The long awaited debut of theM3 finally happened on the 10th March at Blyton Driving Circuit on the Jack Neal Memorial Stages. We were seeded at number 25 and went into the first couple of stages with caution as this was the first time Chris had driven the car in anger. As the day progressed, the conditions dried out and Chris got to grips with the car, setting 6th overall time on Stage 6. The main aim of the weekend was to get a finish first time out and this was easily achieved with the service boys, Craig, Bob and Dave not needing to put a spanner on the car all day as she ran faultlessly. The final results showed us in 13th overall and second in class.
A trophy on the first event for the car was more than our expectations, Kenny & Alan Brown also debuted their new BMW and finished an excellent 6th overall and taking the top honours in our class, The final car in the CTL trio was our old 106 crewed by Anthony Finn & James (Seth) Blyth having had troubles with a faulty alternator wire, returned with second in class.
Link to Anthony's in-car - check out 2mins 45 secs as HMS Pedley "sails"past and disappears into the distance!
17th March 2013
We now have a confirmed entry for the Jack Neal Memorial Trophy to be held at Blyton Driving Circuit on Sunday 10th March, this will be the long awaited debut for the M3.
Kenny and Alan Brown will also be debuting their new BMW Compact on this event
24th February 2013
To continue the trend from the last few years, Chris Snr was once again drafted in at the last minute to co-drive on the Tunnock's Mull Rally on the beautiful Isle of Mull. This year his driver was Martin Rowley, the owner of the filling station in Salen on the island in his Ford Puma. With Chris Jnr and Dave on chase car duties it was a busy weekend for all.
After much deliberation, the decision has been taken to change direction and as a result the 106 has been sold and we await the arrival of our new toy!!!
Watch this space in the next few days for more news
Everything has been very quiet recently in terms of competing this year, but we are hoping to have news soon on future events, watch this space.......
1st April 2012
A frustrating day on the Epynt ranges saw us struggle with problems all day, eventually resulting in retirement after Stage 6 with fuel pump relay failure.
Images courtesy of ALIX JONES
The Pokerstars Stages rally on the Isle of Man saw us debut the newly built car, and our first visit to the island proved to be a very eventful weekend.
Click the following link for a full report.....Pokerstars Stages
Photo courtesy of Robert Kneale
The 106 has been logbooked and is now ready to go!
Next Stop - Isle of Man for the Pokerstars Stages Rally on 11th/12th September
With the Mull Rally fast approaching, the plan was to have a leisurely weekend spectating, but a late call has meant that Chris Senior will now be competing alongside Paul Graham in his Mk1 Escort starting at number 127
We have now put an entry in for the Pokerstars Stages to be held on the Isle of Man in November
This will be the debut of the Peugeot 106 Gti which is nearing completion and is almost ready to be submitted for the competition logbook
For the latest progress on the build of the new car go to the 106 Build page
After a very quiet period in which the Swift has been sold, we now have a new project to keep us busy.
The new car is a Peugeot 106 Gti 1600cc which means a step up in class from the Class A (up to 1400cc) to Class B (up to 1600cc) with the 106.
The car is now nearing completion, so watch this space for news of the debut for the 106
Chris and Dave on their way to 1st in class and 31st overall on the Mini Epynt Stages
Photos courtesy of PETER OWEN
We have now received a confirmation for our entry on the Welsh Marches Mini Epynt Stages, based on the famous military ranges in the Brecon Beacons in Wales. The event will take place on Sunday 29th May and the car will be crewed by Chris on driving duties and Chris senior in the co-driving seat.
18th March 2009
Photo courtesy of Ian Hardy
Photo courtesy of Ian Hardy
Photo courtesy of Rob Lees
Photo courtesy of Rob Lees
Photo courtesy of Rob Lees
Photo courtesy of Rob Lees
Report to follow.................................
Our entry for the Jack Frost Stages at Croft Race Circuit, nr Darlington on the Sunday 18th January has been accepted and we have been seeded at number 74. Matthew will be driving and Chris Snr taking on the co-driving duties for the debut of the new car.
