23rd October 2016

BTRDA Grand Final Car Trial

Event Report

Henry Kitching retained his BTRDA Gold Star with a faultless drive at Woolbridge Motor Club's new venue, previously having been used as a  sporting trials site, near Crewkerne. Kitching made the long trip to Somerset from Yorkshire as favourite, to add to his British championship last month, but overnight found the gearbox leaking oil – leaving him worried but not visibly affected. The long slippery grass saw Kitching immediately open out a decisive class lead, which he extended to twenty five points during the day, over Mark Hoppe. Meanwhile, Trevor Moffatt had his own tussle with Nick Pollitt, who he beat by twelve points to secure the runner-up position in the Bronze Star.

The front wheel drive class saw an intriguing entry with two normally new car class competitors switching to try and boost their Silver and Bronze Star chances. Rupert North has become the man to beat in this class this year, but Neil Mackay and Shawn Franklin immediately had him under pressure. Following Mackay's retirement with a broken engine a super daylong battle ensured swinging both ways, finally seeing Franklin superbly win by six points. North had to be content with the well deserved Silver Star runner-up position.

The rear wheel drive class has seen numerous overall and class winners this year, so a very tight battle was expected. Barrie Parker was completely off form from the off, but recovered slightly during the afternoon, leaving him with just the Mac Hazlewood trophy (for the most qualifying points during the year). Meanwhile, Steve Courts stamped his authority from round one, which he slowly extended as the grass dried in the sunshine and stiff breeze, to net him the Silver Star, but it proved to be not quite enough for the Gold Star again after thirteen years since his last win. Dave Oliver suffered a little from his Hillman Imp not running at 100% but managed to secure second in class ahead of Kevin Roberts, who was just two points behind and won the Bronze Star as a result of his strong performances during the season.

So ended the 2016 BTRDA Car Trial season with seventeen competing for awards out of the eighteen qualifiers. The year saw Kitching come out top of the two championships with three outright wins and then the Gold Star. The early part of the season was remarkably open with the twelve events seeing seven different overall winners.

Henry Kitching, Vauxhall Corsa, 73.6% GOLD STAR
Steve Courts, Hillman Imp, 86.0% SILVER STAR
Shawn Franklin, Citroen Saxo, 98.6% CLASS 2
Mark Hoppe, Citroen Saxo, 99.6% CLASS 1
Rupert North, Rover Mini, 105.8% SILVER STAR RUNNER UP
Dave Oliver, Hillman Imp, 118.3% CLASS 3
Trevor Moffatt, Ford KA, 120.3% BRONZE STAR RUNNER UP
Kevin Roberts, Dutton Phaeton, 123.7% BRONZE STAR
Nick Pollitt, Vauxhall Corsa, 132.7%
Dave Walker, Vauxhall Corsa, 163.9%

 

 

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