Lydden Hill, 31st May 2003
Lydden Hill I'd removed the rear anti roll bar to see what difference it
makes to the Golf handling. With a full grid of cars and only a 1.00 mile
track it was bound to be busy so I just concentrated on getting my three
laps in (there were reserves) and setting a half decent time.
managed to find some space and started exploring the handling a little
more. Rather obviously there was more roll at the rear of the car - but
the back wheels still slid quite progressively. In fact in might have been
easier to drive and turn in seemed slightly sharper at the front. Overall,
although the car felt slightly different, I don't think it was that much
slower or quicker. The Golf had a 'tighter' feel with the ARB fitted so I
think I'll bolt it back on for Mallory - it was worth a try though.
the results sheets came out it wasn't good news - I was down in 19th place
out of 22 qualifiers and a good 6/10's down on the class poll time of Don
Hughes. Still the race was wide open, all the times were fairly close.
I made a great start again at the green
lights (well actually when all the other cars started moving - I couldn't
SEE the green lights I was so far back down the grid!) and got alongside
Hugh Poston's Fiesta. He closed the door into Chesson's so I duly followed
as the big P6 Rover of Peter Holton powered past. With V8 grunt that was
bound to happen, he was right behind me on the grid. So we headed up the
hill towards the hairpin all tightly packed and I took the inside line to
try and maintain position. By this time David Scriven had got a better
exit out of Chesson's and was also ahead - another good start had
deteriorated into nothing!
Lap 2 and I squeezed by the Scrivens Escort
on the entry to Devil's Elbow - a Rover has spun and everyone is taking
avoiding action. I'm later told that there were yellow flags but I didn't
see them at all - oops. Sorry David - if I'd known I would have backed off
and given you back the place. The rest of the shortened (*) 12 minute race
was spent trying to get past the big P6 to join the class D battle that I
could see frustratingly right in front of me. Ahead of the Rover was Hugh
Poston's Fiesta who was having a great battle with Martin Howell in the ex
Stacy Vickers Golf GTi. Don Hughes' Golf led the class a few seconds
further up the field just ahead on Chris Bray and his championship leading
But all I could do was watch
them all race each other - I tried diving to the inside of the Rover at
Chessons Drift, Devils Elbow and the hairpin - no joy. I even tried
driving around the outside of him at the hairpin - I could get right
alongside but he just powered down the hill with the line into Paddock.
Soon enough the chequered flag was out and I'd finished 19th - my worst
(?) Group One race finish ever.
Golf started misfiring on the last lap and packed in altogether at the
bottom of the Paddock as we came in off the circuit. Once it had cooled
down it eventually restarted but the misfire, poor running and anti roll
bar all need sorting for Mallory Park in two weeks time. The results sheet
was fairly re-assuring - my race time was only a couple of tenths off Don
and Chris and quicker than the other class D cars. So I'm hoping for a
better result at Mallory. I certainly can't complain about class D being
competitive this year, everyone seems to be going so well! I'll just have
to try harder...
(* - the Group One
race was shortened from 15 to 12 minutes because of the massive accidents
that put three cars on their roofs at Lydden that afternoon)