2019 Race dates, reports & results

The CSCC (and a few others) selective calendar is as follows  - Blue is a CSCC event and bold/underline shows the race day.

                   

*** Outright winners in Classic K and Class G winners in Swinging Sixties ***
our best results year ever!


Jon's 2019 Trophy Haul - Dave has pretty much the same set at his place too!!!!

2019 Race & other dates and results
# Date Venue / Event

Club & Series

Car Result o/a  Class  result Weather/comment Results
  23 -24 Feb NAEC Stoneleigh, Warks Race Retro Show n/a        
                 
1 6 7 April Snetterton 300 CSCC Swingers
CSCC Classic K
Tuscan
Grantura
dnf
9th
dnf
2nd
Wet then dry
Dry then wet
 
2 4 5 May Silverstone International CSCC Swingers
CSCC Classic K
Tuscan
Grantura
dnf
14th
dnf
1st
Warm and dry Results
Results
3 25 27 May Oulton Park CSCC Swingers
CSCC Classic K
Tuscan
Grantura
3rd
7th
1st
1st
Warm and dry
SS Video: click here
SS Results
CK Results
4 27 30 June Spa Francorchamps Summer Classic Roadbook / CSCC Classics and Spa 3 Hours Tuscan
Grantura
27th (!!??)
4th
25th
??
2nd
5th
Insanely hot - 42 degrees in the Tuscan...
SS Race 2 video: click here
Results
5 20 21 July Anglesey coastal & International circuits CSCC Swingers Tuscan 2nd
1st
1st
1st
Warm and dry
Video: click here
Results
6 25 26 August Brands Hatch Indy CSCC Swingers
CSCC Classic K
Tuscan
Grantura
dnf
11th
dnf
2nd
Mega hot and dry
Video: click here
SS Results
7 21 22 September Thruxton CSCC Swingers Tuscan 5th 2nd Warm and dry SS Results
8 4 5 6 October Dijon-Prenois France CSCC Classic K Lotus Elan 3rd
4th
2nd
2nd
Damp, greasy and windy  
9 26 27 October Donington CSCC Swingers
CSCC Classic K
Tuscan
Grantura
3rd
17th
1st
2nd
very very very very wet SS Results
CK Results

    CSCC Swinging Sixties Group 2 class structure for 2019

Class D - All 6 cylinder cars up to 3000cc (Triumph GT6)

Class E - Cars over 3000cc
Class F - All Swinging Sixties Group Two cars running on Dunlop Historic Tyres
Class G - Cars with original V8 engines (TVR Tuscan)
Class H - All Lotus cars (Seven, Elite, Elan, etc.). Lotus Sevens only, have a mandatory pitstop of 30 seconds. Any race winner penalty will be added to this.
Class M - All Marcos Volvo-engined cars
Class J - Invitation class for Swinging Sixties Group Two Cars

 

7th April 2019 - Snetterton 300 - CSCC Swinging Sixties & CSCC Classic K  TVR Tuscan and TVR Grantura

We love a great start to the season and this wasn't it!  In the Classic K race the Grantura was way easier to drive after the winter changes but the weather didn't really let us stretch it properly after the 18 month gap from the previous race. Qually was dry and we gridded up in a way-off-the-pace in 12th place. The race was super-wet and we finished about 9th having reached the dizzy peak of 8th at one point. It was actually better from the driving seat than the sidelines I suspect and I really enjoyed my 25 minutes in the car. Second in class but with only 3 cars, not enough to gain a trophy.

The Tuscan was better and worse. Qually was super-wet and we didn't get a decent lap at all - 13th must be the lowest we've been on the grid for ages however it nearly always leads to an exciting race start.  With Dave's leg still not being 100% after last year's achilles tendon problem we discussed him starting the race and coming is as soon as the pit window opened (we normally start in our own car) however we decided that I'd go first and try to make up a few places by the pit stop.

As it turned out the weather dried out and the track was 90% dry by the race and I had a truly great get away from the rolling start. I was up to 6th by turn 1 then 4th by turn 2. I got up to 3rd by half way round lap 1 and then started chasing leading Elan and the second placed Ray Barrow Camaro.  By lap 4 I had caught Ray and sneaked inside him as we joined the Bentley straight but just at the same time as the clutch let go. I had no drive and coasted to halt round by Coram. Not sure what failed yet but I would guess it's the clutch release mechanism jammed the clutch into a disengaged state.

