Tag Archives: Services

All Ages And Abilities – BPMC Auto Solo / Auto Test Aust Services

A couple of weeks after Le Jog visited Aust Services I went back to lend a hand with the timing for the Auto Test / Auto Solo event run by the Bristol Pegasus Motor Club that I would have entered myself, but I doubt my employers would have been amused seeing one of their marked SEAT Toledo TDi ambulances being thrown around with competitive abandon.

Ford Cortina, Gilmour, BPMC Auto Solo Auto Test. Aust Services

Among the 25 entries of all ages and levels of ability were Jayne & Andria Gilmour who were taking part in their very first motorsport event with their fabulously original 1980 2 litre / 122 cui Ford Cortina GL Mk V, while they had lot’s of fun they retired after a couple of runs for fear of damaging their pride and joy, but promised to come back with a more powerful Cortina they are building.

FIAT Panda, Thompson, BPMC Auto Solo Auto Test. Aust Services

Youngest competitor taking part was 14 year old Sam Thompson who again was on his first event and competing against his more experienced father Chris for class honours in his Mum’s Fiat Panda.

Toyota MR2, BPMC Auto Solo Auto Test. Aust Services

I’m not sure who was driving the Toyota MR2, the car made a lot of noise, but the driver was having too much fun doing donuts while trying to follow the route through the cones to be competitive.

Subaru Impreza, Benstock, BPMC Auto Solo Auto Test. Aust Services

Über rally marshal Mark Benstock used the opportunity to make a rare appearance behind the wheel of his 2002 Subaru Impreza WRX and promptly won the Autosolo Class C award, at the end of the event Mark kindly offered anyone interested the use of his car for a drive round the track, had I not been sodden in water proofs and wellies I might have been tempted to have had a go.

BMW 318 Ci SE, Payton, BPMC Auto Solo Auto Test. Aust Services

The 2002 BMW 318 Ci Se driven by the Payton’s provided much entertainment through out the afternoon, one wag commenting that the car needed wipers on the door window’s such was it’s side ways progress of the car with a noisy locked differential, Jack won class C of the Auto Test from Josh.

Mazda MX5, Welsh, BPMC Auto Solo Auto Test. Aust Services

The best times of the day were set by the Mazda MX5 driven by the Welsh brothers, with A Welsh being the quickest in the Auto Solo event.

Vauxhaul Viva, BPMC Auto Solo Auto Test. Aust Services

Finally I am not too sure who was driving this splendid farm find 1972 Vauxhall HC Viva, but the owner told me that since being put back on the road it has benefited from a boast in performance courtesy of a modern 2 litre / 122 cui 16 valve Vauxhall “Red Top” XE motor which in standard trim is good for 150hp nearly double the 77 hp available from the original HC Viva motor.

Thanks to everyone at the Bristol Pegasus Motor Club who made this a rainy day of affordable motorsport to remember, their next competitive event will be a 40th Anniversary Navigation exercise on Friday Feb 19th in Wales, see website linked above for details, or come along to the next club meeting at BAWA on Monday Feb 8th.

Thanks for joining me on this “All Ages And Abilities” edition of “Gettin’ a li’l psycho on tyres” I hope you will join me again tomorrow, when I’ll be looking at another Daytona 24 hour challenger. Don’t forget to come back now !


Le Jog – Aust Services

At the beginning of December Le Jog passed through Aust Services for an Autotest in the Car Park, below are some of the runners and riders.

MG A, Volker Haltenhof, Horst Pokroppa, Le Jog, Aust Services,

Volker Haltenhof and Horst Pokroppa collected a nice round 100 min time penalty and were classed 30th in their 1957 MG A.

Rover P4, Robert McClean, Susan McClean, Le Jog, Aust Services,

Spirit of the Rally Trophy winners were Robert and Susan McClean who were classified 19th in their 1962 Rover P4.

Porsche 356, Jonathan Miles, Andy Elcomb, Le Jog, Aust Services,

The #10 Porsche 356, also built in 1962, was driven by Jonathan Miles and Andy Elcomb who were classified 11th overall first in class and won a Bronze Medal Status.

Volvo 123GT, Roger Osborne, Barbara Osborne, Le Jog, Aust Services,

Roger and Barbara Osborne appear to have retired their #4 Volvo 123 GT early in the event, which was won by a similar car driven by Andy Lane and Iain Tullie who clocked up just 8 mins 1 sec in penalties over the three day drive from Lands End to John O’Groats.

Austin Mini, Rachel Vestey, Owen Turner, Le Jog, Aust Services,

Classified 14th in their 1972 Austin Mini 1275 GT were Rachel Vestey and Owen Turner, Australian Rachel won the Ladies prize too.

MG B, David Maryon, Andy Ballantyne, Le Jog, Aust Services,

The 1966 MG B driven by David Maryon and Andy Ballantyne also retired from the event.

Thanks for joining me on this “Le Jog” edition of “Gettin a li’l psycho on tyres” I hope you will join me again tomorrow when I’ll be looking at a Daytona 24 Hour competitor. Don’t forget to come back now !


The Sunlight Textile Services – Pegasus Sprint

Last Saturday I had another 6am start, but this time not to go and spectate at an event but to act as a marshall for the The Sunlight Textile Services Pegasus Sprint run by the Bristol Pegasus Motor Club. Despite a healthy breakfast which included melon, tangerine, kiwi and a banana by the time I got through signing on I was ready to wolf down a traditional Full English Heart Attack in the Castle Combe Canteen. Even with long johns double layer trousers, three fleeces and a coat I was going to get cold under the cloudless skies with temperatures peaking at 8 degress C but with the wind chill factor making it feel like 9 below zero.

Lotus MG Mk 6, Bristol Pegasus MC Sprint, Castle Combe

In between my second breakfast and the marshalls briefing I managed to snap Jack Taylors 1954 Lotus MG Mk VI this car is chassis #6-18 in theory the 24th Lotus ever built, it’s powered by an MG XPAG motor and appears to have a one off body, quite possibly by Williams and Pritchard though I have yet to confirm that.

Lotus Mk 6, Bristol Pegasus MC Sprint, Castle Combe

Wondering around the pits during the half hour lunch break I managed to take a few more photo’s including John Marshall’s Lotus Mk VI, followers of my blogs at the much missed Rowdy.com, and I know there are one or two of you, will remember me originally mis recognising this car as a Lotus 7. Many mis recognitions since I have found out it was also originally supplied with an MG motor and gearbox which has since been swapped for a Ford 100E motor and Triumph gearbox. In John’s hands this car has won at least 54 trophy’s most no bigger than egg cups.

MK K3, Bristol Pegasus MC Sprint, Castle Combe

Perhaps the most extraordinary car and for my money cor of the day was Jeremy Hawkes 1933 MG K3, built as on offset single seater to compete at Brooklands where like the 24 litre “Napier Railton” it holds a record in perpetuity, for vehicles up 1100 cc / 67.126 cui having recorded laps in excess of 120 mph.

MG TA Midget, Bristol Pegasus MC Sprint, Castle Combe

Anthony Smith brought his 1937 MG TA along to compete in the production road going A2 class.

MG A Coupé, Bristol Pegasus MC Sprint, Castle Combe

This was only the second occasion on which I have ever seen a contemporary MG A Coupé this one was driven by Martin Wollacot in Class A2.

Bristol 403, Bristol Pegasus MC Sprint, Castle Combe

Regular readers might recognise this Bristol 403, which was not competing from the first Coffee Croissant and Cars blog I posted back in April.

SEAT Leon Tdi, Bristol Pegasus MC Sprint, Castle Combe

SEAT’s León Cupra R (Typ 1M) was voted 7th best hatch back of all time in a poll conducted by Autocar in 2010, four years after production had switched to the newer Typ 1P. This 2004 Tdi Cupra R shows signs of how tricky the conditions were forcing the brothers who competed with it to go home after the practice sessions were completed to repair the damage which was incurred some where between Avon Rise and Quarry Corner during the second practice runs.

Nissan GTR R35, Bristol Pegasus MC Sprint, Castle Combe

Richard Girling was running his 1st generation 2009 all wheel drive Nissan GTR R35 in the most powerful A4 road going series production class, his car left the factory with 478 hp and a conservative 193 mph capability matched by a rest to 60 mph of 3.2 seconds. Needless to say the car looked quick on the track.

