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2017 Speed Race Reports

Championship sponsored by Bill Rawles Classic Cars and Peter May Engineering

Round 15 - Prescott - 1 October 2017

(Words by LC Branch, Pics by Jackie Baker + Pete Walton + Trish C-P)

On to the final round of the season and where better to have it than Prescott, one of the top hill climbing venues in the UK.  Situated just north of Cheltenham in the picturesque Cotswold hills, this superb hill climb track tests all the driver's skills and unsurprisingly is extremely popular with both drivers and spectators alike.  Unfortunately the weather was expected to be wet and windy, so this put off quite a few of the spectators but not us hardy hill climb types.

As far as the Healeysport championship was concerned, the top three places in the Sprite and Jensen Healey classes were decided before this final round, but there was only two points between the top three drivers in the Big Healey class  (Trish C-P 77pts, Richard Mason 75pts and Paul Baker 75pts), even though Trish would not be running at Prescott.  So there was all to play for at Prescott and the tension in the paddock was evident.

The organisers had agreed for us to title each class in the programme as the "Allan Cameron Memorial" in memory of our old friend and ex Comp Sec at Prescott and we were fortunate that the family were present and both of Allan's sons could take part with us in the cars that Allan knew very well.

Twenty three drivers were expected but health and family issues forced Ed Giles, Tom Walker and Pat Cooper to pull out leaving us with a handsome grid of 11 Sprites and 9 Big Healeys.  In the Sprite class we had Claire Giles co-driving with Joe Mackrell in Joe's Frogeye and the father and son duo of Andrew and James Taylor in their square bodied Sprite.  Also in the class were Phil Gardner - out for his first competitive event in his freshly prepared Sebring Sprite (pictured right), Murray Wakeham out for his annual run in his Ashley Sprite, Ian Grainger in his W&P bodied Sprite, Neil Cameron in his Arkley Sprite and the season's top trio of Steve Casson in his Sprinzel Coupe, Colin Gale in his very green Frog plus David Abram in the very quick Sebring Sprite.  All we needed was a Lenham and a WSM for a full set!

In the Big Healey class, Drew Cameron was driving his late father's well known 'Red Don' Mk2 tri carb (pictured below), Grant Marshall was in his BT7, Derek Job in his 100/6, Will Richards in the much uprated Mk1, Huw Edwards in his BJ8, Pete Walton in his BT7, John Ducker in his 100/4, Paul Baker in the Mk3 and lastly, Richard Mason in his well known Mk2.

At the driver's meeting with the Clerk of the Course, it was made clear that the track was very slippery, so everyone was told to take it easy.  As our two classes went down to the start line for our first run, the rain came down in earnest making the track very tricky indeed.  For our second practice run the track had dried a little so was running a little quicker.  In the Sprite class, Colin Gale lead the way with a 58.48 from four cars in the 59 sec bracket - Murray Wakeham in 59.09, Dave Abram in 59.15, Neil Cameron in 59.53 and Joe Mackrell in 59.93.  Then came James Taylor in 60.72, Claire Giles in 61.65, Steve Casson in 64.48, Andrew Taylor in 65.47, Ian Grainger in 67.80 and Phil Gardner still trying to learn the track in awful conditions with a 76.23.

In the Big Healey class, Richard Mason lead the way in 58.52 secs, with Grant Marshall a whisker behind in 58.63 and Paul Baker further back in 59.50.  Pete Walton did a 60.55, Derek Job a 65.59, Will Richards a 66.13 and John Ducker in 66.94.  Unfortunately a spring broke in one of Huw Edwards Webers resulting in a throttle jammed wide open at Semi Circle bend - he did well to stay on the track.  Drew Cameron was also having fuelling issues with 'Red Don' so did not get a time.

During the lunch break Huw Edwards car was recovered (see drivers pushing Huw back to the paddock), whereupon Huw decided to retire the car.

After lunch the timed runs got underway and as there had been no more rain since the cloud burst before first practice the track was dry in places yet damp in others.  The drivers therefore had to decide how fast they could go yet they knew that any error of judgment would result in a trip to an Armco barrier and some expensive damage.

In the Sprite class, it was Dave Abram who, as he had done most of the season, pulled out the quickest time of 53.04 from Joe Mackrell in 53.96, Murray Wakeham in 54.22, then Steve Casson leapt up the leaderboard with a 54.26, Neil Cameron went wide at Pardon but managed a 55.05, then possibly an over-cautious Colin Gale in 55.09, James Taylor in 55.86, Andrew Taylor in 59.00, Claire Giles in 59.11, Ian Grainger in 66.16 and finally Phil Gardner knocked over 8 secs off to record a 68.02.

Next up were the Big Healeys and it was Paul Baker who took the lead with a 52.94 - just 0.30 over his personal best time in the dry at Prescott. (click here to see in-car video)  Grant Marshall was next in 53.37, over 2 secs quicker than his personal best time.  Richard Mason was a whisker behind in 53.61, then Pete Walton in 54.60, then three drivers in very close order - Will Richards in 58.39, Drew Cameron in 58.64 (finally getting the engine to run cleanly) and Derek Job in 58.89, with John Ducker down to 60.23.

As the cars lined up for their final run of the day/season, the rain had held off and the track was therefore drier/quicker.  As the Sprites were led off by Claire Giles she took over a second and a half off her first run time to record a 57.55. Next was Neil Cameron and he did the same to finish with a 53.53.  Then Phil Gardner was next to head up the track and he finished the day with an excellent 66.98. Next was Murray Wakeham, who was as keen as ever to win the class - unfortunately, he hit the Armco barrier in the Esses but continued up the hill at racing speed. Unbeknown to Murray, the accident with the Armco had deranged his front near side steering so when he got to the right hander at Semi Circle the car went straight on and over the edge where he finished up in the tyre wall at the bottom of the hill near the return road.  The red flags came out whilst the marshals recovered Murray to the medical tent for a check over and his car to the paddock.  Murray was fine apart from a sore back.  This caused a delay of twenty minutes and in that time the rain had started to fall albeit lightly.  The next four Sprites all went quicker James Taylor in 54.25, Ian Grainger in 65.80, Steve Casson in 54.06 (click here to see Steve's run) and Colin Gale knocked over 1.5 secs off to finish with a very good 53.54.  Dave Abram (pictured right) went fractionally slower in 53.08 as did Joe Mackrell in 54.80 but Andrew Taylor was the last Sprite up the hill ending with his quickest run of 58.47.

The Big Healey drivers had been watching all this unfold from the start line paddock area and could see the rain falling.  Paul Baker (pictured right) did a 53.11 on his last run, fractionally slower than his first run time of 52.96.  Richard Mason leapfrogged into second place with a quicker time of 53.02 to take second place just ahead of Grant Marshall with a 53.14 (click here to see in-car video of his run).  Pete Walton went faster with a 55.31 as did Will Richards to end with a very good 57.92.  Derek Job went faster with a 58.49 but Drew Cameron went slower on his last run with a 59.57.  Finally, John Ducker broke the 60 second barrier at Prescott for the first time when he recorded a 59.82 in his Healey 100.

So, the finishing order of this scratch event was:

Sprite Class: 1st Dave Abram, 2nd Neil Cameron, 3rd Colin Gale, 4th Joe Mackrell, 5th Steve Casson, 6th Murray Wakeham, 7th James Taylor, 8th Claire Giles, 9th Andrew Taylor, 10th Ian Grainger and 11th Phil Gardner

Big Healey Class: 1st Paul Baker, 2nd Richard Mason, 3rd Grant Marshall, 4th Pete Walton, 5th Will Richards, 6th Derek Job, 7th Drew Cameron, 8th John Ducker 9th Huw Edwards (retired)

As it was the last race of the season which coincided, as last year, with Pete Walton and Paul Baker's birthday, cake and bubbly was on offer for all the drivers, partners, friends and others who had watched the day unfold.  (the excellent Chocolate cake was supplied by Pete's wife, Vicki)

Overall, during the 2017 season we have had more than our fair share of good weather, really close racing and most importantly, good camaraderie and fun.  Let's hope we have more of the same for 2018.

Click on the links to see the full results from this and all events this season.  To see all the pictures, in-car and outside videos go to our Gallery page.  If you want to see the sprint and hill climb records for each class and venue, then go to  the Big Healey and Jensen Healey records and the Sprite records pages.

Want to start Sprinting and Hill Climbing?

If you own a Healey or Jensen Healey and you like what you see on this website and want to find out more then click here to take a look at our Beginners Guide.  If you want to get involved, then send an email to Paul Baker our Championship Organiser at paulbaker51@yahoo.co.uk   New drivers are always made very welcome.

 

Round 14 - Goodwood - 23 September 2017

(Words by LC Branch, Pics by Jackie Baker)

We all headed south for our annual pilgrimage to Lord March's historic circuit just north of Chichester in West Sussex.  Goodwood is typical of the circuits built after the war, using the track that enabled the fuel trucks to get around the old WW2 grass airfield without getting stuck in the mud, with fast and flowing bends, a real challenge but also a delight on a warm and sunny day in September, as we experienced.

