Dixies Challenge 2023
Round two of the HRCR Mini Sport cup took place over the challenging army training, Eypynt ranges, with blind crests, unseen bends and big jumps this would challenge for all of the mini crews.
Nine minis had entered but two of the cars were not ready in time, so only 7 started.
Leading the minis away were Clive King and Anton Bird at car 41, in the Mini Sport backed car, Eric Davies with Russell Joseph followed a few cars behind with Ken Price and Andrew Ohanalon cars following.
The remaining cars were spread throughout the field.
Most of the crews met the night before for a meal and drinks and a good might was had by everyone.
With rain over night and the ranges not used regularly, it was expected that the roads would be slippery.
Clive was concerned that he would not be on the pace, as he had not been to Eypynt since before Covid. The event would run in batches of two stages before crews would return to the service area, where all the minis were servicing together.
Harvey Steven’s had a wheel bearing that was a bit noisy, but thought it would survive.
Clive and Anton leading the minis made their way to the first stage, and stopped the clocks 12 seconds faster than Andrew and Kevin who were second fastest, with the rest of the crews close behind over the first stage.
This stage saw the mini of Ken Price end up in one of the many ditches, damaging the front, they elected not to continue although they managed to get out with a stage maximum.
Back into service Andrew had the gear leaver becoming difficult to select 3rd and discovered the mounting was pulling through the body.
Harvey discovered the wheel bearing was actually a tooth chipped off the crown wheel and had deteriorated to the point that he was forced to retire.
Back out to the next two stages Clive managed to pull a few seconds to extend his lead. The 4th stage was cancelled due to car 1 having a huge accident, stopping the stage.
Back into service it was a time to swop tales of how the cars were performing then back out quickly to the stages.
Eric’s car stopped over the flying finish with electrical issues on stage six and despite frantic efforts could not get it started. Andrew’s car started to overheat towards the end of the stage and parked up close to Eric with the crank pulley lose.
That was four of the minis retired in short amount of time.
With Andrew and Kevin retired, Clive decided to back off to make it to the finish, but was surprised to be 3 seconds quicker than the previous run through the stage and in the process extended his lead.
When the cars crossed the finish line Clive had finished first mini Cup and first in class 29th overall. Andy Jarman finished runner up with his best result in the championship.
Alan Brown from Questmeed came to watch how their brake products performed and gave Andy Jarman a set of completion brake pads for best improvement on seeding.
He also won the Exol oil award so was a happy chap at the finish.
The Snap on award donated by Snap on dealer Andrew Ohanalan was won by Eric Davies