Newsletter March, 2012


New Member:

May I welcome a new member into our ranks.  He is Alex Brown from Stenton, East Lothian.  Alex was one of the speed fraternity and he is still competing in hill climbs.  Details can be found on his page.

Ian Loudon Cox

Following the January Newsletter, Johnstone Syer emailed me that he was told by a former employee of Ian Loudon Cox that Ian had died recently.  Although not a member, I’m sure many of the Veterans will remember Iain on many rallies, sprints, driving tests and races.  Johnstone and Bill Syer both co-drove for him, and Ian and Johnstone did the 1963 Monte together in Johnstone’s frog-eyed Sprite.
Ian lived in Cyprus for at least 20 years and he had got in touch with Johnstone on hearing of Bill death as the two of them were big mates at one time.   Ian had visited Johnstone later last year along with his brother, Graeme, a former Sheriff of Dundee. and they had a long stroll down memory lane.  Apparently, he came over to the UK to visit at Christmas, caught a bug which turned into pneumonia and died in the Edinburgh Royal Infirmary.

Database Changes:

Bill Barr, Marion Hopkins and Doug Niven have all got new email addresses.  Each of these changes can be found in the Members and Details section.

Tom MacMillan, Secretary of the Bo’ness Hill Climb Revival has updated his page – motorsport career and lots of pictures.

The 2012 Monte Carlo Historique Rally – Sunday 29th January – update:

It was a really drench Sunday evening when the cars left the start ramp from Clydebank.  The organisation of the start was again under the capable hands of members of the Caledonian Classic & Historic Motorsport Club (a few of whom are members of VSMA).  The more public of these was David Ross who gave a running commentary on both the front-running 12 entrants and those following the Monte Starters to Dumfries and those on the much gentler run to Drymen!  Mairi and I were in the latter group along with Jimmy Rae, both in MGBs.  I did say gentler but our route was spoiled by the numerous potholes along the whole route.
One of the Official cars going to Monte Carlo belonged to member Derek Palmer.  Derek’s car, a 1979 Porsche 924 turbo,  was one of the few Monte entries which started from Clydebank.  He felt that those from Glasgow were at somewhat of a disadvantage compared to the Rheims starters as it was an immense challenge.  His Porsche driven by his friend Rick Pearson (who now lives in Nice) and Stuart Pringle (Manager at the BRDC at Silverstone) in the co-drivers seat.  He felt it was tropical in Clydebank, compared to France, 18 below and a gale blowing at Valence, even Monaco was only 1 degree above, chilly.!  They finished with little damage, but the car park at Monte apparently looked like a scrap yard!  Four of the Glasgow starters retired due to mechanical problems, and only two finished with no penalties.  The Porsche was one of them along with Ralph Forbes and Wesley Massam in a 1978 Fiat 128.

Ian Townsend’s Wilson Lotus  – Chassis No. JMYWT1 – Update: Further to last month’s piece about Ian Townsend’s search for information on his Lotus Shell, David Ross was able to pass on some information.  Tim Wilson, who had the Nine Mile Burn Garage south of  Edinburgh and got the legendary Jo Marquart to design the Wilson for him.  The car was subsequently owned by Alastair Macintosh had who raced a TVR along with David’s own Ford Anglia Allardette 1500 and then the Wilson, thereafter a Mallock.  David Ross has unearthed a couple of pics of the said car which he took at Rufforth.  It’s Alastair working on the engine.

Alastair Macintosh’ Lotus at Rufford.
Alastair working on the engine.

Flower of Scotland: Not a tribute to what has become almost our sporting National Anthem, but a tribute to one of our members, Derek Palmer,SNR and his company Speed Scotland.  They have been the force behind the attempt to break the World Land Speed Record in their 1litre Supercharged Class, “Flower of Scotland” Streamliner.  Already they have been twice to the Bonneville salt flats in Utah, USA, the last occasion being in August 2011 at the Bonneville Speed Week. The record in their Class stands at 313mph and they managed 265mph before mechanical problems stopped further attempts last year, but they are pretty sure they can break this record!  If your interested in taking up this great offer of BHCR membership I have attached a PDF Membership Form.  Have a look at their web page which gives more information on the forthcoming Hill Climb and what you can look forward to.

Spring Run Friday 20th to Sunday 22nd April : 

Have you sent in your entry to Bob Baillie yet?  Bob has laid down a route down to Stranraer from the Clyde Valley with many familiar rally roads included. As usual, he has laid on entertainment for the evenings and places to visit on the Saturday and Sunday.   The weekend headquarters will be at The North West Castle Hotel in Stranraer.  The extremely good rates are per person for dinner, B & B – for two nights £109; for three nights £157.50 and for four nights £198.   Remember first come first served!

5th Bo’ness Hill Climb Revival, 8th and 9th September 2012:

Although quite a few months off yet, we thought you should know that the BHCR have kindly offered the VSMA to “pitch their tent” at this prestigious event, where members will be able to drop in for a chat, a seat and perhaps a refreshment.  Not only that but they have generously offered our members, if they are interested, to join their organisation at reduced rates. For VSMA members the following benefits would include –

 Members Only Enamel Lapel Pin Badge
 Members Only Windscreen Sticker
 BHCR Coaster
 BHCR Tax Disc Holder
 Ron Flockhart Postcard/Notelet (pack of 5)
Free spectator entry to the Revival Meetings on production of your Membership Card
 Membership of an MSA and SACU approved club with membership card
 A quarterly Newsletter available only to members and not available on the BHCR website
 A copy of the annual full colour 16 page souvenir photo-book of the Revival Meeting
 2 BHCR window stickers advertising the 2012 Revival meeting
 A reduction of £5 from the entry fee for each of the hill climbs (£10)
 The opportunity to assist the club up to and during the 2012 Revival Meeting
 Your Membership Fee helps to maintain, support and improve the oldest Scottish Motor        Racing venue.

If your interested in taking up this great offer of BHCR membership I have attached a PDF Membership Form.  Have a look at their web page which gives more information on the forthcoming Hill Climb and what you can look forward to.

BHCR Membership Application Form


Those of you who attended our first Reunion in 2001 in the R.S.A.C. building I’m sure will remember Ken Fraser sitting at a table displaying memorabilia of his previous rally exploits. Well, Ken has kindly lent the Association the photograph albums. and other bits and pieces which he had displayed at our first Reunion in the R.S.A.C. in 2001.  These have been scanned and can, for the moment, be viewed in the “Tales from the Past” section. They show interesting images of his rallies in the fifties, together with PDFs of some documents which can be viewed when downloaded.  One of the 1958 Scottish Rally programmes includes names of several of competitors who are now VSMA members.!

Finally, “Honking at Old  People! “:

You may well have seen this video but it is worth a look.  I can guarantee you will watch it at least twice! A lady was videotaping her son riding a skateboard when her attention switched to an old woman trying to cross the street. You can hear the lady who is doing the taping giggling as she records the event.  Open this attachment from YouTube which you may have seen before  ….. It’s a quick one …. Aren’t airbags just great!

That’s all folks………………. !                                                      

 Stuart Parker,  March 2012

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