9th overall Driver in the BHRC 2015.
“It’s been a superb season, despite an awful Trackrod Rally final round where we picked up two punctures, having to stop and change the second one, and suffering with a steering rack held in by Jubilee Clips for half of the mileage.
“The BDA is being readied to fit over the next couple of months ready for another assault on the BHRC (& possibly the BHRC Tarmac too) in 2016. “