Silverstone, 10 April 2005
All that needs to be said on this page is that we didn't make the race. A major engine blow up last week and then a gearbox failure yesterday saw to that. Read the full story on what happened at Goodwood and since.
Fellow Lancia driver Pete Simpson wasn't fairing that much better. His integrale Evo has undergone a winter rebuild, a lot of weight has been stripped out, a set of carbon front wings adding to the cause, and he's rebuilt his engine in an attempt to remain top Lancia! A last minute trip to Owen Developments saw both our cars there simultaneously. Things didn't run smooth for him either - there's no shortage of power (360bhp) but the turbo boost was uncontrollable and lag far too much to drive. They think there is a problem with the exhaust flange being too restrictive so at the last minute Pete pulled out too. Hopefully we will both be out next time at Castle Combe.
Despite the last minute withdrawal of the Lancias, Silverstone still saw a 30 car grid take to qualifying, and the snow showers of two days earlier had turned into dry sunshine.
On qualifying form, Alvin Powell had been expected to romp away with the race, but both Primeras had been worked on and were now running at full strength. Powell got a bad start and the Challis Primera led into Copse, but Powell soon got on the pace to take the lead from Challis, with Soper giving chase. Ronchetti in the Sunbeam was running an uncontested 5th, but behind these the racing was as close as ever. In Class C Richard Buckley (playing his joker) slowly eased away from Stuart Jefcoate's Porsche 911 despite the latter having the faster lap. Derek Hale had started from way back down the grid, but his Primera was now firing on all 4 cylinders as he carved his way through the pack and into contention. Alex Schooledge was not so lucky, his Vectra was still misbehaving and he started the race from the pit lane a couple of laps down and was unable to make any impression.
Chris Brogden (Fiat Uno) and Chris Broad (Astra) were battling throughout the race, swapping places all the way to the end. With Brogden leading into the last lap, the place looked settled but then his gear lever snapped while stuck in second gear allowing Broad to take the position. Joker playing Brogden who still won Class D said "I never thought I would be throwing the place away again due to my knob falling off". In Class B, joker playing Jason Holmes in the sole Tomcat proved too strong for Daniel Ludlow (Rover Metro) after the demise of Latchford's Vento Suddenly, up front there was a change. Powell's Mondeo had been pulling slowly away from Challis, but now it was behind. Turns out the Mondeo's engine suddenly cut, and then restarted again. It did this again later in the race allowing Soper through the take 2nd place and Hale to take 3rd with just the consolation of fastest lap going to Powell.
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