News Archive - MGOC Championship

***   NEWSLETTER   ***

 

5th February 2018

2018 Lancaster Insurance/MGOC Championship

Spring is fast approaching, the 2018 race regulations have been approved by the MSA and preparations for the new season are well under way with the drivers looking forward to the 38th year of the championship.

The double header race dates are :

March 17th 
Oulton Park
April 14/15th    Rockingham
May 6/7th     Snetterton
June 2/3rd  Donington
July 7/8th    Thruxton
August 27th Castle Combe
September 8/9th   Cadwell Park
October 6/7th Silverstone (International)
The format of the Championship remains unchanged, but we have expanded the list of eligible cars to include the following:

MG TF160

These will race in Class F alongside the long established MGF VVC.

Standard MGZR160

In addition to the upgraded ZR160's currently running in Class Z we have introduced a new lower specification ZR160 (Road) to run in our existing Class B. These cars will have to run to a near standard specification are seen as a low cost, entry level car designed to give new and drivers an opportunity to get on the motorsport ladder with a relatively standard road going car.  The cars can easily be upgraded to the higher specification cars in Class Z.

For more information on the Race Championship and to review the 2018 classes and regulations click www.mgoc-championship.co.uk


 

26th January 2018

ALL,

Clause K3 (page 164) of the 2018 MSA Year Book states confirms that it is now a requirement that "extinguishers must be serviced in accordance with the manufacturers guidelines or every 24 months whichever is the sooner".  This is effective from 1st January 2018 not 1st January 2019 as stated in the current MSA Year Book.

I am aware that many drivers have their extinguishers serviced by companies other than the original manufacturer but it isn't for me to say a) if this is an acceptable process or b) what are the "manufacturers guideline".  I copied my initial email to Nigel Thorne for information, he has come back to me and advised:

Looking at this from an official's point of view, we will be looking at extinguishers to see if a label with the last service date or next due service date is present. It will need to be a proper label with the servicing agent's details. I can't, and I suspect most other scrutineer's are the same, tell if it has been done as per manufacturer's instructions and have no way to check. If the label is Chubb Fire or similar and we think it is a proper servicing company we will have to take it on face value, as having been serviced. Our only check is remove the extinguisher from the car and check that its weight is in accordance with the labels.

I have forwarded Nigel's commendably sensible email to Ian Watson of BARC who is satisfied that Nigel's approach is correct and that I can advise our drivers accordingly.

All of this means that it is apparently acceptable to have your extinguisher serviced by someone other than the original manufacturer (eg. Lifeline) but whoever you use they clearly must be a bone-fide fire extinguisher servicing company who are approved and certificated to service AFFF extinguishers.

 

Labels by, for example, Disney Pyromaniac Services Inc. and signed by M Mouse will be rejected. If your extinguisher is more than two years old and hasn't been tested then it must be tested to get through scrutineering this season.  I have recently approached a well established local fire extinguisher company, they didn't know anything about motorsport extinguishers but as far as they are concerned they are not really different to any other AFFF extinguisher.  They have full and formal approval to carry out servicing on AFFF extinguishers and have sent me a copy of their statement on this. They offer two types of service:

 

Annual

In a commercial premises they will carry out a visual inspection and check that the weight of the extinguisher is in accordance with original manufacturers weight as shown on the label.


Five Yearly

Every five years they de-pressurise the extinguisher, check/replace the internal seals, pressure test it, re-charge with AFFF and record the service date and weight on a tamperproof label fixed to the extinguisher body. Given that it's never been a mandatory MSA requirement I suspect that the majority of Club racers extinguishers have never been tested. If this is the case with your extinguisher and you elect to use a local company I strongly recommend that you instruct them to carry out the full five yearly "de-pressure and re-charge" test as the AFFF foam does apparently degrade and the older it gets the less efficient it is. In the event that you're upside down and the car is on fire the last thing you want is an inefficient fire extinguisher. All of this is good but do remember that if your existing extinguisher is more than 10 years old (the date of manufacture is on the label) then it cannot be serviced and you have no option but to replace it. You have two options:
  1. Buy an FIA compliant system from any of the usual suppliers. This will see you through to and beyond 2022.
  2. Some motorsport suppliers may still hold stocks of the Lifeline 2.25 litre FireMarshal AFFF extinguisher. It seems perfectly OK to buy one of these as it will remain MSA compliant until the end of the 2021 season. The best deal on the market at the moment is with JJC (they are owned by Demon Tweeks) who are selling them for £99.95 + VAT.  See:

https://www.jjcraceandrally.com/race/plumbed-in-systems/jjc-2-25ltr-msa-compliant-plumbed-in-mechanical-fire-extinguisher-system

 

 

****    NEWSLETTER    ****

8th January 2018

Hi Everybody,

Christmas seems a long time ago and I'll take this opportunity to wish you all a peaceful, prosperous and, above all, a safe 2018.