Later investigation showed that the concentric clutch slave had burst its seal and lost all its fluid, by the following weekend the gearbox had been out and it was all back together again ready for Silverstone's even worse performance.

Start of the Snetterton 300 Swinging Sixties race in TVR Tuscan click here the end was just 6 minutes later!


Jon waiting for a stint in the TVR Grantura at Snetterton in 2019; David Smitheram and Hugo Holder in hi-vis CSCC mode.

 

4th May 2019 - Silverstone International - CSCC Swinging Sixties & CSCC Classic K  TVR Tuscan and TVR Grantura

A very short report for this one on Star Wars day. In the Tuscan Swinging Sixties we qualified well into 3rd place on the grid from 29 cars (and, notably, quicker than all our Class G rivals) but then failed to even make the first corner when the offside drive shaft failed at the start of the race. I pulled off the track at the first corner and that was the end of that! The car was fixed within 3 days but it was a real disappointment especially after the Snetterton clutch mechanism failure.

Start of the Silverstone International Swinging Sixties race in TVR Tuscan click here oops a drive shaft broke

In the 36 car Classic K race however, we both had really entertaining drives and were both racing pretty much the whole time and we ended up with a Class win which made for our first trophies of the season. A great car and really good fun to drive.


Broken TVR Tuscan drive shaft flange after the Silverstone 2019 event

 

25th May 2019 - Oulton Park - CSCC Swinging Sixties & CSCC Classic K  TVR Tuscan and TVR Grantura

A truly brilliant Swinging Sixties race weekend to follow the two dreadful ones previously. It was good weather and both cars performed faultlessly and we walked away with two class wins.

Swinging Sixties Group 2 We qualified well into 4th place and Dave is getting back on form after last year's injury. We were helped by a few DNFs from our key competition but comfortably won the class and gained a 3rd overall. We do need to brush up a bit on our pit stops but really pleased with the results as can be seen in the picture.   

To see the entire Oulton Park Swinging Sixties race click here


The Swinging Sixties Group 2 podium at Oulton Park in 2019

Classic K A strong performance from both of us and we managed a great class win with 7th overall from 9th on the grid. We both had great stints with racing pretty much wheel-to-wheel for the whole 30 minutes.


Jon and Dave with the trophy haul at Oulton Park in 2019


Dave and Jon with the Swinging Sixties trophies for 3rd overall and class win at Oulton Park, 25th May 2019


Dave, Stack, Jon and Jared with the Swinging Sixties and Classic K trophies for two class win at Oulton Park, 25th May 2019

 

27th to 30th June 2019 - Spa Francorchamps - CSCC Classic and Spa 3 Hour  TVR Tuscan and TVR Grantura

Quite a delayed report but lots happened there and quite a bit of family and village stuff since, hence the delay on writing the report.

This annual Ardennes-based CSCC meeting is a must for us and we were all disappointed that Jared 'Pit Boy' Myers couldn't make it this year (some holiday nonsense excuse was given) but Roger was able to step in to help with paddock and pit lane duties. We had a full weekend:

  • Wednesday afternoon and evening: travel to Spa

  • Thursday: Tuscan scrutineering for the CSCC Classic race (Swingers and Classic K combined); Grantura scrutineering for the Spa 3 Hours...then a few drinks in the Bistro on top of the F1 pits

  • Friday afternoon: CSCC Classic practice

  • Friday evening: Spa 3 Hour practice

  • Saturday afternoon: CSCC Classic race 1 - 40 minutes

  • Saturday evening/night: Spa 3 Hour race

  • Sunday morning: CSCC Classic race 2 - 40 minutes

  • Sunday afternoon: travel home

which sounds busy but because the cars were pretty reliable there was quite a lot of sitting about doing very little, or, Just Waiting as Steve McQueen might say.


The Grantura in the Spa garages just waiting...

