Sunday August 2 saw the running of the third round of the Sporting Car Club of SAs premier hillclimb series with cold and changeable conditions all day. I decided early on to take the chance of removing the roof from my Mazda MX5 and the rain generally stayed away. However every run of the day, as I was waiting in the form up area I was rewarded with a light sprinkle that had me doubting my decision. This moisture though, didnt seem to affect the track dramatically, with reasonable times being posted and the comments around the paddock was that the grip was generally quite good for a cold day. Some drivers did receive a bit more rain as they were about to run and this saw a large difference in times between their fastest and slowest for the day. My turn for the extra rain came with my second to last run of the day, and as usual, as I sat waiting for my run, I had just a light drizzle. What I didnt realise, was that the rain had been heavier at the top of the hill. As I powered towards the finish line around the last right hand kink I found out the hard way , with the rear of the car deciding that it was tired of always being last across the line, therefore deciding to overtake the front end. Sliding sideways along the grass off the edge of the track, I took out the 2 plastic bollards with my left hand door, praying the whole time that I had left the timing sensor untouched. Even though it was covered in grass clippings, and the contact with the bollards was hard, the car escaped unscathed.
Considering the conditions, there were few incidents and most of these were drivers running wide around the bowl and ending up stuck in the grass with not enough traction to be able to drive themselves out. This meant that the Lynas Auto Group recovery vehicle was call upon several times but there were no serious delays. This meant that we were able to complete the 6 runs early and give our wonderful volunteers a chance to finally get warm and dry.
Once again the 4WD Turbo cars dominated the time sheet, With Scott Limbert setting a 34.27 second run to take the day in his Skyline R32 GTR ahead of Daniel Longhursts Evo 7 Lancer with a 34.49. Evo Lancers filled the top 5 with Henry and John Beasley, unbelievably setting identical times at 34.77 and Guy Chet in fifth wit 34.90. The only two 2WD cars to post times under 36 seconds were Ian Richards in his amazing Diahatsu TRXX turbo with a 35.55 and Damien Chwalisz doing 35.85 in his Datsun 260Z rally car, proving once again that the development of this car continues. It was great to see Damien back after his mishap at Mallala when a burst heater hose badly burnt his leg.
As this goes to print we will be running the final round of this competition, and many drivers will be using this as their final try out before The SA Championships on the 12th & 13th of September