We had a healthy number of new drivers join us in 2017 and I hope we can keep that positive momentum going and recruit a few more for the 2018 season. We ended last season with close to 50 registered drivers, all we need is for a few more newcomers and for some of you to enter a few more races and the Championship will continue to move forward. Big grids really are the best advertisement we can make for our championship.

Race Dates

These remain as previously advised:

March 17th          Oulton Park

Apr 14/15th         Rockingham

May 6/7th            Snetterton

Jun 2/3rd              Donington

Jul 7/8th               Thruxton

Aug 27th              Castle Combe

Sept 8/9th            Cadwell Park

Oct 6/7th             Silverstone (Int)

These dates are still "provisional" but I spoke to Ian Watson this morning and he does not expect any changes from the dates shown. 

Most of our meetings are shown as being over two days.  It's too early to say at the moment if our races will be one the Saturday or the Sunday or a bit of both.  I realise that knowing what dates(s) we'll be racing on is important for many of you and as soon as I know what the timetables are going to be I'll let you know. The one thing for certain is that the opening meeting at Oulton 17th March is definitely a one day meeting with quali and both races on Saturday.

2018 Championship Registrations

You are all well aware that to race with MGOC you must first register for the championship using the registration form which is the final page of the 2018 regulations.  The problem is that the registration form requires you to sign that "you have read the current regulations and confirm that your cars complies with the relevant technical regulations" but of course you can't make this confirmation until you've seen the MSA approved version of the regs !!.   In recent years MSA have been painfully slow to sign-off the regs and issue a championship permit number which means that we can't issue them and accept registrations.

The approval system has, allegedly, changed this year and we should get the 2018 regs approved within the next two weeks.  I will of course email them out to you all as soon as they are approved.

 

2018 Technical Registration

Please do note that as the 2018 regs have been submitted to MSA we cannot make any further changes to them until the end of the 2018 season.  We can clarify points within the approved regulations but cannot make any specific changes

Race Numbers

It is a long established MGOC policy that drivers who re-register for 2018 will retain the number they had in 2017.  The only exception to this is of course Simon Kendrick who will run as no.1, in the unlikely event that Simon doesn't want to run as no.1 then no-one else (not even you Willsy !!) can have that number. There are some opportunities to change to a new number, if you'd like to change from your 2017 number please drop me an email and I'll help where I can.New drivers will be allocated a number by MGOC but are welcome to request a specific number and if that number is available then you can have it. 

Seat Belts

I'm sure your all aware that harnesses have an expiry date label on the straps.  Someone always gets caught out at the first meeting of a new season so please do check and make sure that your harness is eligible for 2018.

Frontal Head Restraints  

For the avoidance of doubt, please note that for vehicles manufactured after 31st December 1976 (ie. MGF and ZR) the use of an FHR (eg. HANS) is mandatory. For vehicles manufactured before then (ie. most Midget's and MGB's) they are not mandatory but are, rightly, strongly recommended.

Trevor Dixon

Many of you will know that Trevor has Multiple Sclerosis.  Trev may have stopped racing but is still very much part of the MGOC scene with his father-in-law Chris Flooks a regular Classic Class entrant.  Trev emailed me yesterday to say that he is currently in hospital having ground breaking stem cell replacement treatment.  This is a complex and revolutionary new treatment and I know you will all join me in wishing Trev the very best of luck for a positive outcome.

 

 

11th October 2017

ALL,

Our final meeting of the season at Silverstone went well and the final entry of 21 cars was reasonable in the circumstances.

With a number of respected and regular drivers moving on at the end of last season it's been something of a rebuilding year for us.  The good news is that we've got a lot of enthusiastic new drivers and several more are planning to join us next season.  If we can keep the nucleus of drivers from this year, I'm confident that we'll move forward in a good positive manner next season.

It was good to see Vince Hunt out in his MGB and Darryl Davis and Mick Weidner on the grid in their ZR's.

 Congratulations go to Alan Forster for two overall and Class Z wins, Martin Wills and Simon Kendrick for a win apiece in Class F, I took both Classic Class wins.

No new lap records were set.

Star Drives

The Star Drive trophies were awarded to:

Marcus Holland – two excellent 2nd places in the Classic Class and fastest lap in Race 2. Alan Forster – two dominant wins and two fastest laps in his resurgent ZR

 

Points Table

Mark Baker compiles the MGOC version of the points table and I'd like to record my grateful my thanks to Mark for doing this, it really does make my life a lot easier.  The attached points table shows what we believe to be the final points positions, if anyone believes there is an error in the points table, please drop me an email as soon as possible. The final official version of the points table will be issued by BARC. Congratulations to Simon Kendrick who confirmed his position as 2017 MGOC champion, Alan Forster who is Class Z champion after a really impressive first season with us and Dave Amphlett who is the Classic Class champion easing the pain of a very troubled year on the engine front.

Congratulations also to William van Vuuren who has had a tremendous first season and is the 2017 Novice champion.