 

 

 

Race 1 - CSCC Classic (Saturday afternoon) we qualified in 5th in staggeringly hot weather but then had the fastest lap disallowed due to a pit lane speeding infringement which dropped us to 6th.  The race was fun but largely uneventful although it was well over 40 degrees C in the car and we had a bit of a nightmare in the pit stop; we could not get the seat harness sorted quickly enough which dropped us to about 10th place. There was a bit of lapping but not really much of a race to report on.  Ray Barrow did really well in the white Camaro but was out for race two because of a serious engine fault that developed during the race and also suffered a 30 second time penalty for speeding in the pit lane (which everyone noticed Ray!). Nigel Reuben won convincingly with Simon Lane in second place and Jamie Keevil in 3rd (but missed the podium because of Ray's penalty being applied later).

Much later it became apparent that there had been an issue with the circuit's timing equipment and loads of people were classified in the results way down from where they should be. It took the CSCC team several hours to get it corrected however we were missed! Because not every passing of the transponder was accurately recorded we had a "near 6 minute lap" in the race so looked like we had a super slow lap and were given as finishing 27th overall in the results and 4th in class.

The problem being that race 1 results also set the race 2 grid...hence the lowly grid start for race 2.

The Spa 3 Hour (Saturday evening) was epic fun having qualified in 54th place from 76 starters. This race runs with  three main categories, those being: 1965, 1971 and 1976 and we were really aiming for a good position in the 1965 group where we were 41st on the grid.  Three hours is a heck of a time and we had calculated that we could not run at full speed for the full three hours without refuelling; we had worked out a few scenarios based on wet weather and safety car periods which would affect the timing or need to for a fuel stop. Also the rules mandate that a driver may only drive for a maximum of 71 minutes in a single stint so that suggested two pit stops with Dave starting and ending the race and taking on a modest amount of fuel on the second stop at around 135 minutes.


Seriously hot in the F1 pit garages waiting for my 65 minute Grantura stint in the 2019 Spa 3 Hour race,
with1980s vintage TSSC umbrella

We brought Dave in at about 50 minutes and I went out for about 65 minutes. It was really brilliant fun and the car was well behaved except for the truly horrendous noise coming from the drive train (at the time we thought it was the gearbox although it later transpired to be the pinion gear which had lost three half-teeth. We didn't really make any mistakes and drove pretty solidly for the whole race. Dave put a few litres of fuel in at he start of his second stint which only cost us one place so was definitely worth doing and there really wasn't a lot of fuel left in the tank at the end of the race. We were very happy to finish 24th overall and 5th in our 1965 class; a great result although we were a bit disappointed that car wasn't quicker.

 


Debris from the bottom of the Grantura final drive casing after the Spa 3 hour race

Race 2 - CSCC Classic (Sunday morning) because of the race 1 result I started in 27th place and basically had 20 minutes of picking off cars one at a time which can been seen on the in car video on YouTube. Dave took over (another bad pit stop) and we finished 5th overall and 2nd in Class G but annoyingly 4th in the Swinging Sixties group (meaning we missed the podium by one place). Subsequently (due to Malcolm Johnson / Lotus Europa suffering a pit lane speeding penalty) we were elevated to 4th overall and 3rd in Swinging Sixties group which would have got us a podium but hey-ho that's racing. We got some nice trophies for 2nd in Class G but they are in Luxembourg because Dick stayed to collect them for us while we loaded up and headed off for Calais to catch our Eurotunnel crossing.


JW on the grid at the start of race 2 at the Spa Summer Classic, 30th June 2019...27th place to 4th!      photo Jo Hemelsoet

 


Eau Rouge to Radillon on lap 1 of race 2     photo Jo Hemelsoet

 


Dave at the wheel of the mighty Tuscan in race 2 on the way to 3rd in the Swinging Sixties group     photo Jo Hemelsoet

Another great Spa Summer Classic with a mix of results but no car troubles to speak of and super hot weather. As ever, thanks to the team!


