Round 2 Knighton Sand Pit

28 drivers competed in the 1st unsealed surface event of the Isle of Wight Car Club 2017 season held at Knighton Sandpit.

This venue is known to be a horrible sticky mess when it is wet and a dust bowl when it is dry. It had rained leading up to this event, however, race day produced one of the hottest days of the year so far.

This combination of weather created a very mixed track for the competitors to deal with. The upper sections were loose and dusty, while the lower sections had very soft sand and the dips in the track contained muddy pools of water.

Scrutineering at the club has a new format for 2017. All drivers wanting to compete must now present their car to the scrutineering tent on the start line before 9.30am. This system works very well, not only does it make Brian’s job a lot easier it also seems to be a great place to stand and watch each car having its pre-event safety checks.

The course for the day was not particularly difficult to remember, however, it did involve several loops covering the same part of the venue. The trick was to remember which loop you were on. Many drivers did not do enough loops or did too many, and this continued throughout the day.

Round 1 was the domain of the class 5 cars. 2016 USS champion Chris Wilson set the standard for the day in his car engine single seater special, followed by Kevin Richardson in his newly acquired autograss mini and Andy Williams in his single seater special powered by a motorbike engine.

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In round 2 the Morgan family, driving their AWD Impreza, were now pushing hard and challenging Chris. The only other AWD car was driven by Steve Wells, however, his car had mechanical issues, with both Maf sensor and Knock sensor faults. Due to this, Steve missed round 3 as during this time he was robbing parts off of the Morgan’s spare car in an attempt to fix it.

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Class 2 is normally flooded with front engine rear wheel drive MX5s, however, there were non today. A new breed of class 2 car was kicking up dirt around the sand pit, this time rear wheel drive mid engine cars. Josh Finch was driving his MGF and Joe Moore in his Toyota MR2. Both these standard cars performed well in these challenging conditions.

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Class 3 as usual is dominated by classic minis and this year there is money at stake. After finding Steve Brett and Dan Young envisioning who would be the fastest, Andy Williams persuaded them to take a £10 bet on who would be the highest placed mini in 2017.

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Joining class 3 was new member Lorna Lee. Lorna had a successful first outing driving her Suzuki Alto with no wrong tests and reducing her times with each run.

By run 4 Ricky Sheppard found his mojo in his 2017 weapon of choice, a class 4 Peugeot 205 that he shared with James and Brian Robbins. Ricky had great success in his class 1 Rover 45 last year and expectations are high to see what he can achieve this year.

New for 2017 we have a sponsor for our podium. Grange Chine Service Station will be supplying Champagne (bucks fizz) for everyone on the podium and the flowers that are presented to the fastest lady of the day. So, visit Grange Chine Service Station on the military road for all your road and competition car needs.

Marion Brett claimed the flowers for the fastest lady of the day with only 3/10th of a second lead in a very close battle with Sue Mitchell.

At the close of the day, there was a clear divide between the front runners and the rest of the pack. With his best result to date, Dave Morgan claimed the 3rd step on the podium. Sibling rivalry ensured 2016 SS and over all champion Dan Morgan put his younger brother in his place by claiming the 2nd step with an astonishing 5.14 seconds lead.

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However, both had to submit to the superior force of the King of Knighton Chris Wilson, who not only claimed the top spot but did so with an additional 1.39 seconds lead over second place.

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Is there anyone who can challenge this man in 2017?

Our next event is a sealed surface event at the Isle of Wight College on the 9th of April.

Remember to present your car to the scrutineering tent and sign on with your entry form by 9.30. See you there.

Round 1 SS Ventnor Botanic Garden

28 drivers returned to the Ventnor Botanical Garden for another day of grass roots motorsport.

Due to restrictions on the type of event that the club can run, this year’s event was confined to the top car park of the gardens. The restricted space, combined with the inclement weather resulted in a very slippery and technical course.

This twisty course had many drivers worried that they would not remember where to drive and with 12 of the 28 drivers that competed during the day performing a wrong test on their first outing, they were not wrong.


Wayne Hole not only correctly remembered the course but was also the fastest driver in round one piloting John Coopers remarkable MX5 powered VW Golf in a time of 40.67 seconds.

Run 2 saw more MX5 domination, this time in the hands of Dean Long, his usual flowing style producing a time of 37.71 seconds. However, soon after, Kevin Richardson set the standard for the day in his classic mini producing a time of 35.49. This 2 second lead was instantly under threat as it only took run 3 for Ricky Sheppard to join the fight, producing a time 2 10ths of a second from the lead.


This tight course was extremely challenging for many drivers, front wheel drive cars were having to master the use of the handbrake turn, rear wheel drive cars needed to light up their rear tyres just to get around the tight 360 cone. Resect must go to Mark Hill in his Mitsubishi Evo, this being an all wheel drive car, he had to master all of these just to thread this monster sized car around the cones.


