Page 2 of 3

Re: B D C

Posted: Sat Aug 15, 2020 11:51 pm
by peter rafter
Technical complications with the pretty red car means that I have had to withdraw from Silverstone next weekend. BDC have been supportive and helpful.
However if anybody has a spare ticket I would be grateful

Re: B D C

Posted: Thu Aug 20, 2020 1:55 pm
by Bob Bull
Hi all, Should anyone have a copy of the latest Miscellany they would not mind parting with, I would be grateful for a copy, also all fingers etc, crossed, if there was a spare ticket available I could use it.
See you there, all being well.


01582 595385.

Re: B D C

Posted: Fri Aug 21, 2020 1:08 pm
by peter rafter
With such good cars and racing on offer it is understandable if there are no spares.
However, If there are any i would welcome one as the pretty red car is in the hospital and I had to withdraw.
my e mail is
In any case I hope all goes well with the weather and the racing

Re: B D C

Posted: Fri Aug 21, 2020 4:18 pm
by peter rafter
Bob, Alan House has kindly offered 2 tickets if you still need one.
I am collecting them first sparrowfart tomorrow (they are paper not electronic as in keeping with the majesty of the BDC)
if you need one call me on arrival and i will meet you.
my number is 07989618495

Re: B D C

Posted: Sat Aug 22, 2020 10:42 am
by Mary Lindsay
Good luck everyone at Bentley Drivers Club Silverstone today.

Here is the event timetable: ... 203491.pdf

Live timing:

and we understand that from around 10am there will be live streaming, look here for details:

Re: B D C

Posted: Mon Aug 24, 2020 9:48 am
by Leigh Sebba
Great to see everybody even if ‘from a distance’ and a pity no spectators or viewing stands (or Techniques food) but a good entry of Mogs, good weather, good racing.
Perhaps Motorsport UK will decide that self declaration scrutineering is adequate and will change the rules (perhaps with random spot checks). But like the change to medicals it will come a bit late in the day for me !

Re: B D C

Posted: Mon Aug 24, 2020 10:07 am
by Mary Lindsay
But like the change to medicals it will come a bit late in the day for me !
What change is that?

Re: B D C

Posted: Mon Aug 24, 2020 12:16 pm
by peter rafter
Ramblings from Silverstone

Please be advised that some readers may be offended by the language in this submission which reflects not only the age of the correspondent but also the idioms of those days of yore. O tempus mores. If I have misrepresented any person or conversation or event I can only claim indulgence as I am genetically confused or more likely currently under the influence of an excellent claret, Hic. I

Erewego. The time has come the Walrus said….…It is a truth universally acknowledged that here in Yorkshire the sky is bluer, the sun is golden and sparkles, the light is clearer, the landscape is more rugged, the Moors and Dales serene and enchanting, the views breathtaking, the heather blooms and the colours explode. The deciduous tree leaves have turned a dull green a tad too early this year, heralding the magic of the impending cyclical change to the autumnal colours, golds, yellows, orange, reds, purple and russet browns.

It is an oft perpetuated myth that the inhabitants of this County are parsimonious and they breathe only because the air is free. It is said that the pious, ascetic and saintly folk gravitated to the region long ago, leaving the otherworldly, licentious mortals to fester in the southern counties. Inexplicably, there is no fortified boundary. It is not a haven of tolerance, but on High Days and Holidays we share our bounty (as in fine weather) with our neighbours, in this particular instance as far south as Northamptonshire.

Ah, the Twelfth of August. Last day for entries and also the beginning of the arcane culling of wild birds, substantiated tenuously in the interests of “preserving” ancient moors and peat bogs. Although, basted with a sweet and earthy sauce and accompanied by a classic Red Rhône my dislike begins to falter.

Ah, Race weekend at Silverstone. A faintly chilling wind in the morning modulating to a refreshing breeze in the afternoon sun. Following a period of eremitic self isolation Alan House kindly offered a Ticket. Incomprehensibly, the grandstands were off limits. Had the organisers not realised that the pretty red car had withdrawn from the proceedings, and as a consequence social distancing for spectators would have been less of a problem?

At this meeting on track at the Silverstone National Circuit one is usually distracted into avoiding the multifarious cement covered oil trails deposited by the ancient vehicles brought out of hibernation in subservience to BDC.

The configuration of the circuit itself is not to everyone’s ideal and threading through Brooklands and Luffield somehow lacks the challenge of the choreographed murmuration through the Craner Curves. Without Copse it would be vin ordinaire

In these strange times, and in the digital age, one is robbed of the ingrained rhythm of normal race days. By this I mean the trials and tribulations of the hardened racegoer: location of the nearest toilets/ablutions; the nail breaking tangle with Trailers and retaining straps; is there fuel in the tank? the hunt for missing parts, foot pump and race gloves; the suppressed resentment of intruders who infiltrate the dedicated Morgan parking area; chewing the cud with friends and comrades in the queue for Signing on; the absurd “no starting of race engines rule” until the Stewards have had their morning coffee; the complexities and haphazardness or indeed anxiety of scruitineering (you search in vain Mr. Scruitineer, but as any fule kno its not a Bentley, the Morgan does not have an oil catchier tank); how to confuse the noise testers?; and lastly, the fruitless and impertinent race to beat Keith Ahlers to the assembly point for Qualifying,