Roger, JW, Dave, Dick and Stack enjoying the sunshine in the Pit Brasserie on Thursday evening.
(Jared was away on some holiday nonsense)

 

20th - 21st July 2019 - Anglesey International and Coastal - CSCC Swinging Sixties  TVR Tuscan only

Probably the slowest and most frustrating drive to a U.K. race circuit ever. Over 250 miles of plodding through road works and accident related delays before arriving about 8 hours after we left. We stopped to pick up Jared at Newport Pagnell services and then later for 2 minutes to change driver but what a horrible trip to a truly beautiful place.  Very annoyingly we were also held up by a bloody JCB which had a puncture on a dual carriageway but apparently couldn’t make an extra 20 metres to a lay-by!

All worth it in the end however with a pole position, a second overall (class win) and an overall win too. The pole position came from the final lap on the Saturday morning session as the track was drying out; Dave had the slippery start to the session and then I had the dry bit! We were using the full Anglesey International circuit which I hadn’t seen used for a CSCC event for about 10 years and it’s actually not as good as the shorter Coastal layout we used for the warm up and the race on Sunday.

We’d suffered a minor annoyance too in that on the way up we realised we had not brought Dave’s seat insert but due to Noreen and Tasha leaving home and joining us later they were sent on an unsuccessful search round to workshop to find it. We ended up making another from bits they did find and brought up...then we found the original one in the shower!  Hey ho, the "new" one is actually better!

Qually was interesting; it was really pretty damp when Dave went out and he never really got a dry lap and was struggling to find any traction and we were in about 10th when he came in. This was, fortunately, just as the dryness arrived and the track almost instantly warmed up! I was much quicker as the track dried out and got us our first pole position for 5 years on my final lap. Both races were set at 30 minutes rather than the more usual 40 minutes but made up for by there being two opportunities to win/crash/lose etc.

Race one (Saturday) was combined Swinging Sixties Group 1 and Group 2 on the longer International layout and I was back to 2nd place by the first corner - alas the drive shaft failure at Silverstone is still bugging me because we never really understood why it failed after so many races and brutal starts. I was relatively tentative off the line and that allowed Jamie Keevill (Lotus Elan) to get away and I never really got close to him again.  Dave took over in 2nd place and that's where we finished; it was not a terribly exciting race but great to get another class win. A much improved pit stop performance helped secure the position and I think we're back on form after a couple of sub-optimal pit lane changeovers.

Race two (Sunday) was Swinging Sixties Group 2 plus the 70s Class of Future Classics with grids being set on best lap times from Saturday (I think!). That put us in 2nd place for Swingers but actually 6th slot on the grid because of the three Porsche 911 monsters in front of us plus a missing Future Classics car. Unlike in race one I decided to do a proper start and was up to 3rd overall by turn one with Jamie's Elan right on my tail. We then had a mighty race for the whole 30 minutes with us crossing the line in 4th place but still winning! Video is on YouTube.  It was a super exciting race with close racing the whole time and it's hard to do it justice in words but I was nearly wiped out by a Future Classics 911 out braking himself and just missing me.

At the end of the race the two leading 911s were long gone (the other one was missing in action behind us somewhere) and Jamie had just got past Dave on pretty much the last lap, however, he had a safety rule infringement penalty applied due to an excessively exuberant pit stop and was penalised 30 seconds. That promoted us to Swinging Sixties winners, happy with that but we do need to find more speed!

We came home with a bucket load of trophies because we also collected the missing ones from Spa that were awarded post event and post us leaving for the Eurotunnel. We have also acquired a 30 second success penalty for the rest of the season as a result of the win. Brands Hatch and Thruxton will be tough!

Watch the entirety of Anglesey Swinging Sixties / Future Classics 70s race 2 (about 32 mins) in-car click here


Race delight at Anglesey for overall and class win on Sunday


Looney trophy haul collected at Anglesey
Roger, Stack and Jared rear with Dave and JW front

 

26th August 2019 - Brands Hatch Indy - CSCC Swinging Sixties & CSCC Classic K  TVR Tuscan and TVR Grantura

Brands Hatch again and savage heat again at over 30 degrees. Both TVRs after just taking the V8 to Anglesey and hopeful of two good results but it was not to be this time.

The Tuscan. Reasonable practice with Dave out in the car first but I just could not get it to turn in properly and we gridded into 8th place; quite a bit further back than normal but not really worried as we had 40 minutes to make up the places. We had all sorts of cars this time with a couple of fat Griffiths and both the Camaros present for a nice change. At race start I would be on a mission!