2018

People always ask me about race dates for next season.  BARC organise over 30 race championships and it takes a huge effort to get programmes for thirty championships all wanting at least eight double-header race meetings at the premier circuits. All I can say is that, as ever, I put in my wish list to Ian Watson and use whatever influence I have to get us the circuits we want. We can only wait and see if I get all I ask for !!.  

We try to have one meeting a month but this can work against us. Last year we could have had a Brands Hatch meeting but it would have been the week after Donington, I don't think that would work out for us.

The 2018 race dates are unlikely to be issued before Christmas, rest assured I'll advise everyone on the mailing list of the dates as soon as they are confirmed to me.

Silverstone Marshalling

This left a lot to be desired and I've raised a few points with BARC:

  1. Given the number of races they had to get through on Saturday BARC, rightly in my opinion, used the "Racing Ahead" system which means you do a full lap from the collecting area then line up and go. This is absolutely fine but given the absence of grid row numbers on the pit wall it relies on a start-line Marshal to tell drivers where to go.  A couple of cars towards the front of the grids took up incorrect grid positions and this had a knock-on effect down the field, the start line Marshal was useless and the grid was all over the place. Around eight drivers could have been penalised for starting in the wrong grid position.
  2. No Marshal's in the collecting area before going out for Qualifying.
  3. No Red/Yellow flag at Stowe in Race 2 after a monster oil spillages on the exit of a high speed corner.

Drivers Meeting

 

We had a brief and informal meeting on Saturday afternoon.  This covered a few general points but I would ask that if anyone has any technical matters that they need to be considered for 2018 or if any of our existing Regs require clarification please email me as soon as possible. I will be gathering any such comments and will send them out to all registered competitors in early November as I have to have all changes for 2018 completed and sent to BARC by the middle of November.

Class B

 

We will be putting together a set of Regulations to allow a slightly lower spec ZR160 into Class B. After an initial flurry of proposals it's all gone very quiet, anyone who wants to make any proposals for this Class should let them to me as soon as possible. If I don't hear anything I'll make my own decisions.

 

Awards Dinner

As mentioned, this will take place at the Best Western in Buckingham on Saturday November 18th.  The booking form and menu choices are attached. I really do hope you will support this event, please send your completed booking form to MGOC as soon as possible.

Can I remind you all that the hotel have reserved a number of rooms for the MGOC event, to get the agreed rate you must book directly with the hotel ie. not through the Best Western or any other internet booking site.

Thanks for your continued support this season.

 

 

****    NEWSLETTER    ****

12th September 2017

ALL,
It was good to go back to Cadwell.  Several of the drivers were making their first visit to this most challenging of circuits and the feedback suggests that you all enjoyed this amazing circuit.

The rain just about held off and both races were held on a dry track although it came in with a vengeance as we were all packing up and it was a wet drive home. 
The entry of just 16 cars was disappointing but I do accept that a few of our regular drivers were missing after the dramas at Snetterton. Getting entries at remote circuits like Cadwell at the end of a season is always a problem and whilst our entry wasn't great we can take limited consolation in that we were actually the biggest grid of what was a very poorly supported meeting.

Phil Walker continued his good recent progress in the ZR by taking pole from the MGF of Mark Baker.  Nick Golhar was also on good form taking 3rd on the grid from Simon Kendrick whose car was re-shelled by Kevin in the three weeks since Snetterton and was looking superb.  Dave Amphlett took pole in the Classic Class ahead of Bob van Vuuren and Chris Millard who both put in impressive performances on their first visit to the track. The grid may have been short on numbers but there were some great battles throughout the field.


In Race 1, Mark took the win from Simon with Phil taking 3rd place and a very popular Class Z win in his ZR, this was Phil's first ever Class win in the ZR and his first MGOC win since taking a win in his MGB on our one and only trip to Jurby on the Isle of Man in 1998. Dave Amphlett initially lead the Classic Class but ran wide onto the grass at Charlies allowing Bob to take the lead and he went on to take the win from Dave who was just ahead of Chris Millard who took the point for fastest lap.


In Race 2, Mark initially took the lead but Phil held the inside line into Charlies to take the lead.  Mark was close behind but an ABS brake problem resulted in him spinning off at the Gooseneck and he retired leaving Nick in 2nd place just ahead of Paul Wisbey who was leading Class F. Alan Forster was on a charge and got past Paul on lap 2 and Nick on lap 5 and set off after Phil who by this time had an eight second lead and looked set for his second win of the weekend but Alan was driving really well and began to close the gap. At the start of the final lap, Phil was hanging on by a cars length and held that lead until Barn when he went from 2nd into 5th gear and Alan outdragged him to the line and he took the flag by the length of a bonnet to take a superb win after a hugely entertaining and cleanly fought battle.


With Mark out of the way, Simon held a narrow Class F lead over Paul Wisbey before Paul lost out with a self-induced spin on the run into the Gooseneck allowing Phil Espinasse to move into 2nd place. Simon cruised home to take the Class F win with Phil doing well to hold off Paul to take 2nd place. In the Classic Class, Dave again took an early lead but Bob was never far behind until a spin under braking at Park gave Dave a huge lead.  To his great credit, Bob didn't give up the fight and gradually closed in on Dave before taking the lead along Park Straight on the final lap and going on to take his second win of the weekend. No new lap records were set.