We expected to have nine drivers - the five Sprites of Garrow Shand, Kevin Rowe, Steve Casson, Colin Gale and David Abram (pictured right at the chicane), plus the four 3000's of Trish C-P, Grant Marshall, Paul Baker and Pete Walton.  However, Grant Marshall's tow car decided to breakdown the day before the event and could not be repaired in time so he had to scratch from the event.

This was our first time out with the Sevenoaks and District Motor Club and all was going well until we noticed that our Healeysport class, based at the furthest point from the start line, had not been called to the start area for our practice run.  A quick check by KJ C-P (all initials in their family) and we just managed to get back into our allotted space before the first batch went off for their first timed runs.  Should have realised that there was no Paddock Marshal keeping the drivers in order!  After that we kept a close eye on the running order.

Off went the Sprites for their practice, consisting of a standing start lap followed by a flying lap.  David Abram lead the class with a time of 105.58 from Colin Gale in 113.86, Steve Casson in 117.73, Kevin Rowe in 123.01 and Garrow Shand in the 1098cc Sprite in 145.03.  Then the 3000's went out but clearly all was not well as Trish C-P (pictured right) came back in after her first lap with a slightly rearranged front end following a brush with the tyre wall at St Mary's.  After a trip to the Doctor, Trish was deemed to be fine but the damage to her car forced a retirement.  Such a shame after only one lap and so reminiscent of Derek Job's brush with the tyre wall at St Mary's only two years ago - this time leaving us with only two 3000's in the class.  Also, Pete Walton came back to the paddock complaining of a mis-fire after the double apex Lavant bend.  So Pete began by checking his carbs for fuel starvation until he realised that although his fuel gauge had been reading half full, a quick check with Rob Mackie's trusty measuring stick proved that he was running low on fuel.  So Trish supplied the much needed fuel for a small fee and Pete was out racing again sans mis-fire.

After lunch, the timed runs got underway and in the Sprite class Dave Abram provided a master class in how to hustle a Sprite around this fast track.  He opened with a 101.81 - just outside the record - then finished with an excellent 101.01 to beat the existing track record by nearly half a second.  Colin Gale opened with a 109.18 but finished with a very good 108secs dead.  Steve Casson opened with a personal best time of 110.08 which he could not improve on with his second run.  Kevin Rowe opened with a 118.47 but also went slower on his second run.  As did Garrow Shand as he opened with a 136.52 and was a fraction slower on his last run.

In the Big Healey class, we were now down to two cars, but never mind the quantity it was the quality that mattered as Pete Walton (pictured right on the start line) took nearly two secs off his pb and over a second off the course record with a superb 101.75, then went slower on his second run. Paul Baker opened with a 105.10, some two secs off his pb then finished with an even quicker time of 104.77.

All the drivers were offered the chance of a third run, but due to a big accident early on by a Honda S2000 driver the run was curtailed by the organisers.

The finishing order of this scratch event was:

Sprites: 1st Dave Abram, 2nd Colin Gale, 3rd Steve Casson, 4th Kevin Rowe and 5th Garrow Shand

3000's: 1st Pete Walton, 2nd Paul Baker and 3rd Trish C-P (retired)

So a great day's sprinting at this fabulous circuit, super weather and two class records - not bad eh!!

Our last event of the season takes place at the prestigious Prescott hill climb near Cheltenham and we have an excellent entry of 23 Healeys including the famous Allan Cameron car "Red Don" driven by his son Drew - so be there if you can

Click on the links to see the full results from this and all events this season.  To see all the pictures, in-car and outside videos go to our Gallery page.  If you want to see the sprint and hill climb records for each class and venue, then go to  the Big Healey and Jensen Healey records and the Sprite records pages.

Want to start Sprinting and Hill Climbing?

If you own a Healey or Jensen Healey and you like what you see on this website and want to find out more then click here to take a look at our Beginners Guide.  If you want to get involved, then send an email to Paul Baker our Championship Organiser at paulbaker51@yahoo.co.uk   New drivers are always made very welcome.

 

Round 13 - Gurston Down - 10 September 2017

(Words by LC Branch, Pics by Jackie Baker)

With only five Healeysport entrants at Wiscombe, Gurston fared little better with only ten drivers deciding to take part with seven Sprites and only three Big Healey drivers.  This was a surprise to those taking part, as we usually manage to field an average of 15 cars for this popular target time event.  Fortunately, we had the returning and effervescent Robin Johnson in his restored and now very yellow Frogeye, but with a few electrical issues to resolve - see pic right of him being pushed to the start line.

The weather forecast for the weekend was for wet and windy weather and we were not disappointed. 

The paddock layout was also a surprise, as the five Sprites were supposed to be on the grass near the start line but heavy rain on Saturday night consigned that plan to the waste bin and the five cars were spread around the paddock, where ever there was a space on tarmac.  So the temporary focus for the Healeysport drivers - in other words, where Colin's scoreboard resided -  was under Joe Mackrell's easy up next to the Paddock office.

With dual drivers - James Taylor and Claire Giles in batch one, this left Trish C-P to lead out batch two, followed by the two big un's driven by Pat Cooper and Paul Baker, and the remaining Sprites of Ian Grainger, Robin Johnson, Joe Mackrell, Steve Casson (car now fixed after his Loton off) and Andrew Taylor sharing with son James. 

Getting off the start line proved to be quite a challenge, even with the car pointing down hill, and showed the drivers that the rest of the track was going to be very slippery.  So all the drivers took it carefully and left it to the second practice run to go a bit faster.  In the Sprite class it was Andrew Taylor leading the way with a 41.02  just ahead of Robin Johnson in 41.10, James Taylor in 41.53 and Joe Mackrell in 41.79.  Steve Casson was next in 42.74 with Claire Giles improving with a 45.44 from Ian Grainger down to a 49.36.

In the Big Healey class, Paul Baker led the way with a 40.91 from Pat Cooper in 41.41 and Trish C-P in 45.19.

As the Healeys lined up after lunch for the timed runs, the heavens decided to open and those in batch two fared worse than the two dual drivers in batch one.  In the Sprite class, it was that old 'new boy' Robin Johnson leading the way with a creditable 43.53 to be just ahead of James Taylor with a 43.63.  Claire Giles was next with a 45.38 to beat co-driver Joe Mackrell with a 46.82, Steve Casson with a 50.46 and Ian Grainger with a 52.94.  Practice leader Andrew Taylor went off the track at Karousel and removed the timing system temporarily, so clearly had to rely on his second run time to get a position.

In the Big Healey class, Paul Baker continued to be the quickest with a careful 42.37 (check out his in-car video footage - shame he didn't put his windscreen wipers on for the whole run so that we could all see where he was going!!) from Pat Cooper in an eventful 43.56 (Check out Pat's in-car video to see some quick reactions and nifty car control in these difficult conditions) and Trish C-P in a 47.63.

On to the final run of the day and the weather took a turn for the worse which resulted in only three Sprite drivers improving on their first run times.  They were: Joe Mackrell who posted a 45.72, Steve Casson with a 49.27 and Andrew Taylor with a 51.74.  None of the Big Healey drivers could improve on their first run times.

So once the actual times had been compared to the drivers target times the finishing order was as follows:

Sprite class: 1st James Taylor (pictured below receiving his award), 2nd Claire Giles, 3rd Ian Grainger, 4th Robin Johnson, 5th Joe Mackrell, 6th Steve Casson and 7th Andrew Taylor.

Big Healey class: 1st Paul Baker, 2nd Trish C-P and 3rd Pat Cooper (pictured right).

It was a shame that the weather played such a part in the proceedings this weekend with both Wiscombe and Gurston affected, but it should be remembered that this was only the second weekend of 2017 that we have experienced wet weather after only one brief shower at Shelsley - so not so bad really.

Let's hope Glorious Goodwood lives up to it's name for our last sprint of the season on Saturday 23 September - so be there if you can.

Click on the links to see the full results from this and all events this season.  To see all the pictures, in-car and outside videos go to our Gallery page.  If you want to see the sprint and hill climb records for each class and venue, then go to  the Big Healey and Jensen Healey records and the Sprite records pages.

Want to start Sprinting and Hill Climbing?

If you own a Healey or Jensen Healey and you like what you see on this website and want to find out more then click here to take a look at our Beginners Guide.  If you want to get involved, then send an email to Paul Baker our Championship Organiser at paulbaker51@yahoo.co.uk   New drivers are always made very welcome.

 

Round 12 - Wiscombe - 9 September 2017

(Words by John Ducker and pics by John Ducker, Patrick Forrester and Colin Gale)

Five get wet at Wiscombe

The famous five arrived at Wiscombe Park in Devon for the MGCC south west centre hill climb to a very mixed weather forecast. Claire Giles, Colin Gale, Joe Mackrell, John Ducker and Robin Johnson paddocked their cars at the bottom of the grassy hill (John on his second attempt after sliding past on his first attempt). The paddock has a tarmac uphill only track and all downhill traffic is on the grass. The muddy hollows presented a very slippy obstacle which the hard working marshals managed to keep everyone moving through.

The hill is 915 mtrs and after the Esses features a very tight right hairpin called Sawbench, which is a 1 in 6.9,castle straight, then a tight left hairpin called Martini - yes please! - around which the finish line quickly appears.

