Tuesday 27 February 2024

Sunday 28th January. The Essex winter rally.

 The Triumph finally came out to play today as it was booked on a Club Triumph 12 car rally. Good friend Richard Warr had arrived the day before and was playing the role of my navigator. We had a few drinks on the Saturday night, but not too many as I had to drive and Richard had to concentrate on the maps. 

The start was at D's Diner at Hatfield Peverel and after some breakfast we plotted our route from the first set of clues and got going. 

We encountered some seriously muddy roads and also some very deep Fords. One of them left me with water coming out through my centre console! We reached the first check point and were surprised to learn we were the first car to arrive. All was going to plan and we thought that we were doing well, but on opening the envelope for the last set of clues, nothing was making sense. We lost a lot of time trying to make the clues fit the map, but we just couldn't get it. We even tried working backwards from where we thought the finish would be, but none of it was coming together. (The organisers had decided to not tell us the name of the pub where we were finishing, only that it was a pub in Hatfield Peverel-There's about five pubs in Hatfield Peverel!)
Feeling deflated, we picked a route that we 'thought' might be right and headed back to Hatfield Peverel to look for a pub that had other Triumphs in the car park. 
Once we arrived at the pub, we discovered that the first clue on the instructions for the last section were wrong and two digits and been printed the wrong way round! No wonder we couldn't make it work! Apparently, one of the other crews had managed to guess that it was wrong and plotted the correct route. (Hmm......) They also ended up winning. 

The results were announced and we had finished a lowly 6th place out 8 starters. Although we'd had a good weekend Richard and I have decided we're not going to bother with anymore Club Triumph 12 car rallies. These are supposed to be fun days out, but we just seem to come home feeling deflated and frustrated. There seems to have been a lot of 'mistakes' that affect the results over the years and twice in the past ten years, me and a navigator have won or been placed highly, only for the results to be changed on the Monday night and our position demoted. It's got to the stage where we feel that we the fun has gone out of it now, so it's time to give it a rest. 

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