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HRCR Clubmans Championship – Hughes Historic Rally

Hughes Historic Rally

21st August 2021

Blackpalfrey Motor Club of Kent

Starters: 46

 

Stephen Owens and Nick Bloxham in their immaculate Porsche 911, took a popular win on the Hughes Rally from Richard Isherwood and Ian Canavan Golf GTi with Ken and Sarah Binstead’s MGB third. While Nick Bloxham has won as a driver, the Rally provided the pair with their first win on a Championship Rally after 8 years of trying !

The event started from the Moat at Wrotham and after a short run out, crews were pitched straight into a 9 mile Regularity in Mereworth Woods. Regularities on private land always prove challenging with erratic penalties throughout the field, initial advantage going to Ian Crammond/Matt Vokes Mercedes 280SL on 11 seconds followed by Paul Crosby/Ali Procter Porsche 911 on 25 and Owens/Bloxham on 26

Regularity 2 started immediately via Plaxtol to Pembury Hall, straightforward enough with Owens/Bloxham on 5 from the Binsteads and Hugh Garnish/David Bell Peugeot 205 on 7 however a number of crews missed code boards amongst them Crammond/Vokes, Crosby/Procter and Harvey Steele/Martin Pitt Volvo 144

Regularity 3 was a stinker, initially difficult to plot, it was the 13 speed changes in 12 miles that caused most anxiety Roger Fildes/Dan Middle MGB took top spot on 26 with the amazing Stuart and Emily Anderson 2nd on 30, this father/daughter crew in their trusty 1937 4litre open topped Bentley always attract the biggest cheer from the houses we pass

The First visit to Hole Park followed for Test 1, won by James Griffiths/James Howell Mini 1275GT on 83 seconds followed by Peter Joy/Matthew Fowle in their lovely 1959 Lotus Elite on 88. One more Regularity won by Michael Helm/Jim Bowie Triumph TR6 just 2 seconds ahead of the Anderson’ Bentley before returning to Hole Park for the last Test before lunch, honours were shared by an eclectic mix of cars Crosby/Procter Porsche, Joy/Fowle Lotus and novices John King/Andy Fowler Toyota MR2 all on 97

Comfortably topping the results at lunch were the Binstead’s their MGB looking a little scarred follow 2 separate excursions into the trees in Mereworth Woods on 4:37 from Alan Petit/Peter Rushforth Volvo Amazon 5:44 and Garnish/Bell 5:57

A final tarmac test at Hole Park went to the Porsches Crosby/Procter one second quicker than Owens/Bloxham led into Regularity 5 with the route unknown to the navigators and given out in 2 handouts one at the start the other halfway through. The Reg saw the retirement of front runners Griffiths/Howell Mini (steering arm failure) and eventual winners Owens/Bloxham hit trouble with a puncture. The Reg was won by Rod Hanson/Clare Grove Ford Escort on 33 followed Les Andrews/Nick Middleton MGB on 43 and Tony Jardine/Martin Phaff in the Mr Tyre Motorsport Lancia Fulvia on 47, Tony competing on only his second regularity Rally

 

 

 

Regularity 6 was written as a descriptive but the route was simple enough to plot on the map top seeds Crammond/Vokes and Crosby/Procter fought this out, the former winning by 3 seconds. A final Regularity to the east of Paddock Wood brought crews back to Mereworth Woods, the Reg was won by Peter Engel/Mark Dunkerley VW Golf by 4 seconds from David Smith/Norden Lester also Golf GTi

Mereworth Woods played host to the final 5 Tests the first 2 Tests were won by Steele/Pitt ahead of Elliot Dale/Charlotte Ryall Ford Escort. The third randomly appeared to have only 2 cars under target time Crosby/Procter taking 3 seconds out of Crammond/Vokes. The penultimate Test went to Dale/Ryall from Crosby/Procter and Joy/Fowle and the final Test saw Steele/Pitt top the list from Garnish/Bell

An extremely challenging event, with some timing issues, enjoyed by all mainly for the complex navigation and the Mereworth Tests

 

 

results:-        Stephen Owens/Nick Bloxham (Porsche 911) 16:58; Richard Isherwood/Ian Canavan (Golf GTi) 17:13; Ken Binstead/Sarah Binstead (MGB) 17:15; Peter Joy/Matt Fowle (Lotus Elite) 17:43; Paul Crosby/Ali Procter (Porsche 911) 17:45; Ian Crammond/Matt Vokes (280SL) 18:52; Hugh Garnis/David Bell (205 GT) 19:04; Harvey Steele/Martin Pitt (Volvo 144) 19:10; Tony Jardine/Martin Phaff (Fulvia) 19:43; Rod Hanson/Clare Grove (Escort) 20:02

experts: KenBinstead/Sarah Binstead (MGB)  novices: Dominic Hodge/Peter Raine (Golf GTi) clubmans: Colin Woodhouse/Rhys Williams (Rover 25)