Joe (dual driving his frogeye with Claire) led us into first practice on the dampish track with a 58.40.  Claire followed with a 59.52. John produced a steady, yet misfiring, 63.81.  Robin, first time out since 2014, did a rough running 65.61 and Colin leading us with a 56.38.... As the weather became more showery and the offs increased, the organisers cancelled second practice in favour of the first timed run before lunch.

On a slightly drier track  Claire, led away and sideways at the finish collected a small dent and a 57.05, for second place on target time - see in-car video. John, on a rerun, having replaced "experimental" rich needles back to standard and cleaned plugs solving the misfire ran 58.32 (a PB and 0.63 quicker than last year). Joe, with a winning time of 53.57.  Robin's very light and fresh yellow frogeye ran a quicker 58.49 after an electrical refresh by Joe ousted the gremlins. Last out was Colin who achieved a 56.94 and collected the same rear wing dent as Claire and in the same spot at Martini just before the finish. The track was tricky with some parts drier in the sun and other parts very greasy.

As we stopped for lunch the heavens opened and talk of the previous weeks' event at Wiscombe being abandoned due to rain made the rounds. With the rain easing after lunch the second timed run commenced. We were hoping the 70 odd cars in front of us would improve the track. Everyone was slower except Robin, with gremlins slain all around him, ran an excellent 56.31 in the wet for second place. Joe ran 55.79 to take the double (scratch and target) - see in-car video. Claire 60.24, Colin (who did a three point turn at Sawbench just for fun) 65.96, and John, with windscreen wipers on, a cautious 63.50. Shortly after, as the rain started to come on again, and with accidents at "the gate" the meeting was abandoned for Health and Safety reasons. More fun was then had at the awards ceremony in the beer tent, hosted by Robin, and the joyous task of loading cars on the wet grass.

Claire presented the prizes and the results were - Sprites Scratch: 1st Joe Mackrell; 2nd Robin Johnson; 3rd Colin Gale and 4th Claire Giles. Sprites TT: 1st Joe Mackrell; 2nd Claire Giles; 3rd Colin Gale and 4th Robin Johnson. Big Healey Scratch and TT: 1st John Ducker. A special mention in despatches for the Marshals and Officials who kept the cars moving in very muddy slippy conditions and endured the weather like the heroes they are.

Rounds 10/11 - Loton Park - 27/28 August 2017

(Words by LC Branch, Pics by Jackie Baker)

The last of our double header weekends saw the Healeysport championship cars at the fabulous Loton Park hill climb, west of Shrewsbury in Shropshire. Expectations were high for some good times and possibly a broken record or two as the weather was expected to be dry and sunny and the track had been re-laid earlier in the season.

The format followed the previous two double headers, with a scratch event on the Saturday and a target time event on the Sunday.  For Saturday, we had the Sprites of Messrs.' Abram, Gale, Casson and Mackrell, with Claire Giles co-driving with Joe Mackrell.  The Big Healeys included Mason, Cooper, Richards (Jnr), Edwards, Cecille-Pritchard and Baker in their 3000's, with John Ducker in his 100 and David Lane, in his Jensen Healey, was at Loton for his first time.

Our first practice run showed how much quicker the track was running as many of the drivers either matched or beat their previous best times.  So as the cars lined up for our second practice run expectations were high for some fast times over the weekend.  In the Big Healey class Richard Mason posted a 61.50 which would beat the existing hill record by nearly a second, but as practice times count for nothing he would have to replicate the run during the timed runs for the record to count.  All bar one of the drivers beat their personal bests (pb) on that run - had they peaked too soon! 

David Lane in his Jensen Healey (pictured right) was learning the track as it was his first time to Loton and there is a lot to learn, but David was going quicker with each run.

In the Sprite class, Claire Giles was the only one to break her pb as the rest must have been saving themselves for the afternoon, all except Steve Casson who must have been trying a little too hard and ended up going off the track after Loggerheads, hitting the marshals post and demolishing two of their fire extinguishers in the process.  Body damage was slight but a badly deformed front wheel pointed to possible suspension damage.  A check over and a few changes convinced the Scrutineer and the Clerk of the Course that the car was safe to continue.

Lunch coincided with a wedding at the local church and no engines were allowed to be run during the service.  Once the bells peeled that the knot had been tied the timed runs got underway.

Our first run was dogged by red flags from the single seaters earlier in the batch, which was no fun waiting in the glaring sun in full race gear.  David Lane, in his Jensen, was the first up the hill and recorded a 71.71 over 3 secs quicker than his best practice time.  Amongst the 3000's it was a complete reversal of the 2nd practice run where all but one driver, Trish C-P, went slower.  Richard Mason led the class with an excellent 61.89 (see in-car video of his run), although slower than his second practice run it was still a new class record and a pb.  Paul Baker was next with a 62.79 with Pat Cooper  posting a 64.05, Will Richards a 66.56 and Huw Edwards a 67.99.  Trish C-P went nearly two secs faster than her pb to record a 70.29 - which was probably not what she wanted to do!  John Ducker must have has an 'issue' as he posted a 73.43, some two secs slower than his best practice run.

In the Sprite class, only David Abram went quicker than 2nd practice as he opened with a 63.00, his fastest run of the day and a pb.  Colin Gale was next with a 64.64 then Joe Mackrell in 65.76 (pictured right).  Steve Casson put in a tentative 67.60 and Claire Giles was slower with a 69.16

On the the last run of the day David Lane in his Jensen trimmed his last run time by a tad to finish the day with a 71.40.

In the Big Healey class, Richard Mason and Paul Baker did not go faster than their first run times with 62.29 and 63.69 respectively.  Pat Cooper held third place with a 63.42 and Will Richards put in his fastest time of the day with a 65.98 and a pb.  John Ducker went off at Fallow and was recorded as a fail and the subsequent red flags caught out the following Huw Edwards (pictured below) as he went through three sets of red flags and was consequently disqualified.  A first for Huw and the rest of our drivers!!  Trish C-P threw caution to the wind and went faster still with a 70.27.

In the Sprite class, Dave Abram went slower (63.66) but Colin Gale went faster and he ended the day with a 63.98 and a pb, to stay just ahead of a fast charging Joe Mackrell in 64.11.  Steve Casson's times were falling as his confidence built ending with a 65.13 and Claire Giles ended with a pb time of 69.01 (see in-car video of her run).

A fabulous day's hill climbing but strange as the quickest run for 7 of the 13 drivers was recorded in second practice!!  Regardless, we still had a new hill record and no less than ten new pb's set.

The results for this scratch round were as follows:

Jensen Healey class: 1st David Lane

Big Healey class: 1st Richard Mason, 2nd Paul Baker, 3rd Pat Cooper, 4th Will Richards, 5th Huw Edwards, 6th Trish C-P and 7th John Ducker.

Sprite class: 1st Dave Abram, 2nd Colin Gale, 3rd Joe Mackrell, 4th Steve Casson, 5th Claire Giles.

Sunday started bright and sunny and stayed that way all day.  Four additional Big Healey drivers (Derek Job, Ed Giles, Grant Marshall and John Richards) joined the Saturday drivers for this target time round.  The previous day's times were taken into account and targets were reset for most.

Practice got underway and there were no real surprises, except that the marshals noticed that something fell off either Huw Edwards or Grant Marshall's car (pictured right) during the first practice run, which they thought was part of an exhaust.  Both checked there cars and their exhausts were fine but Grant found that his engine oil filler cap was missing.  So the marshals did a search and found the part in the long grass beside the track.  Just proves how good our marshals are, as Grant would have had to retire the car without it.

The timed runs were started after lunch - no wedding today - and David Lane in his Jensen really improved his time on the previous day with an excellent time of 68.92.  Check out the compilation video of all the drivers taking Museum bend.

In the Big Healey class, Richard Mason (pictured below) opened with another hill record time of 61.75 with Paul Baker a whisker behind in 62.01 (see in-car video of his run), also a new pb, with Pat Cooper a little further back in 63.15.  Will Richards was really learning how to use the power of his new engine with a 64.34 with father and co-driver John posting a 66.30, some 4 secs quicker than his previous best.  Grant Marshall was a little further back with a 66.90 also some 4 secs quicker than his previous best.  Huw Edwards was keeping a close watch on all the marshals posts in case a red flag was waved but still managed to get very close to his pb with a 67.56.  Trish C-P pulled out her best time of the weekend of 68.75 to be just ahead of Derek Job in 68.86, Ed Giles in 70.87 and John Ducker in 70.90 - all very close.

It was also very close in the Sprite class, as 2 secs covered all five drivers.  Joe Mackrell was the quickest with a 63.61 with Dave Abram a 'gnats' behind in 63.66, the Colin Gale in 64.18, Steve Casson in 64.35 and Claire Giles with her fastest run of the weekend and a pb of 65.43.

On to the second and final run of the weekend, and David Lane in his Jensen knocked another second off his previous run to end with a very satisfying time of 67.90 - a very good time for someone new to this track.

The top three drivers in the Big Healey class finished within half a second of each other.  Richard Mason was slower with a 62.07, Paul Baker messed up Fallow and ended with a 62.34, yet Pat Cooper pulled out a pb on his last run in 62.57.  Grant Marshall lowered his pb to a 65.76, John Richards was a tad slower at 66.75, Huw Edwards also finished with a 67.42 and a pb, as did Trish C-P in 68.57, Derek Job was slower with a 69.26 and John Ducker finally broke the 70 sec barrier with a 69.39 despite finding out his front shocks were shot!  Ed Giles lowered his pb to a 70.23 and Will Richards must have gone off the track to end with a 73.45.

