Photos: Paul Lawrence
An epic British Hillclimb Championship presented by Avon Tyres 2022 season could be decided at Prescott Hillclimb in the Cotswolds over the weekend of 3rd & 4th September. After an extremely hard fought season the Championship is currently led by reigning BHC Champion Wallace Menzies driving his Gould GR59M – Cosworth XD, by five points from 2015 Champion Alex Summers (Cosworth XD engined DJ Firestorm). The 2022 season has been an absolute classic, with outright records being broken by not only Menzies and Summers but by six time former BHC Champion Scott Moran (Gould GR59 – Judd) and new driver to the big single seater class Matt Ryder (Gould GR59 – Judd). With dropped scores now coming into play, breaking outright records are of vital importance during what remains of the season. Although Wallace’s lead may look healthy, his amazing consistency could just work against him! To add to his points tally Wallace now needs to finish in second place in the run-offs or better while Alex can add to his total by finishing third or better. This brings us back to outright records. So far this season Alex has scored nine ‘bonus’ points for breaking records, while Wallace has eight. This paints an intriguing picture and one that is sure to be exciting to see play out ‘in the flesh’!
Elsewhere in the BHC many battles remain to be resolved over the next couple of events. Although Scott Moran seems certain to finish third overall, the battle for fourth between three times BHC Champion Trevor Willis and rising star Matt Ryder is coming to the boil. Matt’s fabulous outright win at Shelsley last time out shows he is in great form. He will be doing everything that he can over the weekend to bridge the nine point gap back to Trevor. Dave Uren (Gould GR55B) and Richard Spedding (GWR Raptor) are squabbling over sixth and seventh. Both will come into the Prescott weekend determined to perform well and maximise their points scoring. Paul Haimes (Gould GR59 – Hayabusa Turbo) and Dave Warburton (Gould GR59 – Hayabusa) are locked in battle over eighth and ninth. Paul needs a good Prescott weekend to open up a little breathing space, while Dave will no doubt be his spectacular self in trying to deny him! Graham Wynn (Gould GR59 – Judd) will also be trying hard to score the nine points that he needs from the last two events of the 2022 season to secure the final top ten number in tenth.
As the current holder of the outright record at Prescott Wallace comes into the weekend looking most like the favourite. The 2022 season has been full of surprises though and Alex, Scott and maybe Matt will be doing all that they can to deny him.
BHC competitors are joined at all mainland rounds by competitors in the class based BHC Cup, presented by classic car insurance broker Footman James. Competitors in the BHC Cup compete in cars ranging from relatively standard road cars through to sports cars and historic and modern single seaters. After yet another class win at Shelsley Walsh, the Cup is led by Alex Coles (Van Diemen FF86). Alex could in-fact secure the Cup this weekend, and with two class wins at the opening round of the Cup at Prescott back in April things are looking very good. Second place Richard Spedding (GWR Raptor 2) and third place Johnathen Varley (GWR Predator) will however be looking to take advantage of any slip up that may occur!
An added attraction at Prescott will be a fly-past by a World War Two Lancaster bomber from the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight. This is sure to be a glorious sight when it makes its scheduled appearance at 15.12 on the Saturday.
So, if you can make it to Prescott be there, its sure to be a fabulous weekend of top class Hillclimbing! Advance tickets can be purchased on the button below.