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Silverstone - 2 Sep 2000


 Weather/track: Cloudy
Pos No Class Driver Car Time
kph mph
1 29 A Keith Ahlers +8 1:03.67   149.14 92.67
2 8 A Peter Garland +8 1:04.86 1.19 146.40 90.97
3 37 A Rick Lloyd +8 1:05.79 2.12 144.33 89.69
4 20 A Simon McDermott +8 1:06.05 2.38 143.77 89.33
5 15 A Craig Jones +8 1:06.20 2.53 143.44 89.13
6 16 A Malcolm Paul +8 1:07.01 3.34 141.71 88.05
7 36 A Grahame Bryant +8 1:07.97 4.30 139.71 86.81
8 13 B Chris Acklam +8 n/a       
9 4 B Chas Windridge 4/4 1:08.46 4.79 138.71 86.19
10 21 C James Paterson +8 1:08.77 5.10 138.08 85.80
11 91 B Adrian van der Kroft +8 1:08.81 5.14 138.00 85.75
12 39 C Simon Orebi Gann +8 1:09.70 6.03 136.24 84.65
13 50 C Paul Burry +8 1:10.24 6.57 135.19 84.00
14 25 C Dan Ward +8 1:10.28 6.61 135.11 83.96
15 45 C Andy Green +8 1:10.61 6.94 134.48 83.56
16 55 B Philip McKelvey +8 1:11.02 7.35 133.71 83.08
17 27 C Steve Lockett +8 1:13.59 9.92 129.04 80.18
18 17 D Jack Bellinger +8 1:13.66 9.99 128.91 80.10
19 51 E Alan Wickenden 4/4 1:13.72 10.05 128.81 80.04
20 18 E John Clarke +4SS 1:14.64 10.97 127.22 79.05
21 66 B Tony Howard SLR 1:15.14 11.47 126.37 78.53
22 71 D Kelvin Laidlaw +8 1:15.14 11.47 126.37 78.53
23 34 E Peter Sargeant +4 1:17.08 13.41 123.19 76.55
24 26 E Brian Jenkins +4 1:23.63 19.96 113.55 70.55

Silverstone - 2 Sep 2000


Pos No Class Driver Car Race time
Laps Behind
mph Best
on mph
1 29 A Keith Ahlers +8 11:34.30 10   84.98 1:04.83 9 91.01
2 37 A Rick Lloyd +8 11:37.49 10 3.19 84.59 1:05.20 9 90.50
3 8 A Peter Garland +8 11:38.07 10 3.77 84.52 1:04.83 8 91.01
4 20 A Simon McDermott +8 11:44.96 10 10.66 83.70 1:06.30 8 89.00
5 13 B Chris Acklam +8 12:04.93 10 30.63 81.39 1:08.31 10 86.38
6 36 A Grahame Bryant +8 12:05.44 10 31.14 81.34 1:06.85 10 88.26
7 16 A Malcolm Paul +8 12:05.79 10 31.49 81.30 1:06.68 9 88.49
8 21 C James Paterson +8 12:07.77 10 33.47 81.08 1:08.29 8 86.40
9 50 C Paul Burry +8 12:12.48 10 38.18 80.55 1:09.83 9 84.50
10 91 B Adrian van der Kroft +8 12:15.92 10 41.62 80.18 1:08.30 8 86.39
11 39 C Simon Orebi Gann +8 12:17.40 10 43.10 80.02 1:09.47 10 84.93
12 45 C Andy Green +8 12:32.35 10 58.05 78.43 1:11.45 8 82.58
13 25 C Dan Ward +8 12:32.53 10 58.23 78.41 1:11.33 8 82.72
14 49 C Paul Chauveau +8 11:35.77 9 1 lap 76.32 1:12.31 8 81.60
15 27 C Steve Lockett +8 11:37.25 9 1 lap 76.16 1:12.35 8 81.55
16 55 B Philip McKelvey +8 11:42.91 9 1 lap 75.55 1:12.83 7 81.02
17 17 D Jack Bellinger +8 11:47.32 9 1 lap 75.08 1:14.17 8 79.55
18 66 B Tony Howard +8 11:48.87 9 1 lap 74.91 1:13.97 6 79.77
19 51 E Alan Wickenden 4/4 11:51.55 9 1 lap 74.63 1:15.62 9 78.03
20 71 D Kelvin Laidlaw +8 12:01.29 9 1 lap 73.62 1:15.06 9 78.61
21 34 E Peter Sargeant +4 12:36.06 9 1 lap 70.24 1:20.21 9 73.56
22 26 E Brian Jenkins +4 11:50.67 8 2 laps 66.42 1:25.55 7 68.97

Not classified

  18 E John Clarke +4SS   3     1:19.89 3 73.86

Silverstone (BDC) - 2 Sep 2000

Fastest laps

  mins:secs on kph mph
  A Keith Ahlers +8 1:04.63 9 146.93 91.30
  B Adrian van der Kroft +8 1:08.30 8 139.03 86.39
Lap record C James Paterson +8 1:08.29 8 139.05 86.40
  D Jack Bellinger +8 1:14.17 8 128.03 79.55
  E Alan Wickenden 4/4 1:15.62 9 125.57 78.03