After his tyres were changed and much analysis of the split times, Dave Abram knocked over 1.5 secs off his previous run to finish with a superb 61.92, only 0.27 secs off the hill record in a Sprite. Joe Mackrell and Colin Gale also lowered their pb's to finish so close with 62.85 and 62.95 respectively yet Claire Giles and Steve Casson ended with slightly slower times. 

As this was a target time round the times were assessed and the results were:

Jensen Healey class: 1st David Lane

Big Healey Class: 1st Trish C-P (pictured below), 2nd Paul Baker, 3rd Derek Job, 4th Will Richards, 5th Richard Mason, 6th Pat Cooper, 7th Ed Giles, 8th Grant Marshall, 9th John Ducker, 10th Huw Edwards and 11th John Richards

 Sprite Class: 1st Dave Abram (pictured above), 2nd Colin Gale, 3rd Joe Mackrell, 4th Claire Giles & 5th Steve Casson.

What a great weekend of hill climbing.  A new hill record, loads of pb's, good weather, great company all finished off with cake and bubbly provided by Steve and Jan Casson as it was Jan's birthday.

Our next championship round will be a target time event at Wiscombe on Saturday 9 September followed by another TT event at Gurston Down on Sunday 10th September - come and support the drivers if you can.

Click on the links to see the full results from this and all events this season.  To see all the pictures, in-car and outside videos go to our Gallery page.  If you want to see the sprint and hill climb records for each class and venue, then go to  the Big Healey and Jensen Healey records and the Sprite records pages.

Want to start Sprinting and Hill Climbing?

If you own a Healey or Jensen Healey and you like what you see on this website and want to find out more then click here to take a look at our Beginners Guide.  If you want to get involved, then send an email to Paul Baker our Championship Organiser at paulbaker51@yahoo.co.uk   New drivers are always made very welcome.

 

Rounds 8/9 - Harewood - 5/6 August 2017

(Words by LC Branch, Pics by Jackie Baker and Colin Gale)

Our second double header weekend of the season saw five Sprites and seven big Healeys at our most northerly hill climb, namely, Harewood just north of Leeds in Yorkshire.  Colin Gale could only get an entry for the Saturday scratch event in his exceedingly green frog, but the rest, bar one (more of that later), managed to be there for the target time event on the Sunday.

The weather forecast was for rain showers on both days but in reality it stayed dry all weekend, with the sun out but with a strong and cold wind.

Saturday practice was a slippery affair, but as more cars used the track and the sun came out the level of grip improved.  David Abram led the Sprite class and Pat Cooper surprised a few by leading the big Healey class after practice.  As the BARC team at Harewood run a slick operation, we were out for our first timed run before lunch.

In the Sprite class David Abram opened with a class leading 69.48 from Colin Gale in 69.87.  Steve Casson was trying to find the best tyre pressures for his new Toyo tyres (Kumho's unavailable) and started with a 70.56 from Murray Shand who managed to keep the car on the track and post a very quick 79.35 and a pb in the 1098 Sprite from brother and co-driver Garrow who achieved an 84.54.

Richard Mason started with a very quick 68.85 to re-take the lead but Pat Cooper was only a whisker behind in a personal best time of 68.95.  Paul Baker stopped looking at his oil pressure gauge long enough to log a pb of 69.81 and Claire Giles, co-driving the Cooper 100/6 recorded her best ever time at Harewood in 72.69 (click here to see her run).  Trish C-P also posted a pb of 76.14 to fend off John Ducker who lowered his best time to a 77.25 and Will Richards who was getting used to the track recorded an 83.80.

On to the final championship run of the day and in the Sprite class David Abram extended his lead with a 68.99 to stay ahead of Colin Gale with a slightly improved 69.84.  Steve Casson (pictured right) was slowed up by a loose front hub bearing and finished with a slower time of 71.23.  In the Shand shoot out, both Murray and Garrow went slower with an 80.77 and 84.98 respectively, so their positions remained unchanged.

In the Big Healey class, both Richard Mason and Pat Cooper went slower with 69.39 and 69.57 respectively.  Paul Baker was keen to get amongst the leaders but a loud bang off the start line signaled a broken half shaft, a tow back to the paddock and an end to competition for the weekend (click here to see the in-car video).  Claire Giles went slower with a 73.64 but Trish C-P lowered her time by a further second to finish with a new pb of 75.21 and keep the fast charging John Ducker behind her with an improved time of 76.34 in his 100/4.  Will Richards managed to string a good lap together and post his best time of the day finishing with a 76.96.  Click here to see a video compilation of the cars.

All drivers were offered a third run and some took the opportunity for more practice on the basis that their times would not count towards the championship.

The results for this scratch round were as follows:

Sprite Class: 1st David Abram, 2nd Colin Gale, 3rd Steve Casson, 4th Murray Shand and 5th Garrow Shand.

Big Healey class: 1st Richard Mason, 2nd Pat Cooper, 3rd Paul Baker, 4th Claire Giles, 5th Trish C-P, 6th John Ducker and 7th Will Richards (pictured right in the family 3000)

The annual tradition of the Ducker 'happy hour' was continued this year and all the drivers retired to the Ducker's 'cocktail bar' for whatever was their drink of choice.  John and Cate had everything drinks wise plus a selection of olives and nibbles.  What a great way to unwind after a day of fun at Harewood!  Most then ended up at their pub of choice where the southerners marveled at the bar prices, when a round of drinks for 7 totaled £11.30 !!!

Sunday started dry and sunny - ideal for hill climbing at Harewood, even for those with a hangover.

The Sprite class lost Colin Gale and was down to four drivers.  After practice, the order was the same as it had finished the day before, with David Abram leading from Steve Casson, Murray and Garrow Shand.  In the Big Healey class, Pat Cooper resumed the lead from Richard Mason, Claire Giles, Will Richards moved up two places, then John Ducker and Trish C-P.  Paul and Jackie Baker stayed to watch first practice, had breakfast with the drivers then left for the long drive south somewhat earlier than planned.

When practice concluded, the timed runs got underway.  In the Sprite class David Abram (pictured right) dominated with a 69.14 on his first run followed by a very good 68.93, still a little way off his pb.  Steve Casson was improving with each run with a 70.75 on his first outing then his best run of the weekend, a 70.35 to finish with - was he getting used to those Toyo's?  Murray Shand started with an 84.85, then finished with a much improved 79.83, whereas his brother Garrow steadily improved his times from an 82.90 to a final and best time for the weekend of 82.74.

In the Big Healey class the times for some seemed slower than on the Saturday but others made big improvements.  Pat Cooper was consistently the quickest car with a 69.15 followed by a 69.22 and Richard Mason was equally consistent with a 69.98 then a slightly quicker 69.83.  Will Richards was getting the hang of this track with his best time of the weekend on his first run in 73.42 followed by a slower 75.12.  Claire Giles was really trying on her first timed run, possibly too hard, as she went the wrong side of the boards on the final bend and ended up with a fail.  It must have played on her mind as her second run was a 74.16 nearly 2 secs slower than she had done before.  Biggest improver of the weekend must be John Ducker as he took nearly two further seconds off his previous best time to record a 74.82 on his first run and a 76.24 on his second - well done John.  Trish C-P also pulled out a personal best time of 75.62 then to prove it was not a fluke, matched it again on her second run - another 75.62. 

As this was a target time event, the drivers actual times were compared to their targets and the finishing order was:

Sprite class: 1st David Abram, 2nd Steve Casson, 3rd Garrow Shand and 4th Murray Shand.

Big Healey class: 1st John Ducker (pictured right receiving his prize from his wife Cate), 2nd Trish C-P, 3rd Pat Cooper, 4th Will Richards, 5th Richard Mason and 6th Claire Giles.

A great weekend's hill climbing with good weather, excellent company and superb competition.

Our next championship round will be another double header weekend of hill climbing at Loton Park on 26/27 August - be there if you can.

Click on the links to see the full results from this and all events this season.  To see all the pictures, in-car and outside videos go to our Gallery page.  If you want to see the sprint and hill climb records for each class and venue, then go to  the Big Healey and Jensen Healey records and the Sprite records pages.

Want to start Sprinting and Hill Climbing?

If you own a Healey or Jensen Healey and you like what you see on this website and want to find out more then click here to take a look at our Beginners Guide.  If you want to get involved, then send an email to Paul Baker our Championship Organiser at paulbaker51@yahoo.co.uk   New drivers are always made very welcome.

 

Round 7 - Castle Combe - 29 July 2017

(Words by D.P. Stick, Pics by Pete Walton and Keith Allen)

This wonderful racing circuit nestling to the south of junction 17 of the M4 in the Wiltshire countryside was the venue of the Bristol Motor Clubs Dick Mayo Sprint. The Healeys are always invited to this fast and relatively safe track with large run-off areas where you need them, although the chicanes can give you a shock.

The forecast was the main topic of conversation in the pits with rain due at lunchtime which would then make practice redundant as the timed runs were in the afternoon.