As at Donington an unintentional consequence of the Coro regulations dictated that there was no nosebag on offer from the Thorne Academy Motorhome, and I had forgotten to ask Cook to prepare a luncheon basket. Coro! I often think the so called experts now regulating our daily existence don’t know their R’s from their elbow (to the detriment and disadvantage of all). An end to the pernicious call for more restrictions

Belated thanks to BDC for holding the meeting.The first ever Morgan Challenge Race was at Bentley Drivers' Club Silverstone in 1966. Previously, I always enjoyed sauntering through the paddock held in thrall to the wonderful contingent of exotic machinery on display (and even more exotic personnel and attire). This year it was sadly depleted. Nevertheless, there was still an an impressive array of pre war Bentleys, complemented in turn by a lovely Alfa 8C, a Frazer Nash, Lea Francis, Alvis, Aston Martin, Lagonda, a BMW 328, a MG K3, Riley and pride of place to 2 Morgan super sports 3 wheelers ( Derbyshire/Cameron).

Vintage Bentleys are imposing beasts but to the tutored eye somehow lack the elegant lines of an Hispano Suiza and even the pretty red Morgan.

Strategically positioned at the entrance to the bacon butty server I espied and encountered Chas and Helen Windridge, Tim Pearce (a Past Master of the Guild of Guardians and the Society of Merchant Venturers), Robin Pearce (who was in paters’ lovely AC), Simon King and progeny, Mrs Hon Chairman, Nigel Bradford (editor of Mog Magazine, former aero pilot, Naval Officer, whose frizzled locks almost managed to exceed my task of making Albert Schweizer look well groomed hirsuitly)) and USA exile Richard Fohl who was nursing a shoulder injury. Later I bumped into Mrs Plant and Shears checking up on their charges, both of whom upheld the family honour racing-wise, and Brenda Bryan who is the rock in the Paul Bryan enterprise. In attendance were also Ace photographers Bob Bull and Chris Dickens vying for prime spots for the races but also surreptitious paddock shots

I managed to intrude on many conversations and in the long intervals received most patience, understanding, and polite sufferance from both Kathryn Emberson and Helen Lancashire.

There were 2 Morgan races plus the bonus of the Traditional Techniques Trophy Race, the latter mollifying the frustration from the interminable interval between the first and last race scenarios from the quirky scheduling.

Post Donington, welcome in this year of grace to Craig Hamilton-Smith (and Ian from the factory), Bill Lancashire, Peter Sargeant, Stephen Lockett, Chris Bailey and after a prolonged absence Tom Andrew and Jim Mountain. Also and with some trepidation to the lap times Oliver and Graham Bryant.

Praise to Wolf who repaired the Fearn Club sport damaged at Donington, and the Marshalls who make these events possible.

Lastly Jack Bellinger who managed to resolve his gearbox problems and still sport fashionable shorts.

A 28 Morgan car grid for Qualy. Conditions Dry, bright, and a slight wind sufficient to upset the F1 cars but not the Bentley bricks. In a short session a sedentary spectator sees only a limited and often only a fleeting aspect of the intense racing as the pack stream by. In longer sessions and races as the field spreads out it can be confusing and difficult to monitor track positions as the faster cars thread through traffic on multiple occasions. However, from the sidelines the Lancashire/ Bryants/ Will Plant/ Whiiteside train through Brooklands and Luffield was fascinating both visually and acoustically.

Race 1. Authoritative race reports will hopefully be showered on Mary by her coterie of correspondents, but non finishers comprised Bret Syndercombe (exhaust?), Graham Bryant (Puncture), Sharlie Goddard (electrical), John Milbank (spark), Hon Chairman (?) and Tom Richards (over exuberance in the search for gravel). Young Will hounded the race leaders at every opportunity. Andrew Thompson chased the more powerful from runners.

Richard Thorne, Leigh Sebba, Alan House and Mark Shears were in a confusing Fiskar Qualy which included a Jack Fairman, Innes Ireland and Mike Harwthorn Challenge race. An eclectic mix of cars, (Jag/Allard/Aston, Lister, Jowett, AC) all extremely covetable. The Morgans impeccably presented. Alan could not race (precautionary but hopefully not extensive wallet damaging engine issues,) and in the Race Richard behind the faster cars led Leigh and Mark home.