With the Tunnock's Tour of Mull now out of the way, all the attention now turns to completing the new car as soon as possible. Whilst the team has the funds to complete the car, at this stage we have no significant budget to contemplate tackling future events so we are actively looking to secure a sponsorship deal (or deals) to allow us to compete in the car. As we are only a small team, the budget required is only a fraction of that spent by some of the teams we compete against, so any contribution would be greatly appreciated, and we can offer a range of incentives, which could include driving the car yourself or co-driving on a selected event with all the necessary training given by the team.
We hope to debut the car on the Christmas Stages at Croft Race Circuit in December, followed by a possible trip to the Isle of Man in February.
If you feel you can help us in this effort to secure part or full funding, please don't hesitate to contact us and we can tailor a package to suit your requirements.
Details of how to get in touch with us to discuss any proposals can be found on the Contacts Page
14th October 2008
What an interesting weekend, just before we set off I had a frantic call from Lorn MacFadyen (Car 126) to take my kit just in case, got to the island on thursday and at that point was still servicing, friday morning got the call from Lorn that his co-driver wasn't coming and I was in! The plan was to have some fun and get round without any dramas.
The formalities of Friday afternoon came and went without a hitch, but we didn't have chance to do any recce at all, the first time we sat in the car together was at the start, so stage 1 was a bit nervous for us both as I was using borrowed notes that I had never read before. After a steady run over the 14 miles of the first stage we settled into the job and started to enjoy it. After the first night we found ourselves in 61st, Lorn doing a great job despite a few wobbles on the notes from the left hand seat. Daylight and saturday afternoon saw Lorn in a bit of a comfort zone, with the route taking in some of his old stamping ground from his youth, we moved up to 47th and the scooby WRC didn't catch us on any stage!
Saturday night and the 22 miler was a pleasure, despite slowing to let Chris Tooze past we set a respectable pace, the notes came out well and Lorn kept it all on the black stuff. The hairpins were very slippy and were tackled with some caution, in service the plan was definitely to bring it home on the last three and that's exactly what we did, although the last stage was a little slow compared with our earlier pace. At the finish we were 43rd overall and 10th in class, a very pleasing result given the panic on friday morning!
Big thanks to Lorn and the gang for putting up with me over the weekend and glad I could do a job and get him round.
13th October 2008
Last weekend we travelled to Penrith to support John Deegan and Chris Smith who were taking part in the Pendragon Stages. A frustrating day was ended early with brake failure.
Car 1 was a Ford Focus WRC driven by William Stobart and his co-driver for the day was Shane Lynch of Boyzone.
It is with deep sadness that we learned that Jack Neal, the well known & very likable Scrutineer from Colne in Lancashire passed away after a long battle with Cancer.
Jack succumbed to his illness after a long period in hospital & our thoughts are with his wife Trish & Family.
Jack was a true gentleman and always had time for everybody and I am sure that we speak for many when I say he will be sadly missed by all who new him.
Work is progressing well on the new car and the engine has been fired up for the first time. The front brake conversion is now completed and the new 15" wheels have arrived and the Subaru 4-pot calipers hide nicely under them!
As the build of our new car continued, we again supported John and Chris in the Honda for the annual visit to MIRA in Nuneaton for the D'Isis Stages, this would be the first time in five years that we had not competed on this event. Fellow club member Ian Smith was also entered in his Peugeot 205 for his first visit to the venue.
John and Chris had a very successful day bringing the Honda home in 9th overall and 3rd in class.
Ian and his co-driver Richard Winstanley had a very fraught day with lots of small but costly problems, but enjoyed the experience of what we think is one of the best single venue events in the calender.
12th April 2008
A successful day at Blackpool saw John and Chris bringing the Honda Civic Type R home in 17th position and securing the trophy for third in their class. This was despite suffering a puncture at Weeton which cost about three minutes and a possible top ten finish.