First practice saw Grant Marshall leading the field of Big Healeys with a 76.79 sec run with everyone else being rather coy trying to remember the bendy bits. In the Sprite class Colin Gale had stepped in to replace Jo Mackrell who was unable to attend, and put in a steady time but was unable to beat Tom Walker in his racing Sprite complete with 60kg of lead still attached after his last race meeting. Kevin Rowe completed the small Sprite entry with a 85.45 sec run.

The very well prepared Jensen Healey of Dave Lane was in a class of his own doing a 83.51 sec to warm up.

The second practice saw all cars improve their times considerably, but no-one broke their handicap time for this event although Grant Marshall did say he got two wheels in the air going through the chicane trying to do so. Lunchtime arrived relatively early at this well run event with few "offs" so the first timed run came at 1.30 pm and the weather was still holding.

The Sprites were led by Tom Walker (having removed his lead weights) with a blistering 72.64 secs which was to be the fastest time of the day, with Colin Gale doing a 75.69 and Kevin Rowe an improving 82.13. No-one was able to beat their rather stiff handicaps.

The big cars got stuck in and Trish C.P. smashed her target time by 1.69 secs to do an 82.51 to take the lead, followed by the standard road car of Claire Giles well driven through her target time by 0.15 secs. Grant Marshall also put the hammer down and got within 0.2 secs of his target time of 74 secs. Simon Leeming became rather too enthusiastic cresting Avon Rise and breaking hard for Quarry found himself grass cutting on the in-field. With only pride damaged he re-joined the track but with no time. Farmer Pete Walton was less agricultural with a 73.76 but was still well over his target time. Dave Lane in the Jensen Healey despite not finding second gear off the start did a 81.07, surely sub 80 was in his grasp?

As the Healeys came out for their second run the drizzle started and although most people tried hard the grip had gone and no-one improved on their time.

Moira Walker kindly presented the cut glass prizes in her usual graceful style and Dave Lane presented everyone with a beer because he is like that! What a great way to spend a Saturday in such good sporting company. You are all welcome.

The results for this target time event were as follows:

Sprite Class: 1st Colin Gale, 2nd Tom Walker and 3rd Kevin Rowe

Big Healey Class: 1st Trish C-P, 2nd Claire Giles, 3rd Grant Marshall, 4th Pete Walton and 5th Simon Leeming

Jensen Healey Class: 1st David Lane

Our next event will be two rounds of hill climbing at Harewood in Yorkshire on 5/6 August - be there if you can.

Click on the links to see the full results from this and all events this season.  To see all the pictures, in-car and outside videos go to our Gallery page.  If you want to see the sprint and hill climb records for each class and venue, then go to  the Big Healey and Jensen Healey records and the Sprite records pages.

Want to start Sprinting and Hill Climbing?

If you own a Healey or Jensen Healey and you like what you see on this website and want to find out more then click here to take a look at our Beginners Guide.  If you want to get involved, then send an email to Paul Baker our Championship Organiser at paulbaker51@yahoo.co.uk   New drivers are always made very welcome.

 

Rounds 5/6 - Shelsley Walsh - 22/23 July 2017

(Words by LC Branch, Pics by Jackie Baker and Vicki Walton)

The Classic Nostalgia double header weekend at Shelsley Walsh is always a favourite with the public, with huge crowds, a Malcolm and Donald Campbell memorial plus their cars, period WRC rally cars, demonstration runs plus a large field of cars competing.  Healeysport were pleased to be taking part and we had 14 cars competing on the Saturday and 21 on the Sunday.  Grant Marshall, Ed Giles and Will Richards were out for the first time this year with their 3000's.  Grant and Will have refreshed engines and Ed's car was back after some body work.  Also out for the first time with Healeysport was Paul Auston in his very smartly prepared red over white BJ8, looking very similar to Pete Walton's car.

The weather forecast for the weekend was for showers, sometimes heavy but we were fortunate as in the main it stayed dry for most of the time, with only one run affected by rain.

The Saturday event was a 'Scratch' event with Sunday being a 'Target Time' affair - more of this later.

So, after practice on Saturday in the Sprite class, it was Colin Gale (pictured right) leading from David Abram and then Steve Casson.  In the Big Healey class, there were no surprises that local expert Richard Mason was leading from Paul Baker with Pat Cooper next followed by Trish C-P, Huw Edwards, Andrew Taylor, Will Richards, Paul Auston, John Ducker and Claire Giles.  David Lane was the sole driver in the Jensen Healey class.

Andrew Taylor came back to the paddock after practice with his 100S rep sounding very loud which turned out to be a split weld on his exhaust silencer, resulting in all the fibre glass packing material being blown out through the hole that had been created.  A temporary fix was tried but was unsuccessful so Andrew had to retire reluctantly.

As the weather forecast was for rain in the afternoon our first run up the hill after lunch in the dry had to be good.  In the Sprite class, Dave Abram took the lead with a 36.67 to move Colin Gale into second place with a 37.38 and Steve Casson took third with a 38.04.

In the Big Healey class, Richard Mason went fractionally slower but still retained the top spot with a 35.77 with Paul Baker half a sec behind in 36.22 and a pb.  Pat Cooper retained third in 37.05, Huw Edwards leapt ahead of Trish C-P with a 39.67 to Trish's 40.27 - also a pb.  Will Richards was learning fast how to use the power of his new engine and produced a 41.06.  Paul Auston finished with a 45.39 with John Ducker a fraction behind in 45.67 and Claire Giles a little further back with an excellent 48.31 - all three had pb's.  David Lane managed to lower his time again to almost break the 40 second barrier with a 40.06.

Then the heavens opened just before our final run of the day and nobody went faster than their first run time, so the positions after the first run remained.  The finishing positions in this scratch event were:

Sprites: 1st David Abram, 2nd Colin Gale and 3rd Steve Casson

Big Healeys: 1st Richard Mason, 2nd Paul Baker, 3rd Pat Cooper, 4th Huw Edwards, 5th Trish C-P, 6th Will Richards, 7th Paul Auston, 8th John Ducker and 9th Claire Giles - with Andrew Taylor retired.

Jensen Healey class: 1st David Lane

A good days hill climbing finished off with bubbly and cake supplied by David and Sue Lane to celebrate David's birthday.

Sunday morning started with sunshine and clouds but, more importantly, no rain.  The drivers who took part on Saturday were joined by Rafe Haywood in his Frogeye plus Max and Garrow Shand in their 1098 Sprite, with Grant Marshall, Derek Job, Pete Walton and Ed Giles joining the Big Healey class in their 3000's.

After Practice the positions in the Sprite class were as follows: Dave Abram led with a 36.83, a whisker ahead of Colin Gale in 36.98.  Steve Casson held third with a 38.77 with Rafe Haywood a fraction further back in a 39.15.  In the 1098 Shand Sprite it was son Max showing father Garrow the way with a 48.34 to Garrow's 52.49.

In the Big Healey class, Richard Mason got very close to his pb and course record with an superb 34.89 and Pat Cooper reduced his time further to a 36.37 to leap frog Paul Baker into third with a 36.64.  Pete Walton was steadily lowering his time on this challenging hill as he had not driven at Shelsley for 10 years, by recording a 38.47.  We then had the unusual situation of two drivers, Grant Marshall and Will Richards (pictured right), tied on the same time of 38.65.  Huw Edwards got just below the 40 mark with a 39.99 with Trish C-P just behind in 40.27.  Derek Job was still getting the hang of the hill with a 41.48 with Ed Giles was also steadily improving with a 41.90 as was John Ducker with a 44.63.  Paul Auston was struggling with a recalcitrant gearbox that kept jumping out of second and third gear, so he unfortunately had to retire at the end of practice and played no further part.  In the Jensen Healey class, David Lane brought his time down to a 40.68.

After lunch, the Healeys were the first cars out on track and in the Sprite class it was Dave Abram who lowered his time further to record a 36.07 with Colin Gale a second off with a 37.08, but Steve Casson put in his best time of the weekend to record a 37.31 and Rafe Haywood posted a very good 38.45.  Max Shand also went faster to record a pb of 47.39 as did Garrow Shand in 50.85.

In the Big Healey class, Richard Mason held the lead, albeit with a slower time of 35.41, with Pat Cooper in second place with a 36.16 and Pete Walton moved up to third with a much improved 37.24.  Paul Baker fluffed his gear change into Bottom Ess, lost all momentum and ended with a 38.08, which matched precisely the time of the fast improving Will (I'll match anything you can do) Richards.  Grant Marshall got down to a 38.30, just ahead of Huw Edwards in a fabulous pb time of 38.40 and Derek Job in 39.89.  Ed Giles chipped away at his practice time to record a 41.70 but Trish C-P must have made a mistake to post a much slower time of 41.79, then John Ducker removed over two secs from his previous run to lodge a 42.16 and Claire Giles was really happy to post a pb time of 47.96.  David Lane (pictured right) finally broke the 40 sec barrier with by recording a 39.66.

