Monday, 16 July 2012

TORCH Summer Series Round 4

The RC gods smiled upon us for once this summer and granted us a decent day on Sunday to go racing.
I took full advantage of this and headed off to TORCH for round 4 of their popular summer series.

The TORCH committee have worked hard over the last year or so to turn this venue into a top notch off road destination for southern buggy racers that now regularly attracts national and even international drivers to darkest Hampshire. This season they have already played hosts to a round of the 2wd drive mid south regionals with a round of 4wd scheduled in a couple of weeks. 

(Click on any pic for full size version)

As has become the norm these days there was a decent turnout for this event, I estimate around 70 drivers.
All were catered for with a wide range of ability across 2 and 4wd classes. There was also a juniors class who were to be rewarded with trophies for their efforts at the end of the day.

At TORCH everyone gets value for money with 4 heats and 3 finals for all, none of this 3 finals for the 'A' drivers but just one for everyone else nonsense!

Rob 'ASBO' Elms was present determined as ever to cause carnage.

James 'lets get ready to' Rumble was aiming to continue his decent run of form.

 John 'Mr Magoo' Clarke was gonna have fun whatever.

Some were less interested!

Kris and Freddie had their own VIP area and if your name wasn't down you weren't coming in!

Terry Streeter taking on some essential racers fuel.

Chris 'DB1' Ellis looking pleased with his performance.

Big G Westwood, one of the men to beat.

M Sadler Senior is starting to worry as M Sadler Junior is nipping at his heels these days.

Matty Butcher, the only man who can challenge Kristian Minter for height, and pretty quick with it, looking very smug about his 'A' main qualifying performance.

The rapid Hatton brothers.

'Rude' Tony Evdoka gives a master class, must be worth a listen?
He must be doing something right because you can't move without tripping over a Kyosho at TORCH these days.

Marcus 'QBall' Askell can be found exploiting his talents off road these days with an SV2.

Kristian M is rockin' a Kyosho now and going pretty quickly. I guess having been through a B44 an SX3 and a Durango 410 in the last year he had to find something he liked in the end.
They all need fixing though!

A bit of a who's who in the 2wd A heat.

My trusty SX3.
I've been struggling with it a little lately so was hoping for a decent day today. Despite not getting a great result, 7th in the B, I was pleased to make some progress and be closer to the pace than I have been of late.

Chris 'OTM' Betts makes an off road guest appearance bringing his engineering expertise to bear on . . . . .

2wd buggy aerodynamics . . . !!?
Yes he did actually race it like this.

The day started damp and didn't dry throughout the 4 rounds of qualifying. Various flavours of tyres were experimented with but most settled on Ballistic greens.

The slippery conditions meant a tricky time for drivers and a busy time for marshals. There were plenty of crashes on the testing jump section under the rostrum.  

Oops, another smashed wing.

A study in concentration.

Discussing tactics.

The track dried out for the finals and most people reverted to the usual tyre of choice at TORCH, Schumacher yellow mini spikes.

Rob 'Hollywood' Rasey provided informative, helpful commentary and ridicule in equal measure throughout the day.
Top work Rob.

Reflecting on the days endeavours. Tears and laughter but good fun and good company.

Despite not being involved I did enjoy watching some really good racing in the A finals, I am embarrassed to admit however that I can't remember who won.
If you want to know a quick visit to the TORCH website HERE will reveal all.

I needed a fun day to bolster my waning enthusiasm and today I had one. The weather was kind, the racing fun, the SX3 much improved, the banter amusing and the company as good as it gets.

The next big meeting at TORCH is round 5 of the summer series on 9th September followed by the buggy fest that will be the LMR GP on the weekend of 22/23 September.

This hobby really is a fickle mistress but today she was a kind one.

Get yourself along for some astro action.

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