BHC Season Review Part 6 – John Bradburn

Our latest series continues today with the next installment of our look back at the 2013 British Hillclimb Championship.

John Bradburn Gould GR55

John Bradburn moves the Gould GR55 into the pre-start area at Barbon Manor.


The next stop on the journey sees us take a look at the quiet man of the top 12 who has made steady forward progress over the past 5 years or so, Midlander John Bradburn.

7th – John Bradburn (115 points)

The quiet man of the top 10 had a cracking end to 2012, and the beginning of 2013 looked like being similarly successful. Mr Editor predicted JB to score a Run Off win during this season and by mid-season he was still feeling pretty confident of it being a good guess. Unfortunately as the year wore on JB’s challenge started to fade slightly, indeed only 7 points were scored in the last 6 Run Offs of the year.

Powered by a monstrous Cosworth HB F1 engine, as used by Benetton, Lotus, Jordan and even McLaren in the early to mid-1990s, which puts out well over 700bhp Bradburn’s Gould GR55 is a great combination of power, downforce and nimble handling. For this season the engine was sent back to Cosworth for a lot of work to be done. This work included re-mapping the engine so that it pulls from much lower down the rev-range than it did in F1 spec, also Cosworth’s own launch and traction control was installed, which should have made the car much easier to handle in wet and slippery conditions.Top 5 finishes at June Doune and Wiscombe were the result, but JB could only muster a single point from the mixed conditions weekend of the September Doune.

John Bradburn Gould GR55

Bradburn prepares to launch the mighty Gould down Gurston’s start shute.


Hopefully having taken in an end of season sprint at Curborough, where he convincingly beat Will Hall and Ray Rowan (sharing the Force WH) to FTD, Bradburn has resolved the issues that stopped him scoring at the end of the year and will be back on the pace come the start of the new season in April.

There is still enormous potential in both this chassis and engine, and we feel that if any engine can beat the NME V8 on the power hills, then this could well be the lump to do it.


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