FIAT X1/9, Bristol Pegasus MC Sprint, Castle Combe

Micheal Kason was running his 2 litre / 122 cui FIAT X1/9 in the modified limited prodiction class C3, notice it sits on slick tyres which would not have been easy to heat up in the prevailing conditions.

Porsche 911 GT3, Bristol Pegasus MC Sprint, Castle Combe

Running in the largest C4 modified production class were Andrew Fraser and Tim Painter in this 2004 Porsche (996) 911 GT3. This car is for sale at £37,500, if you would like Andrew and Tim’s phone numbers send me an e-mail and I’ll gladly forward the details, usual disclaimers apply.

Triumph TR7 V8, Bristol Pegasus MC Sprint, Castle Combe

Last runners of the day were David Hardcastle and Simon Allaby who were competing in the Revington TR / TR Register Sprint & Hillclimb Championship.

Darrian T98-GTR, Bristol Pegasus MC Sprint, Castle Combe

I did not manage to get many photographs of the on track action but while taking a break from marshaling duties I did get a photo of Ian Hall’s 5.2 litre / Darrian T98 GTR which set fastest time of the day by nearly ten seconds.

Thanks to a combination of few too many thrills and spills with short hours of sunlight competitors only got one timed run in before the event started to get too far behind schedule for everyone to get a second time in. Out at Tower we were great full for the hour or so this spared us standing in the delightful sunshine but freezing wind.

Thanks for joining me on this “The Sunlight Textile Services – Pegasus Sprint” edition of “Gettin’ a li’l psycho on tyres”, I hope you will join me tomorrow. Don’t forget to come back now !


Traffic Light King – GMC Syclone

Max Grabowsky established the Rapid Motor Vehicle Company on the 22nd December 1901 which built a truck powered by a single cylinder motor. In 1909 the company was taken over by General Motors to form the General Motors Truck Company from which the GMC Truck brand was born. In 1916 a GMC Truck was driven from Seattle to New York City in just 30 days, ten years later a 2 ton GMC Truck took five days and 30 mins to travel from New York to San Francisco.

GMC Syclone

In 1990 GMC identified a niche market for a ‘performance’ truck based on the GMC Sonoma complete with lowered suspension, four wheel drive, fog lights and under the bumper corner spoilers.

GMC Syclone

The Syclone model was powered by a 280 hp 4.3 litre / 262 cui turbocharged V6 motor that was coupled with a 4 speed automatic transmission. ABS brakes, to keep all those horses under control, were used for the first time on an all wheel drive truck application.

GMC Syclone

Volkswagen Golf / Rabbit GTi inspired, to European eyes, red detailing inside and out was rounded off with 16 inch alloy wheels carrying comparatively low profile tyres.

GMC Syclone

Car & Driver famously pitted the $26,000 Syclone against a $122,000 296 hp Ferrari 348ts and in all the acceleration tests up to and including the 1/4 mile drag the Syclone came out best only loosing out with a top speed of 126 mph against the Ferrari’s 166 mph !

GMC Syclone

Built in Troy MI by Production Automotive Services, unlike the regular Sonoma which was built in Shreveport LA, the only downside of the Syclone was that it’s lowered suspension limited the carrying capacity to just 500 lbs, still considerably more than a Ferrari, but considerably less than that 1700 lbs plus of a regular GMC Sonoma.

GMC Syclone

It is thought just 2998 Syclones were built between 1991 and ’92, with just 3 made in 1992 ! 113 are thought to have been exported, with 31 returned, making today’s vehicle seen in Bristol one of just 82 Syclones thought to be outside the USA.

Patrick Bedard of Car & Driver summed up the Syclone as the pick up that would ‘do a Ferrari blur on the local scenery’ and ‘makes this capability seem like a perfectly wonderful idea.’ Sounds good to me, a very good idea indeed.

Thanks for joining me on this `Traffic Light King’ edition of ‘Gettin’ a lil’ psycho on tyres’, I hope you will join me again tomorrow. Don’t forget to come back now !