The ladies were also battling for the honor to be the fastest lady of the day. Hope Wallis and Sue Mitchel initially struggled to remember the course and swapped positions on the leader board through the day. Marion Brett on the other hand showed everyone why she held the trophy for the fastest lady in 2016 by not only remembering the course but consistently improving her times throughout the day and was presented with the flowers at the days close.


The only real mechanical fatality during the day was the suspension of Adam Morgan’s Locost. The good news is he continued the event in the Greenen’s classic 1275GT mini to finish 10th place overall and he is now in the running to win a new trophy for the best mechanical failure that will be awarded at the 2018 AGM.

By run 5 Ricky had taken the lead from Kevin by 7 10ths of a second and this is how it stayed as in round 6 Ricky could not improve on his time and Kevin incurred time penalties due to striking cones.


2016 sealed surface and overall champion Dan Morgan who had been plagued with wrong tests and time penalties throughout finally produced some quality times in round 5 and 6 to claim the 3rd step onthe podium.

17238659_10155026308065070_392490603_nThe next event on the Isle of Wight Car Club calendar is an unsealed surface event at Knighton sand pit on the 26th of March. Don’t forget to complete your entry form in advance.



Come and enjoy a meal with your fellow car club members followed by the AGM and club awards.

It this evening (3rd of March) Arrive at 7 for a 7:30 meal or arrive at 8:30 for the AGM and awards 🙂 see you at the cheques inn

You can buy your ticket for the meal, via Pay Pal in the payments section of the club website


Winter non championship event

On the 19th of Feb, the Isle of Wight Car Club held their annual winter non-championship event at BAE Systems in Northwood. The club always tries to do something a little different than the normal competition format and this year’s event consisted of a simple course set between cones that drivers had to navigate in one direction for 3 runs and the remaining 3 runs in the opposite direction. All six runs were added together and the driver with the lowest combined time would be crowned the winner.

With every run counting, drivers were very reluctant to drive the course without being confident where they were going as a wrong test would instantly place them at the bottom of the leader board.

Not everyone was at this event to be competitive, many used it as a shake down session to test their cars for the upcoming season or just wanted an excuse to shred some tyres on this open twisty course.

The ladies had an interesting battle, Marion Brett in her Classic mini and Hope Wallis in her mk7 Ford Fiesta were placing competitive times, although, both performed one wrong test. New member and first time competitor Josie Collins, however, was precise and consistent driving her classic mini and thanks to this, leapfrogged both Marion and Hope in the leader board to claim the flowers as the fastest lady of the day.

This was not a specific drift event but you would have been mistaken for thinking so. The amount of tyre smoke produced from rear wheel drive cars choosing to navigate the cones in a sideways fashion provided lots of entertainment, not only for the drivers but also for the onlooking crowd.

One such driver was new member Adam Pomeroy who was not shy in using his immaculate Skyline to its true potential. With the rise in popularity of forced induction Mx5s and other driver orientated cars, expect to see more of this style of driving in 2017.

Father and son duo of Chris and Adam Greenen were super quick right from the start. Their distinctive 1275GT may have been giving up power to the larger cars but more than made up this deficit with plenty of grip, lifting a rear wheel on the tight corners. These two traded places during the day but in the end, Chris had to settle for the 3rd step on the podium as Adam pipped him to second place by only 4 tenths  of a second.

But the driver of the day was Ricky Sheppard, who consistently laid down very quick runs without a single mistake and finished on the top step of the podium with a combined lead of over 11 seconds.


The next event is round one of the Isle of Wight Car Club’s 2017 championship held within the top car park of the Ventnor Botanic Garden. The format of this event has been changed from previous years and if you can attend the club’s AGM and awards evening at the Chequers Inn on the 3rd of March all will be explained. You can find more details on how you can attend both of these events on the club’s website Keep in touch with latest updates by following us on Facebook and Twitter.

2017 annual dinner AGM and awards night – March 3rd

The car clubs annual dinner AGM and awards night will be held at the Chequers Inn at Rookely.
Arrive at 7pm for a 7.30 meal,
after this will be the AGM where you can voice your opinion with regards to the clubs future and discuss the changes for the 2017 season
once this is complete we will be awarding trophy’s


Its a great evening out, if you would like to join in with the meal it will cost £12.50 per person for the 2 course carvery, payable in advance via pay pal on the clubs web site.