The clouds gathered but the rain held off for our final run of the weekend.  In the Sprite class, only Steve Casson went quicker to end with a 37.13, just off his pb to stay in third place.  All the other drivers did not go faster than their first run.  Unfortunately, Rafe Haywood hit the tyre barrier coming out of Top Ess and did quite a bit of damage to his Frogeye.  Rafe was fine but the car will need some serious TLC.  Apparently, he was trying out a new line through that bend that had been recommended to him - clearly not one to be tried again.

Of the 12 cars in the Big Healey class, only 5 went faster on their last run.  Richard Mason was one of them and trimmed off a fraction to finish with a 35.35.  Pat Cooper went slower and just held onto second place by 7 hundredths from Paul Baker who finished with an almost weekend pb of 36.23.  Pete Walton was over a second slower and a late charge from Grant Marshall almost displaced Pete with a 37.90.  Will Richards was way off his first run by over 4.5 secs to hold sixth from Huw Edwards who also could not repeat his first run time and neither could Derek Job.  Trish C-P finished with an excellent 40.10 and a pb, Ed Giles trimmed his time further to a 41.64 but John Ducker and Claire Giles could not match their first run times and neither could David Lane in the Jensen Healey class.

The finishing positions for this target time event, once the calculations had been done were:

Sprite Class: 1st Max Shand, 2nd Rafe Haywood, 3rd Steve Casson, 4th David Abram, 5th Colin Gale, 6th Garrow Shand.

Big Healey Class: 1st Huw Edwards (pictured right receiving his prize from Sue Lane), 2nd Trish C-P, 3rd Grant Marshall, 4th Claire Giles, 5th Paul Baker, 6th Derek Job, 7th John Ducker, 8th Pete Walton, 9th Pat Cooper 10th Richard Mason, 11th Will Richards, 12th Ed Giles - with Paul Auston retired

Jensen Healey Class: 1st David Lane

After the drivers helped Rafe Haywood get his Sprite back on it's trailer, we all said our goodbyes and went home with the memories of a really good weekends hill climbing at this historic track and well organised event.

Our next championship round will be a sprint at Castle Combe on 29 July - be there if you can.

Click on the links to see the full results from this and all events this season.  To see all the pictures, in-car and outside videos go to our Gallery page.  If you want to see the sprint and hill climb records for each class and venue, then go to  the Big Healey and Jensen Healey records and the Sprite records pages.

Want to start Sprinting and Hill Climbing?

If you own a Healey or Jensen Healey and you like what you see on this website and want to find out more then click here to take a look at our Beginners Guide.  If you want to get involved, then send an email to Paul Baker our Championship Organiser at paulbaker51@yahoo.co.uk   New drivers are always made very welcome.

 

Round 4 - Silverstone - 18 June 2017 - Phew what a scorcher !!

(Words by LC Branch, Pics by Jackie Baker)

The MG Live meeting at Silverstone not only drew our biggest grid of Healeys this year so far with 15 cars, but it also proved to be the hottest weather (30deg c plus) we have seen in many a while.  We had 5 sprites, 9 Big Healeys and 1 Jensen Healey competing with two late withdrawals - namely Huw Edward's whose 3000 broke down near Cheltenham on its way from west Wales and Grant Marshall whose new engine was still not ready for him to compete.

Those new to this circuit included Murray Shand, sharing the Mk 2 Sprite with nephew Max, John Ducker in his 100 and David Lane in his uprated Jensen Healey.  Those out in different cars included Simon Leeming in his new 100/6, but now with working carburetors and Andrew Taylor in his 100S rep.

The other major difference this year was that we were allowed to use the grass in front of the Stowe Centre as a paddock rather than the usual very stony and dusty paddock as that was being used by an earlier group.  Given the heat, the grass was a major improvement as it was not only cooler but there was no dust to deal with.

With such high temperatures the track was going to be very fast, especially as most agreed that the new chicane layout seemed more straight forward last last year's version.  So personal bests and class records were definitely going to be tested.

Practice got underway at 9am and we had two timed runs in which to work out how to tackle the chicane that had been added at the end of the main straight.  In the Sprite class, it was Steve Casson leading with a best time of 62.91 from James Taylor in 69.75, but whose car was suffering with fuel vaporisation given the heat, then Kevin Rowe a tad behind in 70.12, Max Shand in 72.64 and Murray Shand in 77.29 but still learning the track.

In the Big Healey class, Pete Walton was leading the class with a 62.95, nearly 3 secs faster than his previous best.  Paul Baker was a whisker behind in 63.18, then Richard Mason in 63.49, Pat Cooper in 65.48, Derek Job in 67.92 (nearly 2 secs quicker than his pb), Simon Leeming was getting the hang of driver a 3000 compared to a Sprite and managed a best time of 69.50, Andrew Taylor posted a very respectable 69.88 to be ahead of Trish C-P in 71.20 (over a second off her pb) and finally John Ducker (pictured above admiring the 'wing' at Silverstone) was improving with every run as he learned the track with a best of 71.86.

David Lane our sole Jensen Healey driver and new to this track was getting to grips with the challenge and ended practice with a best time of 67.69.

After lunch the first timed runs got underway and in the Sprite class it was Steve Casson who continued to lead the way with a new pb of 62.26 with James Taylor closing up with a 65.15 but still some way off his pb, from Kevin Rowe in 67.87.  Max Shand took 1.5 secs off his pb to post a 70.79 and Murray lowered his time again to a 74.03.

In the Big Healey class, the order stayed pretty much the same as practice, but the first six cars all recorded pb's.  Pete Walton (pictured right pushing his car to the start line to avoid starting the engine given the heat) lowered his time to a 62.01 so not only a pb but also a new class record for the track.  Paul Baker posted a 62.33 also a new pb and Richard Mason in 63.23, also a pb.  Pat Cooper lowered his best time to a 64.32, Derek Job got down to a 67.33 and Simon Leeming was a whisker behind in a 67.66 - also a pb.  Andrew Taylor posted a near identical time of 69.89, but John Ducker knocked another 1.5 secs off to record a 70.33 to jump ahead of Trish C-P who went slower with a 72.32.

In the Jensen Healey class, David Lane went slower than his best practice run when he posted a 69.03.

In the break before our final run Sue Taylor, Andrew's wife, with James' wife and family arrived with cold box full of Magnum ice creams for everyone and boy, were they welcome.  A very generous act from the Taylor family which was much appreciated by all the drivers, friends and family.

So, on to the final run and in the Sprite class, Steve Casson held the lead albeit with a slightly slower time.  James Taylor did his fastest run of the day with a 64.05 as did Kevin Rowe with a 67.53, as did Max Shand who finished with an excellent 69.64 and a pb.  Murray Shand could not quite match his first run time to end with a 75.39.

In the Big Healey class, Pete Walton, Paul Baker and Richard Mason could not match their first run times so the positions remained the same.   However, Pat Cooper confounded all by beating his pb with a super time of 63.66, over a second off his previous best.  Simon Leeming was steadily getting used to hustling a 3000 around this track and finished with an excellent 66.75 to leap ahead of Derek Job who also finished with a pb of 67.23 some 2.5 secs faster than his previous best - some improvement.  John Ducker's final run ended with his first sub 70 second run and pb of 69.64 and set the new class record for a 100.  Andrew Taylor finished with a 71.20 and Trish C-P ended her day with a new pb of 71.44.

David Lane finished with a 68.39 a new pb and set the class record for the Jensen Healey class.

So as predicted, the heat of the day produced some excellent performances with personal bests and class records posted throughout the field.  An excellent day's sprinting at a super venue at a well run event, as they managed to get through the large field and offer any that wanted it, the chance of a third timed run. 

As this was a target time event, the actual times recorded were compared with the target times set per driver to establish that the results were as follows:

Sprite class: 1st Max Shand (pictured above receiving his prize from Richard Mason), 2nd Murray Shand, 3rd Steve Casson, 4th Kevin Rowe and 5th James Taylor.

Big Healey class: 1st Derek Job (pictured right), 2nd Pat Cooper, 3rd Trish C-P, 4th Simon Leeming, 5th Pete Walton, 6th Richard Mason, 7th Paul Baker, 8th John Ducker and 9th Andrew Taylor

Jensen Healey class: 1st David Lane

Our next championship rounds will be a double header at Shelsley Walsh on the weekend of 22/23 July - so be there if you can.

Click on the links to see the full results from this and all events this season.  To see all the pictures, in-car and outside videos go to our Gallery page.  If you want to see the sprint and hill climb records for each class and venue, then go to  the Big Healey and Jensen Healey records and the Sprite records pages.

Want to start Sprinting and Hill Climbing?

If you own a Healey or Jensen Healey and you like what you see on this website and want to find out more then click here to take a look at our Beginners Guide.  If you want to get involved, then send an email to Paul Baker our Championship Organiser at paulbaker51@yahoo.co.uk   New drivers are always made very welcome.

 

St Goueno - 27/28 May 2017

(Words by LC Branch, Pics by Vicki Walton and Marius Abram)

For those who don't know, St Goueno is a small village in the middle of Brittany which holds a round of the French national hill climb championship.  They also allow a group of 80 drivers, mainly from the UK and Ireland to compete in a 'Masters' set of classes which includes a weekend of hill climbing, food, drink and live entertainment.  Healeysport thoroughly enjoyed attending this event for the first time in 2015 and we were welcomed back this year.

