Sunday 18th April 2010 saw the latest collaboration between the Wessex Area of the TSSC and the Southern Area of the TR Drivers Club. This year’s Wessex and New Forest Triumph Run could best be described in the words of the song as a “fantastic day”. We had 101 cars turn up at Avon Heath Country Park out of a total of 155 entries.
One of the motivations for this event is to support the FBHVC’s “Drive it Day”. In previous year’s we have held the Run on the official day, however there are many other events also held on this day encouraging people to get their Classic vehicles out on the roads. Our decision to move the event one week forward proved to be popular giving people the opportunity to participate in other events being held “in support of the cause”. Ok, the good weather undoubtedly helped but we had a “fantastic” turn out of Triumph cars with examples ranging from the TR’s, Heralds & Vitesses, Spitfires & GT6’s, Stags, Dolomites & Toledo’s, 2000/2500, a Bond Equipe plus some other “Honorary Triumph’s for the day. This latter category including a Healey 3000 Mk3 and 3 MX5’s (they seem to get everywhere!)
There was only one area which did not go as we would have liked. Our normal timings were thrown astray by the required change of route at the end of the Run which added approximately 20 minutes to the second half. We had intended to counter this by bringing the start time forward by half an hour but this proved not to be possible due to the distance some entrants had to come. The inevitable result was that the early arrivals were “hanging around” for longer than intended at the start and again at the halfway halt whilst the last cars caught up. However, no-one seemed to mind particularly – some even took the opportunity to break out the picnic hamper and just enjoy the sunshine.
We eventually got everyone underway from Avon Heath just before 11am with the marshalls having previously departed to their allotted positions. The Route took in the scenery around Avon, Burley, Rhinefield, through Brockenhurst and Sway with the halfway halt at Boldre. This year we procured the Boldre War Memorial Hall and adjacent field for the Halfway Stop which proved to be a popular choice with its pleasant outlook. After time to relax and take advantage of complementary teas and coffees we got underway again for the second half which took us out to Beaulieu passing the Motor Museum, out through Beaulieu Heath, through Lyndhurst and on to Emery Down, Bolderwood, through Fordingbridge and Sandleheath, finally ending up at The Compasses Inn at Damerham. The Route in total was some 67 miles.
Despite all the planning that goes into the event, there is always the possibility of the unforeseen. This year, as in past years we had to contend with a cycle race being held over some of the same route as our event. Thankfully, despite the belligerent attitude of some cyclists we managed to avoid incident – although I believe there were a few exchanges of “choice words”. The main area of unforeseen incident is always the chance of a breakdown. Fortunately, we only had 2 of these - both on the first half. One was a TR4 which I believe managed to get re-started and continue the Run. The second, was a TR7 V8 belonging to our “resident cameraman” so, unfortunately this year, we do not have the customary video of the Run itself. However, not wishing to miss out completely on the day he managed to get his car home on the back of a recovery wagon, then he logged on to the DVLA website, taxed his other car on line and met us at the end of the Run at Damerham. You can look at this 2 ways – either he is completely “bonkers” or he deserves a mention for what must be a perfect example of the “Spirit of the Run”. Hopefully the problem was relatively minor and has not dented the wallet too much!
All in all, I think everyone who came along had a good day and enjoyed the Run, the scenery and of course the wonderful weather. This is certainly the impression I have received through the various e.mails I have since received in appreciation. Our only problem now seems to be that we have set a very high standard for the event which we hope we can maintain – planning for next year has already begun!
Although we do not have the customary video of the day we do have, courtesy of “That Bloke with the Jag and a Camera”, a good photographic record of the day. Allan has put these on Flickr for all to enjoy.
I believe Allan managed to photograph most of the cars at various points on the Run – hopefully you can see yourself. In addition other people have very kindly forwarded us their photos of the day which can be viewed via this website.
As you will appreciate there is a lot of work that goes into the planning of this event, designing the route and obtaining the various permits and insurance required. Most of which goes on behind the scenes before the day. In addition there is the organising of the booking in at the start, the band of volunteer marshalls around the route, the halfway refreshments and the arrangements at the end of the Run. I would like to pass on the many thanks received from numerous participants to everyone involved in making the day the success it has been.
I would also like say a big thank you from us to everyone who came along with their Triumph on the day. Also I feel a special mention should go out to all the Area Organisers and Group Leaders who have supported our event. Without this support we would simply not be able to hold the event and it would not be the success it has been. I won’t mention any names but you know who you are – they involve areas of the TR Register, TR Drivers, TSSC, Stag Owners, 2000/2500 Register, Dolomite Register etc. Last but not least a special thank you must go to Bethany Williamson for awarding the prizes at the end of the day!
This year we had a separate award for furthest distance travelled to the event. We had entries from all over the South of England stretching as far as Bristol in the West to East London and as far North as Coventry. The prize was taken by A. Ball from Coventry, who travelled a total of 154 miles in his Vitesse to join us, drive round the route of 67 miles and then travel the 154 miles back to Coventry! Another contender for “Spirit of The Run”!
Due to the fantastic number of entries this year we were able to offer prizes not only for the Best Car but also the Runner Up in each of 9 categories in the self judging concours. The results of which are as follows:
|TR 2, 3 & 4||N. Barber||A. Postlethwaite|
|TR 3||TR 2|
|TR 5 & 6||M. Lock||I. Tubbs|
|TR 6||TR 6|
|TR 7 & 8||I. Tinsey||A. Francis|
|Herald / Vitesse||L. O'Kelly||D. Thompson|
|Herald 1200||Vitesse Mk2|
|Spitfire / GT6||J. Longhurst||A. Taylor Jones|
|Spitfire Mk3||Spitfire 1500|
|Dolomite / Toledo||F. Smith||D. Batchelor|
|Dolly Sprint||Dolly Sprint|
|Stag||S. Jones||M. Goulding|
|2000 / 2500||N. Woodward||M. Goulding|
|2000 Mk2||2.5 PI|
|Others||G. Singleton||M. Hammond|
|Bond Equipe||Healey 3000 Mk3|
It is interesting to note that more than one of the above are previous winners of their categories. Of these L. O’kelly has won the Herald / Vitesse category for the last 4 years!
In addition to the above there was also a separate prize for what was deemed to be the “Car of The Show”. This was chosen for us by the owner of the field at Damerham who at very short notice very kindly gave us permission to drive 101 cars over his nicely grown grass. His choice of “Car of the Run was the GT6 of N. Fletcher.