Category Archives: Classic Cars

Donington Historic Festival – Sun 30th May 2017

The offer of spare tickets from Steve Winter at Jaz Porsche overcame any remaining indecision over whether to get up to Donington this year.

Opting to go on Sunday meant I could watch Steve and his co-driver Rob Williams compete in the GT & Sports Car Cup for Pre-’66 GT & Pre-’63 Sportscars.

It was also a good opportunity to meet up with old friends Ken, James & Kirk.

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Goodwood 75th Members Meeting – Sun 19th March Part 2

With so many cars to inspect at close quarters it’s really difficult not to be drawn to different sections of the paddock and miss key races.

In retrospect – I should have spent two days at Goodwood not just the one long day to cover everything. There’s always next year!

Continue reading Goodwood 75th Members Meeting – Sun 19th March Part 2

Goodwood 75th Members Meeting – Sun 19th March Part 1

Upon reflection – setting off at 05:30 to be at Goodwood as the gates opened at 07:30 was a bit mad but it did give me time look at some wonderful cars in the paddock before it got too crowded and before the track action commenced.

Sunday’s Goodwood 75th MM programme provided a great day of fast and furious racing in thankfully dry if bloody cold conditions.

Continue reading Goodwood 75th Members Meeting – Sun 19th March Part 1

London Classic Car Show – Sat 25th Feb 2017

This Classic Car Show continues to expand in terms of the volume and variety of cars on show and in terms of the size of the Grand Avenue where cars are driven up and down the cavernous main hall to improve the visual and aural experience for the audience.

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Origin Of The Species

Darwinian principles can be applied as much to automotive design and manufacturing as they have been to evolutionary biology. “Survival of the fittest” has been the recipe of enduring success for a number of car marques but it has also seen the extinction of many more.

From the very first cars – certain marques have driven down developmental cul-de-sacs whilst others have, through inspired progressive improvement, survived to the present day.

As one of the most successful surviving marques – it’s interesting to analyse some of the factors and earlier designs that assured Porsche’s initial establishment, success and ultimate longevity as a manufacturer of road and race cars.

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Regent Street Motor Show – Sat 5th Nov 2016

This event has become an annual institution as the Saturday prelude to Sunday’s London to Brighton run.

Locals and visitors to London are privileged to be able to wander amongst the carefully preserved but enthusiastically used progenitors of modern cars.

I got chatting to a coupe of guys from Antwerp who were knocked out by their luck in coming to London for the first (but not last) time and just happening upon the Regent Street Motor Show. Loads of other visitors must have shared the same fortuitous experience.

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Brooklands Autumn Classic Breakfast – Sun 30th Oct 2016

The autumn clock change softened the blow of having to get up early to drive my noisy 911 through slumbering London to Brooklands.

As I neared my goal on a damp and misty morning I joined a long queue of like minded enthusiasts in their precious cars.

A full English breccie and strong coffee in the Club House set me up for some serious car nerd mooching around the visitors car parks and the museum exhibits.

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Ace Cafe – Tue 9th Aug 2016

When my friend and fellow petrol-head Arun suggested a trip up to the Ace Cafe in his wonderful Caterham 7 for the the Classic Car Night + Lotus + Midget & Sprite meeting I had no hesitation in accepting.

After the minor complication of getting my non-sylph-like frame into the tiny Caterham 7 cockpit and strapping myself into the full harness the journey up to the Ace Cafe was great (despite the early evening homeward-bound traffic). The 7 really is like a 2-seater jet-propelled skateboard – soooooo fast and responsive.

 

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Prescott “La vie en bleu” – Sun 29th May 2016

Blast-Off

A 6AM start saw me blasting out of London in the old 911 along the M40 before hitting quiet country roads North of Oxford. Well they would have been quiet but for the fractious popping and banging of my engine!

Undeterred by fog, the aftermath of a nasty crash on the M40 and an inordinate number of flattened foxes and the odd two-dimensional deer littering the carriageway – I pressed on.

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Goodwood 74th Members Meeting – Sun 20th Mar 2016 Part 2

The Perils of High Speed Circuits.

As Goodwood circuit is not used all year round due to local noise restrictions – it’s easy to forget that it’s is a very high speed circuit and therein lies the risk to race drivers and to spectators.

At the end of the first lap of the first of Sunday’s races a really scary crash  unfolded right in front of me on the start/finish straight when Richard Wilson’s Lotus Cooper Climax T51 collided with Stephen Bond’s Lotus Climax 18.

Instead of both cars coming to rest on the track or in the tyre wall – the collision caused Bond’s Lotus to go into an end-over-end  cartwheel which lifted it over the wall and hedge of an access road before it plummeted down into a pedestrian tunnel right next to the viewing area for wheelchair users.

Possibly because it was early in the day – the pedestrian tunnel was empty so by a miracle spectator injuries were avoided. Stephen Bond also came out of it with broken ribs but was extremely lucky not to come out worse particularly as fuel was pouring from the car as he hung suspended in his seat belts.

It’s horrible to contemplate but with slightly more forward momentum the cartwheeling car could easily have cleared the pedestrian tunnel and landed on the wheelchair spectator viewing area.

Luck was with  a number of people as it looked like the accident could have shaped up to be a 1955 Le Mans type incident.

I was rooted to the spot watching the accident in slow motion but a few yards further along the viewing platform Tim Quinlan captured this remarkable footage of the accident:-

Continue reading Goodwood 74th Members Meeting – Sun 20th Mar 2016 Part 2