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Ti RallyBlog

November cleaning

Posted 16 Nov 2019

First job is always to steam clean the Rallyschool cars on stands. Wheels off and try and keep away from the wheel bearings. After that job a run on the airfield to dry things off. And then onto the ramps to replace any parts that need replacing and adjust other parts.

One of the school cars needs a new engine so the first job is to take that out and strip it. Put spare engine in and the old one is off to York for machining and new parts.

The weather for the Rallyschools was wet the first morning which makes it hard to predict how much grip there is on the route. In the afternoon it started to dry which made the mud spread all over the route which was as slippy as it gets. But with having no power steering it does make it a bit easier to feel grip.

This week we had Paul who has just started Historic rallying and brothers Clive and Craig, one of which did some classic road rallies in the past such as the Illuminations. They are now building an Opel Ascona to have a go in.

It must be a strange thing to do when you are so used to normal driving. We had a group from London about 20 years ago and one guy stood out as he hardly spoke to the others. And it looks like he got himself into a state as when we set off on the route he screamed a bit and bit his tounge. He was having an epileptic fit. He was probably in his 30’s and this was the first time he had had a fit. We called and ambulance and got him out of the car and laid him down in the recovery position. He had come out of it by the time the ambulance came and his brother who was also taking part said being strapped into the seat and having the helmet was probably the safest place to be.

Well done to Dave Hornbrooke on his 3rd O/A at Weeton Camp.

Autograss with Owen (now 13 years old) at York Autograss. He didn’t get going on the first 2 races but on the 3rd he got in among them and got a brilliant 2nd place.

There have been a few One to Ones over the past month so there may be more people rallying at club level which would be great to get the numbers up on local rallies.

A Good Investment

Posted 25 Sep 2019

Great groups this weekend. Hot and dry weather with a nice breeze. In one of the groups was Colin and James. They showed us some pictures of the 2 Escorts they are restoring, including a RS2000. Good luck guys, all the hard work will be worth it when you have them up and running. In another group was Steve. When I asked if he had any good stories he told me the 4 x 4 was hit by a sniper on tour. Makes rallying seem tame after that. Also there was Jonny Tennant and his mate. Jonny is Mark Tennant’s son. Mark used to rally with some success a Talbot Sunbeam with brother Tim. Mark went on to work for Team Toyota in Germany which was a fantastic job when Carlos Sainz was there.

School cars ran great all the time and it was good to see people’s faces when you open the bonnet of the Ford Escort MKII. They are shocked to see it’s just a big engine and no bits of plastic cluttering up the engine bay. But they are built by us so can be easily maintained, sometimes when the day is running. They are high maintenance cars but people love to drive them. Much more satisfaction when you drive them well, more so than a modern car. In the past we built Cosworths. Peugeot and Subaru’s but decided not to run them at the school. We also bought Honda off road karts and used them them when the school days were running. But we stopped using them and concentrated on the cars. We try to do everything in house so we can’t blame anyone if things go wrong. We even stripped and rebuilt the JCB engine which was a big heavy job.

In the past we used to take a couple of cars to the Hull show. One time a guy came up to us and said “You sold me an Escort 20—30 years ago for around £1200.” He still had it and had it valued recently for £30,000. If we had only known then to hang on to these cars.

Vale of York Stages and a Red Kite

Posted 8 Sep 2019

Sunday September 8th. Me and Mick did the Vale of York stages run by Lindholme Motor club. We were always going to do it in the Escort but problems with the axle meant we had to enter the Evo. Only one service crew which was Daz but he’s like 2 men so no problem. We had some second hand Pirelli tyres so fitted them on. Not sat in the Evo for a while so had a steady clean run. Surprised to be leading. 2nd stage had massive understeer, had to stop on stage for a bit as a car had gone off and the marshall’s were running into dust ahead of us. Finished stage now 2nd by a second. Fixed understeer problem in service. Went into stage 3 and we heard a metal banging noise so stopped. We found out later it was a mounting bolt that had sheared. So game over. Loved what we had done of the rally. A shame there weren’t more entries after all the work the Motor clubs put in. Big well done to Dave Hornbrook and Ann Foster on their 2nd O/A in a not so high spec car. (Dave came to T.i. Rallyschool quite a few years ago and then started rallying again. When you wander around the service area there are quite a few people who have been to the rallyschool.

On the school days the Best Improved trophy went to Michael Coggin and Matthew Sample was Fastest time. In another group was Callum McPhearson with his dad, Not seen for 20 to 30 years so nice to catch up. Another hot day, not much cloud. Cars ran great.

Owen (12 years old) had a run in the Escort with a help of a few cushions and loved the rear wheel drive but back to the 1.0 Micra at Scarborough Autograss where he finished 2nd, 3rd and 5th. There were more doing it this time and lots of 14 to 16 year olds who have been doing it for over a year. Lots of families there who have only ever done Autograss so we were well happy with his results.

On a different note , was setting out the stage for the Rallyschool as some pigeons landed and a red kite landed on it. I didn’t think they did that and only took road kill.