Majestic Line-up for Cultra 2012

This weekend will see a real motorsport spectacle as the Cultra Hillclimb celebrates the jubilee in Northern Ireland, Tony Gregory has kindly sent us this preview to what should be a cracking event:

(Thanks to Reinis Babrovskis)

 

With this years Cultra Hillclimb event falling on the 2nd of June, the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee weekend, it seems only right that the Thoroughbred Sports Car Club (NI) has arranged for some Group B rallying royalty to be in attendance. As one of many headline appearances the MG Metro 6R4 No.1 will be making its debut at the event and will be competed on the hill by the owners son, 2010 NI Rally Champion Stuart Biggerstaff.
 
The family owned car was acquired in 1988 by Stuart’s father Denis Biggerstaff with records showing that the upgraded chassis 00184, Reg. No. A658 NJO was the first 6R4 built. No.1 was driven by Tony Pond and David Llewllyn in Group B’s rallying heyday. The car has an extensive competition history at the hands of Denis and was driven to British, Northern Irish and Irish Rallycross Championship title wins and NI Hillclimb and Sprint Championships. The car still holds the outright record for the Spelga Hillclimb in the Mournes and in later years the car won two NI Rally Championships.

(Thanks to Reinis Babrovskis)

 
Cultra is now becoming one of Northern Ireland’s most high profile motorsport events, which sees the country’s leading speed hillclimb competitors joined by their racing, rallying and sprinting counterparts to contest the Lyness Trophy, over the challenging 700yd hillclimb course. This annual celebration of motoring and motorsport is set in the parkland grounds of the Ulster Folk and Transport Museum and is over looked by the historic Cultra Manor. First run on the 6th May 1905 it has now become the World’s Oldest Active Speed Hillclimb.

The event this year will follow two themes. Firstly in celebrating 50 years of the MGB in collaboration with local MG car clubs, who will have around forty cars on prominent display. And secondly the 4WD work and legacy of two of Ulster’s greatest engineers Harry Ferguson and Rex McCandless. In support of this the TSCC has secured the appearance of the Ferguson P99 4WD Formula 1 car, which will be returning to Northern Ireland for the first time in fifty years. This car is still the only 4WD car ever to win an F1 race, when Stirling Moss drove it to success in the 1961 F1 Gold Cup at Oulton Park.

The Ferguson P99 at a Silverstone Test Day

 
In addition to the Museum showcasing it’s 4WD McCandless race car and McCandless “Mule” 4WD Military Prototype the event will be graced by the presence of the museum’s own Ferguson aeroplane which will have pride of place outside the manor house. 4X4 Production cars get a nod through the presence of the first non all-terrain production car equipped with 4WD, the Jensen FF’s. Produced between 1966 and 1971 only 320 were made, with the event having one example on static display and the other being driven on the hill.
 
Bolstering the theme and making a rare public appearance will be the only 4WD 1293cc 8-pot Mini Clubman built by the BMC Competitions Department and subject to final confirmation (if its not sold) the clubman will be joined by the very latest competition 4×4 Mini, Derek McGarrity’s JCW WRC MINI giving visitors a very rare and unique photo opportunity.
 
Also on show will be rare and modern agricultural machinery with civilian and military 4WD vehicles. Sporting Trials demonstrations will be held during the day with an Autotest demo being held on the hill for the first time. One of the events staunchest supporters Andy Cooper will again return to entertain the crowds, showcasing his car control skills in the 420bhp Nissan S14a, RMS Drift Car. Also hoping to make an impact will be two Bowler Off-Roaders and a MX5 Modsports trackday car.

Seamus Morris Pilbeam MP62

Seamus Morris will be battling for FTD (thanks to Reinis Babrovskis)

 

With the event taking place in the grounds of the Ulster Folk and Transport Museum, Cultra, Co Down, further information can be found out www.nmni.com & http://www.tsccni.info/.

 Many thanks as always Tony, it sounds like it’ll be a cracking event, hopefully we can get over to it next year.

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