BHC Season Review Part 1 – Paul Haimes

Three time former British Hillclimb Champion Scott Moran started the season as hot favourite for his fourth title. It was not to be however, as a stupendous run of results (including a well-timed pair of hill records mid-season) saw the supreme talent of Trevor Willis rise to the surface as he secured both his and prolific chassis manufacturer OMS Racing Cars first ever British Championship.

Paul Haimes Gould GR59

Paul Haimes rounds Semi Circle at Prescott in September (thanks to Our Correspondent).

 

For the 2013 season the big-hitters were back again, with Scott determined to regain his title and prove that he and the Gould-NME package are still the fastest on the hills. Trevor, along with a resurgent Wallace Menzies were never going to make it easy for him though, and there was always the growing threat from the Suzuki Hayabusa powered ‘little cars’.

The most impressive aspect of this years BHC was the weather! After a dismal 2012, where it seemed to rain every week, and in some cases threatened to cause the cancellation of events, this year was largely stunning. Indeed the ‘wets’ were only really required on three occasions during the year at both Dounes and at Wiscombe Park.

So, let’s have a little look at the big-hitters and how they have performed this season, with a post-season top 12 round-up, starting with the man who finished 12th in the Championship:

 

12th – Paul Haimes (44 points)

Ok, so no bias to be shown here, for those who don’t know Mr Editor is Paul’s gofor!

Having not competed regularly since 2010, the former double Leaders Champion and Top 12 Run Off winner Paul Haimes returned to the hills with probably the most eagerly anticipated new car for many years, the brand new Gould GR59 Turbo.

After missing the opening round at Prescott due to some issues with the oil system during testing, the car debuted with a single exploratory runs at Barbon Manor and Harewood in early May. Early indications were good, with the car pulling impressive speed trap times at Harewood despite virtually no set-up time and a series of new-car niggles.

Things really took off at the first Gurston where Paul scored 8th & 6th place finishes despite some slightly wayward handling with the inside front wheel pawing the air when cornering. A rear anti-roll bar was fitted to the car for Shelsley a week later and the handling was much better.

New tweaks and additions were regularly introduced through the course of the season, and the chassis progressed quite a lot during the last few events of the year although very, very old tyres hamstrung the results slightly by the season’s end.

The bare stats will point to top-qually spot at Paul’s home hill of Wiscombe in Devon, which was backed up with an 8 point finish for 3rd place in the shootout behind Trevor Willis and 2-litre classmate Alex Summers as being the seasons high-point. We reckon that Paul’s pace at Prescott in September was the high water mark, as the car showed immense pace over the high-speed lower reaches of the hill and nobody could beat his pace through the Orchard speed trap all weekend!

Paul Haimes Gould GR59

Haimes & Summers were the stars of the 2-litre class during the 2013 BHC season.

 

There will be a new engine-builder for 2014, along with a switch to methanol fuel, a fully functional electronics package, and hopefully a slightly larger tyre budget. Combine this with the whole host of aero and dynamic testing which the car has been through in recent weeks should see a substantial step forward for the combination.

 

Comments

  1. Rich Danby says:

    Barbon was slightly damp too – or are you putting that behind you ;)

    • Our Correspondent says:

      Yes Rich, Barbon was atrocious and we lost a run-off. More importantly Mr Editor fell on his backside in the paddock mud!

  2. James says:

    Clearly that has been erased from my memory already…. Can’t think why!!

  3. Paul Danby says:

    Erased from your memory James, but I suspect not the cameras!!

  4. Andy Barton says:

    The Editor’s misfortune was to merge into the landscape a trifle too far perhaps. I hope that any soil erosion issues were resolved. How much is the change of engine builder likely to bring to the ensemble? 500 Bhp perhaps?

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