The course is much longer than anything the UK has to offer, with over two miles of fast sweeping turns with virtually no clear view of the exit from most bends.  All the returning drivers wanted to have a chance to reacquaint themselves with this demanding track as they felt there was some unfinished business.  In the end, 11 Healeysport drivers with 8 wives/partners and relatives took part:  Steve Casson, David Abram, Joe Mackrell and Garrow Shand were in Sprites, Huw Edwards, Richard Mason, Pat Cooper, Paul Baker Tom Walker and Peter Walton were in 3000's and David Lane was in his Jensen Healey.  The drivers new to St Goueno were Garrow Shand, David Abram and David Lane.

Most caught the day sailing from Portsmouth to Caen which left them with a 3 hour drive to St Goueno, yet some took the longer journey via the night boat to St Malo but had the shorter drive to the venue.  For those arriving on the Thursday afternoon, the locals had laid on a welcome buffet dinner with local wines in the St Goueno Civic Centre which was excellent. 

Friday was hot and sunny with the afternoon set aside for signing-on and scrutineering.  In the evening there was a dinner and entertainment from a number of live bands performing on a covered stage set up in the entrance to the Civic Centre.

Saturday was practice day, with the first run untimed but two further runs in the afternoon that were timed and which determined the running order for the timed runs on Sunday.  The weather was really hot and sunny, great for hill climbing.  In the Sprite class, it was Steve Casson who led with a 2 min 01.015 sec run from David Abram a whisker behind in 2 min 01.713 secs. Joe Mackrell's best practice time was a 2:06.351 and Garrow Shand's best was 2:29.958.  To put Steve's time into perspective, the fastest Sprite time in 2015 was a 2:04.309 albeit on a damp track.

In the Big Healey/Jensen Healey class: Tom Walker's best time was a very quick 1:54.606 but Pete Walton was just 5 hundredths of a second behind with a 1:54.656, so these two could not be closer (Click here to see Pete's run).  Paul Baker was next with a 1:59.903, just ahead of Richard Mason in a 2:00.291, then Pat Cooper in 2:07.867, David Lane in 2:10.996 and Huw Edwards in 2:13.164.  Again, it's interesting to compare Tom Walker's best practice time with his best time from 2015 when he recorded a 2:05.536, nearly 11secs quicker.  Hardly surprising as its a long course with 15 bends to remember, so a second visit is going to result in faster times.

The anticipation and tension before the Sunday timed runs was high as both classes had two drivers with less than a second between them, but the weather forecast for Sunday was not good with rain showers and thunder storms expected.  We knew the weather was going to play a big part, so it was important to be quick when the conditions allowed.  It rained hard before our first timed run so the track was very wet which was reflected in the times.  In the Sprite class: David Abram took the lead with a 2:21.966 from Joe Mackrell in 2:31.344, with Steve Casson back in third with a cautious 2:34.926 and Garrow Shand posting a 2:38.353.

In the Big Healey class: Tom Walker held his lead with a 2:12.690, but again only just from Pete Walton in 2:12.987.  Paul Baker did a 2:23.584, Huw "rainmeister" Edwards jumped up the lead board with a 2:31.745, ahead of Pat Cooper on 2:37.906, Richard Mason in another cautious 2:39.102 and David Lane in 2:51.234.

Lunch was provided for the drivers, partners and friends in a marquee next to the track and was a gastronomic delight, with wines (yes, you had better believe it!!) and set us up for our final two runs.

The second timed run after lunch was much drier and in the Sprite class David Abram went 14 seconds quicker to post a 2:07.258 and hold a 7 second lead over Steve Casson with a 2:14.298, Joe Mackrell in 2:19.360 and Garrow Shand back in 2:30.467.  In the Big Healey class, Pete Walton snatched the lead for the first time with a 1:59.011 to Tom Walker's 1:59.861 with Paul Baker just a little further back with a 2:02.356.  Richard Mason knocked 29 secs off his first run time to post a 2:10.687 with Pat Cooper a second behind with a 2:11.628, then Huw Edwards in 2.19.982 and David Lane taking it carefully with a 2:35.384.

So as always, it was down the the last run, but this time the running order was also going to play its part.  The track was now nearly dry and this was going to be our best chance of a good time today.  The Sprite class were first in the running order and Steve Casson really went for it and almost equaled his best practice time in the dry with a fabulous 2:01.924 (Click here to see his run) to take the class win from David Abram who was under a second away with a 2:02.785, Joe Mackrell who ended with his best run of 2:13.620 and Garrow Shand with a 2:24.169, his best time of the weekend.

In the Big Healey/Jensen Healey class: David lane was first away and finished with a very good 2:11.448, to end ahead of Huw Edwards with a 2:14.982, Richard Mason ended with a 2:05.154, which meant that Pat Cooper's 2:04.658 was the first time he had beaten Richard's time.  This left Paul Baker, Pete Walton and Tom Walker to go.  Paul Baker left the start line but just after half way he was red flagged because the Lotus Europa ahead of him had gone off the track and so he was turned around and sent back to the start.  There then followed a 20 minute wait whilst the rescue services tried to recover the Lotus (the driver was fine, but the car wasn't).  In that time the heavens opened and the almost dry track was now very wet.  Paul, Pete & Tom realised there was no way they could beat their previous run so backed off with times of 2:19.173, 2:13.035 & 2:05.121 respectively.  Click here to see Tom's final run in the wet.

So the upshot was that Pete Walton won the Big Healey class with his second timed run to beat Tom Walker into second place.  Paul Baker was next, then Pat Cooper, Richard Mason, David Lane and Huw Edwards.

Despite a slight hiccup with the prize giving, both Steve and Pete collected their awards and the evening finished with a huge thunder storm and a wind-down dinner in St Goueno with good food and lots of local wines.

A huge thank you must go to John Lloyd and his team who organise the Masters, plus the people of St Goueno for their unbelievable hospitality, as it was great fun from Thursday to Sunday and left us all wondering - when can we go back?

A big thank you must also go to Vicki Walton and Marius Abram who took all the pics.

To see all the pictures and in-car videos go to our Gallery page.  If you want to see the sprint and hill climb records for each class and venue, then go to  the Big Healey and Jensen Healey records and the Sprite records pages.

 

Round 3 - Curborough - 21 May 2017

(Words by LC Branch, Pics by Jackie Baker)

We had a slightly depleted entry for Curborough as a couple of drivers had to scratch as their cars were not ready but the main reason was that the event took place only a few days before our trip to the National round of the French Hill climb at St Goueno in Brittany.

So, we had 8 drivers with 3 x 3000's, 1 x 100 and 4 x Sprites.  First time out with us for many years was Les Procter in his Sebring Sprite (pictured right).

The weather was kind to us with a dry and largely sunny day. 

After the practice rounds it was Colin Gale leading the Sprite class with a best time of 69.25 and beating his previous best by nearly three quarters of a second. Next was Les Procter with a 71.33 but he suffered a gearbox failure so would play no further part in his car.  Rafe Haywood produced a 72.51 and Ian Grainger achieved a best time of 84.64.

In the Big Healey class, it was Paul Baker leading way with a 69.65 but only by 2 hundredths of a second from Pete Walton in 69.67.  John Ducker (pictured right) was showing what his car can now do with 50% more power in his 100 with a 76.31 from Trish C-P who was some way off her pb with a 78.04.

During the lunch break, Rafe Haywood proved what nice guys these Healeysport guys are by offering Les Procter a dual drive in his Frogeye, which fortunately the officials accepted.

The timed runs got underway and in the Sprite class it was Colin Gale who took the class win with an almost practice equaling time of 69.26 from Rafe Haywood in a best time of 72.11 and Ian Grainger in 83.98.  Les Procter almost completed one lap in the Haywood Frogeye but called in a day when he nearly ended up in the Armco barriers on his first run as the brakes caught him out.

In the Big Healey class, Paul Baker lowered his best time to 69.21 and a pb to stay 2 tenths of a second ahead of Pete Walton who finished with a best time of 69.46 and a pb.  Trish C-P knocked over three seconds off her practice time to finish with a best time of 74.63 and a pb, yet John Ducker's early promise somewhat faded as he finished with a best of 77.16 after trying too hard on his final run which included a spin.

Richard Mason turned up to present the prizes for this target time event, where the finishing order was:

Sprites: 1st Colin Gale, 2nd Rafe Haywood, 3rd Ian Grainger and 4th Les Procter.

Big Healeys: 1st Trish C-P, 2nd Paul Baker, 3rd Pete Walton and 4th John Ducker.

As it was Trish and Keith's birthday we were all pleased to complete the day with an excellent glass of Prosecco and delicious cup cakes.

Our next championship round will be at Silverstone on Sunday 18 June - be there if you can.

Click on the links to see the full results from this and all events this season.  To see all the pictures, in-car and outside videos go to our Gallery page.  If you want to see the sprint and hill climb records for each class and venue, then go to  the Big Healey and Jensen Healey records and the Sprite records pages.

Want to start Sprinting and Hill Climbing?

If you own a Healey or Jensen Healey and you like what you see on this website and want to find out more then click here to take a look at our Beginners Guide.  If you want to get involved, then send an email to Paul Baker our Championship Organiser at paulbaker51@yahoo.co.uk   New drivers are always made very welcome.

