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TUNSHILL TRIAL & TEAM RECOVERY

 

     “Ring Ring!” (crude imitation of a telephone bell), "Sorry to have to tell you this but Grassington has had to be postponed until later in the year" ....(Short pause as these facts are digested by my low geared brain) then PANIC! Stop the trophies being engraved, get additional postscript sheets printed to attach to BB, get permission off Hadrian Drake to use his land at short notice, and somewhere in the middle of all this confusion, John Lister and myself ended up running the event! '

 

Myself and John were helped with the marking out by Jim Burgess, on what turned out to be a nice sunny Saturday. There isn’t much scope at Tunshill to put new  sections in so its virtually a case of putting the sections in the same place as usual but try and get some new twists and ideas into them^ We laid out some tight stick sections, some wide, muddy, gungy types, a water hole and a couple of hill climbs thrown in for good measure....what more could you want? (power steering???)

 

On the Sunday morning we again had a problem with late arrivals which meant it was after 11-00 before we got under way. We used travelling marshalls working four groups to try and keep things moving, although the cold wind blowing up from the M62 made people move even quicker! (there's nothing like a draught up the trouser leg to get things moving!) The biggest surprise of the day was how well the two diesels were doing.  Howard Leahy and George Carruthers were both proving that diesels aren’t always a handicap … just usually!

 

There seemed to be more than the usual amount of problems with vehicles on this event, one had already failed scrutineering due to a fully floating back axle, a couple of handbrakes that had to be adjusted before passing and a broken spring etc! You know there going be checked so why risk not being able to enter for the sake of getting them mended?

 

The water holes soon claimed it's first victims which  were just a little eager to create the biggest splash. One triple entered 6 cylinder series 11 had a particularly hard time of it, come to think of it, it had a hard time of it all day! I think we must have been a bit severe marking because all the scores were quite high. Either that or you we’re all rubbish!!.

 

 The team recovery was held in the deep quarry hole at the bottom of the field. It provided not only a good recovery, but also a clear AND safe viewpoint for the spectators, who really seem to enjoy watching this event. There were 8 teams entered (and would probably have been more if they'd managed to drag themselves out of the pub earlier!) There was a nice long run around the top of the quarry and a hill that we were quite confident wouldn't be cleared by anything less than a helicopter so just to make sure the entries got their moneys worth we decided to have one run, but one of the team had to do the hill twice. What confusion that caused!. I'm sure half of our lot can't count above two, there were a lot of worried faces and furrowed brows as I tried to explain that it was only a matter of one person doing it twice. I was beginning to wish we hadn’t bothered!. Richard Hobbs christened his new lightweight by rolling it in his own inimitable way and style ...so  slowly and gracefully it was almost as if he’d been practicing! (Judging by the number of times he had his Series 11 over. I think he has been) to cap his day off a frightened rabbit out-accelerated him up the hill!. Team female; Melanie Simmonite and Margaret Hartley were doing well until the prop shaft on Melanie's 80 parted company from itself, and there’s no way a 2 wheel drive 80" recovers 30cwt of Series 11

 

The final result was a very close match (only 5 seconds in it) between Carl Amos and Ted Hartley and Brian Dibb and Ian Ridleyo The final times were;

 

 Carl and Ted      4min   55 sees     First

Brian and Ian     5^in   00 sees     Second

 

Thanks go to all those who helped marshall and to Jim Burgess for his help marking out and setting up direction signs. Once again we are indebted to Hadrian Drake for letting us use his land at such short notice,

 

Thanks a lot

 

 

Hodgehurst - S&S Easter Weekend

 

The Dynamic Duo from Lancashire decided to take up the invitation from Staffs & Shrops LRC to their events over the Easter weekend. All they had to guide them to that part of the world was and O/S map reference number. Now, it all depends on which map you use!. (There are 2 kinds you know, and being the worlds worst navigator, apart from a certain gentleman in Thornton, who can’t even find his way around a marked course, we could finish up anywhere between Lands End and John O’ Groats). However on Saturday, we set off. We had only travelled about 200 yards when my worse half mumbled something like “this croc’ll never get us there” or words to that effect. (Who am I to argue with a statement like that. Ed). Apparently there were noises, squeaks and bumps from the Land Rover’s gearbox that we’re all in the wrong place and occurring at the wrong time.

 

It took approximately  3 hours to get to Hodgehurst, near All Stretton, and we we’re surprised to find so many fanatics like ourselves. The camp site was on a very, very, steep hill and halfway up the hill, our Land Rover, with caravan, decided to take a rest. About 2 feet behind was Ted in his Range Rover, towing his Land Rover on a trailer. To cut a long story short, Ted had to do a mini team recovery to get Carl going again (What a motor!!). We finally managed to find a place to put the caravan. The last thought in our minds before going to the Land Of Nod was “Blimey, If this is only the camp site, what will the trial, team recovery and comp safari be like?”