 

 Star Drives

There were some very impressive drives throughout the field in both races and a number of drivers were on the short list but the trophies went to Phil Walker for a well deserved win in his ZR in Race 1 and to Alan Forster for a superb drive in Race 2.

Points Table

The point table after Cadwell is attached. I'll leave you to make your own calculations but my (often wrong !!) interpretation is that Simon is confirmed as the Overall and Class Z champion and Dave Amphlett has won the Classic Class.  Class Z is still not quite sorted although, by my reckoning, Alan looks to be the hot favourite.

Awards Dinner

As previously mentioned, this will take place at the Best Western in Buckingham on Saturday 18th November.  This is an important event for us and is always a really good evening, please put the date in your diary.

Silverstone

The Version 2 timetable for this meeting has been posted on the BARC website.  The Version 1 timetable showed us racing with the Renault Clio's.  I'm pleased to say that this has changed and qualifying and both of our races will be only for MGOC cars.

Several old faces are threatening to enter this meeting, let's see if we can put on a really good grid and see the season off in style.

 

                                                       

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22nd August 2017

 

ALL,

Our annual Snetterton meeting has always been well supported and the 24 car entry was excellent given that several of our regulars were on holiday. The entry was boosted by the welcome return of Gary Crowley, Mick Weidner and Steve McDermid who was making his race debut in Class Z. Chris Pollard was also making a long overdue return in his MGB.

Dave Mellor was on pole by 1.7 secs with Alan Forster and Steve Williams both continuing their recent good form by taking 2nd and 3rd places with Mick Weidner showing that there's plenty of life left in him by taking an excellent 4th place on his return to the championship.  Simon took the Class F pole by a couple of tenths from Mark.  Chris took the Classic Class pole by just .06secs from me.

Congratulations go to Dave Mellor who took two more overall and Class Z wins and to Simon Kendrick and Mark Baker for a win apiece in Class F.  I had two Classic Class wins but was made to work hard by Chris who soon got back in the groove after a year away.

My 2011 Class A lap record for the 200 circuit was well and truly smashed with Chris and I recording a total of ten laps under the old record and it was Chris who had the final say by setting a new lap record.  No new lap records were set in Classes F or Z.

Those of you who were at the meeting will be aware of a heavy startline shunt in Race 2. Steve Williams was very slow away from his front row of the grid position and with Simon making a great start from row 3 there were four cars abreast as the cars went under the startline gantry and contact was made resulting in a number of badly damaged cars and the race being red flagged.  You may be expecting me to "name and shame" but I'm not going to do that as those involved are all honest and experienced drivers who know what happened and how it happened and whilst I'm certainly not playing it down I think we should try and move on from what was a really sad and bad incident. Having said that, every one of us should learn from this incident and be fully aware of what is likely to happen when cars move off line when the red lights go out.

The end result of the incident was that a number of cars were very badly damaged but thankfully no-one was seriously injured.  I hope those of you who sustained damage will lick your wounds and come out fighting as soon as possible.

Star Drives

The Star Drive trophies were awarded to Maninder Golhar for two strong drives on his first visit to Snetterton including an excellent 5th place in Race 2 and to Mick Weidner for two podium places and fastest lap in Race 2.

Trophies

I must give my apologies to all those who attended the trophy presentation after the race on Saturday afternoon as it was even more disorganised than usual.  I'd become drawn into a post-race inquest, it was raining, I lost my notes from the Donington meeting, I had to compete with a loudspeaker just behind me and I was very tired after a long and slightly manic day. 

Pat and Mel were on holiday and I must thank Lynne Baker for her help throughout the day.  Without such help I simply can't do what needs doing on  a race day and compete in my MGB as well. 

 Championship News

It was good to see Ian Evans, Peter St. Barbe and Bob Kett around the paddock on Saturday. Both Ian and Peter have some difficult health problems but both were looking well and on good form.  After hanging up his race helmet Bob is really enjoying his time as a Marshall, he was on the post on the exit of Murray's (it will always be Russell to me !!) and was waving his arms to encourage the Class A guys – at least I think that's what he was doing !!.

Our former Class A driver Trevor Dixon (Chris Flook's son-in-law) has had the first stage of major treatment for his MS. Assuming this all goes well he will then move on to stem cell replacement, this is a radical and debilitating procedure and I know you will all join me in wishing Trevor all the very best for the difficult months ahead.

Matt Gozalves has passed his ARDS test and will be making his race debut in a ZR at Silverstone. Young Shelby Wilshire is due to take her driving test next week and is looking forward to returning to the action at Cadwell.

Cadwell Park

The timetable for this meeting has been posted on the BARC website.  As you can see, we have qualifying and both races on the Sunday which means that you only have one night away.

