Shoe Box Racing evening.
It was standing room only at the 6th running of the Lincs Group, IGSBRA Shoe Box Grand Prix, held again in our “Stable Block” club room of the George Hotel, Leadenham.
We were honoured by the presence of our Chairman, Chris Garner and his First Lady, who joined 56 spectators to watch a grid of 16 Shoe Box racers, assembled to do battle on the slope.
Scrutineering was, as usual interesting, with some “iffy” interpretations of the Regs submitted, one entry had to leave off the lid to meet the weight requirements, but one of the novice entries weighed in at only 8.5 ozs, until it was pointed out that this would be disadvantageous to his efforts and we managed to “load him up” with reels of tape and loose change. Regretfully, one contestant was even permitted to start with rear wheels constructed from UB 40 45rpm records, very poor taste, but quite legal.
As scrutineering progressed to completion, tension levels soared and a hush settled on the room as the first racer on the slope was prepared by the Start Crew for launch. As one of 3 novice entries at the event, it was also the largest ever to take to the slope and was more a Boot Box and struggled to fit on the ramp, however, it was still compliant in every way ( note to self, must put a top limit on size in the Regs). Based loosely on a Ruby, David Robinson’s entry “Lincs Latest” had had to employ a replacement driver at the last minute because of a “fracas” in the Toy Box, but performed splendidly on its first outing. Cliff Ringrose, had very sportingly decided to retire his all conquering “Easy Peasy”, but “Easy Peasy 2” suffered prototype anti rollback issues and was eliminated early in the proceedings, in fact 7 racers failed to reach the finish line on the first run. One of these early victims was “Bruce’s Bomber” entered by Bruce Robinson, who had installed a prototype Bar Maid sensing device in the nose cone, unfortunately, after the final painting of the racer last week; Bruce had left it outside in the sun to dry and forgot it. It rained heavily, consequently, the last few days of preparation comprised baking in the airing cupboard to dry out the cardboard in order to meet the 14oz weight limit.
After progressively reducing the ramp height six times, 3 racers lined up for the final run and the “TT Manx” of Dennis Bingham, after 3 years of trying, was the clear victor of the Main Event, clearing the finish line and on to the run-off carpet in front of the bar. Second place, 12inches short of the finish was “Frogeye Rod” of Rodney Smith and less than an 1/2inch behind him was the ubiquitous Stuart Ulph and his Rolls Royce recovery racer, ”Brooklands Blown”.
Andy Storer, our racing car designer, was Judge for the Technical Award and based only on innovative interpretation of the Regs, he gave it to Bruce Robinson’s efforts, to the owner’s evident delight, second was Christine Duggleby and Chris’s Cracker .
Throughout the evening, the spectators were invited to vote for the racer they would most like to take home, our version of a Concourse d’Elegance, and with such a fantastic array of modelling talent on display, it was “Bea’s Belter” entered by Brenda Johnson who was chosen and as a veteran of every event so far, a vindication for persistence, resulting in an emotional acceptance speech after the award. A very close second again, was Christine Duggleby, with her beautiful 1 tenth scale Short wheelbase saloon and Peter Davis, whose model of a Type AD 2.5 cwt van, was one point behind in 3rd.
The racer judged by the spectators to have provided the most entertainment throughout the evening was Rodney Smith and his entry, “Frogeye Rod”, with Paddy Malone and Chummy Chaser 2nd and Bruce Robinson’s Bomber 3 rd.
Representation from the Mid Lincs Rover Club attended and suggested an inter club challenge match for next year, so watch this space.
It involves a lot of effort to run an event of his type and I would like to thank the Team who made it all possible, you know who you are, so a big thank- you from me.
The Line up of shoeboxes The Winner Dennis Bingham