In olden times (a glimpse of stocking as the song goes) I had often remarked that if I closed down one bank i,e, 4 of my 8 cylinders i could enter the Techniques Trophy. However, the format of the race at the BDC meeting included 70’s 8 cylinder cars which, after the initial confusion, ultimately explained the presence on the grid of not just the usual suspects (Casablanca) but of Messrs Richard Plant, Kelvin Laidlaw, and Jack Bellinger in period plus 8’s

In an enthralling race Richard Plant eased masterfully away from the field and was not to be challenged followed by Craig, Hon Chairman, ever improving Sumner Scion, James, and the following train of Bellinger (Senior and Junior), Emberson, Laidlaw, Andrew, Ian Sumner, Bryan, Whiteside, Gurney, Gateson Senior,, Bevan, Sebba, and the Baileys (interesting pillow talk there ).
DNF Cole in Cupie Doll. Bellinger junior, having earlier in the day together with Simon Orebi Gann qualified on pole in class at Brands Hatch magically appeared to carve his way through the field in his own self built (but only for his children) 4/4. Did you pay for the helicopter Jack?
Full praise for an event that preserves the spirit of the race and yet helps the lesser powered cars where, in the challenge series they can be overpowered within 3 laps.

A subdued Techniques presentation (with full apologies for the absence of cold beers) where Brian Gateson whispered his interpretation of his own race before acknowledging the exploits of the rest of the field. Son James in attendance all videoed by Tracy on her phone.

Big applause for how Mark Shears sprang, metaphorically, from his white flat rad directly into the Burgundy beauty to participate in the following Techniques Race. For he record Mark i omitted reference to your hirsute scion as he was in a foreign marque.

Mprgan Race 2.
Quaint Qualy rules relegated both Oliver Bryant and Mark Butterworth to the back of the grid. Moreover, restrictions on the pit wall for starts deny us all the intricacies and drama of the race start. As we stand in the pits we hear the cacaphony of the engines for the start but stand in oblivion and can only surmise the ensuing formation. Arrgh.
I can only presume the pit wall ban is a fear of us dropping our coffee cups, telephones and cigars onto the track through the portals in the fence, or alternatively, causing a distraction to the drivers. Is there another way of making the start visible to those the in the pits and elsewhere.

As the race unfolded and whilst we tracked the inevitable progress through the field of Oiiver, there were a number of puzzling DNFs, (water hose, Lancashire who had shown exceptional pace in both races) Mark Butterworth puncture, Goddard/Tisdell/Chris Bailey???). Inbetween there was engrossing racing as befits the series with due respect to all entrants, a mark of our ethics and heritage
I do hope messrs Thomas and Parnell are well and follow the series.
Simon (SIFAB) you must have a better explanation for wearing your pyjama bottoms the whole day,

You can wake up now jack.

Re: B D C

Posted: Mon Aug 24, 2020 2:26 pm
by Leigh Sebba
Moderator – please put a limit on size of postings !

Having said that hidden in there is some true and entertaining reporting and I see now why you were wearing your ‘crime reporter raincoat’

Re: B D C

Posted: Tue Aug 25, 2020 5:08 pm
by Mark Shears
Well what can I say?!

I certainly can't add anything to Peters most eloquent and entertaining take on the unfolding day at BDC Silverstone!

And I did see Peter whilst waiting for the 'off' in the assembly area bereft of his flashers mac Leigh!

When asked 'if he had a light mac?' he replied 'No. But I've a dark brown overcoat'! (Apologies to Viv Stanshall and the Bonzos!)

But a great day was had by all...



Re: B D C

Posted: Wed Aug 26, 2020 12:42 pm
by Mary Lindsay
Peter, your most interesting and erudite report has been published on the Morgan Challenge web site. I could not allow such an heroic effort to produce such a literary masterpiece go unpublished! ... ports.html

If you are in future moved to share your insights with us we will be most interested to read them.

Re: B D C

Posted: Wed Aug 26, 2020 6:19 pm
by gregparnell
Peter thank you for asking - I am keeping well and looking forward to returning to racing in 2021.

Re: B D C

Posted: Wed Aug 26, 2020 8:07 pm
by ian cummings
thanks for posting the reports, it's good to be able to read about the events even if we can't get to watch them yet


Re: B D C

Posted: Wed Aug 26, 2020 9:42 pm
by peter rafter
Blessed Mary,
had I anticipated that you would circulate my Ramblings to a wider audiencew, then before penning said article, I would have consulted my well thumbed Fowlers Modern English Usage (that is if I could find it in the detritus of my study) and paid more attention to the grammar, structure, semantic and morphemic pieonasm, antonomasia, prolixity, inelegant variation, syntax, circumlocution, homonyms and synonyms, metaphors, split infinitives and choice of words especially epithets, convoluted sentence construction, obtuse and obsolete language, verbosity, purple prose, tautology, archaisms and the use of seldom recognised latin phrases.
Many years ago , as my youngest daughter was taking her GCE or whatever archaic and useless examination was prevalent at the time, I recall attempting to explain all of these terms and their origins context and usage, naturally with pertinent and sometime humorous examples perhaps omitting the greek and latin stems, only to be perfunctorily rebuffed as she, with rolling eyes and that savoir faire of a teenager, complained that I had plainly swallowed a dictionary, asked what had etymology to to do with insects, and in conclusion that it was not at all helpful as her Teacher came from HULL.
Fear not. I have no compulsion to revert to English as she is spoke

Re: B D C

Posted: Wed Aug 26, 2020 10:00 pm
by Mary Lindsay
Venerable Peter, so gifted in the use of the English language like what she should be spoke.
Your unedited and uncut prose is entertaining and obscure, just what we need in these mad times.