View Full Version : Auto Italia Stanford Hall

07-06-2009, 05:54 PM
I've put this in the Nova chat thread because I didn't get there :cry:

I set off on the 135-odd mile journey to Stanford Hall in Leicestershire just after 7am this morning, put 40 litres of fuel in the tank and pointed the nose North... Passed a few Porkers and a Fezza 599 heading for Goodwood (Supercar Sunday), and there was bright sunshine all the way to Guildford. Onto the M25 and its looking more ominous, but still not raining. Spray everywhere though - some serious rainfall has come through overnight.

Then I hit it - torrential rain from Chorleywood onwards. The heater valve is off, but I get a bit of heat bleeding through into the demister channels - open up the flaps and its OK - for a while. Onto the M1 and things are getting really bad - there's been a huge smash on the Southbound carriageway and its all closed off. Traffic is really heavy Northbound and I can't see for spray.

But worse is to come - I try and pull out to overtake a slower car and I find that my foot is flat to the floor! I'd assumed that the rain and spray would slow me up a bit, but not to this extent. I pull of at Toddington services and consider my options. The rain hammers down...

I decide to press on - maybe the rain will abate a bit and allow me to make better progress. I switch on the heater valve and try and clear the side windows with a chammy - the screen stays reasonably clear while on the move, but joining the motorway is still fun - the telecam coverglass is misty with spray and some people are still driving without lights!

Its no good - I'm down to 50 mph in 5th and there's no more throttle travel. I pull into Newport Pagnall services and look at the road atlas. My best bet is to carry on North to junction 15A and pick up the A43, which heads Southwest across to the M40. From there I can head South, pick up the A34 and get back home via Oxford to Winchester and then across on the A272 back to Petersfield. All the time with only part throttle...

And that's what I did. Fortunately the rain stopped as I headed past Towcester, and there was bright sunshine virtually all the way home. I finally got back just after midday, after 5 hours of virtually non-stop driving and 230 miles. It was, without doubt, the most atrocious conditions I have ever witnessed at the wheel of the Nova.

To cap it all the sun came out at Stanford Hall in the afternoon and everyone that went had a great time. I on the other hand missed Auto Italia, the Goodwood Breakfast Club and the Butser Hill Autojumble and Classic Car show, all in one fail swoop :annoyed:

I guess the weather wasn't too bad for the Kit Car London to Brighton run either. Wasn't Kevin (Nova ICE) running in it this year?

So that was my day out :zipped:


PS - the reason for the part throttle operation was a fluid leak in my hydraulic throttle master cylinder. Fortunately I found the problem which was a loose union at the bleed valve letting the fluid out and allowing the pedal to slowly sink to the floor. Lots of motorway miles helped to exacerbate the problem. Still, no harm done :confused1:

08-06-2009, 02:49 AM
Damn!! That sucks Lauren. At least you located the problem and fixed it. Still, no consolation for missing out.


08-06-2009, 11:30 AM
Thanks Cyco. I reached for the stars and fell short :bye2:

Should have set my sights lower and gone to Goodwood instead - the weather was fine and there was a good turn out by all accounts. I'm also hearing Stanford Hall was OK in the afternoon which compounds my misery. Still, it was an interesting experience - when I pulled into Newport Pagnall services there was steam billowing out of the nostrils as the rainwater evaporated off the hot radiator, and looking through the back window showed as much steam again issuing out from under the louvres. It was quite a sight.

And I was also pleased at the lack of aquaplaning, even with so much standing water - and this is at speeds of 60-65mph. So the asymmetric tread on the tyres is doing its job.

Stanford Hall is a bit of a jinxed show for me. 2 years ago I had "Incident #3" at the Devil's Punch Bowl on the way to this event, last year I had the jellyfish attack less than a mile from the event (and worried all day and all the way home that there would be another attack), and now this :cry:

I think next year if there is a clash of events I'll deliberately choose something else :D

Any news from the Kit Car London 2 Brighton?


09-06-2009, 12:46 PM
Any news from the Kit Car London 2 Brighton?

Looks like Kevin made it as his car has just been tagged on flikr from the event,

http://www.flickr.com/photos/peters-bmw ... 608656006/ (http://www.flickr.com/photos/peters-bmwmarlin/3608656006/)

09-06-2009, 05:46 PM
Great! - looks like the weather held out in Brighton as well.

I really threw it away trying for Auto Italia, didn't I? :stupid:

Still, a faulty throttle would have been even less fun on a Tulip-style run so perhaps its better this way :wink: