May 27th, 2013
Autotest on Grass. May 26th 2013
After the disappointment of having to postpone last month’s Autotest on Grass due to torrential rain 0n the morning of the event, it was good to see the sun shining for this event. John Bogie kindly permitted us to use his field next to the level crossing at Oakbank, after heavy rain the previous weekend had reduced the options to just this one field and what a good field it was too!. Just the right size for us to lay out some demanding but entertaining tests which were so easy to follow that we only had one ‘WD’ and one cone penalty to count throughout the day, which saw all the drivers do ten tests (apart from Tony Currie, who broke an engine mount on his Rover) including a whopping three-lapper as a grand finale that everyone thoroughly enjoyed.
Dean Gillespie joined the Junior throng with his first ever experience of driving a car and seemed to enjoy himself enough to want to come back for more, while sister Kelsey just came to watch but couldn’t resist the chance to drive, joining in at the very last moment and relishing the open tests. Dad Warren was going for it and will be surprised to see he only just took class 2 by one second from Heather Currie who, having also just come along to watch, took little persuasion to compete and was amazed how well she was doing, having been away from autotesting for quite a long break. Heather seemed to pick up speed every time she got to the middle of the field and it turned out she was aiming for some Jackdaws that were hunting for worms in the disturbed earth!. We cant guarantee to have Jackdaws at every autotest Heather.
Mum Shirley was watching her wean with interest and certainly picked up speed in the Fiesta after the first test where Heather was several seconds faster right out of the box and as a result was eight seconds ahead at the finish. Danny Pattie put on another consistent, smooth performance to take a well deserved win, making regular trips to the results board to see what he had to do to keep his lead from Ronnie and James Clark whose Corsa was driven equally smoothly, and although they finished on equal times, James just nicked it by being faster than his dad on test 2.
Niall Cown Jnr brought his Rover rally car along and while it’s power meant it struggled initially with loads of wheelspin on the more lush grass, the car was coming into its own later, as the grass was scrubbed and the ground dried in the breeze and occasional warm sunshine. Margaret (Mags) Pattie, now a ‘Lady’ having turned seventeen, was just chuffed to have got time away from work and brass band commitments to drive the family Corsa, while the constantly improving Robert Macgregor pedalled the Nova to good effect with Dad Andrew ‘on the notes’. Sadly Tony Currie’s efforts ended due to the aforementioned breakage but also no thanks to a lost contact lens. He had been spectacular twice up to then, spinning luridly toward the nearby railway line twice at the same bend but on separate tests!.
Thanks to Derek Kirkpatrick for marshalling and to Tony for riunning the event.
Following this event, which was round one of the ‘2013 G23 Grafix Grass Autotest Championship’, the leaders with 12 points each are: Danny Pattie, Warren Gillespie and Niall Cowan Junior. The next round’s on July 14th.