This race is a unique event in the world of motor racing and was originally conceived to give cars of differing performance the opportunity of competing on 'equal' terms in a long distance race; the concept has proved to be one of the most popular events in the UK.
I was invited to help in one of the two teams of MGBs. In the whole event there were 40 teams of different marques, each with a minimum of 4 and maximum of 6 cars in each. I was given the important job of making sure that the timing 'transponder' was fitted to the car before leaving the pits.
Each team had two of these devices, one in the car out on the track, and one in the car waiting in the pits for the changeover. At the changeover I had to remove the transponder from the incoming car, and secure it inside the car that was due out next. It was important to get it in the right car!
In the event of a car being stranded out on the circuit, we would have to retrieve the transponder, if not, this would have meant a lot of lost time in the pits! We were fortunate not to loose any cars, either through mechanical failure or accidents! I also spent some time on the pit wall deploying the laps times, to each of the drivers. Each driver would drive for about 40 minutes, the faster drivers perhaps a little longer, to get the lap count up; but not too long, as that could lead to disqualification.
When not on the pit wall, or getting out of the rain in the pit garage, I managed to get track side to take a few photographs.
|MGCC -Team MGB 1|
|Team No:10||Team Manager: Natasha Bell||Class B|
|A:||Natasha Bell||MGB Roadster||1800cc|
|B:||Jeremy Rodgers||MGB GT||1860cc|
|C:||Martin Watters||MGB GT||1800cc|
|D:||Brian Playford||MGB Roadster||1860cc|
|E:||Lew Bergonzi||MGB Roadster||1860cc|
|F:||Barry Sidery-Smith||MGB Roadster||1950cc|
|MGCC -Team MGB 2|
|Team No:9||Team Manager: Brian Playford||Class B|
|A:||Richard Evans||MGB Roadster||1860cc|
|B:||Andrew Young||MGB GT||1900cc|
|C:||Mark Burnside||MGB GT||1800cc|
|D:||David Beresford||MGB Roadster||1860cc|
|E:||Brian Fish||MGB Roadster||1860cc|
|F:||David Cakebread||MGB Roadster||1860cc|
The race started at 10am and ran until 4pm, a total of six hours, and it rained for the whole the six hours. You will see from the photographs below how dark it was. There was a total four teams racing MGs. Teams MGB 1 & 2, the 'Millennium Midgets' and 'Girl Power', who were back once more. I followed their fortunes last year Girl Power 97
|Millennium Midgets||Handicap: 203 laps 13th||Scratch: 180 laps 23rd|
|MGB Team 1||Handicap: 197 laps 28th||Scratch: 178 laps 29th|
|MGB Team 2||Handicap: 195 laps 33rd||Scratch: 173 laps 34th|
|Girl Power||Handicap: 192 laps 35th||Scratch: 168 laps 38th|
The Birkett Six Hour event is put on by the
750 Motor Club