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EMC Championship Autotest - (Sat) 19 May 18

Posted: October 23, 2018 7:31 AM - 692 Hits

Counting Round - 2018 Northern Ireland Autotest Championship

Photo: Gerry Cavanagh

Report - Motorclub Get Scorcher for Autotest

Posted: October 23, 2018 7:28 AM

The second running of the Keith Boyd Autotest was held in scorching sunshine in the Severfield yard at St Angelo on Saturday last. Enniskillen Motorclub [EMC] welcomed a new sponsor for the event in Dermot Brewster Plumbing and Heating. Despite clashing with the North West 200, the FA Cup Final and a royal wedding not to mention Fermanagh’s first round Ulster Championship match in Brewster Park a solid entry of 23 cars screeched and slid their way over the dry and dusty concrete amid the stacked steel of Severfield’s yard. This was a counting round of the McMillan Specialist Cars ANICC Northern Ireland Autotest Championship and the 2018 Clubman/Legends Challenge. Indeed the quality of the entry was reflected in the appearance of Mark King, Robin Lyons and Paul Mooney all members of the N I Team which clinched the 2017 Ken Wharton Trophy. Such was the pace at the top of the leader board that winner Steven Ferguson and second-placed Paul Mooney were never more than a handful of seconds apart all afternoon. On the third run of the first test Ferguson had an uncharacteristic error taking down a pylon to let Robin Lyons edge ahead by just 2 seconds with Mooney 2.7 seconds behind. So it went on over the next three tests with Ferguson in his 1600cc Vauxhall-engined Special just staying ahead of Lyons who was on fire in his more conventional 1430cc Mini Saloon to seal victory by a mere 3.6 seconds. Third Overall went to Paul Mooney in another Vauxhall-engined Special a further 7.2 seconds adrift. This event consisted of the four usual Autotest classes made up of Class A: Front-wheel drive sports cars and specials, Class B: rear-wheel drive sports cars and specials, Class C: Saloons under 11’ 8’’ in length [sometimes called ‘small saloons’] and Class D: Saloons of 11’ 8’’ or greater in length. Cars in these classes were competing in the NI Championship section of the event. However, in the other section aimed at bringing newcomers into the sport the Challenge there are again four classes with two sections the Clubman and the Legend as follows - Clubman A: Front-wheel drive Lightweight cars, Clubman B: Rear-wheel drive Lightweight cars, Clubman C; Front-wheel drive road going cars and Clubman D: Rear-wheel drive road going cars. Then came the Legends. Legend A: Front-wheel drive Lightweight cars, Legend B: Rear-wheel drive Lightweight cars, Legend C: Front –wheel drive road going cars and Legend D: Rear-wheel drive road going cars. Note that ‘road going cars’ are either MOT’d or are capable of passing an MOT test. They must have all standard interior trim in place but aftermarket seats and hydraulic handbrakes are permissible. The vehicles need not be taxed or insured and may be trailered to the event. All tyres must be road legal at the start of the event. This format is proving successful as EMC had 10 entries in the Clubman Challenge with just one in the Legends Challenge. Add to that an entry fee of just £20.00 and EMC may have a winning formula on their hands. In the Class battles in the NI Championship section Steven Ferguson won Class A and also claimed Overall Winner. Class B was lifted by Ashley Lamont in his super-sounding Sylva Stryker. Class C was won convincingly by Robin Lyons in his blisteringly quick Mini saloon and Mark King was the only entry in Class D, also finishing a very creditable 6th overall. Meanwhile in the Clubman Challenge Gary Campbell, in his immaculate Nova, won Class A by 6.3 seconds from Crawford Ewing. No entries were received for Class B so Class C was dominated by Richard Earney who finished some 22.4 seconds ahead of Ben Colhoun. In Class D Irvinestown’s Mark Thompson wheeled out his MX5 which he normally uses for Night Navigation and Targa Rallies for his first attempt at autotesting. He was beaten on this occasion by Dungannon’s Colin Hazelton in a similar car. In the Legends Challenge David Jenkins was the sole entrant and so subsequently he claimed the class win. At prize-giving the Clerk of the Course, Brian D’Arcy thanked all the competitors for their entries, the marshals who turned out in great numbers and his organising team for all ensuring a slick and smooth event. He also thanked the new sponsor Dermot Brewster Plumbing and Heating as well as Severfield for the use of their yard and Enniskillen Airport for the use of their premises for the prize-giving. Results and pictures may be viewed on www.enniskillenmotorclub.co.uk and on facebook.


Posted: October 11, 2018 10:10 AM

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