August Bank Holiday weekend, Saturday 26th and Sunday 27th sees the second visit of the Avon Tyres / TTC Group MSA British Hill Climb Championship and the Avon Tyres / TTC Group MSA Hill Climb Leaders Championship to the narrow, twisty and spectacularly fast Gurston Down Speed Hill Climb.
The weekend brings some of the fastest cars and drivers in British Hill Climb. They will all pit their wits against each other, the clock and Wiltshire’s award winning famous Speed Hill Climb Venue.
There will be over 140 cars and drivers competing in everything from standard road cars, specially prepared hill climb cars and super fast sports and single seat racing cars.
Spectators have fabulous unrivalled access to the hill, paddock and facilities. We have excellent catering and refreshments on site too.
You really can’t get closer to the action!
Saturday is practice day. Each driver will be allowed three practice runs. The first cars will come to the line just before 09:00. There will be two runs in the morning and one after lunch. Practice usually finishes around 15:00.
The day doesn’t finish there. Saturday evening includes live music from Darren Mitchell.
Sunday sees another practice run in the morning, starting around 08:30. Timed runs will start around 10:30 followed by the first of two British Championship Top Twelve Run-Offs. After lunch the second timed runs are followed by the second Top Twelve Run-Off.
The Top Twelve Run-Off allows the fastest twelve registered competitors in the British Hill Climb Championship to score championship points. Ten points for a win, down to one for tenth. These run-offs ultimately determine who becomes the British Champion! The current leader in the championship is Trevor Willis.
Alongside the British and Hill Climb Leaders Championships, the Porsche Club, SBD HSA have rounds of their respective championships and the BARC South West Members have their own class.
As ever there will be a Fastest Time of Day award.
Class Preview in Detail:
The BARC South West B Licence Class
This class has a variety of cars and drivers. Martin Watson’s Westfield, Sarah Fudge’s Impreza, Mike Butler’s M3, if it’s sorted after the off he had a Goodwood earlier this month, and Alex England’s Ford Fiesta, to name just a few of the drivers likely to feature in the top five. Martin’s previous times will probably give him the class win.
The Porsche Club’s National Championship Class
There is an all 911 line-up in the Porsche class. Peter Turnbull has the form to win the class but this class is really competitive. Robert Lancaster-Gaye and Paul Howells and all of the rest of the class will make him work for the win.
The Gurston Down MX5 Class supported by DoctorMX5
There are six MX5’s running in this class. Julian Cox, the class sponsor, bring his Mk1 to the hill for the first time this season and Nick Revels, Gurston’s competition secretary will be the drivers to beat.
Road Going Series Production Class up to 2000cc, supported by Record-Designs
There are just five cars entered. John Davey and his refreshed MG Midget are back. Steve Harris is entered in the Vauxhall Corsa and Richard Brant and his 172 Clio Sport will probably be fighting for the top two places.
Over 2000cc Road Going Series Production Class, supported by Turbo Dynamics
Shaun Fudge and the Lewis Dean Motorsport Subaru Impreza is favourite in this class. Andrew James and the Nissan 350Z won’t let him have an easy time of it.
Road Going Specialist Production Class, supported by Fieldfare Trailer Centre
The Caterham 7 of Allan and David Warburton is likely to dominate this class. Can Adrian Lewis’s Westfield Superbusa and local knowledge help him to victory?
The up to 1400cc Modified Series Production Car Class
There are just two entries in this class. David Bean and the extra-ordinary Mini and Andrew Russell and his Imp powered Ginetta G15. Hopefully, the Ginetta will behave this weekend and make this class another close battle.
The Modified Series Mini Class
There is just one entry in this class. Richard Wood and the Yamaha power Mini will be chasing personal bests and class records.
The 14001cc to 2000cc Modified Series Production Car Class
This class brings Colin Satchell and his ultra-fast Peugeot 205 back to Gurston Down. He is sharing the car with Paul Drowne. Colin will probably take charge of this class so it’ll be down to Paul Drowne and Darren Balster and Tom Reeves to fight it out for second.
Over 2000cc Modified Series Production Car Class, supported by Meadens Skoda
This class features former Gurston champion. Simon Purcell in his Lotus Elise. He will be up against Geoff Tremlow’s beautiful Subaru Impreza, Tim Painter and Andrew Fraser’s stunning Aston Martin Vantage and Bob Mortimer’s 911 to name just a few of the large entry in this class. It will probably be between Simon, Bob and Geoff but you cannot discount Tim or Andrew or for that matter any of the rest of this class.
The Modified Specialist Production Class, supported Gates of Brockenhurst
Anthony Orchard and Simon Jenks and their respective Westfield and Caterham will be the one’s to watch in this class. On previous form, Anthony should end up on-top. This class is never easy to predict and it could be anyone’s!
The Historically Interesting Class, supported by Kelvin Jouhar
There are four gorgeous cars entered in this class. The Lotus 22 of Geoff Hunt has the form to take the win here. Mike Broome’s lovely Alexis Mk17 F3 will be chasing Geoff all the way to the line.
The Sports Libre up to 2000cc, supported by Class Lewis Property Services
There is a good entry in this class, the Peter Sexton / Jonathan Gates Force LM is the car to beat in this class. There have been issues with the Force LM, this season, but when it is on-form, it’s almost unbeatable! Our drivers school principal, Tim Pitfield and his DJ Firecat will have to work hard to beat Keith Diggle’s WEV HCS-BDG to third.