 MSV have asked me to inform all those persons entering Cadwell that the circuit is open for testing on the Friday before the meeting.  The cost is £155 for the morning, £165 for the afternoon or £265 for the full day. Bookings can be made or on line at www.msv.com/testing/2017/september/170908-cp.aspx or by calling the circuit on 01507 343248.

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6th June 2017

 

After missing out last year it was good to return to the flat out sweeps of Thruxton. 

Thanks to a few late entries we ended up with 24 cars on the grid. Whilst I'd obviously like to see more I have to say that it was an excellent turnout and confirms my view that the championship is definitely moving in the right direction. It was good to welcome Lee Sullivan and his ever enthusiastic team back to the championship and Darryl Davis who was making a one-off return in Nick Golhar's spare ZR to the championship he won in 2000.

We had two more drivers making their race debut's, Andrew Garbutt and William (call him Bob) van Vuuren in the ex-Bob Kett/Martin Goddard MGB.  We've now had seven complete new drivers enter races since the start of the season and with one more new driver on the way plus several familiar names planning to return very soon the future is looking good.

Congratulations go to Lee for taking outright and Class Z wins in both races.  Martin won the Class F race on Saturday but was unable to enter the Sunday race and Simon Kendrick took the win after Mark suffered a gearbox problem.

In the Classic Class, I had yet another big end failure and Dave Amphlett took his third win in a row.  The Sunday race was won by Bob van Vuuren who drove really well in his first ever race weekend to take a very impressive win.

No new lap records were set on a meeting where lap times were generally a lot slower than on past visits.

I'm pleased to report that for the third meeting in a row, there were no significant on-track incidents, well done to you all, this is a real credit to everyone and goes a long way towards the appeal of our championship. We all know that incidents do occasionally happen on a race track but if we continue this clean driving record it can only work in our favour. I've asked BARC to be very hard on any damage incidents this year so please let's continue with the good spirit we've had so far this season.

 

The atmosphere around the Paddock is back to where I want it to be, this is great news for everyone – long may it last. Steve Williams and Stuart Philps both suffered engine failures but, as usual, everyone helped out and both cars had overnight engine changes.  I'm happy to record thanks to the ever helpful Andy Rogerson for lending Stuart his spare engine. 

 

It was good to see James Pryor and Danny Porter around the Paddock, both are planning to do a few races during the course of this season.

 

Trophy Presentation

I apologise if this was a little disorganised on Sunday.  I was pretty knackered after a very busy couple of days talking to several prospective new drivers, helping out with various Classic Class problems, meeting with BARC officials and trying to get my own MGB ready to race.  Our cars were scattered far and wide across the Paddock and with Pat and Mel having to leave at mid-day it was all a bit manic but we got there in the end.

 

I know that all you want to do after a race is to load your car up, chat with your fellow competitors and have a drink but the presentation of awards is important for us and I do appreciate your efforts in attending.

 

Star Drives

The Star Drive trophies were awarded to Bob van Vuuren for a very impressive race debut and a Classic Class win on Sunday and Darryl Davis for two excellent 2nd places in Class Z. Darryl was quick to say how much he enjoyed the racing and the Paddock atmosphere and has already started pushing another former MGOC champion to get his car back out on track with us.

Scrutineering

Nigel Thorne checked the block height on Lee Sullivan's race winning ZR and the gear ratios on the MGF's of Simon Kendrick and Stuart Plotnek and the ZR's of Stuart Philps and Lee Sullivan. I'm pleased to advise that all cars were found to be fully compliant with MGOC regulations.

 

Rockingham

We now look ahead to Rockingham on 1/2nd July.  This is a two day meeting, the timetable is posted on the BARC website but this may well change, I'll let you know a soon as I hear of any changes.

 

 

6th May 2017

ALL,


Castle Combe may not be the most challenging circuit on our list of venues but it is a delightful place to visit and the Castle Combe Racing Club team always put on an efficiently managed and friendly meeting. With a Twix or KitKat at signing-on and an excellent paddock restaurant what more could you ask for !!.

The weather forecast over the days preceding the event were a bit uncertain but late on Sunday evening the forecast was for heavy rain from midday, thankfully this didn’t happen and both races went ahead in warm and cloudy conditions.

Thanks to late entries from Junior Bhambra and Jag Golhar we ended up with 22 entries, this was pretty good and shows that the championship is definitely moving in the right direction. It was good to welcome the Midget of Shelby Wilsher and the MGF’s of Ivor Morgan and Ralf Tognieri to the championship. With a couple more new drivers on the way and a few more experienced names returning over the next couple of months, the future is looking good.

Congratulations go to Stuart Philps for taking outright and Class Z wins in both races, Stuart’s ZR looks great and he drove it really well to firmly bury the memories of twelve months ago.

Congratulations also to Simon Kendrick for taking two wins in Class F and to Dave Amphlett who, after a truly depressing run of engine problems, finally got back to form with two Classic Class wins.