18th February 2008
As preparations continued for the North West Stages, it started to become apparent that the damage sustained by the car as a result of our accident on Mull was far greater than we first thought. The full extent only came to light after removing the sump guard and under-body tray which had in effect been holding the chassis in place, as soon as they were taken off, the chassis flexed and from that point nothing would line up and setting the geometry became impossible, as a result the shell is now basically scrap.
Our entry for the NW Stages has been withdrawn although we will still be in Blackpool to support John and Chris in the Honda who have now been seeded at number 41. Full list of seeded entries is available here.
All the attention is now focused on preparing the new car as sson as possible as all the team are suffering from the lack of competitive action.
6th February 2008
What a difference a day makes! The car at the start of the day, waiting for engine, gearbox and suspension to be fitted.
A few hours later and the car is running!!!
20th January 2008
After many months of inactivity on the competing front and the new shell still not back from Custom Cages, we have taken the decision to resurrect the red car and enter the Legend Fires North West Stages. The event takes place on the 15th February, based in the Blackpool area.
So the next few weeks will be frantic as the car hasn't been touched since the Tour of Mull in October, when our accident caused significant damage to both the mechanics and the cosmetics of the car.
Work starts to get the car ready for the North West Stages
The decision to reshell the car after the 2007 Tour of Mull was taken due to the current shell coming towards the end of its competitive life.
The progress of the new project can be found on the New Car Project page and will be updated as the car takes shape
After months of preparation and anticipation, this year's event was hugely disappointing ending in mechanical failure on Stage 3 after a previous visit into the scenery on the second stage.
Full Report to follow..................
Photo courtesy of ROB LEES
The final preparations on the car have been completed and we are all packed up and ready for the long drive overnight to Oban to catch the early morning boat to Mull. Regular updates will be available on the rally website www.2300club.org when the event gets underway on Friday evening.
Tuesday 9th October 2007
The provisional seeding for this year's Tunnock's Tour of Mull has been published and we have been placed at number 96. Our good friends Phil Merrills and William Kelly are at 150, with Nick Stamper/Steve Rogers at 101 and Dave Steggles/Mark Hadfield at 106. Click Here for the full provisional entry list.
With just over two weeks to go, we are still waiting on new a new crown wheel and pinion to be delivered from America, but hopefully it will arrive this week in time to rebuild the gearbox and fit it in time to get some testing mileage on the car before we leave for the island on Tuesday 9th October.
27th September 2007
After months of hard work, Phil has finally unveiled his new car in readiness for next month's TunnocksTour of Mull in Scotland
It is with deep regret and sadness that we heard the news of the tragic death of Colin McRae on Sunday. He died in a helicopter crash near his home. Colin, his son Johnny (5 years old), Colin's friend, Graeme and Johnny's 6 year old friend, Ben Porcelli, were all killed in the tragic accident. Fortunatley, Colin's wife, Alison and his daughter, Hollie, were not involved in the accident.
Our thoughts go out to all the families and friends who's loved ones lost their lives.
Posted by Sophie
We have now a confirmed accepted entry for The Tunnocks Tour Of Mull 2007. After being on the reserve list for one day, the top seven reserves have now got accepted entries. A number hasn't been confirmed yet but when we get one, we'll update ASAP.
Posted By Sophie
Matthew and Craig had a good day turning in a solid performance to bring the Swift home in 49th place and 9th in class. A broken drive shaft cost them dearly and ruined what could have been a much better result. Excellent work in service by the two Chris's, Bob and Ian Smith kept them in the event allowing Matthew to achieve his first finish in the Swift
The car is now being stripped and checked in preparation for the long journey to Mull in October if we are lucky enough to get a start.
We have now received the news that we have been placed on the reserve list for this year's Tour of Mull, which means the waiting goes on. We just have to wait and see where on the list we are placed and then hope to progress and obtain a start before the event on the 12th October.
Phil Merrills in his newly built Honda Type R and Nick Stamper in the Impreza have both had their entries accepted, another friend and Mull regular Dave Steggles is in the same position as us on the reserve list.
The full entry list is due to be published at any time and we will then know where on the reserve list we have been placed.