The car was great off the rolling start despite the heat and I was round the outside of a few cars by Druids and chasing the US style grey Geoff Taylor TVR Griffith whilst watching my mirrors for Dean Halsey’s sometimes quick Datsun 240z. I had a tremendous 15 or so laps and was up to 3rd for a while before blam! Left side drive shaft parted company with the rest of the car and went for a trip into the gravel on the outside of the start-finish straight. I coasted to a halt at Paddock Hill bend marshal’s post and watched the rest of the race from there. Alas Dave didn’t get a drive this time.

I never did get the drive shaft back and despite a few emails to Brands Hatch admin team they were unable to find it all, just half of it which isn’t really worth going back for. I need to revise how the final drive works and am designing a CV joint based drive shaft setup and if I can get the special parts I need, it should be much better than what I have now.

Classic K was better but not perfect. Dave had a really strong practice session but mine was cut short after just a couple of laps by someone depositing oil all over the track leading to every other car withdrawing from the session leaving me entirely on my own for the final 8 laps!

We qualified in 9th (we were faster actually but I had my best quality lap discounted due to exceeding track limits) and Dave had a good start and soon recovered the couple of places he lost off the rolling start. I took over the car when we’re running in a strong position but was keen to try to get us up to class lead rather than 2nd place.

However, I tried a bit too hard at the start of my stint and had a graceful spin on the exit from Paddock Hill bend. I ended up at the bottom of the hill on the outside edge of the track (which is also right on the racing line) with the engine stalled and zero response from the starter motor. I was stuck and just prayed that nobody piled into the car as I sat in it. I was soon summoned to the side by the marshals and made my plodding way through the expansive gravel to the tyre wall. On the up side the safety car was deployed while I was recovered and I got back into the Grantura as the tow truck arrived. Feeling hopeful....I strapped in and as soon as the line went tight I dropped the clutch and the engine fired up. I signalled that I was running and they unhooked me and waved me back in the track only about 10 metres in front of the safety car but four laps down and now in class 3rd. I then drove as fast as I dared to catch the back of the safety car train thereby regaining a lap.

I was pretty loose and was shown the white and black flag to suggest my driving was under close observation! By this time the rest of the Wolfitt Racing team had pretty much given up any chance of seeing me again and had headed off back to the paddock on outside the circuit. Luckily Lisa saw that I was back on the track and after some apparent confusion and gesticulating a team reappeared on the pit wall with about 15 minutes still to run.

I managed to regain a few laps and thankfully retook 2nd in class and got us back to 11th overall which was more than acceptable given the circumstances especially as we like to look at the whole year in the round. Dave was delighted that we'd recovered a 2nd in class from what looked like a dnf.

Thruxton next - lots of work to do on the Tuscan in the meantime!

 

21st September 2019 - Thruxton - CSCC Swinging Sixties   TVR Tuscan only  (no Classic K)

A huge amount of work to do on the Tuscan before we could confidently take to the track; all the rear end had to come apart to check/renew/improve the rear drive shafts. I ended up with a new u/j based unit but with slightly bigger flanges while also designing a new CV joint based drive system which will have to wait until 2020 because the parts I need are on back order from GKN.


The mighty Tuscan basking in the Thruxton sun in 2019


The mighty Wolfitt team basking in the Thruxton sun in 2019

The Swinging Sixties race was on the Saturday which was most fortunate because the weather forecast for Sunday was for heavy rain; we had a reasonable and dry practice session which left us 7th on the grid and somewhat nervous about the standing start given the two drive shaft failures this year.  It was a pretty good start however and I was away cleanly for a few laps and managed to avoid a spinning Jamie Keevil (Elan) and was not caught up the Mustang/240Z contretemps which can be seen in the rearview camera video. I had a reasonable race to the pit stop and Dave was able to maintain our position despite a nasty noise from the engine, our 30 second success penalty and the car not starting after the pit stop caused by the main power cable fatiguing through!