Lap Records

  mins:secs   kph mph
09-Aug-97 A Peter Garland +8 1:04.48 4 147.27 91.51
15-Jul-00 B Chris Acklam +8 1:08.07 6 139.50 86.68
15-Jul-00 C James Paterson +8 1:09.75 9 136.14 84.59
15-Jul-00 D Ian Hepburn +8 1:13.49 11 129.21 80.29
15-Jul-00 E Alan Wickenden 4/4 1:13.22 7 129.69 80.58

BDC - Ahlers wins the race, Wickenden the Championship

Silverstone - 2 Sep 2000

The Bentley Drivers Club meeting is always eagerly awaited by the Morgan Motor Challenge drivers and so no-one was surprised to see that 30 drivers had paid their fees to enter into the fun. The paddock was buzzing with excitement and Morgans were to be found nestling in garages and parked from one end of the enclosure to the other.

Their drivers too were well spaced out (perhaps from the previous night’s revelry) and were engrossed in all the usual preparations from deciding upon tyre pressures to those essential little tweaks to their engines and brakes and other bits. Sadly some of the hopefuls had tweaked just that little bit too far and didn’t even make it to the practice session.

Matthew Wurr had blown up his engine while testing on Friday, and he even showed me the photograph just in case I disbelieved this particular excuse. Indeed testing was evidently a dangerous place as Chris Williams’s son wrote off Daddy’s real pride and joy there too, but happily, neither himself nor anyone else. David Sherman was also missing but his excuse note is still outstanding, as is Leigh Sebba’s. Leigh was later seen out in Jack’s car and I have seen his car in bits in a garage, so I am inclined to overlook it this time. Paul Chauveau was seen unloading his car in plenty of time but his story is that he became so engrossed in ogling the Bentleys that he failed to note the absence of both drivers and Morgans from the paddock and missed practice entirely. Can this really be believed? The Bentley boys, being very good natured, allowed him to qualify in another session and slotted him into the Morgan grid accordingly.

This of course brings us to my dearly beloved who had adequately displayed his driving skills (if not his observance of certain driving rules) on the M1 on the way to Donington when he had controlled an errant trailer, one with half of its tow bar fixing sheared off from the underside of the tow car, and guided it to safety on the hard shoulder with a pierced petrol tank and severed fuel and power lines. Julia and I are in no doubt that he will remain our champion even when I no longer have that tray to polish, which will be pretty soon now. Anyway, before you die of boredom and vomit inhalation, I shall relate that on Saturday morning we discovered that a new and excitingly original excuse had come to light: bent stub axles. All that the poor car had been doing was clinging onto the trailer for dear life, but the trailer straps had demanded a heavy toll and so yet again number 1 was unable to come out to play. One might have thought that this was going to be to the considerable relief of a certain Mr Orebi Gann, but he was soon to find another playmate. Rick Lloyd’s car was also reluctant to join the fray and had to be pushed by four likely lads from the garage to scrutineering. It was eventually coaxed out onto the track. At this point your scribe has to register her own excuses, she dutifully watched practice but any incidents obviously happened outside her line of vision because everyone roared around Copse keeping well away from the gravel traps. Adrianus, better known as Adrian Van der Kroft, did admit to losing it at Priory, but the Maggotts Curve where your scribe was taking notes caused few problems. Chas Windridge’s new(ish) kart was heard roaring around and even qualified 9th but alas was also put away with an oil leak and no pulling power between 5500 and 7000 revs. Kelvin experienced further brake problems and was to be found fiddling with them in a garage and as for everybody else, well they were so eager to qualify for all the other events into which they had entered, or to ogle at those Bentleys, that the practice was declared uneventful or they were hiding and could not be found by your faithful hack. Rick’s car stopped sulking so that he qualified 3rd but poor Chris Acklam was apparently ignored by the officials and spent much of the day attempting to discover into which session his transponder had placed his times. Craig Jones had qualified 5th on the grid but unfortunately broke his car in the process. He did come out in a later race rather shamelessly in a very grand car indeed, but as it wasn’t a Morgan I shall ignore this display of rank disloyalty and not report that he won. The session had to be awarded to Keith Ahlers who broke Peter Garland’s lap record at the track by nearly a second. This left Garland wondering whether he could come up with an answer but decided that Keith’s brakes were better and therefore there was no stopping him, as it were. All drivers seem to be unanimous at such times that it is incredible how little effect a driver really has on how quickly a car goes. This is all terribly confusing for your ignorant reporter and shows how much she has to learn in such matters mechanical.

The weather was fair on bits of the track but decidedly dubious on others as the contenders for the Tony Morgan-Tripp memorial race began. Excitingly, Garland took the lead from Ahlers who was closely followed by Lloyd. Trouble for Garland began around the other side of the track as it began to rain. As Peter headed for what he thought was a good each way bet for a dry line, he found that the bookies had it all sewn up again and he consequently swapped ends a few times and was glad not to be trampled by the bookies and others in the rush for the exit. Alas, he ended the first lap in 13th place rather than first, with Keith (who had also nearly spun in avoiding PG) firmly in the lead once more.

