Loton Park 15th May 2021
Back to Loton Park after having a year off, only to be presented with a horrible rainy day and a painfully slow meeting.
Even before the meeting started, there was fun and games with Geoff and Iain Stallard trying to work out their seating arrangements in their first outing in the Lotus 61 with a variety of booster seats. As Jane Millward, Steve Millward and Pete Bottrill were stopping off site, then driving to the circuit, Jane arrived in a custom-made passenger seat which she assured us was very comfortable but was immediately taken out for racing.
Due to the weather and delays with so many offs, we were asked if we would consider having just one practice run and two-timed runs, which we all agreed.
So on to our one and only practice run in the rain which was Briony’s first time out at Loton and Malcolm’s first time in his Lotus 69 F2. Fortunately, we all manage to get through it without any major incidents. As we waited at the top for other cars to join us, the heavens opened. This was not ideal for the single seaters. Eventually we returned to the paddock to a traffic jam waiting for the other cars sort themselves out, then we finally parked up. Unfortunately, Tony Shute discovered his starter motor had broken and was deemed to spend the rest of the weekend being push started.
As the time passed and the numerous red flags were shown, our first timed run was upon us. The paddock Marshall came to tell us to get ready, then out came another red flag. As we sat there waiting with the single seater umbrellas up it was noted that quite a few drivers were having ‘forty winks’ and could not keep their umbrellas up straight. Thank you to Sue Wilford kindly offering everyone her chocolate bars to trying and keep everyone’s energy up. Eventually we were called forward. We approached the line to yet another red flag, which went in then came out again then in, we had been sitting in our cars for over an hour. As Karen Buffey approached the line the car stalled, would not start and had to be pushed back off the line and then to the paddock. Thank you all who helped. Everyone else except Malcolm managed to go slightly quicker than their practice times, due to Lotus 69 F2 not running correctly.
Lunch was then called giving time to fix Karen’s Elan. Thank goodness for Roy Bury who found the loose wire. The handicap was then set but only using the times from the first and only practice run. Straight after lunch our second run commenced. Everyone again improved on their time with Jonathan Bibby just winning on handicapped by 8/100th of a second over Sarah Thorne.
That was us finished for the day which was the right call as the heavens opened up again and there were even more red flags.
Cars all cleaned and put undercover for the next day, round three.