8th and 9th June 2019
Words and Pics by Shane Murphy.
To quote the Hillclimb chair Bruce Anderson,
“the objectives underlying the Winter Hillclimb were, as with previous events, to provide a wonderful weekend driving event, to increase spectator numbers, and provide an experience for drivers that would encourage them to return again and again!
It was intended that the event provide an experience beyond that of being a simple motor sport day, but rather a festival environment where drivers could catch up with old friends and make new friends.
Similarly, for spectators, not only were they able to observe motorsport up close, in the pits and track, but also feel they were a part of the action. To that end the pits and start line were made focal points with an inflatable arch, flags, banners, speed monitor and an increased grandstand capacity”
A very fair summation of the weekend, congratulations to the Noosa Beach Classic Car Club and all the volunteers who put the effort into a fantastic event.
Overall competitor numbers were down this year, probably a consequence of competing events and the event timing.
A field of about 135 vehicles and drivers signed the bottom line and by Friday morning had started to filter into the paddock. Peter Quinn had again established a dedicated space in the paddock for team Lotus, with tents and flagging staking out our claim.
The Organising Committee had done a marvelous job and the track and surrounds were in great shape. New to the event was an improved timing system, complete with a live timing feature, fantastic for the more competitive, who are keen to check their times as soon as possible after each run.
The Winter Lotus team consisted of Pat Richards, Peter Quinn, Zaid Latif, Dick Reynolds, Jon Young, Shane Murphy and team associate Robin (s–t I have it rolled again) Manning, that’s another story.
By Friday lunchtime the team camp was established, tyres fitted, tents erected, paperwork completed and scrutineering passed.
With rain pending, a few brave souls headed out to Hastings Street for the street parade to woo the madding crowd, however ever the wiser, the Sevens passed on the experience, and that discretion paid off as the rain came down and washed out the street parade.
The Friday night shindig at Land & Sea again proved to be a winner with plenty of cold beer, hot burgers and chips and plenty of borderline jokes being bandied about.
Saturday was a bit of a wash out with rain storms passing over the north coast and teasing the competitors with a track that was alternatively wet and then drying all day long. Saturday times were a little down, however the tricky track conditions made for a fun day’s competition.
A few highlights included, Jon Young losing the will to live in order to post a hot time and Dick’s new Nankang Rubbers.
Next time you see Jon Young ask him about the bottom of the golf bag, I still don’t get it!
Zaid was very serious with four sets of tyres in his paddy wagon, a tyre combo for each of the varying track conditions.
Gaye and Jen performed admirably, scrubbing up the tyres before each run.
Pat Richards was so keen to best Peter, that just prior to the event he spent three weeks in Nepal in an effort to lose ten kilograms off rolling mass, I must beat Peter at any cost was his mantra.
Robin Manning provided the biggest thrill by rolling his Mini, luckily Robin was shaken but not injured, the Mini was a little sadder for the experience.
Sunday was a much finer day with the track warming and drying as the hours marched on.
In the final washup;
• Zaid secured a second spot in the Modern Sports Cars (up to 2,000 cc) class with a best time of 66.46 seconds.
• Shane secured a second spot in the Clubman (up to 1,600 cc) class with a best time of 66.55 seconds.
• Dick secured a second spot in the Clubman (over 1,600 cc) class with a best time of 67.32 seconds.
• Pat secured a third spot in the Modern Sports Cars (up to 2,000 cc) class with a best time of 68.11 seconds.
• Jon Young posted a best time of 70.30 seconds, but kept the will to live, Peter Quinn punched out a 70.50 second run and Robin ground out a run of 74.52.
A very fair effort by the team and, as always, a lot of fun.
See you all in November.