Two fantastic days of motorsport action were enjoyed by the competitors and the spectator crowds at Gurston Down Speed Hillclimb, Broad Chalke, near Sailsbury on April 20th and 21st, with plenty of local drivers notching up their first successes of the new season.
Best Time of the Day on both days was set by Ed Hollier from Honiton in his 1.6 Pilbeam MP62 just ahead of second ‘BTD’ man James Blackmore from Ropley near Winchester in his 1.6 OMS 25. On Saturday third best time of the day was set by Gurston Down Hillclimb Championship sponsor Jonathan Gates from Brockenhurst in his 1.6 Force LM sports libre car. Hollier thus takes the lead in the 2013 Gurston Down Top Ten Challenge after round 1.
In the classes
On Saturday Kevin Diamond from Portsmouth won the Volvo Owners Club class in his 2.0 Volvo Amazon.
In the pre-War Austin 7 (Road) class Bernard Cowley from Wimborne grabbed secons spot in his Austin 7 Special.
Anthony Record from Bishops Waltham drove his 1.8 Proton Coupe to the win in the up to 2000cc roadgoing series production cars class, but he had to settle for second on Sunday behind winner Miles Horne from Fordingbridgde in his rapid 2.0 Peugeot 306, Miles moving into the joint lead of the Gates of Brockenhurst Gurston Down Hillclimb Championship after the first round as a result.
In the over 2000c roadgoing series production class Neil Duncanson from Newbury won in his 2.1t Audi Quattro on Saturday but it was Stephen Moore from Stapleford who took the win on Sunday in his 2.0 Mitsubishi Evo 5.
The roadgoing specialist production class was fast and furious both days, Steve Holland from Portsmouth winning in his 1.8 Caterham Superlight on Saturday and Piers Thynne from Hartley Wintney taking his turbocharged Westfield to the win on Sunday.
In the up to 2000cc modified production marque sports car class mother and daughter Dee Stapley and Steph Limb from Castle Cary and Reading respectively were second and third in class in their 1.8 MGF.
The always close-fought over 2000cc marque sports car class once more saw Graham Beale from Basingstoke win in his turbocharged Ginetta G33, with Steve Holley from Salisbury setting a personal best in his 5.2 TVR Griffith on Saturday for second spot, but he had to give best to the charging Bob Mortimer from Long Load in Somerset in his 3.5 Porsche 911 on Sunday.
The up to 1400cc modified series production car class was all about classic Minis, with son and father Darren and Phil Eaton from Poole taking a family one-two in their 1.4 Austin Mini on Saturday. On Sunday Neil Turner from Andover proved too quick for all though as he took the victory laurels this time in his 1.4 Mini Cooper ‘S’..
Former Gurston champion Paul Webster from Fareham eased to the up to 2000cc modified series production class win on Sunday in his 1.9 Mazda MX5.
The over 2000cc modified series production class produced a surprise as Adrian Flagg from Christchurch put in some rapid runs in the family 2.0 Subaru Impreza STi to win on both days ahead of a slightly off-form Roy Barker from Stockbridge in his 2.3t Mitsubishi Evo 5.
The Historically Interesting class always brings out some super machinery and some great action, and Fyrth Crosse from Bristol won on both days in his 1.6 Ensign just fractions ahead of Geoff Hunt from Andover in his 1.6 Lotus 22, a car Geoff has owned for the past 40 years.
Mark Mortimer from Mudford won the hillclimb supersports class on Sunday in his 2.0 Mallock Mk 18B and moved into the joint lead of the Gurston championship in the process.
In the sports libre class up to 2000cc an inspired Jonathan Gates from Brockenhurst, the Gurston championship sponsor, really got to grips with his relatively new car, the 1.6 Force LM, to set personal best times and take the class win ahead of arch rival Keith Diggle from Basingstoke in his 2.0 WEV HCS.
The over 2000cc sports libre class saw Salisbury’s Chris Cannell win in his twin engine 2.6 Force SR8 on Saturday from Tom Brown from Newbury in the 3.5 SPA Judd V8 formerly owned by Cannell. The pair reversed positions on Sunday!
In the up to 1100cc racing car class Euan Kemp from Chippenham took a slender win in the 1.1 OMS PR he shared with his brother Calum from Woking on Saturday, but Calum got his revenge on Sunday.
The up to 2000cc racing car class saw two different local winners, Mark Walker from Trowbridge getting the first win in his latest car, a 2.0 Dallara F399 on Saturday, while on Sunday it was Robin Johnston from Shaftesbury who won in his recently acquired 2.0 Pilbeam MP82.
If this weekend is a guide to the season to come, it’s going to be a fantastic year of hillclimbing at Gurston Down…
Keep up to speed on the Gurston Down Speed Hillclimb web site www.gurstondown.org