What a Difference a Day Made

Doune Hillclimb

Avon Tyres/TTC Group MSA British and Hillclimb Leaders Championships

Guyson Scottish Hillclimb Championship

MJ Engineering Lowland Speed Championship

June 2014 no.2

Outright Hill Record Smashed

For the first time in recent years the weather at Doune was warm and dry for the duration of the event. This track consistency allowed drivers to push hard during Saturday practice, with some cars running inside class records, it set the scene for some sparkling performances in the timed runs.

As Doune is arguably the most challenging of all the hills on the British Championship scene, it takes nerve and confidence in a car, for drivers to be quick from the off here. Speaking with OMS 28 driver Trevor Willis after Saturday's practice session, he commented that with the weather having been good there had not been the usual runs in damp or wet conditions that allow drivers to familiarise themselves with the hill and build up their speed before taking a quick dry run.

Once the competition commenced on Sunday class records began to fall and it quickly became apparent that the outright hill record could well be reset too. As drivers lined up for the first of the British Hillclimb Championship top 12 run offs, pit crews and spectators watched to see who might break the hill record. Trevor only managed to qualify 5th fastest, so needed to put in a special run to finish higher than his qualifying place. An error at the top of East Brae put him momentarily on the grass, but it was sufficient to lose him time and the clock stopped on 37.69 seconds: slower than his qualifying time of 36.98. After the run off he said he had carried much more speed through the lower reaches of the hill and this extra speed at East Brae caught him out leading to the grassy excursion. His time placed him 6th and only gained 5 championship points, not what he had hoped for.

Two litre driver Jos Goodyear had already set a new class record on his timed run; having wiped a full 2 seconds from the previous mark. The agile car swept up the hill to set an unbelievable time of 35.36 seconds: 0.25 seconds inside the hill record. However the record would only be held briefly when last man to run Scott Moran who up until a few moments ago was the hill record holder, took his run. He stopped the clock at an astounding 34.99 the first person ever to run sub 35 seconds at Doune.

The excitement of the mornings' run off continued in the afternoon. With cloud having moved in and temperatures falling, the Clerk of the Course was keen to get the run off completed quickly in case it should rain during the runs. Trevor was 4th fastest qualifier and needed a good run to make up the mornings result. He stopped the clock at 35.50 seconds a personal best time and he was in the lead with three more drivers to run. Will Hall's time of 35.99 was also a PB, but didn't topple Trevor from the top spot. Then Jos took his final run of the day. The clock stopped at 35.05 an unbelievable time for the supercharged 1300cc car and a full second inside the class record he had set earlier in the day. With Scott still to run had Jos done enough to score his first win of the season? It seemed not, Scott lowered his morning hill record time further to 34.76 seconds, almost a full second below the outright hill record at the start of the day.

What a meeting, with the top three drivers in the second run off all running below the hill record at the start of the day to score an additional championship point each and an outright hill record that had been re-set three times during the day.


600cc Racing Car Class

Steve Owen was back at Doune again, this time for his 47th consecutive British Hillclimb Championship meeting at the venue. Having first competed at Doune in 1990 Steve hasn't missed a British Championship meeting there since. He was reunited with the diminutive 600cc OMS Hornet he drove last season, along with his co-driver for the weekend Mike Fitzsimons. The class win went to Steve with a personal best time for this car of 45.34 seconds. Mike improved his time on each run, just missing a sub 50 second run by 2/10ths.

1100cc racing Car Class

The ever popular 1100cc class is extremely well supported in Scotland and as the meeting was a round of two Scottish Championships, many of the Scottish competitors were at today's meeting.

OMS drivers included Fergus Duncan OMS 2000M, Colin Graham OMS PR; with George Richardson a non-starter in his OMS PR.

1600cc Racing Car Class

This class fielded three new OMS drivers; John Mackenzie drove his ex-Sarah Brehaut/Neville Rollason OMS 2000M whilst father  and son duo Gary and Danny Dickson drove their ex-James Blackmore OMS 25.

John's fastest time was 41.66 seconds and possibly a personal best for him. Danny is a B licence holder having only recently begun hillclimbing and this his second visit to Doune with the car. Danny's best run was a 40.51 which placed him fourth in class. Gary's best time of 39.04 seconds placed him second in class to British Championship top 12 runner Richard Spedding on a 38.13 and ahead of George Coghill Jnr on 39.44 seconds. Had Gary been registered for the British Hillclimb Championship he would have qualified for both of the top 12 run offs.

2000cc Racing Car Class

Only one OMS car competed in this class: Neville Rollason in the supercharged OMS 28.

This was Nev's first visit to the hill with his new car and his first for a number of years. The car ran faultlessly all weekend with Nev improving his time on each run.

He finished on a PB of 42.44 which placed him 5th in class ahead of local drivers Scott Brownlee and Nicola Menzies.



To view results please click here.

To view British and Leaders Championship positions click here.

Date: 23/06/2014 | Author: L.Owen