The Parkinson Line.....is back
Well. It's been a while since I've written anything for Startline. I wonder if I've been missed. I suppose Tony Blair and Gordon Brown have been asking the same question. So best forget it.
I retired, from work, at the end of June this year and was particularly busy prior to leaving so wrote nothing in that final period. I had a few days off and then it was Spa. On the return from Spa I had about five weeks off and spent most of the time in the garden. Doing all of the jobs that I'd neglected for years because of spending so much time away from home. I really enjoyed it. The weather was good and I would work for an hour then have a rest in my hammock with a drink and a book. The last thing I wanted was to sit in front of a terminal after years of such. The retirement then came to an abrupt end when I was asked to return to work to complete a small contract. As this was for ENI, (AGIP), whom I'd been contracted to for the past nine years I didn't like refusing. So off I went for several weeks to central London. Finishing just in time for the Silverstone GP event. This was quickly followed by the last meeting of the year. Again at Silverstone. So season over and retired. What is a chap to do?
More work in the garden and much modification to my car trailer. I've replaced the canvas sides with aluminium sheet and amended the jockey wheel set up and the location of the spare wheel. I did think about writing a piece for Startline but the pull of being outside won. Even now at the end of October the weather is like spring with hardly any rain since the end of June. And after years of being stuck in an office environment it's really nice to spend time outside. (This article was started in October when the weather was good. It's now mid November and the snow is on the ground).
That's the excuses taken care of so what can I write about. It's a bit late now to do an article on Spa. (oh no it isn't - ed)
This time last year I'd just won the 1600cc championship so was thanking all of the people who'd helped me to attain this never to be forgotten milestone. This year I finished second but on reflection the same applies. I had a good year, thoroughly enjoyed it though making some mistakes and can't wait for next season to start. I have to thank Ewen Sergison once again for looking after me all year. The repair he did at Anglesey to get me into the race. Cutting the spare offside rear rocker to modify it to a near side took some doing.
The 1600 championship was won by Nigel Davers and he won it fair and square but I'll get him next year. I was pleased that Richard Evans grabbed third in the championship but having said that I felt sorry for Henry Fryer who just missed out with Eddie Guest also being in contention to the bitter end. Henry must be the most improved driver in 2010 and it's a pity that he's moving into the 2 litre class for next year. Pigging young drivers.
As I get older the 1600 drivers seem to get younger. If any of them calls me Dad there will be trouble. A new driver at the last Silverstone meeting was Dane Catanzaro. He's the son of Nick, who is obviously a long time Mono member. Dane was out in a Formula Renault which was very well prepared. Something about the Catanzaro/Evans cars which is always apparent. Dane finished a fighting fifth on Saturday in his first ever race and was sixth on Sunday.
As if this wasn't enough to put up with, also new to the formula was Austin Kimberly. He's from the USA and had two good races in his 2003 Van Diemen particularly as the car was in Formula Ford trim ready for the Walter Hayes. I had a chat with his father, whose name I can't remember, who was telling me that he works in the defence sector and is in the UK for a three year period. I might have got this wrong but as I recollect, Austin passed his ARDs test on the Wednesday prior to the meeting the day after his sixteenth birthday. The most annoying part is that I'm old enough to be his dad's dad. If we get drivers much younger in future we'll need a parking area for prams and facilities for bottle feeding and nappy changing.
As it's the end of the season, one person who deserves a big thank you
is Sara Hughes. Every meeting she's baked and hauled along several tins
full of cakes. Thanks Sara. Much appreciated.
After his little scrape at the Silverstone GP event and the feared cost of repairing the super duper Dallara thing, Tony Cotton was telling me that he could have purchased two or three complete Formula Vauxhall race cars for the same money. At this relatively obvious fact, I suspect that most of you are asking the same question that I am. I refuse to even put it into words but you're always welcome in the 1600 class Tony.
The race programme for 2011 looks good and the MSV connection really seems to have paid off. It's a pity that we're not going to Croft, Pembrey, Castle Combe etc. We have some good venues, particularly the Brands GP circuit.
My car is going to Ewen's tomorrow. Not much to do other than try and get some weight off it. In a double pronged attack I'm also on a diet and in full training and the ounces are falling off. Unfortunately they seem to fall back on the next day.
Anyway. A Merry Christmas and a Healthy and Prosperous New Year to you
Gordy & Tone, lest we forget. Never noticed before but is Tone wearing a rug?
DP's garden before....and after the clearing up. Team Avit mobile workshop - or is it a home of wizardry? Or both?Mono's cake-based Mother Teresa (Sara, not Phil Anstruther. That would be silly.)