1993 Rallycross Review

Filed under: Classic News |
Three British drivers have had a tough year in Europe in 1993. The 1992 European Champion, Will Gollop, debuted his new Peugeot 309 and has had mixed results, having experienced teething and engine problems. Pat Doran was runner-up in the European Championship last year, the big man from Milstead has suffered more bad luck than anyone else this year but still managed to come through as the top British Division Two driver with 8th in the European Championship. Finally, it's all credit to one of the youngest drivers, Richard Hutton, who competed his first season in Europe and finished an outstanding 3rd overall in Division One. Will Gollop Will GollopGollop's switch to the all-new Silkolene backed Peugeot 309 was never destined to be easy. "We started the season late as the new car took longer to completed than anticipated. That meant we didn't get a proper test under out belt and the opening round at Lydden proved to be a blessing. Then we had to miss Austria whilst awaiting parts and Portugal became the first round of the year for us. I finished 7th overall despite suffering throttle lag and rolling the car in practice!" "In France the engine blew up in practice which mean a speedy return home to rebuild it for the following weekend in Ireland, we eventually finished 3rd at Mondello Park" I thought this must be an upturn in fortunes, but not so. In Sweden at the beginning of July, the engine blew up yet again and this time there was no choice but to miss Finland, the following weekend and the Internations Cup just after." "In mid-August we went to Arendonk in Belgium, where I managed a 'B' Final finish amidst fuel-related problems. A week later in Holland, things seemed to be picking up again and I finished 4th with the car running well in the very wet and the dry." "The final two rounds of the championship in Norway and Germany also yielded 'B' Final finishes to complete our worst season in Europe!" Pat Doran Pat DoranDoran was also a late starter to the European season and it was not until Loheac in France that he showed up. The all-new Ford Escort Cosworth was bearing allegiance to new sponsor, Panasonic Batteries and took to the track in anger with a 3rd place. "It was a brilliant result for a new car. I was really pleased but the good performance didn't continue in Ireland the following weekend - the engine blew up and the car caught fire!" "We went to Sweden and I finished 5th in the 'A' Final. I was the highest placed Brit and the first non-Swede! In Finland I was 3rd and again top Brit." "The car went well in the Inter Nations Cup, in which Britain finished 2nd. The Belgian round, however, was a disaster and I could only manage second in the 'C' Final. Holland the following weekend, wasn't much better - I was assaulted in practice by a Saab which tripped me up straight into the banking after a triple end over roll!" "It was an all-nighter trying to put to put the car right and although we straightened it fairly well, the handling was abysmal and it was a 'C' Final second again." "The penultimate round was in Norway and I could have won but was taken off on the last lap of the third heat, which sent me into the banking." "Again, there was more hard work to get the car ready for the 'A' Final in which I finished 5th. It wasn't a good year for me in Europe but I hoped that the final round in Germany would have been better - it probably would have been if Iversen hadn't taken me out in the 'B' Final!" "This season has cost me a fortune. I was developing a car and at times it was so close and then one bit of trouble and you were nowhere. At least I've tried and finished on the podium more than any other British driver. It's been a lot of hard work - I'm glad it's over! " Richard Hutton Richard HuttonOf the three British heroes, young Richard Hutton certainly did the best in Europe with three victories in Division One. His performances are even more commendable since the Essex driver was in his first season in Europe. "I couldn't have asked for a better first year in Europe. Our main problem was the gearbox. "In Austria, I was nervous but did ok in the heats. In the final, I was black flagged when I went so wide so I ended up 6th. However we made amends in Portugal, it was an easy win as everyone else had a new car with all the teething problems" "It was the same again in France; an easy victory despite the front and rear differentials blowing. By comparison, Ireland was not quite so good. I took fastest time in the first heat, was excluded from the second heat and then got a puncture in the third heat. That qualified me for the 'B' Final, which I won and in the 'A' Final, I finished 4th." "By the time we got to Sweden, the other drivers were far more competitive. I had gearbox problems and finished 4th. Gearbox troubles again dominated Finland, where I qualified 2nd in the 'A' Final. I was then leading the final - after only two hours sleep having worked on the car most of the night - until I got a puncture and finished 3rd." "In Belgium I broke a gearbox on Saturday but still managed to qualify 2nd for the 'A' Final and finish up with victory. In Holland the following weekend, I had two good runs and qualified on pole but in the wet conditions, the washers packed up and I hit a concrete wall and broke the steering arm but I was still classified 5th. In Norway, I actually held the fastest time of the day for a while until Ludvig Hunsbedt beat it. In the third heat I got a puncture and that put me 3rd on the grid for the 'A' Final, in which I finished 2nd on a demanding circuit!" "Germany was simply a disaster! During the second heat I has a coming together with Opland and accidentally hit the 'off' switch killing the engine. I ended up with pole position in the 'B' Final but I didn't finish. One of the highlights of the year was being in the British team in the Inter Nations Cup - you could say everything went right for a change, I won all my heats and the final!" "Most of the other drivers competing in Europe also race in their domestic series too, but I didn't have the money to do that. The only other event I took part in was the final round of the British series at Brands in October where I finished 3rd." "I've had backing from Slider 2000 this year and help from Ford Motor Company's Dunton test facility but if it wasn't for my Dad, Terry, and the TR Hutton Accident Repair Centre, I wouldn't be out there at all."Tags:, ,