Things That Make You Go Hmmm...

Doune Hillclimb in Scotland hosted its first meeting of the 2012 Avon Tyres British Hillclimb Championship and TTC MSA Leaders Hillclimb Championship at the weekend. Lothian Car Club who organise hill climbs at Doune, have resurfaced the track for 2012 and the weekends national meeting was the first time the venue has been used since the work was completed.

Any new surface presents a challenge to drivers due to its unknown characteristics and quite often levels of grip increase leading to class and hill records being reset. Unfortunately for Doune the unseasonal weather we have experienced this summer followed the competition to Scotland. Heavy rain fell during Saturday practice and through Saturday night leaving a wet track with low level grip for Sunday morning practice and the event.

The meeting was punctuated from beginning to end by cars going off the track, many of which incurred heavy damage leading to a number of retirements. The organisers and barrier repair team were kept busy all weekend retrieving cars from the Meadow and the top of East Brae, or rebuilding the famous Doune Armco that lines the lower reaches of the climb.

Some OMS drivers did not escape without damage; Lee Griffiths was caught out at Garden Gate in the changing greasy conditions during Sunday morning practice. His OMS 25 hit the barriers heavily on the near side resulting in suspension and wheel damage that could not be repaired at the event. Lee's co-driver Steve Owen was generously offered a drive in the Summers' family OMS 1100CF along with Alex Summers after Griffiths' 25 was sidelined. The event marked the 45th consecutive national meeting that Steve has competed in at Doune and he did not wish to break this unique record. Steve said "The Summers' kindly offered me a share drive with Alex after Lee's accident. In view of the difficult conditions I just wanted to score a time and finish the event, so that my run of 45 meetings would not be broken". At the prize giving Steve was presented with a trophy to mark his record.

Dougie Brown in his OMS 2000M set a good time in the morning timed runs placing him second in the 1100cc single seater class. Unfortunately for Dougie he had a failed run in the afternoon sustaining damage to the car but managed to hold onto his 2nd in class. Richard Matossian running in the sports libre class also failed to reach the finish in the morning class runs in his OMS sports car resulting in his retirement from the meeting.

Trevor Willis on the other hand did manage to complete the meeting without any failed runs or damage to his OMS 25. This was an achievement for Trevor as he has only been to one other Doune British Hillclimb Championship meeting during the last 10 years when he has not damaged his car in some way.

Both Avon MSA British Hillclimb Championship run offs saw a mix of 1600cc and unlimited single seaters qualify. Trevor Willis in the V8 PowerTec OMS 25 finished second in both run offs to reduce the gap between himself and Scott Moran at the top of the championship leader board: Scott could only manage 3rd and 4th place on the day.

For those drivers and organisers that stayed for the prize giving in view of the very late finish, they were rewarded with the sun breaking through to bathe the hill in warm evening sunshine. That evening we walked the hill up to the finish straight to take in the spectacular views across the Trossachs, why could the day not have been this good.... Hmmm.



The results can be found at:

Date: 18/06/2012 | Author: L.Owen