Monday, 16 November 2009

What happened next (Part 1.)

So, I’ve been thinking that it’s a bit of a shame that I never chronicled the next stages of my kit car experience. Well, having sold the MNR, several months passed and things looked ‘ok-ish’ at work. It looked like I’d be employed for a while yet. So, I started to look for a new toy to keep me occupied over the summer. Kate and I decided to go and look at an ex-RGB racer in Sussex. As it’s almost an age-away, we booked a cosy pub-slash-B&B so we didn’t need to spend the whole day on the road. About 90minutes into the journey we got a call to say that the car was sold. Dammit! It was then I realised that the Deitling Kit Car show was on the next day fairly close to our intended destination so we decided to press-on and go and see if anything caught my eye there. In summary nothing did. I did however buy one of the kit car rags and had a quick flick through the classifieds. Unbelievably there was a Sylva Striker for sale at an extremely good price… four (yes FOUR) miles from home! Just to emphasise the significance, we don’t live in a great metropolis where hundreds of thousands of people inhabit every square mile. The image below shows the local terrain. It’s green, because it’s essentially a mountain

I rang the guy and arranged to go and see it as soon as possible. Of course, after all that travelling, the car on my door-step was great. A 1600cc x-flow powered Mark II Striker; kit built in 1990 and finally SVA’d and registered by its second owner 17 years later! It makes you wonder how many kits are just sat waiting to be built in peoples’ sheds. Anyway, it was cheap and fun. I proved this by picking it up the following Saturday and driving it straight to Llandow Circuit for an afternoon on-track. It ran faultlessly. I didn’t touch the suspension settings, the oil pressure stayed good and it kept-up with a friend’s much more expensive (and heavy!) Zetec powered Striker. Happy Days.

Perhaps the car’s biggest adventure under my short spell of ownership was the trip that the brunette and I made to the National Kit Car show at Stoneleigh. We managed to get a tent, sleeping bags (lashed to the roll bar) and all sorts of other stuff in the little boot. The weather wasn’t great on the way to the show and it was even worse coming home – I was bloody frozen!

On the subject of poor weather, we also spent a weekend on Anglesey watching the 750MC racing; at least that’s what I think it was. It was so wet it could have been powerboat racing! I hadn’t visited Anglesey Circuit before and was keen to. Despite the weather and one or two bizarre locals (yes, I’m talking to you Restaurant Manager-lady!) we met along the way we had a good time. Problem was, I felt that racing itch again. Big Time.