L7C Hants (North) & Berks - Autumn 2003 & Winter 2004

What everyone's up to over the winter. By Steve Foster.

Firstly, sorry for not having been so diligent with the upkeep of these reports during the autumn.

The summer was long and glorious. I made good use of it blatting when I could as did many other club members. Blatchat was used for several impromptu area gatherings and blats. All fine without the need to involve the MSA if the number is no more than 12 cars of course.

The management of the Phoenix Inn has changed hands. The car park is getting a little worse for wear. Some deep potholes are appearing so watch out for these. The pub is getting smokier and the staff more critical of our only drinking soft drinks. Not sure why on the latter, as I thought soft drinks had a huge mark up.

I am considering moving the 2nd Weds meet to another pub. Leaving the last Thurs meet at the Phoenix of course. I will canvas members on this and let you know of the results. A suitable alternative will be evaluated. This may only be for the winters and revert back to the Phoenix in summer. However that could cause confusion and folk going to the wrong place.

Some members also voiced an interest in having the winter meets on a Sunday lunchtime. The benefits would be a chance to meet in the daylight. The chance of more 7's attending. The opinion of members varies on this one. Some get no free time on the weekends due to family commitments, others are busy with upgrade-itus. So split views. We will leave things as they are for the time being.

So what of our regulars? This is a summary as I see it.

Kev Sull: The only man I know to have two half shaft boots go at the same time. An inner and an outer! Then the squealing clutch thrust bearing degenerated and the engine had to come out. Pre-load (or lack of it) on the thrust bearing could be the culprit. Kev also reluctantly (initially) volunteered to do the Xmas quiz and then started fighting with Eric over who should do it. Happily they were joint quiz meisters.

Martin: Also clutch probs. Could be all that doughnutting. Engine out new one in all sorted.

Jason: Several problems and the joys of CR500's... water rail leak, spongy brakes after a track day and then finally the bottom end gave up, probably due to oil starvation. Now a newer 2nd hand 1.8 is procured and the gearbox ratios are to be breathed on by BGH.

Phil: Blatting, liking the power and grip. Even lets the wife drive it :-)

Nigel: Moved area again. Back to native Cambridgeshire so we don't see much of him these days.

David: Wants a roll bar change or refurb.

Rory: Had a de Dion tube fail at Spa on qualifying laps. Fortunately they normally go progressively so you know something is not right and check them out, rather than instantly into the boonies catastrophic failure. There is now a belt and braces (read thick and heavy) de Dion tube available from Caterham.

Simon: New Zetec was put in for the yr. Problems with the cam not being right and work commitments have meant that he did not race as much as he would have liked to. Not been to a meet all year but I hope he can make the Xmas do...

Ben: Had an SL. Started a Newbury meet and sold the car in lieu of getting something even vroomier.

Dennis: An oil drip caused much worry. It's a Cross Flow, they normally leak like the proverbial was the response from us... Dennis took the barman out for a pleasant drive. He liked it.

Andy: Took the barman out and he came back white as a sheet and staggered back to the bar!

Barry and Flo: The car came out on some evenings when I thought it might rain so full marks :-)

Ray: Blatting about. Now the treasurer of the club.

Tony W: Last seen overtaking me in my tin top on the A30 :-)

Xmas Meal

We had over 30 for the area Xmas dinner. Many thanks to Eric and Kev for organising the quiz and raising £75 for NTL. I got a very nice letter from NTL thanking us for our efforts. Any volunteers for this years quiz?

During the winter I have been blatting about when the salt is washed off road and am now thinking; new road wheels and tyres, new de Dion tube and planning my first race of the 2004 season.

Steve Foster

This page is http://www.strangely.org/7club/meetings/200401/index.html. It was first published on Thursday 22 January, 2004 and last updated on Wednesday 23 June, 2004.