This weekend the MSA British Hillclimb and Hillclimb Leaders Championships made their annual visit to Wiscombe Park in Devon, for the next rounds of these two closely fought championships.

Many of the competitors encountered horrendous traffic queues travelling down on Friday afternoon; the M6 and M5 in particular were badly affected. With it having been the first weekend of the school summer holidays, everyone had taken to the roads!

For Lee Griffiths this was his maiden visit to Wiscombe, though his journey of over nine hours from Yorkshire may make him think again before embarking on another trip to Devon. Lee will be pleased with his and the car's performance. The OMS 25 1300t completed four practice runs and two timed runs, getting quicker each time, Lee's best run time 38.20s placed him fourth in class and added to his Leaders Championship points tally: all in all a successful event. Hopefully the journey home will be less troublesome.

OMS 25 1300t Lee Griffiths: photo T Wilson

Joining Lee in the up to 2 litre racing car class were two other OMS cars. The first driven by a father and son pairing, Geoff and Chris Guille, who came over from Guernsey with their Vauxhall powered OMS CF04. Like Lee, Chris was faster on each run, his last climb of the day being his quickest 36.53s, to secure second place in the class. Trish and Terry Davis completed the OMS crew in this class, driving their OMS CF09 powered by the 2.0L TKD engine. Again both drivers bettered their times with each climb.

OMS CF04 Geoff Guille: photo T Wilson

The 1100cc racing car class fielded its now familiar large number of entries:15 this weekend. Following one or two failed runs during practice, two of the Empire cars didn't make it to the start of timed runs. 2015 British Hillclimb Champion Alex Summers, driving the family DJ racing car, dominated this class from the off. His winning time 36.21s, was some 7/10ths ahead of second placed Adam Steel 36.93s, in the Martlet.

Mike Lee had an excellent meeting in his 1600cc OMS 2000M, with both of Mike's class runs qualifying him for run off places. In the morning run off he finished 8th and in the second run off he finished 9th overall.

OMS 2000M Mike Lee: photo T Wilson

BHC challenger Trevor Willis (OMS 28 V8) started the weekend well. As the outright hill record holder (33.92s) and with a record of fine wins at Wiscombe, he was a strong favourite to win rounds 23 and 24 of the British Hillclimb Championship and possibly lower the hill record too

OMS 28 V8 Trevor Willis: photo T Wilson

Trevor dominated practice and his opening salvo 34.06s, showed he meant to win today. As top qualifier for round 23, Trevor would be the last car to run. Three drivers recorded 34 second times: Dave Uren 34.82s, Richard Spedding 34.63s and Wallace Menzies 34.14s. Fastest to the split Trevor was on a charge, when suddenly a rapid tyre deflation on the fastest section of the hill, caused the car to hit a bank and come to a halt. Game over for Trevor, with Wallace taking the win in round 23. Trevor's qualifying time did however, set fastest time of day and win class L; some comfort for the Worcestershire driver.

The reason for the tyre deflating so rapidly was not clear. Speaking to Trevor this evening he said he will have a better understanding of what happened once he gets the car home and is able to examine the damage more carefully. Thankfully the damage was confined to wishbones, a wheel and the upright so the car will be out again at Shelsley Walsh for rounds 25 and 26 of the championship in a few weeks’ time.

To view the results click here and to see the BHC points table click here.

Date: 31/07/2016 | Author: L.Owen