We ended up 5th overall and 2nd in Class which was a good result given the dnf at Brands just a few weeks earlier. The engine noise later transpired to be a failed nearside exhaust manifold gasket which was fine; on the pit lane we had decided it wasn't a mechanical noise and suspected a split exhaust manifold and hence let Dave carry on in the race.  There was some nervousness that the noise was a broken lifter (which happened twice in 2018) but the valve gear was all fine but has been adjusted anyway. The engine (which is basically a fast road spec crate engine from the USA) has now been in for five years and I am considering whether it should come out over the winter for a quick check-up and refresh...I'll decide after Donington!


Failed exhaust gasket which was causing the noise at Thruxton

 

4th 5th 6th October 2019 - Dijon Prenois - CSCC Classic K   Jon in the Lotus Elan  Dave in the TVR Grantura


Promotional poster for the Dijon Motors Cup 2019

The first trip ever for the CSCC to Dijon-Prenois circuit in France and to a place that used to host the French GP.  It’s about 350 miles from Calais and was a double vehicular first for us.  First time towing in the new VW Camper and first time out for the recently completed Lotus Elan GTS/26R racer. So Dave vs Jon in Classic K again after which has not happened since I sold the Falcon about 5 years ago.  The weather forecast was really changing on the days leading up to the meeting and we both accepted that it would probably be a very wet one.  As it turned out we had mostly dry sessions amidst many downpours although the track for the second race was horribly oily and slippery. 

Scrutineering  was interesting...we had anticipated a rigorously thorough check on the cars but in the end it was mostly a clothing check! You can never tell what it’ll be like from race to race and I think they spent more time looking at my nomex socks than at the car! What we did manage however was a track walk on the Thursday afternoon which highlighted that this was no flat airfield circuit (which is how it looks on Google Earth) but a fast sweeping, swooping circuit like the Brands Hatch GP circuit but with a huge straight.

Practice was the first proper track session and the car was good apart from the overly stiff steering which needs investigating because it didn’t get any less stiff throughout the weekend. Other than the o/s Chapman strut insert coming loose again (happened in the test at Snetterton too) there was not any maintenance to do on the car just checks and petrol (at en eye-watering 177c a litre!)

One thing we did do however was fit a differential cooler pipe. The Lotus Elan 26R has an air intake on the left sill to take air to the top of the diff casing and I was advised by Paul Keevil, a long time Elan racer, that it’s essential.  We made one up using a short length of hose from John Hammersley's spares box and a couple of plastic water bottles. Looks pretty good actually.  Also Richard sorted out an electrical problem that was stopping the heater elements in the windscreen working on the drivers side. 

Anyway, practice was good and I was in 7th spot on the grid which I was very pleased with. It was a mixed Future Classics/Swinging 60s/Classic K race so was doubly happy to be that far up.  It’s amazing how late you can brake in an Elan compared to the fat-boy TVR Tuscan!

Also weird was seeing my old Falcon Sprint at the circuit. It was sold back in February 2019 by the guys I sold it to and it was there in new ownership still looking remarkably similar to how I left it!  Totally amazing was that it was running the same race number as me, being 262!


The old bus at Dijon in 2019 looking remarkably similar to how it left me...amazingly with number 262

Notably on Saturday morning we (I) decided to pop out on the scooter to Velars-sur-Ouche to find a boulangerie for bread and croissants. Jared as pillion and I set off in reasonable weather but got drenched on the way back as we struggled uphill into the driving rain. It was worth it though despite Jared’s messed up hair do. 

Race 1 was probably (definitely) my worst race start for many years.  I think I lost at least 5 places by turn 1 because I totally misunderstood how many revs you need to get the car off the line quickly; it’s not like the mighty V8 Tuscan at all.  I then spent the time to the pit stop slowly making my way back up the field. We had a super slick pit stop but I was then out into clear space and had a very dull 25 minutes circulating pretty much on my own.  I finished 3rd in Classic K however which was brilliant with Dave not that far behind in the trusty Grantura.  However, due to a bloody annoying cock up by the organisers I missed the podium ceremony although I did get the trophy later; thanks to the club stepping in to sort it out.

Race 2 on Sunday was very different.  A horribly greasy slippery track with no grip at all for those of us on cross ply tyres.  Again a pretty lonely race after the pit stop with the radial tyred cars doing much much better than those of us on Dunlop historics; ended up 4th in Classic K. Unfortunately both races were a bit dull from where I was sitting but I got two class 2nd place trophies and the 3rd overall for race 1 so actually pretty good for first time out in the car.  Dave won his class twice so was very happy with that too.  