Martin Wills was his usual ebullient self and put in two strong drives that came to nothing when his gear linkage failed in Race 1 and a dislodged rear bumper resulted in him being black flagged in Race 2. He did have the consolation of setting a new fastest lap in Race 2.
I’m pleased to report that for the second meeting in a row, there were no significant on-track incidents and all cars (well most !!) cars came home without damage. The sole exception being Martin’s MGF whose rear bumper was dislodged when, rumour has it, he reversed into Stuart Philps in race 2.

Star Drives
The Star Drive trophies were awarded to Stuart Philps for two impressive drives and a win double in Class Z and the Junior Bhambra for coming out on top of a hugely entertaining race long battle with Nick Golhar.

Thruxton
We now look ahead to Thruxton on 3/4th June. This is billed as a two day meeting, the timetable isn’t yet posted on the BARC website but I will ask what day(s) our races are on and advise you all later this week. With Thruxton only able to run races on 13 days a year we are very fortunate to be allocated a date and we really do need to put on a good entry in order to secure a repeat booking for 2018. Thruxton is the fastest circuit in the country and is a real challenge, the BTCC are there this weekend, have a look and see what it’s all about. It’s a big meeting for us and I do hope you’ll all do your very best to support it.


MGCC Brands
Many of you will be aware that there was a nasty multi-car accident at the start on the MGCC Trophy race on Sunday. A number of ex-MGOC drivers were involved and many cars were seriously damaged. Sadly this sort of incident does happen from time to time in all championships but thankfully, to the best of my knowledge, there were no serious injuries and I’d like to pass on our best.

****    NEWSLETTER    ****

30th March 2017

ALL,

It was of course disappointing to get just 17 entries for our opening meeting at Silverstone but we shouldn’t be too despondent as a number of our regular drivers and several new drivers will be entering Castle Combe. I should also make the point that early season entry levels are often a bit thin and most of the other races at Silverstone had grids of less than 20 cars.  Not much of a consolation but it is a fact.

With a healthy influx of new drivers joining the championship over the next few months I see 2017 as a year when we refocus the championship and I’m optimistic about the future. If we continue to put on the same high quality racing as we did at Silverstone it will only be a matter of time before even more new drivers come and join us. Congratulations go to Alan Forster who had a Class Z win in Race 1 then went one better with an outright win in Race 2. After a heavy shunt at Mallory Park on Boxing Day and troubled winter repairing his ZR this was a great reward for Alan, who prior to Silverstone had never raced a front wheel drive car. Alan was quick to publicly thank Steve Williams for his unwavering help and support in getting his car repaired and on track for Silverstone.

Congratulations also to Simon Kendrick who took a Class win, an outright win and set a new lap record in Class F. The action at the front of Class F was hugely entertaining but sadly ended in the worst possible way when Mark spun off at Copse and hit the barriers in Race 2, the repair is under way and Mark fully expects the F to be ready for Combe.   

 Dave Amphlett suffered yet more engine problems and Ashley Barnes had a very frustrating steering problem that couldn’t be resolved at the circuit and both didn’t make either of the races. This made life pretty easy for me but I pushed really hard and managed to take a tenth of a second off my 2003 lap record.

Star Drives

The Star Drive trophies were awarded to Alan Forster for two hugely impressive drives on his MGOC debut and Stuart Plotnek for an excellent podium finish in Race 2.

Scrutineering

The ZR’s of Phil Walker and Steve Williams were fitted with the MGOC owned ECU, the two drivers in question were entirely happy to swap their ECU’s and it was clear that the performance of their cars was exactly as with their own ECU’s fitted.

Nigel used our new block height gauge for the first time. He checked the blocks on the ZR’s of Phil Walker and Alan Forster, both were found to be fully in accordance with our regulations.

These checks will be made on other Class F and Z cars at every future meeting. All cars were weighed, Nigel has given me a sheet of weights and I can confirm that all were a minimum of 10kg over the prescribed minimum weights as stated in the Regulations.

Castle Combe

With two or three new drivers planning to enter and a couple of “old stagers” returning to the fray, I’m expecting a decent grid for this meeting. Several drivers have already booked into the Premier Inn at Chippenham for the Sunday night prior to the meeting.

 

21st March 2017

 

The first meeting of the 37th year of the MGOC championship is almost upon us.

A few of our long standing regular drivers have moved on to other things, they will of course be missed but I know you will join me in thanking them for their support and to wish them well in their next venture. I do hope we’ll see them back with us at some time in the future.

I see 2017 as a season where we regroup and focus on the future. The entry level for Silverstone is a bit disappointing but several of our regular drivers are missing due to holidays, engine problems or health problems.

We have several new drivers and I’d like to welcome 17 year old Shelby Wilsher, Phil Elder and Marcus Holland to the Classic Class (formerly known as Class A), Ralf Tognieri and Ivor Morgan to Class F and Alan Forster to Class Z. I know of at least two other new drivers who will be joining us as the season progresses.

In addition to our new drivers I’d like to welcome Ashley Barnes and the 1995 champion Nigel Woolcott back into Class A.