Try a new Motor sport in 2017

try-a-new-motorsport-banner-2-001Last year we had the idea to start –  Try a new motor sport day. Have you ever wanted to take part in a different type of motorsport but never known how, what is needed or just did not want to do it on your own? Well this is for you.
Every year we plan to organise a club trip to take part in a different form of Motorsport on the mainland.
In 2016 we went Hill climbing at Gurston down and it has now become an annual fixture.
We have plenty of club members with experience that can hold our hands and tell us what we need to do. We will hopefully be able to get a discount of ferry fares.

However, before we even think about starting this new event we need to know what type of motorsport you would like to try?

so please if you are able visit the event on our Facebook page or email the club with your suggestions.

Once we have a good feel of what people want we will find a date that fits into our car club calendar.

This is going to be fun 🙂

Round 14 and the championship battle

The final round of the Isle of Wight Car Club season was held at Fort Street Car Park in Sandown. 29 drivers arrived to not only compete but to see who would be crowned the sealed surface champion, as well as the overall champion and who would clinch the individual class championship awards in this 2016 closing event.

As un unexpected bonus and just for a little fun, drivers were randomly paired up with another competitor to form a team. The team with the quickest combined time at the end of the day would win free car club membership in 2017.

The surface at Fort Street is like no other on the calendar. This course is not quite tarmac and not quite concrete and has many sharp stones that can reduce the competitors’ precious performance tyres to shredded canvas in a single event. Not necessarily for this reason, Fort Street is left for the last race day on the car club calendar.

Right from the off this looked like an MX5 would be the weapon of choice. Matthew Price, Matthew Griffin and Wayne Hole were posting fantastic times. However, it was not long before the class 5 Locosts and specials were setting the standard.

Dan Morgan and Ryan Munt were not only sharing Dan’s car, but were also neck and neck with sealed surface championship points. Who ever finished the day in front of the other would take home this hard fought award.


Chris Wilson was also in a points battle with Dan, however, it was for the overall championship. These two drivers have dominated the 2016 season but were stumbling at the last hurdle. Both were having car handling issues and neither were performing to their full potential.

Lets summarise the ups and downs of who was winning what with regards to the sealed surface and the overall championship at each point of the day –

At the start of the Day


Dan Morgan was winning the overall championship and Chris Wilson was in 2nd place

Ryan Munt was winning the sealed surface championship and Dan was second.


After run 1

Status Quo, Ryan was the fastest of the 3, Dan was 2nd and Chris was 3rd


After run 2

Ryan was still the fastest, Chris was 2nd fastest and Dan was having real issues and not happy with the set up of his car.


After run 3

The title positions stayed the same but Chris had pulled out a small lead.

A this point Chris Wilson was winning the overall championship and Ryan Munt was retaining his SS championship title.


After run 4

Dan made a few tweaks to the suspension of his car and this resulted in Dan being the fastest of the 3 followed by Chris and then Ryan.


Run 5

Dan’s car breaks with Ryan driving!

Chris can’t improve.

Dan squeezes into Adam Morgan’s Locost but does not improve his time.


Run 6

Ryan drives Steve Wells’ car and improves his time but does not get in front of Dan. However, he gets close enough that at this point he now leads the sealed surface championship and the class 5 sealed surface title.  Chris Wilson fails to improve his time and has to settle for 2nd place in the overall championship.

Dan again drives Adam’s car and improves his time and puts enough drivers between himself and Ryan to take the sealed surface championship and the overall championship.


Steve Glass dominated the class one sealed surface championship.

Wayne Hole, Dean Long and Daryl Turner are sharing the top spot on equal points in class 2.

Adam Greenen snags the class 3 sealed surface title by a point.

Toby Allan walks away with the class 4 sealed surface championship trophy.

And of course Dan Morgan has class 5 wrapped up.


What an epic battle that was.


With regards to the result of round 14 –


Sue Mitchell was awarded the flowers for being the fastest lady of the day, Steve Wells finished on the 3rd step of the podium and thanks to Steve’s generosity Dan Morgan claimed the 2nd step using Steve’s car. 1st place went to Kevin Richardson in his classic mini.


The end of year fun team event went to the team of event winner Kevin Richardson and Wayne Hole in his MX5.


That’s it, no more events until next year, however, we still have the club’s Christmas Dinner held on the 10th of December at the Bargeman’s Rest.


The club’s AGM and awards ceremony will be in early 2017.

Healey Weekend

The annual Isle of Wight Car Club Healey Weekend never disappoints and this year the action and drama was non stop.

For many years the Austin Healey Club have been making their annual pilgrimage to try and wrestle the coveted Turbine Trophy from the Isle of Wight Car Club.

This year they came armed with some serious machinery, some very performance orientated MX5s and even an mk1 rally Escort that had competed in the London to Sydney safari rally.


The two days spread over the fireworks weekend comprised of rounds 12 and 13 of the car club’s championship, however, in conjunction with the championship, the times from the two days are combined to see who is the quickest over the entire weekend and that person will have their name immortalized on what has to be the best trophy in the car club trophy cabinet.

