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Exeter 2015

Time Penalties affect Results

Putting the issue of time penalties to one side this was a well organised trial, a fitting end to Tim's Whellock and Keeling's spell as Exeter Trial organisers. The weather was quite nice and the sections kind, apart from Simms that is, which restricted the number of Premier Awards.

Dave Cook captures Ian Moss on Tillerton in his wonderful Pre War Ford Model Y that has been in the family for many years. Ian had a great trial only failing Simms for a Silver (Picture by Dave Cook)

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Full Results

As competitors converged on Haynes Museum after the night run few knew of the incident on the A303 affecting John Wilton's Trojan. Sadly Johns passenger was very poorly after the accident and at at the time of writing no more news is available.

TV Cameras

There was plenty to see at Haynes. The refurbishment is now complete and there was plenty of space to relax in smart surroundings after signing on. Then outside there was the TV filming as Tiff Needle was driving Dick Bolts familiar Escort for Fifth Gear.

The action started on the Haynes complex with an observed test in the car park. There were only a couple of failures which included Phil Tucker who lost his Gold in his TR3A.

With the dry weather neither Classic Canes or Underdown proved too problematical but still cost Nick Gibbs a gold in his Marlin when he failed Classic Canes.

Bovey Woods

Neither Normans Hump or Clinton took their usual toll but Dick Bolt was a notable failure when the 1300 Beetle he was driving jumped out of gear. Dick had planned to shadow Tiff in his new Ford Pop but the car wasn't ready so Emma Robbiliard kindly offered her Beetle complete with passenger Simon Groves.

Across the road the twists and turns of Waterloo bought a lot of the Suzuki X90's to a halt and also stopped James Shallcross in his Peugeot 205.

Time for Breakfast

Marc Schafer came all the way from a small town in Germany to repair his Toyota Celica. (Picture by James Llewellyn) Dave Wall was anxious not to draw attention to the rear mudguards on his Class 8 Dellow (Picture by James Llewelly

Stretes and Bulverton Steep were straightforward and it was soon time for breakfast at Crealey Park with plenty of space to spread out for the all you can eat buffet.

The Trial Toughens at Tillerton

AH Trophy Winner Nick Farmer had problems in the night when he lost his overnight bag on the A303 (Picture by Dave Cook) Roger Beaumont showing he has a substantial sump guard as he leaps his Suzuki X90 over the rocks (Picture by Dave Cook)

With its usual rocky restart Tillerton came as shock to Class 7 and there were more fails than cleans and a lot of punctures. Some notables lost Gold here, including the vastly experienced Roger Bricknell in his Vincent and multiple PCT Champion Barrie Parker with his new Toyota, running in Class 7 as it was fitted with a LSD as standard.

Several of the Lieges failed Tillerton, these didn't include Mark Endley but he then blotted his copybook by stopping on Fingle!


Brian Shore providing the spectators with the excitement they want on Simms (Picture by James Llewellyn) Neal Vile getting close and personal to the barrier on Simms. He was went clean but lost his Gold on Slippery Sam (Picture by James Llewellyn)

The famous old hill was to be the big one on this years Exeter. OK lets get this one in first, our hero Tiff went clean and on to gold.

Ian Cundy in his Golf was the only FWD to clean Simms, benefiting from the finish time penalty's being scrubbed to go gold. Class 5 was interesting as a whole host of Suzuki's reached the top. Some of these have now been had extensive development, being fitted with a lot of ballast and a variety of Vitara transmission components to increase their competitiveness.

The hill took its toll of the RWD brigade, especially in Class six, but Dick Bolt had learned how to carry the momentum of a low power to weight car in Class Four and followed his Escort to a clear.

The Finish

Simon Hendra about to leave the line on Slippery Sam, the last hill of the day (Picture by Dave Cook) Karl Oakley only failed Simms in his Saab 96 (Picture by Dave Cook)
Joseph Wills had to settle for a bronze after failing Slippery Sam (Picture by Dean Vowden) Roger Vanstone recovered from his brush with the bank to clean the hill (Picture by Dean Vowden)

There was only Tipley and Slippery Sam left now but neither had much effect on the big picture. Everyone was looking forward to hear what Tiff had to say at the evening meal and he didn't disappoint.

Tim Whellock's made a nice farewell speech. When the next chapter of the MCC history is written it will say the Exeter Trial was in safe hands during his custody.


When the final results were published the time penalties applied at the finish were dropped but retained for lateness at the Crealey Park, affecting a handful of people.

Published 3 February 2015

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