I’m also pleased to confirm that Pat and Mel Scrivenor will again be representing MG owners’ Club at all of our championship meetings this year. Their help and support to me and all drivers is invaluable.

Eligibility

I and several other drivers have put in an enormous amount of time and effort over the winter to close a few loopholes and to rework the technical regulations; the changes are highlighted in yellow in the 2017 MSA approved version issued to you all.

Do remember that it is the driver’s responsibility to ensure that their car complies with the regulations.  Please have a good look through the regs and satisfy yourself that everything is OK with your car. If you have any doubts, questions or queries them please speak to me and I’ll advise as best I can.

Pre-season checks

Do check the following before turning up for scrutineering at Silverstone:

· The pull cables for electrical cutout and fire extinguisher haven’t seized solid over the winter.

· Your seat belts are “in-date”.

· Your car has the correct MGOC, Lancaster Insurance and Yokohama stickers in place.

We will have supplies of all of these stickers at Silverstone.

Championship Website

After a lot of work over the winter the championship website has been reworked and has now gone live, have a look at www.mgoc-championship.co.uk

As someone who has no idea of website design it has been a real eye opener to me quite how much time and effort it has taken to get it to where it is now and I’d like to record my grateful thanks to Chris Towers of MGOC and our own Bob Fisher who have been instrumental in putting it together. It is an evolving thing and will be tweaked and added to as the season progresses. I’d welcome any constructive comments and suggestions.

Facebook

In addition to the website, Chris Towers and Bob Fisher are relaunching (I’m not sure if that’s quite the right expression!!) the championship Facebook. Please do contribute short articles and photographs. As I’m sure you all know, I “don’t do” Facebook so if you have any comments or queries please direct them to Bob Fisher.

Driving Standards

Firstly, I’d like to make it very clear that this comment is not a veiled criticism of any driver or any past incidents.

I’d just like to remind you all that this motor-racing is a non-contact sport and to see damaged cars in the paddock is really upsetting and does tremendous damage to our credibility and long term reputation. Most on-track incidents are avoidable and, like all championships, things sometimes happen but please do treat your fellow drivers with respect and give room where it is safe and sensible to do so.

We are all competitive when on track and I wouldn’t want it any other way but do remember that winning a motor-race doesn’t change your life; we all (me included!!) still have to go to work on a Monday morning. Taking the car home in one piece is far more important that winning the race – or it is to me anyway!!

Whilst on the subject, can I remind you all that we expect slower cars to use their mirrors and give room to faster cars who overtake them. Similarly, we expect the faster cars to be careful and respectful of the slower drivers. It’s all common sense really.

Beware!!

Can I also remind you all of MSA Blue Book Q14.4.3 , this clearly makes the point that if a car goes off the track (ie. over the white lines on the edge of the track) it is the drivers responsibility to ensure that he/she rejoins the track only when it is safe to do so. This applies equally if you have fallen off of your own accord or been forced off by another car. Clerks of the Course will be keeping a close eye on this during the season. One driver well known to me was excluded from the race and had four points put on his race licence for such an incident last weekend.

Awards Dinner

Again, I know it’s early but please put a note in your diary that the 2017 Awards Dinner will be held on Saturday 18th November.

I look forward to seeing you at Silverstone on Saturday afternoon.

****    NEWSLETTER    ****     

4th March 2017

As previously advised, MSA have finally signed off our 2017 regulations, these have been emailed out to everyone on the 2016 championship mailing list.

We have been receiving a steady stream of championship registration forms but I do note that some of you who raced with us in 2016 haven’t yet registered for the coming season.  If you are planning to race with us this season, please complete the registration form and send or email it to MGOC as soon as possible. If you will not be registering for the coming season could you drop me an email so I can re-allocate your race number.

We currently have four new drivers registered for the coming season with a couple more expected to join up soon and with the planned return of a few familiar faces I’m optimistic that entry levels will grow steadily through the season. I see 2017 as an opportunity to re-establish ourselves and get back to our core values and I thank you all in advance for your support. 

It’s fairly normal to see some drivers moving on from our championship. For those of you who will be racing elsewhere in the coming season I’d like to thank you for your past support and to wish you a safe and successful season wherever you decide to race.   You will always be welcome to return to race with MGOC at any time in the future.

Silverstone

The current draft race programme shows our qualification session will be late on Saturday 25th with both races held on Sunday 26th.  The meeting is, of course, being held on the National circuit. 

BARC Race Entry System

In common with other major organizing clubs, BARC operate an on-line race entry system.  This remains exactly as it was in 2016, I found it easy to use to enter, and in necessary cancel, race entries.  My guidelines on how to use the system are attached to this Newsletter.

The Home Page shows the entry fee for each race meeting but please do note that drivers who enter the race before the official closing date will receive a £30 reduction from the stated entry fee.  Assuming you enter the race before the closing date, this £30 reduction will be shown on the Pay page and that is what you will pay.

 We all complain about the high cost of race entry fees and it amazes me how many drivers leave their race entry until the last night and thus pay the higher rate.  It really does make sense to enter before the closing date and use the on-line system to cancel an entry if you have to. 

