Funky Dunky Flies at Loton!

Due to the massive difference in disciplines, both in terms of venues and the rules applied, it is very rare that we see a European Hillclimb Championship contender competing on the UK mainland.

Duncan Barnes Dallara F301

Duncan Barnes brings the Dallara to the line at Loton


At Loton Park’s BHC finale last weekend however, there was an unfamiliar looking Dallara F3 car in the paddock, competing in the 2-litre class.

Euro contender Duncan Barnes brought his Dallara-Opel F301 along for an end of season blast and had a fairly entertaining weekend as well!

The car is virtually a standard F3 spec, and looks quite different to the UK hillclimb Dallaras we are used to seeing with their big wings and wheels. Duncan’s car, which is prepared by New Techniques, features the circuit spec ‘skinny’ wings and bulbous air-restrictor.

Engine-wise, the airbox limits the pump-fuelled 2-litre Vauxhall/Opel engine to somewhere around 220bhp compared to the 300bhp which is regularly achieved by the methanol-fuelled ‘BTCC’ spec engines used in most Dallara BHC set-ups.

Despite the lack of grip from its skinny boots & wings and the fact that the power plant doesn’t hit the high-notes of a UK car, Duncan had a lot of fun at Loton and finished 11th in the 13 car class.

Duncan Barnes Paul Webster

Duncan (left) is notoriously camera-shy, but we did manage to sneak this shot of him and Webbo!


The ‘fun weekend’ didn’t go entirely to plan however. on the final run of the day on Sunday Duncan lost the car at the very top of Cedar Straight and sped across the infield. Duncan then hit a large yump in the grass which launched the car into the air. It then cleared the track completely (at quite some altitude), before finally landing safely on the outfield.

Somehow, despite all of this, Duncan appears to have done virtually no damage to the car at all. Although the same cannot be said for the Gurston Committee members back, which was slightly sore on Monday morning!

Thanks for all of the entertainment this weekend Dunky, look forward to seeing you have a more low-key weekend on the British hills in 2014!

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