Loton Park Results 120714

Loton Park 12th &13th July 2014


At 1475 yards Loton is second only to Harewood in length of the hills we visit. It has both up and down sections, tight and open corners as well as unsighted bends, including the challenging final one, Museum. It also has plenty of local wildlife, as Finlay and I saw during a walk of the course early on the Friday evening – an unconcerned young badger and a couple of deer near the appropriately named Fallow corner towards the finish line. Fallow also gives the drivers awaiting the return run plenty of entertainment by way of smoking tyres, trips onto the grass and near spins, as it comes at the end of the fastest part of the course.

Blessed with a sunny day there were ten drivers and cars, eight 500’s and the v-twins of Charles Reynolds and Tom Cowley. Steve Powell had brought his long term project, a Cooper Mk VI, unusual in that it is powered by a BSA Gold Star motor. Xavier Kingsland was out for the first time with his new hillclimb mount, another Cooper Mk 5 fitted with a JAP. For both, the meeting was a means of getting to know the car and finding out what jobs were going to be needed.

The first run revealed a few teething problems to be sorted and thought about. Fin’s rev counter did not want to go much past 2000rpm, Xavier was experiencing lots of vibration and poor performance, but this was his first outing not using Norton power, and nothing could be found wrong. Steve’s engine had an unexplained rattle which collected brains diagnosed as lack of oil to the valve gear, priming sorted this out.

The second run was better and all but Xavier made it to the top, the car cutting out for no apparent reason. Alistair entertained the marshals with a quick pirouette and Mike made more smoke signals at Fallow.

Timed runs
After some gentle fettling over lunch all the cars set of with purpose and most improved on practice. Xavier discovered the vibration and apparent lack of power was caused by the pedal position and not getting full throttle travel. By changing his foot position a little, the last run showed an over 2 second improvement.

On the second run, times in the main got better. The v-twins were enjoying the opportunity to stretch their legs on the long Cedar Straight but poor Tom broke a drive shaft on the last run. Fortunately John Dent was able to come to the rescue with a spare that was fitted after the meeting closed but in time for the Sunday event.

In preparation for the next day John felt things could be better and made adjustments to the fuel pipes whilst Alistair wanted to try a development engine and Mike changed his engine sprocket. With the prospect of some overnight rain those cars staying for the Sunday event were well wrapped up and fingers were crossed it would be another dry day.


Pos Name Car Run 1 Run 2 Best

Invitation: Tom Cowley -  Cooper Mk VI -JAP 66.42
Charles Reynolds - Cooper Mk VII-JAP 66.91

Words and pics by Mike Wood

1 Alistair Dent Cooper Mk VI-JAP 67.56 68.55 67.56
2 Finlay Mackintosh Cooper Mk VI-JAP 67.95 68.67 67.97
3 John Dent Cooper Mk VIII-JAP 72.15 70.24 70.24
4 Mike Wood CBP-JAP 76.11 73.93 73.93
5 Xavier Kingsland Cooper Mk V-JAP 76.25 74.19 74.19
6 Ted Sharpe Cooper Mk IV-JAP 80.98 81.45 80.98
7 Tim Ross Cooper Mk IX-Norton 82.73 86.60 82.73
8 Steve Powell Cooper Mk VI-BSA 97.82 96.92 96.92

Peter, putting some manners on the old man.....


The day dawned very bright but overcast after overnight rain. The hill was damp but as we were batch 5 there was plenty of time for things to dry, which they did. We were joined by Jan with his Staride, and father and son Richard and Peter de la Roche with the Mark 5 Cooper. Xavier found an oil union to the pump had leaked out around half the tank contents. The repair proved taxing and would need to be looked at again once he got home.

The first run threw up a few issues but thankfully nothing serious. Equipe de la Roche Cooper changed the engine sprocket, as did Alistair, who was pleased with the top end power delivery from the fresh engine, but not the low rev performance. Tom Cowley was also relieved his drive shaft replacement performed well.

The second practice run saw a few more gremlins emerge. Xavier had a head bolt strip in the crankcase, Mike had the carb fall off just after Hall corner and Jan threw the primary chain before he could leave the line, but got a re-run. On a positive note, both Richard and Peter recorded very fast times as did Fin.

Timed runs
All except Xavier, who had been forced to scrub, were optimistic for the competition proper and with the exception of Mike were able to lower times set in practice on the first run. The Iota died again on the exit of Keepers with subsequent investigation indicating a failed camshaft. Tom’s bad luck also persisted when part of his gear linkage broke, although he was able to record a time.

The second run was therefore contested by only six drivers, two of which were able to break the 68 second barrier. Star of the day had to be young Peter de la Roche who managed 66.28. Father Richard tried his best to get below 67 but a spin exiting Keepers caused a fail. Peter will obviously be one to watch in the future. The gremlins had a last throw of the dice when the silencer came off Fin’s Cooper, the sudden increase in noise causing him to moderate his pace for fear of damaging his fresh engine following problems at Gurston.

Thus ended another grand day, and with the sun was still shinning and cars now on trailers, we set off home to prepare for hoped for success at either Donington or Shelsley in a weeks’ time.


Pos Name Car Run 1 Run 2 Best

Xavier Kingsland - Cooper Mk V-JAP No runs

Invitation Tom Cowley - Cooper Mk VI-JAP 70.84

1 Peter de la Roche Cooper Mk V-JAP 66.96 66.28 66.28
2 Finlay Mackintosh Cooper VI-JAP 67.33 67.47 67.33
3 Richard de la Roche Cooper Mk V-JAP 67.47 N/T 67.47
4 Jan Nycz Staride-Norton 69.52 68.44 68.44
5 John Dent Cooper Mk VIII-JAP   69.00 69.00
6 Alistair Dent Cooper Mk VI-JAP 69.15 69.07 69.07
7 Mike Wood CBP-JAP N/T    

Finlay Mackintosh took second on both days