2022 results and event summaries
I was invited to be part of the show at Car Fest south this year (www.carfest.org) and drive in front of a 75000 audience over the 3 days at Jody Scheckter's Laverstoke Farm in Hampshire.
This event has been running for 11 years and raised more than £20M for charity and Giulia and I had a fantastic 5 days, joined by friends and Sponsors. We had access to side front of stage and our own guest bar in front of the 25,000 capacity crowd each night.
I was particularly excited about getting onto the Chris Evans Breakfast show, as I had offered him a drive in my car. He had a seat fitting, but I sensed he was nervous, and in the end not surprised when he didn't drive. His son Noah was a lovely lad and so knowledgable about cars. I had James Martin's £7M of Ferrari and GT40 in the paddock next to me, and I was pleased to put on a good show and enjoyed being the fastest car there. I also have been invited back for 2023!
Kirkistown, Northern Ireland
I hadn't been across the water for 2 years, so looked forward to this event, especially as my wife was coming and we made a weeks holiday after the the event - lovely place, highly recommended.
The racing was good, and of the 4 run off over the weekend, Terry took 3 and I got my second of the season. To be fair, the Lola was for combat for the run off I won, but at least I had some stiff ecoboost competition to overcome!
Cracking circuit at Lydden, with undulations, fast flowing bends and hairpins. Terry Holmes, Lola Judd 3.5 litre was in fine form and took the first run off win by only 0.05secs from Matt Hillam.
In qualifying for the 2nd run off, Terry left the track at well north of 100mph and did a long run on the grass but returned to tarmac without anything more needed than an underwear wash! however the car was out of action for the run off and Matt took this, and Steve Broughton, sharing the same car was 0.03secs faster than me in third! So close, a PB and a good day for all.
In order to not get rusty, and test the modifications and repairs after Pembrey, I had an afternoons testing at Llandow in South Wales and a club sprint the following day. I was joined by fellow 2 litre drivers Mike and Gary who travelled all the way up from the tip of Cornwall. Testing was useful, car felt great, I still got car sick. Martin joined me the following day and a FTD was a nice boost. The car ran great, despite a continuation of the dry sump tank leak found at Pembrey and SBD sent some overnight traction control upgrades that worked very smoothly.
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Pembrey Club layout
A day to forget! whilst preparing for the event I noticed on the Monday that a rear shock absorber was leaking significantly, but great service from Steve Pickering, a Koni specialist in Lincolnshire meant I had it repaired in a day. unfortunately I put the springs back on at the wrong length and it took two runs to find the and roughly sort the error out as the car handled awful. 6th in the run off was all I could manage. Terry Holmes took the win, but we had some Jubilee paddock celebrations at least!
To keep up the seat time, and also it is another great track, I entered the club event at Hethel - the lotus test track in Norfolk. Again, a PB, but got pipped to 2nd overall by Pete Goulding! - no photos as cameras are banned
It was the coldest night in Wales for 7 years and got down to 0.8 degs C inside the camper van!
While practice and qualifying went well and I set a new PB again, both run off I made a few 'overdriving' mistakes and ended 5th both times. Matt Hillam in the SBD car shared with Steve Broughton took both wins. Again all tight at the top!
Wet! excellent start as I enjoy the slippery conditions, but this dried out for first run off, but was pleased with 3rd overall, just 0.04 behind Steve Broughton who was very pleased to be at the sharp end and his new upgrades were paying off.
The second run off went even better and I took a narrow win! it was a three way tie at the top after the first two rounds
A relaxed club level sprint to hopefully get competition ready before the opening British round at Anglesey. Great venue and rather scary, but managed a 2nd overall behind Pete Goulding who came second in the BSC last year, so not too shabby!
Blyton Park testing
No dramas, car ran fine, I got car sick - nothing unusual there! New trailer is great.
Following last years success, I adopted the same philosophy of maintenance and reliability, so the car was split to get access to the clutch which was upgraded with parts from SBD, and everything gone over with a fine tooth comb! The rear uprights had new bearings and the inners were cracked in multiple places. New brake discs all round also.