Start of race 2 at Dijon Prenois in France on a terribly slippery, greasy track; it was the first time out for the Elan

The new VW T6 camper was great and we found a super municipal camping site up on the castle walls at Langres which we used on the way down and on the way back to break up the journey. That was in addition to stopping over at the old Reims circuit on the way down to look at how all the old buildings have been restored and protected. The last time I was there in about 1988 it was all looking very sorry for itself.  

A great CSCC weekend and we’re all looking forward to Le Mans in October in 2020.

 


Pre-grille (collecting) for race 2 at Dijon in 2019

Post meeting we undertook a thorough inspection of the Elan given that this was its first proper outing. We found that both front wheel bearings had the same issue that being that the A Ring on each inner wheel bearing was a loose fit in the hub (probably a spun bearing at some point in the past) and was causing excessive wheel wobble. I bought a new pair of FIA compliant steel hubs from Kelvedon Lotus and soon had them fitted; a quick re-shim of the track rods means there is now zero play in the steering. I am sure this was the cause of the high-speed braking stability issue I experienced in both races.

I also stripped and refitted the o/s Chapman strut insert where the upper, threaded retaining collar had worked loose and I also resolved a small oil leak where the now-redundant mechanical rev counter drive was fitted to the front cover of the engine.  It now has a blanking plate bolted in its place.


The restored, old Reims circuit in September 2019

 

26th October 2019 - Donington Park - CSCC Swinging Sixties & CSCC Classic K  TVR Tuscan and TVR Grantura

Rain, rain and more rain was the basic principle of Saturday 26th October; oh, and then some more rain resulting in a real mixed bag result; Dave was the star driver this particular weekend.

Swinging sixties was first race of the day and Classic K was last daylight race and the whole lot was streamed live on YouTube. It can be seen on https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ssylNn9SGXw&t=1795s where you'll see just how wet the whole day was.

We qualified badly in Swingers because we couldn't see a thing! The new glass screen misted up almost immediately and it was impossible to keep it clear - we were both wiping the screen 10 times a lap and it made for pretty slow laps leaving us 11th on the grid from 23 starters, not great but could have been a lot worse!

I had a reasonable start but on lap one had a gentle pirouette onto the grass at Coppice corner dropping me to dead last -  I was well and truly stuck on the grass and had to gun the engine in 1st gear to slowly progress across the grass back to the track again. Hey ho, recovery drive needed again!  I have to say that just a lap later I was delighted (very) to see the Safety Car signs out at the marshalls' posts; brilliant because that would allow me to catch back up with the back of the train of cars. It took about 3 laps for the beached cars to be moved and then had just 2 laps before the flippin' safety car was out on track again, this time all the way to half distance where I handed over to Dave. By some skill and luck the team had timed our stop at exactly the best time and made up about 10 places while many cars were held in the pit lane the lap before we pitted, this elevated Dave to about 8th and he was on a mission and got us up to 3rd overall and back into the class winning position. A great drive from Dave and made up for my dreadful showing. The race was somewhat marred by the huge number of people getting in trouble with the Clerk of the Course for infringing Safety Car rules, some very dangerously and one driver was excluded from the meeting and received 6 penalty points on his licence. Another driver actually managed to slide into a gravel trap while behind the safety car and got a proper reprimand.

For Classic K it was much the same story (apart from the bad driving bit), it was still raining while Dave was in the Grantura but pretty much stopped as I got in, meaning I had the horrible greasy drying track to deal with. I knew we wouldn't be able to win the class but could get a class 2nd just by finishing the race so basically drove round reasonably fast for 30 minutes while losing about 5 places, I was mindful of Dave's words at the pit stop which were basically to bring it home. We finished 17th but with a very important class 2nd.

The cars ran faultlessly and we came home with a great Swingers and acceptable Classic K result and with zero car damage.

Sunday was lovely dry, sunny weather...bugger!

As ever, massive thanks to the whole extended team for the support this year!
 

 

 

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