Haimes Hits the Hills

The Barbon Manor & Harewood British Hillclimb Championship double-header weekend saw the debut of the most eagerly anticipated new hillclimb car of 2013.

Paul Haimes Gould GR59

Paul Haimes prepares for a run in the GR59 Turbo

 

Having shaken the car down at Curborough Sprint Course a couple of days previously, Paul Haimes had returned the new Gould GR59 Turbo to Gould Engineering’s Newbury works for some final details to be completed, and for a very new development part to be fitted to the car.

At 7.30 on Saturday morning Paul arrived at Barbon to discover that the weather was as bad as the forecast had suggested. With no wet tyres available until the Sunday event at Harewood, the new Gould would be staying in its box unless the weather eased.

First practice ran in the wet, and second practice was cancelled after the arrival of another bout of rain, but by early afternoon the sun had come out and the car was wheeled out of the trailer and it’s new, impressive front wing and nose assembly was unveiled.

The completely new design of wing is quite different in layout to anything currently on the hills and is much larger and more complex than the GR55-style wing seem on the Moyse car so far. The anhedral main plane has a distinctly 1990s F1 look about it, and many people have commented that it reminds them of a Tyrrell wing. To us though, it is reminiscent of a combination of the 1992 Footwook F1 car and the current Dallara DW12 Indycar. The wing has very complex endplates and will eventually include large vortex generators to channel air around the wheels and wishbones.

Gould GR59

New nose and wing for the GR59

 

Footwork-Porsche

1992 Footwork-Mugen Nose & Wing

 

Paul’s single exploratory run at Barbon was quite encouraging as, despite the slick tyres on the damp track the car had good traction, stopped well and turned-in well.

Sunday at Harewood Hillclimb dawned with much better weather conditions, and it was time to give the car a proper run. With engine builder Geoff Page in attendance, a very low boost level was dialled in and Paul rolled down to the line. A time good enough for third in class at that point (and 125mph through the speed trap) was the result.

 

For second practice, it was time to push a bit harder. Geoff turned the boost up, and Paul prepared to go for it… Unfortunately, having gone the wrong way on brake bias, Paul locked the rears into The Esses and had a harmless slow-speed spin.

 

Bias sorted, everything checked over, and it was time for the first qualifying run. Frustratingly, the car rolled silently to a halt in the middle of turn one. A flat battery was the cause.

Battery replaced, and it was time for another run in second qualifying. Unfortunately a blown electrical relay meant that another run would not be possible on the day.

It was a slightly downbeat end to a day that had started brilliantly, but the car will be back on track again very shortly for some more serious running. The car and engine have mega potential, and it was great to see Haimesy back on track in a single-seater again for the first time since August Shelsley 2010.

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