Last event of the UK season at Whittlebury, Silverstone


This was the first UK event for the new craft to be competing rather than testing, and it was a brand new venue. You don’t see on google maps, but when we arrived it turned out most of the course was on a fairly steep hill! Hovercraft tend to drift down the contours and accelerate very fast downhill! This was going to be interesting… As we were next to Silverstone we could hear the 24 hour Britcar racing going on all weekend, and on the Saturday there some flying displays put on for the event!

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I managed to get a few laps in practice, but as the electronic lap timing was not in use at this event the initial grid places were based on the seasons standings. This was useless for me as i had only been to a few other UK events this season. I started from the back of a very tight, crowded grid and managed to get into about 6th place by the water entrance- the grid was on the apex of a hill that went straight down into the water, lots of craft getting airborne! I managed to get to 4th place after a few laps but then the back-markers started coming thick and fast (there was a very large grid of about 20+ craft including the slightly slower F35 craft). Because of this there was lots of close racing and i did make one bad decision and hit Chris at one point- sorry mate! Going through back-markers was great fun and had its advantages in that the guy in front could be held up by one giving you a gap to squeeze through. This was how i managed to take third place in the final lap, getting a good line coming off the water.

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In the second race i started on the front row of the gris and managed to out drag everyone at the start and get into 1st place until the second lap where i had the craft on its side on the hill and went back into 4th place which is where i finished- one of the best races i ever competed in so far with positions changing most laps and lots of close racing.

On Sunday i started in 4th spot on the grid, still at the front and managed to get into 2nd of the line behind Tony. I managed to keep Jamie and Dave behind me for a few laps but Jamie got me on the inside on the hill. With Dave right behind me i accidently got the craft pointing skyward again, managed to get it back down again, but couldn’t avoid the crash netting where i had to turn the craft around to get back on the track. After taking the last few laps very tentatively i finished 3rd because Jamie didn’t finish.

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For the last race of the season i was sitting in 4th place on the grid, i was like the worlds again, i could get third place trophy if i beat Tony and came 2nd… I managed to get away in second again, behind Tony who i couldn’t quite catch until he got caught behind a back marker when i got through a gap… Dave was having problems so was not in the race which made it easier to get me into second place. Jamie had overtaken both of us at some point in his 100hp storm craft so i was lying in second, i just needed to finish the race… Then somehow i pulled my lanyard off and was left dead at the side of the track, i re-started as quickly as possible but Tony had got me by then and i finished 3rd!

Another great weekend with the new craft at a great new venue, and again i was just short of the trophies..! There is plenty in store for next year though, which should increase the craft’s performance (although most of the problem is the driving!) The craft will be completely stripped and looked at and hopefully it will have some tuned engines and a stator for the thrust duct to increase thrust, more on this later.

Posted in: Racing Diary on September 20th by admin


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