Alf was fearsome not
After all the recent snowy
trials Stoud & DMC had arranged fine weather for The Mechanics as Sam
Holmes led the field away from the well organised start in Stonehouse.
Sam's hopes of another Class 4 win were soon dashed when, like all but one
competitor in the lower classes, he failed the fearsome restart on Alf's
Delight. The one who succeeded was Ian Moss in his Imp, now running on
approved 13 inch wheels. Ian was to continue his form throughout the day,
challenging for the overall lead and eventually finishing third overall.
About half the Class 7 & 8's
managed to get away from the restart. They didn't include Brian Partridge
who had a rear upright break on his Ridge Cannon. Aaron Haizelden retired
soon after, worried about the oil pressure of his Cosworth engined Escort.
After some delightful
traditional sections the route entered Catswood from the top, where three
observed sections and a Special Test awaited. Sapseds Big Surprise is a
slippery, muddy climb between the trees. Only Dean Partington, in his DP
Wasp, could clean this difficult section. Dave Wall (Dellow Mk1), Tony
Underhill (Triumph Special) and Mike Chatwin (DP Wasp) all came close, but
couldn't quite make it past the one marker. Ian Moss showed his mastery of
the conditions, the only car outside of Class Eight to get a two.
Climbing to the top of Catswood
Mini Hoskin awaited. This had a sting in the tail, a restart followed by
an immediate 90 left up a steep bank. Unfortunately this deviation wasn't
obvious too most of the entry and around 70% went straight on, dropping
four marks in the process. Dean Partington was the big loser here, taking
him out of contention for the overall win.
After the traditional sections
at the picturesque King Charles Lane and Bulls Cross the route descended
Greenway Lane to the sections on private land half way down. These didn't
have any significant impact on the results but the news is the main track
has been repaired and hopefully will be back in action as a section soon
After some extended Green
Laning and another Special Test there was just Bulls Bank and Viaduct to
come. These passed without impacting the results and the last competitor
signed off at Minchinghampton Golf Club before 5pm, where many realised
their mistake by not planning to eat here as the food looked first class.
Congratulations to Dave Wall
for proving a Dellow can still win a one day classic trial. It was a shame
about the confusion on the route at Mini Hoskin. Lets hope it didn't spoil
too many people's enjoyment of another well organised Stroud event.