Meanwhile it was all happening down the field where the championship spoils was being fought over. John Clarke, who assures us all that he is notoriously sure footed in the rain, was really upsetting everything. He was in front of Jack and had overtaken Alan Wickenden and was holding him at bay. Was the championship favourite going to be held to ransom by Clarkie? For three laps it seemed that number 18 was really putting a spanner in the championship spline as Alan was unable to pass him and Jack was giving Alan grief from behind, much to the relief of Mary who usually finds herself in that postion. Perhaps anticipating this, she decided that discretion was the better part of valour and kept well away - in Norfolk, in fact (no place is too far away in such situations).

As they rounded Luffield for the third time Alan pulled ahead, only to be retaken by Clarkie at Woodcote. Then on the fourth lap as they rounded Brooklands, Clarkie spun or Alan nudged him and Clarkie was left high and dry in the middle of the track causing a further chicane for those following closely and then those steaming class A boys. (Sorry: got carried away, there). A chastened Clarkie had to sit out the rest of the race from the relative safety of the grass with the marshals for company, and it was a good job they were wearing ear defenders.

At the front, Ahlers was still holding off Lloyd who kept attempting to nip up his inside, but Keith was looking and Rick seemed unable to pass him. Orange was also reported to be poking his nose into the fray but from lap three onwards he had the steaming Garland up his chuff (sorry) and was therefore a little preoccupied in keeping Peter back. Simon was also suffering from low fuel pressure causing his engine to die off after 5500 revs.

Chris Acklam had briefly come between Peter and the other class A cars on lap two but he was summarily despatched on the third lap. Chris was really clinging to his place as he had fought hard to achieve it. He started well until Adrianus had set off up his inside, Chris then raced around Luffield in the rain passing Adrian and anyone else in his way only to have Paul Burry, who was enjoying the wet conditions, overtake him. Chris then took advantage of the track drying out to retake Burry. Paul stayed behind Chris for the next four laps followed closely by Malcolm Paul and James Paterson. James too was hungry for a class win and overtook Paul Burry by niftily out braking him down the straight on lap 7. Paul was then taken by Grahame Bryant and Malcolm Paul who also both overtook James Paterson, but as they weren’t in his class James really didn’t mind. Instead, he concentrated on keeping Burry firmly in his rear view mirror until the chequered flag. Adrian too had attempted to keep Chris in his sights only to be overtaken by Paul Burry on lap two and then he decided to take time out to inspect the gravel at Copse on lap 3. Creditably he caught up with the tail end of Burry, but not until lap 9, to finish a second and a half behind him.

Simon O. Gann was delighted when he found himself in front of James Paterson on the second lap but alas, as Adrian spun on his way to inspect that gravel on lap three, James drove past, allegedly waving (surely not). Simon then stayed with James until Malcolm Paul and Grahame Bryant felt certain enough of the dryness of the track to overtake him on lap six and so Simon O. G. eventually finished behind Adrian and Paul B. in 11th place.

Andy Green and Daniel Ward were doing their usual dicing all around the track followed at a safe distance by Steve Lockett who was driving at half throttle, something to do with a trombone or something I was told. Green and Ward delighted the crowd at Brooklands with their manoeuvres but were unavailable to comment after the race and so your scribe must leave their antics to your imagination; although Green passed the line first, he was only 18 hundredths of a second ahead of Ward highlighting their battle.

In the later half of the race Wickenden, Bellinger and Tony Howard’s SLR were also engaged in a big battle competing for the corners, roaring down the straights and attempting to out brake one another. Indeed an examination of the lap chart shows their continued battle throughout the race and how Jack struggled for six laps behind Alan until he overtook and then managed to pull away. Kelvin struggled manfully behind them nursing his brakes around, followed by Sarge and Brian Jenkins who all reported lonely races. Paul Chauveau managed to spot the start of the race and also managed to survive his first sortie onto the grass though not the first such sortie for his car. At the front, Ahlers was still manfully leading the pack with Lloyd keeping station. Orange was also sniffing around awaiting his chance, but towards the end he began to drop back and was overtaken by Garland on lap 7. Rick then appeared to engage in blocking tactics probably caused by a wayward back end until the finish line where Keith was the undoubted winner. He and Garland shared the fastest lap time which was still slower than Peter’s lap record despite Keith’s magnificent practice time.

The championship then seemed to be sewn up as the leader Alan Wickenden achieved both class win and fastest lap while the other two contenders had their chances dashed. Jack Bellinger didn’t have enough competitors in his class and while Chris Acklam won his class, Adrian VdK took fastest lap by one hundredth of a second!

So there we are. Alan W takes it for this year. Hearty congrats. But one more race to sort out the minor placings. Such excitment. But it is at Donington - probably the best race track in the UK and so a full grid is eagerly expected as the drivers exercise their cars for one final time before all those winter bills inexorably catch them up.

Ruth Horsman