September always proves to be a hectic month with both Goodwood Revival and Spa Six Hours just two weeks apart. Following our success at Goodwood we prepped two more cars and headed off for Belgium. We brought with us the Jaguar XK140 of Joao Mira-Gomes and the TVR Grantura of Ernst Luthi. Both cars ran faultlessly all weekend. The XK140 ran in the Motor Racing Legends cobined race for the Woodcote Trophy and Stirling Moss trophy and the TVR ran in the Masters pre-66 GT race. Charles Rainford shared the drive with the owner of the TVR in the 90 minute race. Being the only car in their class they came home with a trophy for 1st in class!
Following the recent return of the Mira-Gomez XK140 for the 2019 season, we’ve been busy preparing the car for Donington Historic Festival. Now that the car has some proper power from the new race engine, things are getting pushed a lot harder. One of those things being the driver! To help keep the driver in his seat we’ve changed the old leather bucket for a new Tillet B6 Screamer. We’ve had custom leather panels made up to match the existing leather interior.
Prior to Donington Historic Festival, Shaun has been out testing the car at Brands Hatch. Now that the car is going quicker we will be looking into some other other upgrades to aid handling.
Goodwood’s, season opening, Members Meeting was as good as it ever is. Even without the snow. For weeks we’ve been in preparation for the Betty Richmond Trophy with out FIA Mini Cooper S. We decided early on that we wanted to put in a good effort and make the most of the opportunity. We new the original engine wasn’t making enough power to compete with most of this grid so we chose to build a new one. We went to Swiftune for many of the internal components and built ourselves an engine with comparable performance. Charles Rainford was to pilot the car for the event but other than one test session he was new to Mini racing. Even still, qualifying came around and he brought the car home in 16th out of 30 cars. The first heat was Saturday afternoon and after a long, 4-car, battle Charles managed to finish 13th, clinching a much desired spot in Sundays final. Sundays race was fairly straight forward and despite an overheating clutch and a slow puncture on the front left we managed to finish the weekend 24th out of 60 Minis. We couldn’t be happier with this result. Thanks to Chris Harper and Mini Sport for all their help.
We had another historic racer in from Paul Kennelly. This time his recently prepped Jaguar E-type. The standard of preparation on this car is very high, much the same as Paul’s Austin-Healey. This E-type racer is built like the early steel bodied cars you see in the Kinrara Trophy at Goodwood rather than the Lightweight and Semi-lightweights you see in the TT. We spent some time on the rolling road setting up the triple SU carburettors.
Storm Callum arrived at Donington this Sunday and wreaked havoc on the grids. A major accident in the MX5 race postponed activities until they could get the ambulances back. Burford did his best with a clean qualifying, in the torquey Cheetah, in the most unsuitable conditions for the car. Due to the extreme weather the race was delayed and with the forecast for rain to continue, we called it a day. Thank you to the HRDC and all of the organisers and marshals for doing their best in the terrible weather. Fingers crossed for a dry day next time
The week following Goodwood Revival we were packing up and heading out to Spa with the Jaguar XK140. A new full race 3.4 litre engine from Nick Finburgh was delivered less than a week before the classic Belgian event. The engine went in, the car was prepped and transported out to Spa for the Motor Racing Legends Woodcote Trophy race in support of the famous Spa 6hour race. Qualifying took place on Friday with the race on Saturday. The new engine proved itself immediately with 20 seconds coming off the previous years best lap time. Unfortunately one of the 1/2 shafts broke just before the end of the race. Back in the UK the car is now getting prepped for the Algarve Classic Festival at Portimao in Portugal.