What an eventful event! First of all thanks to all the organising team from SHMC! Top effort in getting everything sorted and ready for us all! Also HUGE thanks to all the Marshall’s! It was pretty cold out there!!
First of all we failed scruitineering, not the best start to the day! Matt only had 3 point harness’ in the car where 4-point is needed! So a quick trip and a few pounds later Matt returns in time with some brand new 4-points, so got them fitted and through scruitineering before it closed! We made out way up to Badgers Holt and signed on, just in time, only a few minutes before they closed! This was a bit of a headache as it didn’t give me too much time before we were off to sort out everything in the hand-out. But we were signed on and all set to tackle the forests!
On the way out to Selective 1 the trip meter stopped working, Not the end of the world as we weren’t pushing for a win or anything, but would of been handy! Selective 1 was successful, a steady pace but Matt was only just getting used to the newly built car and his first enduro!
About 3/4 of the way through the second selective the throttle cable snapped! Tried a few different things to get it connected again but I couldn’t get the cable to stay attached! So the idle was wound up and we limped to the end of the stage. Gutted after such a short distance!
Matt then managed to get a lift back to Badgers Holt to grab his van and head off to try and find another one! About 4 hours later Matt came back (I was frozen!) with a corsa throttle cable, I managed to get it fitted but it was too long and there was too much play on the pedal (could only raise the revs by about 1000rpm) So we limped it back to the start away from the crowd of people who had congregated around the car, little piece and quite to get it sorted. The only way I could think to space it out was to wrap loads of cable ties around the cable so that the play was taken up, bit dodgey, but it worked! So off to catch up with everyone else at selective 15!
By the time selective 15 was to start it was dark, so time to get the potti and spots out! Half way round the cabin started to fill up with smoke and by the end I couldn’t even speak because I was coughing so much! The wiring had caught fire and melted all the plastic around it and some of the foam behind the dash, not the nicest of smells! We made it to the end but Matt was a little annoyed so we called it at that for the enduro. So again we headed back to Badgers Holt to get it sorted ready for the road rally.
After retiring from the Endurance we managed to enter the Road Rally, hoping for a decent result. We weren’t doing too bad, had dropped about 8 minutes by petrol plus the forestry times (was good to see what they were like! haha!). A missed slot right lost us about 5 minutes while trying to figure out where we were and how to get back without getting a wrong approach!
About 10 miles from the finish we hit a large pot hole and the engine went dead. Matt jumped out to take a look and I headed back to warn coming cars as we were blocking the small road. Matt had no luck so we pushed the car back along the road to a place where people could pass (even though only 1 turned up from then!) A bit of wiggling sensors, relays, fuses and things under the engine bay and then it fired up! One of the HT leads had slightly slipped off from the impact, this unfortunately put us a couple minutes outside OTL by the time we got to MTC60. Bit gutting for all that work and all that time to not even get a finish! Not many people can say they failed 2 rallies in the same day though! haha!
Got to admit, it was too long a day for me, I was extremely tired by the end which caused a few corner calls not to be quite right and also losing my place on the map a few times. All in all a bit of a disastorous event, but I’ll be back soon!
Will see some of you at the Bath festival next month!
Daniel Pidgeon, Nav, Car 26 – Vauxhall Nova