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 Oddicombe Hillclimb
March 15th 1987
1987 Shell Oils ASWMC Hillclimb Championship
Round One
Kevitt's South Western Opener
The Oddicombe Hillclimb has been run by the Tobay Motor Club regularly since 1961 and such was the case on March 15th when 84 competitors lined up for the first round of the 1987 Shell Oils ASWMC Hillclimb Championship. The Skipper-Vauxhall sponsored event utilised the very steep and twisty climb up the cliffside adjacent to the cliff railway. A picturesque setting, but there was one man who had no time to admire the scenery.  He was the then current hill record holder at the Devonshire venue, Cornishman Kevitt Payne. The Ensgn F3 driver, as usual, put in two excellent runs, his first climb requiring just 36.54secs and the second even quicker, at 36.10s to take best time of the day.

The class battles were as close as ever, starting with the up to 1300cc road cars, where the very quick Clan Crusader of Roy Sims took the section honours as expected. Two great runs by hillclimb newcomer Dean Vowden in his 1275cc MG Midget posed a real threat to the regular campaigners and resulted in his taking a well-earned second place ahead of the interesting Cox GTM of MIke Brend.

In Class 2 (road cars 1301 to 1800cc) the normally speedy Brian Gurney was dogged with bad luck. During practice his Davrian broke a CV joint and this was repaired in time for the competitive runs, only for the diff. to fail on the first run - Brian's challenge was over. This left the way clear for Tony Wiltshire to take the honours with his very tidy Lotus Elan, while another newcomer in the form of Andy Rice (Dutton 'B') made his presence felt, taking the runner-up spot ahead of Andrew Pegg's Europa.

The largest capacity road car group fell to the rally-prepared 2 litre Escort of Terry Rook, ahead of stalwart South Western campaigner John Turpin who finished a close second with his Porsche Carrera. Third place was hotly contested between two equally immaculate 2.3 Chevettes of David Bradburn and Dave Harris; the sparring pair finally finishing in that order with just 0.17secs separating them.

Mike Lee collected the trophy in class 4 (special saloons up to 1300cc), the division attracting just 3 entries plus a couple of cars which were transferred from the day's opening class. Mike's well-known and unique Nike Imp screamed its way up the hill, completing the 850 yard climb in just under 40 secs, a good opening to the season for the Saltash driver.

The over 1300cc special saloon car class fell to the consistently quick Roy Bray, who posted  a fine sub 40sec climb to hold almost 4secs in hand over his nearest rival, the Mini-mounted Richard Matossian. Amongst the small section of modified and limited production sports cars, it came as no surprise to see the reigning ASWMC champion, Jonathan Williamson, starting the season as he had left off in 1986. Jonathan, in the Parks of Exeter Porsche Carrera Sport, now enlarged to 3.2 litres, commenced the defence of his title in fine style, only just failing to break 39secs, showing that he would not surrender his mantle without a fight.

The clubmans and sports racing car division produced a fine start to the year for John Forsythe who powered his Mallock U2 Mk20 to victory in just over 40secs, while in the small racing car category the protaganists were faced with a real problem.  Relative newcomer Andrew Hale's little 350cc Halo Jedi ruffled a few feathers on its way to a well deserved class win. Class 11 contained the largest capacity single seaters allowed at Oddicmbe and with the elevation of Kevitt Payne to the top of the rostrum following his two storming climbs, the class trophy went to Steve Lydon and his home-built Virago DS2. A challenge had been expected from the usually rapid John Lloyd, but unfortunately his campaign was thwarted by engine problems.

The final class of the day was reserved for drivers of the T.R. Register and produced a grandstand finish to the well supported event as Nick Morgan.s TR6 was able to get the better of Lorna Rice's similar machine by just 0.07secs.
BTD     Kevitt Payne 1.6 Ensign LNF3 Holbay
Class Winnners
Roy Sims  1.0 Clan Crusader
Tony Wiltshire  1.6 Lotus Elan 
Terry Rook  2.0 Escort Mk1
Mike Lee 1.3 Nike Imp BDH
LeRoy Bray  2.0 Ford Escort Mk1 
Jonathan Williamson 3.2 Porsche 911 Carrera
John Forsythe  1.6 Mallock U2 Mk22 Ford
Andrew Hale 0.4 Halo Jedi
Steve Lydon 1.6 Virago DS2 TC
Nick Morgan 2.5 Triumph TR6

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