Sports Libre over 2000cc Class, supported by Berazzi Wheels
Allan McDonald will have a proper battle on his hands in his Mini Evo. With similar times, Allan and Sue Hayes in the Force SR8 she usually shares with Chris Cannell are very evenly matched and neither will give any quarter.
The 601cc to 1100cc Racing Car Class, supported by Drynham Project Management
This class has a massive entry! There are 21 drivers entered. Although the Force HC of Olivia and Liam Cooper might not be repaired in time, after Liam’s off at Wiscombe Park at the end of last month. Simon Fidoe (Empire Wraith), Steve Owen (OMS 28), Lindsay Summers (DJ Firehawk), Darren Gumbley (Force TA Mistral) and the Greenen brothers, Adam and Andy (Empire Evo 2) will all be in the mix. This class will probably be settled by just hundredths of a second.
The Formula Ford Class- Cars up to 1600cc
There is another big entry in this class. 1967 is not only Gurston Down’s 50th Anniversary, it is also the 50th Anniversary of the Formula Ford. The current class record holder Simon McBeath starts favourite but this is a class that is usually very close, hundredths of a second are usually the deciding factor! With cars that are so evenly matched everyone has a chance of taking the win.
1101cc to 1600cc Racing Car Class, supported by SM AeRoTechniques with Brian and Adrian Moody
This class really have come alive recently. The specialist hill climb car manufacturers are building some amazing machinery. There are three of last years Top Ten British Hill Climb Championship drivers entered. The GWR Raptor of Richard Spedding has been very much in-form recently with three run-off wins of the last four rounds and he is currently second in the championship. Then there is the Gould GR59 of Sean Gould, currently ninth in the championship and we must not forget the Empire Evo of Ed Hollier who is tenth. And we should not discount Tina Hawks and her Force PC who has been on sparkling form.
All of these drivers will be looking for runs that secure a place in the Top Twelve Run-Off so you should expect these driver to be fast.
The 1601cc to 2000cc Racing Car Class – Normally Aspirated
The class is also well supported and extremely competitive! There are fourteen drivers competing. Chris Cannell, who usually shares the Force SR8 with Sue Hayes in the Sports Libre class, is out this time sharing, the recently revitalised Pilbeam MP53 of Roger Cook. Tim Davies and his Pilbeam MP88 has Lee Griffiths and his OMS 25 as well as Tim Elmer and his Dallarra F399 and the rest of the class to contend with. This class will be down to the best driver and car performance on the day.
The 1601cc to 2000cc Racing Car Class – Forced Induction
There are only three entrants in the Force Induction class. It’s likely to be between the two lastest cars from Pilbeam and Gould here. The Gould GR59 of Paul Haimes and the Pilbeam MP101 of Kelvin Broad will probably make up the top two.
The Over 2000cc Racing Car Class
This class is all about qualifying for the Top Twelve Run-Off. There are two former British Hill Climb Champions, Alex Summer and Trevor Willis, as well three other drivers currently in the top ten in this years championship. The class is difficult to predict. Trevor Willis and the OMS 28 are leading the 2017 Championship and will be one to watch. Wallace Menzies, fresh from a Run-Oiff win at Wiscombe Park in his constantly improving Cosworth / Gould GR59-M will be one to watch. In May Wallace went through the Hollow speed track at 150 mph and over the line well in excess of that! The car seems to be getting better all the time. Jason Mourant in the Judd / Gould GR55b had a win at Gurston Down in the Midland event in July and Will Hall and his Force WH-XTEC (2000cc turbo-charged) will also be chasing. And the former champion, Alex Summers, will be there or there about too. Although he will have to fight hard in the Opel V6 (2500cc) / DJ Firestorm.
British Hill Climb Championship Top Twelve Run-Off
There will be two Top Twelve Run-Offs on Sunday, one before lunch on Sunday and one at the end of the meeting. With the British Championship still undecided, any points will be important to all of the qualifiers. We suspect the Fastest Time of the Day will come from one of these run-offs.
SBD HSA – Speed Championship – Saloons and Sports Cars Class
The HSA championship has an eclectic group of cars entered. It’s quite a difficult class to predict, the Caterham of Colin Bowdidge, the Raw Striker of James Robertson start favourite although the Peugeot 205 of Jason Tunnicliffe might be a surprise.
SBD HSA – Speed Championship – Sports Racing and Racing Cars Class
There are two entries in this class, John and Charlotte Phelps share the Westfield Megabusa so it’s a win for the Phelps family!
Another exciting weekend of at Gurston Down Speed Hill Climb – Don’t Miss It!
Location: 1 mile west of Broad Chalke, 9 miles SW of Salisbury, Wiltshire. Turn off the A354 at Coombe Bissett on the unclassified road to Broad Chalke, follow AA signs.
Dates: Saturday August 26th and Sunday August 27th
Times: Saturday Practice from 0830 until 1500 approx. Sunday 0830 Final Practice then timed runs from approx 1030, then first timed runs followed by First Top Twelve Run-Off, then lunch and final timed runs from 13:00 Second Top Twelve Run-Off.
Admission: £10 for adults Sunday (£6 on Saturday), accompanied under 14s free, free paddock entry, free parking.
Anthony Record – Press Officer Gurston Down Speed Hill Climb – BARC SW