JC Returns!

In recent weeks the Midland hillclimb scene has seen the return of one of the most competitive drivers, and one of the most committed hillclimb families, as a very heavily re-developed car has made its first appearance for a few seasons.

John Chalmers Ralt F302

John & Jamie Chalmers prepare for another run with the Ralt during testing at Curborough.

 

Warwickshire 2-litre runner John Chalmers has spent the past couple of years installing a very special new engine into his familiar Ralt F302 chassis, the car with which he took the Shelsley Walsh 2-litre class record in 2011, and after a difficult development period has made a return to the hills.

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New Pilbeams Revealed

One of the biggest names in our sport is Pilbeam Racing Designs. Mike Pilbeam’s company dominated British Hillclimbing at National level for 20 years between the mid 70s and the mid 90s, winning 17 British Hillclimb Championship titles for some of the legends of our sport including Roy Lane, Martyn Griffiths, Martin Bolsover and Andy Priaulx.

Roy Lane Pilbeam MP58

The late, great Roy Lane at Martini Hairpin with his title-winning MP58-Judd (thanks to Steve Wilkinson)

 

In recent years the Pilbeam marque has focused on sportscar racing on the circuits. This, combined with the massive success of the Gould composite chassis’ which have dominated the hills for the past 15 years or so, has seen the Pilbeam star shine slightly less brightly than it has in the past.

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For Sale… More Hillclimb History!

One of the most successful single chassis in the history of the British Hillclimb Championship has been spotted for sale on a popular race car marketplace website.

David Grace Pilbeam MP58

David Grace with MP58-05 at Prescott in 1994 (thanks to Steve Wilkinson)

 

The aluminium honeycomb tubbed Pilbeam MP58 was the car of the late 80s and early 90s on the hills of the UK. The MP58 won BHC titles for Martyn Griffiths (1990 & 1991), Roy Lane (1992 & 1996), David Grace (1993 & 1994) and Andy Priaulx (1995).

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Skools Out For Winter!

On Saturday the Guernsey Kart and Motor Club hosted the final hillclimb event of the year at Les Val des Terres.

Justin Smith OMS 25

Justin Smith with his beautifully presented OMS 25 (thanks to Our Correspondent)

 

As with all events on the island, our local scribe Lee Corbet was there and has put together his usual ‘off piste’ report on the days proceedings.

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Priaulx Ommision

Did anyone see Thursday evening’s edition of Sky F1′s usually excellent F1 Show?

We did, and we were very surprised by the omission of one very high-profile former hillclimber from one of their features.

The show visited the recent DTM round at Brands Hatch in Kent, and followed Jenson Button having a test drive in the latest generation Mercedes C-Class DTM car.

There was a lot of time devoted to British DTM driver (and McLaren test driver) Gary Paffett, and even a quick mention of former DTM Champion and current Audi driver Jamie Green…

But not one word was uttered about our very own Andy Priaulx. Come on guys, as well as the 1995 British Hillclimb Championship, he has won multiple WTCC championships, the ETCC, races in the BTCC, Le Mans rules racing and the Nurburgring 24 hours as well as F1 testing for Williams and BMW, so he’s done a bit!

Warwick’s a Winner!

We hear on the grapevine that Guernsey Dallara driver Darren Warwick has won the Guernsey Press Sporting Achievement of the Year Award for 2012!

Darren Warwick Dallara F301

Darren Warwick with the Dallara in the Bouley Bay paddock, July 2012.

 

Darren secured the coveted award for consistently lowering his Channel Islands record at Le Val des Terres, a record which he lowered to a staggering 27.88s with the ex. Haimes Dallara-Vauxhall in September.

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