 

Sunday dawned rather peaceful except for the sound of trickling water. No, not that!. It was raining very hard. This was the day of the trial. It was very wet and the ground was covered in luvverly mud, in excess. The sections were varied and interesting. Interesting in that one steered the Land Rover in one direction and as usual with a mind of its own, it promptly went the opposite way, and varied in that one had to be pushed or pulled and that was only to get to the start of a section. There were several, well hundreds really of strategically placed trees which were somewhat magnetic and will bear the marks of red and cream paintwork for many years to come. One tree in particular was very thoughtful. As Carl went up the hill past it, it promptly moved 2 feet in behind him and wedged the rear end of the Land Rover firmly in its grasp. On one particular section Ted was going that fast (to quote a well known saying) up a very steep incline (that means a big hill) and was driving between an ever decreasing gap between two trees  The Land Rovers front paws hit the tree roots and leapt 3 feet in the air.  On re-entry there were some funny noises coming from the front end of the Land Rover, and from inside the cab. Actually what had happened, instead of re-entry on the wheels Ted had landed  on his front prop shaft, which promptly parted company from the diff, At the end of the trial calculations were needed  to add up our scores.  Ted managed to count to 90 and Carl actually managed to count to 104. Ted was 3rd in the Special class.  Carl came 500th. The outright winner of the trial was Staffs and Shrops member John Braithwaite, (Brother of Pennine member Jeff) with a total score of 70.

 

With the aid of some very helpful S&S members, a new prop shaft was fitted to Ted’s motor the following morning in readiness for the Comp Safari.

 

Not only Pennine have interesting motors. One chap from the S&S club had, wait for it!, an 80" V-8, rear mounted (very painful) engine driving a Range Rover gearbox with a radiator where the tailgate should be. We couldn’t decide whether it was coming or going, but whichever way it went it went very well!

Monday, the day we had really come for. There was a Comp Safari in the morning and a team recovery in the after noon.  The Comp Safari course was approx 1 1/2 miles long.  It  was thoughtfully laid out and had everything.  Mountains, valleys, dammed rivers (streams really) trees more trees and even more trees.  Oh yes I forgot, mud and barbed wire fences. There were 2 runs at the course the fastest run to count. Ted’s first run was the fastest time and Carls was third. Now came the second run. This is when it all happened.  Ted was trying hard to better his first time when one of those magnetic trees sprung into action and stopped his motor abruptly. When this obstacle was overcome he continued, It was then it happened. Doing a sideways quick step, he tangoed with a barbed wire fence.  After dragging 40' of fence down he managed to free himself but it had cost him a lot of time. He finished the course with barbed wire wrapped round his front axle. On Carl's second run he was doing very well when the Land Rover decided it wanted a bath. It dived over the top of a hill and into 3' of water with a great splash. That was the end. On this occasion Ted ripped the splines from his front drive hub and all the needle rollers fell out of his new prop shaft. We managed to borrow one from an unsuspecting lightweight owner who had only come to watch the events.

 

Later came the team recovery. The weather had managed to stay fine although there was still an awful lot of mud about. The course consisted of approximately 3 recovery places and there were 3 runs. Five teams entered.  Derek Montford and Arthur Shaw of the Lancs & Cheshire Land Rover Club did very well and from a spectators point of view were more than entertaining, falling about all over in deep mud. Then came Carl and Ted with the sad saga of the notorious V-8.  It all started off very well, but ended with a cantankerous engine that refused to work. With varied, good natured encouragement like "@^£%*#, rubbish etc from the spectators, Ted and Carl retired.  The second run was even more entertaining, with Derek and Arthur becoming muddier and muddier. Ted and Carl managed to complete the course on this occasion. On the final run Ted’s V8 gave up the ghost for a while when the battery lead came off.  The mid-engined V8 also broke his front prop shaft and punctured a big hole in his petrol tank (which was where his engine should have been).  The well deserved winners of the event were Tom and young Tom Boydell of Lanes & Cheshire, who put up a very impressive performance.

 

We arrived home late Monday night. The Land Rover gear box was tinkling and rattling very nicely, and the new paint job was a little modified. In fact the following morning when I went to use the motor for work it refused to start and has not been quite the same since.

 

All in all it proved a very enjoyable weekend, We were made very welcome by the S&S members and the members of other clubs, and we felt it was worth while travelling to Hodgehurst to enter their events. Those Pennine members who decided not to go missed a really good weekend’s fun as the events were a challenge to man and motor and the competition fierce.

 

         Carole Amos

 

 
MSA and ARC club members are welcome to come along and join our events. Phone Mark on 07866 506521 / 01282 703718

 

 

Pennine Land Rover Club, Pennine LRC