Class Z Tyres

Clause 8.17.1 of the 2017 regs shows one of the permitted tyre sizes for Class Z as 195/55R16.  This is incorrect and should read 195/50R16 as in previous years. BARC will issue a Technical Bulletin to formally confirm this.

Towing Eyes

All Class sections of the 2017 regs include a clause from MSA regarding a new arrangement for towing eyes.  Please do note that this is a recommendation and there is no indication from MSA as to if/when this will become a mandatory requirement.

Club Photographer

I have previously mentioned that we need another photographer to cover some of our meetings. 

The role requires a talented photographer with high end equipment who is prepared to attend MGOC race meetings and stand out in the cold and rain taking photos of our races. It is an unpaid position but MGOC do arrange Media passes for trackside access. I accept that this isn’t the most appealing job description you’ll ever see but that’s the way it is !.

If you know anyone who may wish to be considered for this role, pleased drop Jim an email.

Cars for Sale

The website currently shows three cars for sale. If you have, or know of, an MGOC spec race car for sale, please send me the details with a side on photograph and I’ll get it added to the website.


26th February 2017

MSA have finally signed off our 2017 regulations, these have been emailed out to everyone on the 2016 championship mailing list.

We have been receiving a steady stream of championship registration forms but I do note that some of you who raced with us in 2016 haven’t yet registered for the coming season.  If you are planning to race with us this season, please complete the registration form and send or email it to MGOC as soon as possible. If you will not be registering for the coming season could you drop me an email so I can re-allocate your race number.

It’s fairly normal to see some drivers moving on from our championship. For those of you who will be racing elsewhere in the coming season I’d like to thank you for your past support and to wish you a safe and successful season wherever you decide to race.   You will always be welcome to return to race with MGOC at any time in the future.

Class Z Tyres

Clause 8.17.1 of the 2017 regs shows one of the permitted tyre sizes for Class Z as 195/55R16.  This is incorrect and should read 195/50R16 as in previous years. This change will be formally ratified by BARC.

BARC Race Entry System

In common with most other major organizing clubs, BARC operate an on-line race entry system.  This remains exactly as it was in 2016, I found it easy to use to enter, and in necessary cancel, race entries.  My guidelines on how to use the system are attached to this Newsletter.

Can I remind you all that drivers who enter the race before the official closing date will receive a £30 reduction from the entry fee shown on the on-line entry form.  We all complain about the high cost of race entry fees and it amazes me how many drivers leave their race entry until the last night and thus pay the higher rate.  It really does make sense to enter before the closing date and use the simple on-line system to cancel an entry if you have to. 

Silverstone

The current plan is that our qualification session and both races will all be held on Sunday 29th.  The meeting is, of course, being held on the National circuit.  We have been allocated five pit garages, the garage numbers will be shown on the Final Instructions.

Club Photographer

I have previously mentioned that we need another photographer to cover our meetings. 

The role requires a talented photographer with high end equipment who is prepared to attend MGOC race meetings and stand out in the cold and rain taking photos of our races. It is an unpaid position but MGOC do arrange Media passes for trackside access. I accept that this isn’t the most appealing job description you’ll ever see but that’s the way it is !!.

If you know anyone who may wish to be considered for this role, pleased drop me an email.

Championship Website

We are in the final stages of updating the championship website, this has turned out to be a lot more work than I’d ever imagined but it should go live in the next couple of weeks.  It’s not radically different, just a lot of tweaking and a more modern layout.

Cars for Sale

The website currently shows three cars for sale. If you have, or know of, an MGOC spec race car for sale, please send them to Jim with all the details and with a side on photograph and I’ll get it added to the website.

Silverstone isn’t fast approaching. I hope your pre-season preparation is progressing faster than mine, the MGB is still on the trailer after Silverstone last October !!


                                                        ****    NEWSLETTER    ****     

30th January 2017

ALL,

I’m afraid to say that MSA still haven’t signed off our 2017 regulations. There is no sinister reason for this and most of the Regs for other BARC championships also haven’t been signed off. It’s always a great frustration as, as previously mentioned, we can’t start accepting championship registrations for the coming season until the regs have been signed off.

Rest assured, I’ll keep the pressure on and the minute we get the signed off version I will email them out to everyone on our mailing list.

Club Photographer

Dave Mellor has told me that he won’t be racing with MGOC in 2017, this is really disappointing and we will also be losing the input of Marcia as our championship photographer. I’d like to thank Marcia for her tremendous efforts over the past few years, she will be a hard act to follow but I do need to find a replacement.

The role requires a talented photographer with high end equipment who is prepared to attend MGOC race meetings and stand out in the cold and rain taking photos of our races. It is an unpaid position but MGOC do arrange Media passes for trackside access.

If you know anyone who may wish to be considered for this role, pleased drop Jim an email.

Silverstone isn’t far away. I hope your pre-season preparation is progressing faster than mine, the MGB is still on the trailer after Silverstone in October ….…..

 

 

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