Saturday’s event was based at BAE Systems in Northwood. This large open car park has lots of room and was deliberately set up for the larger cars .

Dan Morgan set the standard early on Saturday. Half way through the day he had a 2 second lead over the rest of the field, however, in the afternoon Steve Wells in a similar class 5 Locost was applying pressure and posting similar times.


As the temperature plummeted Adam Greenen rose up through the leader board to the frustration of Dan Morgan who was unable to improve on his 3rd run.

Adam’s sixth run was faultless and he was rewarded with the fastest time of the day. Dan had to settle for 2nd place and Steve Wells stood on the 3rd step of the podium.


Day two at the College car park is a much tighter venue and with many raised curbs there is little room for error and more suited to the smaller more agile cars.

Adam Greenen was starting the day with 5/100th of a second lead and there was only 7/10th of a second separating the top 4 drivers.

Pushing hard Chris Wilson struck one of the unforgiving college curbs and it looked like his day was over and put the car back on the trailer but seeing his championship hopes disappear he unloaded his car to continue competing.

The Greenen family suffered a minor mechanical issue when the boot floor on their classic mini gave up and deposited their battery on the floor

Hope Wallis is a natural behind the wheel of her Ford Fiesta and deserved the flowers presented to her on both days and the fastest lady of the weekend trophy.


Kevin Richardson on his 6th and final run posted the fastest time of the day, however, he only held this position for about 2 minutes as the next car entering the stop box was Dan Morgan with over 6/10th of a second quicker, giving him not only the event win but also the coveted Healey Weekend Turbine trophy. Kevin had to settle for 2nd and Chris Wilson kept his championship title alight by finishing on the 3rd.


This annual fixture is the highlight of the Isle of Wight Car Club’s calendar and we very much look forward to seeing the Austin Healey Club next year again.

The next and final event will be held at Fort Street in Sandown on the 27th of November.

This is a great venue for spectators, so come and see who will clinch the 2016 Sealed Surface championship title.


The new King of Knighton

The last round of the Isle of Wight car club unsealed surface season was held at Knighton sand pit.

Chris Wilson had more points than he needed to be crowned the USS champion of 2016, however, this was not going to stop him from attempting to win all 4 Knighton events of the season.

There are trophies for the overall USS championship as well as for each class. It’s a bit complicated but basically there are 1st, 2nd and 3rd place trophies in each class up for grabs as long as there are enough competitors who have competed in a minimum number of events.

Many of these class trophies had yet to be decided and almost all of the 17 competitors who attended this event were fighting to have their name engraved and immortalised in Isle of Wight car club history.


This amazing venue requires drivers to be able to navigate a mix of terrain, unlike the previous event at Atherfield where times are guaranteed to improve throughout the day. Being an active sand quarry the ground is covered in small stones and this makes the first few runs like driving on an ice rink, on the flip side, the sand sections are smooth and grippy.

However, as the day progresses the stones get brushed away with each car but the sand section becomes slow and rutted.

In class one Steve Glass was trying as hard as he could to stay close to the time posted by Ricky Sheppard, however, Ricky and his Rover 45 seem to have some form of symbiosis as not only was he uncatchable in class 1, he finished 6th place over all.


Class 2 consisted of 2 MX5s driven by 6 drivers, Dean Long is a master of controlling these cars and finished at the top of class 2 and 5th place overall.

Class 3 had Marion and Steve Brett battling against Dan Young in their classic Minis. Dan initially struggled to remember the course but once he knew where he was going there was no stopping him. Dan finished top of class 3 and 8th place overall.

All wheel drive Subaru Imprezas were the weapon of choice in class 4. These cars may have the power and grip but threading these large cars through the cones requires a special kind of driver. Steve wells scuppered his chances by taking too tight a line around one of the sand piles and getting his car that he shares with Jill broomfield stuck, luckily not before Jill posted a time quick enough to clame the fastest lady of the day award. Dan Morgan however kept all 4 wheels on the track and stood on the second step of the podium at the day’s close.


Class 5 is for cars that don’t fit into any of the other classes. Chris Wilson and Andy Williams were sharing their single seater ex Autograss special. All seemed lost when mid-way through the day Chris Wilson launched his special off the start line but instantly broke his throttle cable. To many other competitors this would have meant disaster, however, Andy and Chris know from bitter experience that a good spares package can save the day. Once the spare throttle cable was fitted both were fighting for the top spot. With such quick times on their 5th run, there was no need to go out on their 6th, Andy was content with 3rd place overall and Chris took the top step on the podium.


With Chris winning every round held at this venue this year he truly is the King of Knighton.

Images (apart for the podium) by Allan Marsh