How much lower can they go?

23rd July 2013

Guernsey entertained the British Hill Climb racers at Le Val des Terres on Saturday. The conditions were near perfect and after seeing the quality of the racing in Jersey a couple of days before I was expecting some serious action.... and that is what we got.

Records dropped in several Classes with special mention needed for Sarah Gaudion's all-time women's record. However it was the battle of the big boys which resulted in the outright hill record being lowered by Scott Moran during the first Championship run-off. His time of 27.19 looked impressive enough to stay as a long term record for Le Val des Terres.

But that was soon proved wrong.

It was during the first dramatic and tense run-off that every local motor sport fan had their fingers crossed as Darren Warwick's time placed him in the top spot with only Scott Moran to run.

The real possibility that a local driver could win a round of the National Championship had the crowd ready to release their emotions... but had we forgotten that Scott was a previous outright record holder for the hill?

Maybe we were all a bit too hopeful because as Scott finished his run the clock stopped at a quite amazing 27.19 beating Darren by seven tenths. He had re-taken the all-time record for the 'Terres'.

In qualifying for the second round of Championship run-offs Darren clocked almost exactly the same time as his earlier runs, perhaps suggesting he was at the limit.

So it was the second of the National Championship run-offs that provided a fitting climax to the day as Scott Moran produced a time that took him to the top with only Jos Goodyear to run. Jos raised his game by re-taking his outright hill record by the smallest margin of two hundreths and at the same time he asked the question - is a 26 second run going to be seen sometime in the future?

The brilliant time that Jos returned mustn't overshadow the standard of Darren Warwick's racing. He really stood toe-to-toe with the big boys with their powerful high-tech kit and got very close to beating them all... bar one.

There should also be a mention in despatches for the notable inclusion of two other locals in the run-offs. As a regular qualifier, Nick Saunders qualified for both run-offs and was joined by Paul Le Messurier for one of the runs. Once again they pushed their underpowered and lower tech cars as hard as was possible and split the visitors for run-off places.

The Championship provided a memorable days racing. We now have to wait twelve months to find out if that 26 second time really is possible.

The 40th time that the Championship has been run at Le Val des Terres was celebrated by the unveiling of an impressive Banner Hoarding at the bottom of the hill. This has been sponsored by Comprop who are about to re-develop the old brewery site.

Comprop have become major sponsors of the GMC&CC and together with Dowding Signs produced the superb display. Of course I might be a bit biased as the hoarding features many of my pictures ;-) Make sure you stop and take a close look next time you are in the area.