Two crews arrived at Penrith yesterday for the Pendragon Stages, John and Smeg in the Honda Civic Type R and Nick and Chris Snr in the Subaru Impreza, with Matthew and Chris helped by Shane (young Smeg) in the chase car, whilst Phil was in charge of service, food and George!
A frustrating first stage saw Nick and Chris retire in a ditch
John and Chris almost got to the finish but broke a driveshaft on the last stage
Full Report coming soon.............
27th August 2007
Last weekend (10th August-12 August), we took a trip up to the Island Of Mull for a social visit and to see the things we don't normally on 'Rally Week' such as:
Birds Of Prey
The Mishnish Hotel
Me (Sophie), Lesley, Chris, Matthew and Christine all went and had a great weekend and below are some pictures I took as it was my first visit.
More will be posted soon =)
Posted By Sophie
We have put in a entry for the Tunnocks Tour Of Mull, but we will have to wait untill the end of August to find out whether we are accepted or not. If we are, as normal, Chris and Chris Snr will be competing.
Posted by Sophie
Matthew has a confirmed accepted entry for the Promenade Stages. Craig will be co-driving, Although he faces a race against time to be fit after a accident at work which left with a fractured wrist. If Matthew is not fit in time, Chris will be driving with Craig instead.
Posted by Sophie
15th August 2007
After the disappointment of the cancelled event at Manby, Matthew got an entry on the Centenary Stages at Twyford Wood near Grantham in Lincolnshire. After a promising start the rough nature of the venue got the better of the car and sheared the bottom arm mounting bracket, breaking the driveshaft in the process, game over.
John and Chris had a much better day in the Honda, finishing an excellent 8th overall and 1st in class, the first class win in the Honda.
5th August 2007
Entries have opened today for this year's Tunnock's Tour of Mull and we have submitted ours, along with Phil Merrills and Nick Stamper. The entry list closes on 31st August, so the long anxious wait now begins to see if we will be succesful in being accepted.
Chris junior has also once again submitted an entry for the annual John Easson scholarship with the prize of a free entry on the rally.
1st August 2007
We have just returned from a very wet Manby which forced the organisers to cancel today's Opposite Lock Stages. As the picture shows the conditions gave the Clerk of the Course no option but to halt proceedings and send us all home to dry out.
21st July 2007
The seeding for the Opposite Lock Stages has now been completed and we have been placed at number 81. John and Chris are at 23 in the Honda, with Matthew and Gary Jakeman just in front of us at number 76
20th July 2007
Matthew has received a confirmed entry for the forthcoming Opposite Lock Stages, to be held at the Manby showground in Lincolnshire on the 21st July 2007. He will compete in the Suzuki Swift, and will be co-driven by Chris Senior. John and Chris will also be taking part in the Honda Civic Type R, along with fellow High Moor members Gary and Matthew Jakeman in their Peugeot 205.
2nd July 2007
Matthew finally achieved his first finish at his third attempt at the Procare Stages on Sunday. A day of mixed weather and fortunes saw him return home 45th overall and 8th in class, but more importantly a first finish for him and the Metro. Full report soon on the events page.
9th May 2007
After a period of inactivity, the team was out in force last weekend at the D'Isis Stages at Nuneaton. We encountered a day of mixed fortunes for all the team, full details will be reported soon.
7th April 2007
This Sunday sees a swift return to the Croft Racing Circuit near Darlington for the Jack Frost Stages. Our role will again be in the form of service crew for Nick and Heather Stamper (Car No. 21 - Subaru Impreza) and John Deegan with co-driver, Chris (Smeg) Smith.(Car No. 29 - Honda Civic Type R). Both crews will be looking to improve on the results at the Christmas Stages, in particular Nick who finished 13th overall.
12th January 2007
This weekend (30th December) we will be visiting Croft Racing Circuit for the Christmas Stages. We will be servicing for Nick and Heather Stamper (Car No. 16 - Subaru Impreza) and John Deegan with co-driver, Chris (Smeg) Smith.(Car No. 36 - Honda Civic Type R) The field will be headed by last year's winner, Tony Bardy but will have tough competition from British Championship front runner, Ryan Champion in his Mitsibushi Evo 8.
