Queensland Hillclimb Championships
By Jason McGarry.
What a great weekend, although the number of entries were a little down from previous year’s the number of spectators would have been the largest ever.
I didn’t attend practice on Saturday as I was down at Morgan Park for the A Series Sprints. The word on the street from Saturday’s practice was that competitors were pushing extremely hard as there were a number of incidents – fortunately no human injuries but some cars weren’t able to compete on the Sunday.
I entered my Green Caterham R300 and was placed in the Production Sports Cars 1601 to 2000 Class 2B/2F. Lotus Club Qld member Zaid Latif has held the record of 46.93s since June 2017 in his Exige. There were 8 cars in this grouping with a collection of MX5, MR2, Toyota 86 and my long term close competitor Ainsley Fitzgerald in his Arrow Clubman. I was quickest in the first run with a 46.78, and then Ainsley lowered it to 46.65. Then I dropped down into the mid 45s range for the next 4 runs until my final run where I did a 45.09. So the final result was my Caterham 45.09 first, Ainsley Fitzgerald in the Arrow Clubman 46.62 second and Philip Rowan in a MX5 49.35 third. I also hold the new class record at 45.09s, sorry Zaid.
A highlight of the weekend was seeing Alan Telfer in his 1971 Brabham BT36-2 Formula 2 car. This car had been driven extensively by Graham Hill in the early 70s throughout Europe with many podium results. The car competed in Asia until the late 70s when it was then smuggled out of the Philippines, when it was under the Marcos regime, back to the UK, and then competed in Europe until early 2002. The car then came to Australia and Alan Telfer raced it until 2015 – then recruiting Dean Tighe as driver. They competed in many historic events in Australia. The car is in beautiful condition and can be raced like it was designed to do. Alan achieved a 56.30s …..if I won Lotto, this car would be at the top of my buy list if it was for sale.
Dean Amos was the outright winner in his Gould with a 36.16. It would be great to see some Lotus and other Caterhams next year.