 

Round 2 - MIRA - 6 May 2017

(Words by LC Branch - no pictures or videos allowed)

After a break of a couple of years due to date clashes with other venues, Healeysport returned to the Bentley Drivers Club meeting at MIRA with two Sprites (David Abram and Ian Grainger) and seven Big Healeys (John Ducker was here for his first time in his Healey 100, then the rest were in 3000's - Huw Edwards, Trish C-P, Pat Cooper, Richard Mason, Paul Baker & Pete Walton). Unfortunately, Nick John had to scratch from the meeting due to poor health.

The weather was really cold and windy with the occasional misty rain.  Not ideal conditions, but this track is a challenge with its fast sweeping bends, requiring good car control to get the best times.  It would have been so much nicer though had the sun come out.

After the parade lap and the two morning practice runs, the order was as follows:  In the Sprite class, Dave Abrams was quickest with a 62.17 with Ian Grainger next with a best of 73.80.  In the Big Healey class, Pete Walton led the way with a best of 60.23, Paul Baker was next with 62.68, then Pat Cooper in 64.33, with Richard Mason just behind in 64.63, Huw Edwards in 68.09, Trish C-P in 68.89 and John Ducker was getting the hang of the track with a best of 74.53.

Checking our times after practice, it became clear that we were not achieving anywhere near the speeds through the speed trap into the Control Tower bend that we had in previous years.  Pete Walton did a 101mph in 2014 but only managed a 70mph this year, was he just sand bagging as usual or was there another problem!  The organisers confessed that the speed trap had been set up far too close to the apex of the bend and as a result was well into the braking area.  They were aware of the problem during practice and had planned to move it back to its usual position at lunch time but they ran out of time, so left it where it was for the afternoon runs.

After lunch the timed runs got underway and in the Sprite class Dave Abram was having trouble getting off the line and went slower with a 62.91 as did Ian Grainger with a 74.36.  In the Big Healey class, Pete Walton broke the 60 barrier with a 59.96 with Paul Baker also lowered his time to 60.63.  Richard Mason leap frogged Pat Cooper but he had snapped his gear lever changing down for the very quick Control Tower bend and ended up in 4th gear so ended with a 62.27, just ahead of Pat in 63.15.  Trish C-P got ahead of Huw Edwards with a 67.91 to Huw's 68.22.  Huw was not feeling too good and had been complaining of having eaten a dodgy spicy chicken dish the night before, also his car was starting to misfire.  John Ducker took another 5 secs off his time to post a very good 69.52.

During the interval, there was frenzied action in the Mason 3000, to hack saw off part of the broken gear lever before a copper sleeve was added to act as a extension and to have the old gear knob and overdrive switch taped to it.

On to the final run of the day and in the Sprite class Dave Abram went slower again with a 64.06 due to an even slower start and other on-track problems, but Ian Grainger went quicker with a best time of 74.06.

In the Big Healey class, the tension mounted before the final run, but it was Pete Walton who held onto the top spot with a best time of 59.26, but only just as Paul Baker finished just 2 tenths behind him with a 59.46 to take second place. Richard Mason went for it and beat his first run time by nearly 2 secs to finish with a 60.78 with his makeshift gear lever and Pat Cooper did the same to post a best time of 61.39.  John Ducker was the surprise of the day as he knocked a further 3 secs off his first run to finish with a 66.99 to leap ahead of Trish C-P who finished just 2 hundredths behind with a 67.01 and Huw Edwards could not improve on his first time run.

So, a great day's sprinting at this well organised event on an excellent track.  If the sun had managed to make an appearance it would have been perfect and the times would have fallen fast, but if, buts and maybe's don't count in this sport.

The final positions in each class were as follows:

Sprites: 1st Dave Abrams and 2nd Ian Grainger

Big Healeys: 1st Pete Walton, 2nd Paul Baker, 3rd Richard Mason, 4th Pat Cooper, 5th John Ducker, 6th Trish C-P and 7th Huw Edwards.

Click on the links to see the full results from this and all events this season.  To see all the pictures, in-car and outside videos go to our Gallery page.  If you want to see the sprint and hill climb records for each class and venue, then go to  the Big Healey and Jensen Healey records and the Sprite records pages.

Want to start Sprinting and Hill Climbing?

If you own a Healey or Jensen Healey and you like what you see on this website and want to find out more then click here to take a look at our Beginners Guide.  If you want to get involved, then send an email to Paul Baker our Championship Organiser at paulbaker51@yahoo.co.uk   New drivers are always made very welcome.

 

Round 1 - Gurston Down - 23 April 2017

(Words by LC Branch, Pics by Jackie Baker)

Our first event of the season got off to a really good start with some superb weather making it a day to remember.  We were expecting to have 17 cars, with 8 Big Healeys, 8 Sprites and 1 Jensen Healey.  This soon changed as we found out that father and son team, Andrew and James Taylor would not be with us due to colds/flu.  However, Simon Leeming was out in the much awaited and freshly produced 100/6 with a 3000 engine and a very neat finish in dark blue with white hard top.  Our place in the paddock was bracketed by our new Healeysport sail flags (pictured right) courtesy of Trish C-P.

Practice got underway on time as usual at Gurston and after two runs in the Big Healey Class, it was Richard Mason leading the way with a very respectable 39.08, from Pat Cooper in 39.96 and Paul Baker a little further back in 40.81 - still getting used to his new engine.  Peter Walton was next up with a best time of 41.59, almost two secs quicker than his pb yet surprisingly only managing 65mph over the finishing line!!  Huw Edwards posted a 44.28 from Simon Leeming who managed a best time of 46.07 on his first run, but then suffered with fuelling problems from his triple SU's.  Nick John recorded a 49.67 and Claire Giles posted a best of 49.70, just a fraction off her pb.

In the Jensen Healey class, David Lane achieved a best time of 45.25.

In the Sprite class, Colin Gale took some stick from the drivers as he made the mistake that we have all done at some stage - namely - forget to put some more fuel in the car for his second practice run.  As a result he ran out of fuel before he got to the start line so had to be pushed back and was assisted by Joe Mackrell who was spectating on this occasion, with more fuel, so that Colin could take his run in a later batch.  However, it was worth waiting for as Colin's second run was a class leading time of 40.68, ahead of David Abram with a best time of 41.26 and Steve Casson right behind him with a 41.60.  Rafe Haywood posted a best of 42.33 from Kevin Rowe in 44.04 and Ian Grainger in a 48.21, just outside his personal best.

After lunch the timed runs got underway and in the Big Healey class Richard Mason got into the 38's with an excellent 38.90 but now had Paul Baker right behind him with a 39.12 (see video footage of his run) and Pat Cooper with a 40.36.  Pete Walton found his accelerator pedal and reduced his pb further with a 41.31 as did Huw Edwards with a 44.06.  Simon Leeming (pictured right) coughed and spluttered his way to a 46.73 before calling it a day and putting the car on the trailer as it was clearly not running well and needing a carburettor check over and another trip to the rolling road before his next outing at Silverstone.  Claire Giles leapfrogged Nick John with a pb of 49.21 and Nick also improved to a 49.65.

In the Jensen Healey class, David Lane was still some way off his pb set last year with a 44.77.

In the Sprite class David Abram pulled out a 40.11 and a pb to lead the class from Steve Casson in 41 secs dead and Colin Gale with a scrappy run in 41.07 (see compilation video).  Rafe Haywood went marginally slower in a 42.96 yet Ian Grainger posted a 47.94 and a pb.

Onto the last run of the day and the clouds rolled over the track to lower the temperature.  In the Big Healey class, our top three drivers all went fractionally slower than their first run times so, Richard Mason took the win from Paul Baker in second and Pat Cooper in third.  Pete Walton bucked the trend with a quicker time of 41.31 and another pb.  Huw Edwards found time to use the new 'Drive Thro' Burger bar on his way to the startline (See pic right) and not surprisingly did not go any quicker.  Claire Giles also did not go faster, so held position with Nick John finishing with a 49.33, his fastest time of the day.

David Lane finished with a much improved 43.27.

In the Sprite class, the top three drivers all went faster and ended within half a second of each other.  David Abram took the win and a pb with a 40.07 (see video footage of his run), from Steve Casson in 40.23 and Colin Gale in 40.56 - very close.  Rafe Haywood did not improve on his first run time, but Kevin Rowe was just outside his pb with a 43.77and Ian Grainger went a fraction slower.

Overall, a really good start to the season with a fine day's hill climbing at this iconic venue on a beautiful spring day.  The positions in each class were as follows:

Big Healey Class: 1st Richard Mason, 2nd Paul Baker, 3rd Pat Cooper, 4th Pete Walton, 5th Huw Edwards, 6th Simon Leeming, 7th Claire Giles and 8th Nick John

Jensen Healey class: 1st David Lane

Sprite class: 1st David Abram, 2nd Steve Casson, 3rd Colin Gale, 4th Rafe Haywood, 5th Kevin Rowe and 6th Ian Grainger.

Click on the links to see the full results from this and all events this season.  To see all the pictures, in-car and outside videos go to our Gallery page.  If you want to see the sprint and hill climb records for each class and venue, then go to  the Big Healey and Jensen Healey records and the Sprite records pages.

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