Round 1 - Prescott 25th April 2021
Prescott was looking in fine shape for the opening round of the 2021 B.O.C Henney's Cider Classic Championship. Three weeks of dry weather in the preceding weeks had made the whole venue come alive and with some very worthwhile estate modifications the Bugatti Owners Club has done itself proud.
The major venue change is the addition of tarmac in the top paddock area. This makes a massive improvement for Saloon & Sportscar drivers that almost always find themsleves positioned up there. The lack of spectators is still an issue but thanks to Rich Danby the whole event was livestreamed on youtube.
Around 30 drivers took part in Round 1 , fairly evenly spread across the three classes. It was good to see some returning faces , having been out of action during the 'Covid shortened' last season. A few new cars were present, Series sponsor Mike Henney out in his pretty Lotus Elan coupe and Mike Bainbridge with his newly acquired Brabham BT35 F2 car. Both a great asset to the series and presented beautifully. Also out for the first time was the lovely 'big' Healy 3000 of Saloon car class record holder Ian Moss. A recent acquistion and a very different prospect from his more usual Imps & Escort.
Star of the class was Matt Clarke in his super rapid Mini. Sideways on camera at Orchard corner each run and very very sideways on the final timed effort !. A really close battle with Simon Braithwaite in the Mk1 escort just went in Simon's favour by a few hundreths of a second for fastest class time. Mark Hobbs was third quickest in his immaculate Mk2 Pinto powered Escort. Handicap honours went to Andrew Cairney - very fitting as the weekend would have been car builder Stuart's 70th. Second on handicap was Matt Clarke with father Andy in third. Mini drivers all 'getting their eye in' ready for the Mini only meeting coming up at Prescott in a month or so's time.
Josh Sadler was a late entry for the class and duly took fastest time in his black Porsche 911. Garry Cox matched his best ever run in the 'Lemon Slice' scimitar for second with Richard Jones surviving a wild last timed run to take third. Mike Henney was first on handicap in the Elan with Steve Phennah (MGB) and Richard Jones following very closely indeed. These three being separated by 0.13 seconds !.
Fastest time of the day in this class went to Andy Tippett in the big V8 Brabham. Mike Bainbridge in the new (to him) 1600cc BDA Brabham was second , very much a learning experience with the new car. Third quickest was Les Buck in the FF1600. Handicap win went once again to Jeremy Rivers-Fletcher in the Triumph special from Jim Scott in the Vixen-Imp followed in third by Andy Tippett.