27th December 2006
Last weekend saw us on servicing duties for Nick in the Stamper Motorsport Subaru Impreza at the Grizedale Stages based at Coniston in the Lake District. The day was short-lived as the Subaru broke a rear drive shaft at the start of the second stage, the car became very unstable and halfway through the stage, Nick clipped a bank on the front nearside corner, breaking another driveshaft and losing all drive - rally over.
At the head of the field was Matthew Wilson in his Ford Focus WRC, who dominated the event and won by quite a margin from Geoff Jones and Barry Johnson who came home in second and third in their respective Impreza's.
12th December 2006
Work has begun on the suspension conversion to change the front suspension from the standard Hydragas units to coil-over shock absorbers. This involves an extensive amount of work on the inner wing area of the car to re-site the top mount of the shocker. The rear suspension will be changed to individual hydragas units with separate valves to allow each unit to be pumped up seperately.
12th November 2006
We have just got back after the long drive home and what a great weekend!
Our event was a mixed bag, but we still enjoyed ourselves as usual.
Friday was beyond our expectations, with the Swift and Chris performing brilliantly. The end of the first leg saw us in 60th overall out of 112 still running. The first stage on saturday was the start of our problems when a heater hose burst dropping all the water and overheating. We were stopped in the stage for 30 minutes, putting us 14 minutes into our lateness, a huge thank you to Bruce Lindsay for his excellent work to keep us going, but driving over to Calgary for the next stage, we encountered lots of rally traffic on the way to the stage and emergency crews coming back, some who didn't help our cause by forcing their way through the rally traffic. We arrived at Calgary and after a run past lined up cars, booked in two minutes late - putting us 16 minutes into lateness and OTL, game over.
We completed the remaining stages and finished tenth in the trophy rally. The most pleasing part of the rally was beating all our times from last year by a considerable margin. We will be back for some more next year
Really pleased that despite some big accidents, there were no serious injuries.
Thanks to the 2300 Club for putting on another excellent event, and thanks to all marshals, officials and most importantly the islanders for the use of their beautiful island.
17th October 2006
After ten days of hard work following the damage caused at the Promenade Stages, the Swift is very close to being ready for this weekend's Tour of Mull. We will be leaving on Tuesday night and will catch the Wednesday morning ferry onto the island, then spend a couple of days reccing before the rest of the team arrive during Thursday and Friday.
Scrutineering starts on Friday morning and continues for most of the day, after co-driver briefings, it's then rest time until Car 1 leaves the start ramp at 8pm. We are due to start 139 minutes later at around 10-15pm.
We hope to update the site regularly during the rally, so keep checking for the latest news
Almost ready for the trip to Scotland
Matthew's rallying debut at the Promenade Stages on Saturday was a day completely mixed fortunes. After stage one Matthew found himself 59th overall out of a field of 90 cars and he was an excellent 8th in class out of 17. The second stage saw him climb another 3 places. The third stage was the beginning of his problems, halfway round the stage the car started to misfire badly and after completing the stage very slowly, the marshals on the finish line spotted a fuel leak under the car. Back in service we found a broken fuel line, which was repaired and he went out onto stage 4. As on the previous stage he arrived at the finish control with the same fuel pipe having broken. Another repair was done this time using braided pipe, at this stage we couldn't work out why the pipe had broken twice. Stage 5 was completed without drama and he was feeling more and more confident.
Disaster struck on the next stage, as he rounded the top hairpin, the car suddenly jammed in 2nd gear, and then smoke started pouring from the engine. The car was then disabled as it was stuck in gear and had lost all of the electrics.
After being towed back to service, we examined the car and found that the engine and gearbox mountings had snapped, dropping the gearbox onto the gear linkage,meaning we couldn't get it out of gear. The engine had dropped down so far that the ammeter wires had snapped and earthed against the body of the car setting fire to the loom.
The car is now back at home awaiting a full assessment of the repairs required to get the car ready for the two Chris's to tackle the Tour of Mull in two weeks time.
1st October 2006