Harewood British Championships Hill climb 2016

Once a popular class at Harewood, pre-94 Formula Fords have less support these days. Except, that is, from Robert Spedding and Ben Tranter who are still regular contenders in their shared Vector. Just eight of these rare machines were built in 1993 by Dutchman Wiet Huidekoper and featured the then new monoshock front suspension very similar to that pioneered by Dallara, by whom Huiderkoper was previously employed! In a close opening duel, Spedding led the first class of the day by a tenth, but later Tranter found over a second to get the final verdict.

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A strong class of Baylis and Harding Porsche Championship runners were led all the way by Tim Barber’s 911SC, who pulled clear to leave David Hilton over a second adrift in his 996 GT3.

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The Roadgoing Specialist division was expected to be a Warburton benefit, but young David had to give best to HSA contender Chris Howard-Harris who led after the first runs in his Caterham Superlight R. Unfortunately that was all that was seen of the Warbys as a broken propshaft sidelined both Allan and David, leaving Simon Jenks to grab a narrow third place from CH-H’s co-driver Lynn Gilbert.

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After Les Procter, running on his own, had lowered his own pre-72 sportsracing record in his immaculate Sebring Sprite it was the turn of the ‘B’ licence entrants in the SBD/HSA Championship class. Top runner from the HSA perspective was 2010 champion Tony Thomas, whose time in the Mazda MX5 was quick enough to take the series lead in this year’s series. The final class was for BARC Yorkshire Centre members and scored to their own unique formula. On scratch, the only single-seater in the class not surprisingly set the pace as Ed and Steve Carter took their Jedi to the one/two ahead of Richard Paterson’s Raw Striker. But it was Paterson that took award on handicap, from Richard Archbould’s Evo 6.

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As the British Championship big hitters came out for their points-scoring run-offs, Wallace Menzies was playing himself back in after his big Shelsley accident and the rebuilt Firestorm was still minus an engine cover, the correct undertray and one or two other parts. Although the understandably cautious Wallace had been bumped out of qualifying for the opening run-off by Steve Owen, he made the cut for the final shoot-out, qualifying and finishing tenth. Earlier, Deryk Young had suffered a gearbox breakage on the 4-litre Gould-Judd and struggled over the line to finish out of the points, but at least the car had survived long enough to allow his wife Sue to take the best part of a second off Sandra Tomlin’s eight-year-old Harewood ladies’ record.