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Lakes Tour 2009

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    Lakes Tour 2009

    Just back from what proved to be an epic w/e.

    I did a fair bit of car prep. in the last week or 2, normal servicing, bodged a blowing exhaust (gun gum really works), freed off a sticky brake caliper, and cleaned it. I decided to use the alloy wheels instead of the steel ones, as they are a lot lighter, reducing steering effort, and also had new tyres fitted to them. The alloys are the same age as the car btw.

    Packed the car Thursday evening, and borrowed a sat. nav. and was up before 3am Friday (couldn't sleep), and away at 3.50am headed for Dublin Port. I was a bit bothered about Dublin traffic, and as a result cruised through the Mad Cow before 6am, and found myself refuelling in Dublin Port at 6.20am. I checked in and parked up. Heavy rain fell on the way up, and with a full electrical load of headlights, sat nav, and wipers, plus the rear window demister, the charging light came on once or twice. I ignored it.

    The boat (Dublin - Birkenhead 7 hour crossing) wasn't too busy for passenger traffic[img]smileys/lol.gif[/img] I got into my cabin and promptly fell asleep for a few hours. Poor car was left on deck, looking very small:-

    Refreshed, fed, and clean (calm crossing) I did the 84 miles trip up to Heaves Hotel, near Kendal quite rapidly, arriving before 7.30pm.

    The "D.G. Hilton" was erected:-

    I'd forgotten about sleeping in a tent. The upside is it's handy, and pretty comfortable (at 2am hic with an airbed and sleeping bag) but the downside is you get woken by the sun (6am) ouch.

    Saturday was the Lakes Tour proper, and cars left for the 160 miles from 8.30am onwards. 4 of us decided to take up the tail, and it was 11.30am before we got going. I was presented with a set of Rallye Tags (nice touch).

    The flag was deliberate (see later).

    My passenger seat was vacant as my navigator cried off I'll at the last moment, so I got no in car shots (was busy driving) but here a few taken by others along the magnificent route (the green car is an 1957 Anglia 100E running a tuned 2.0 Pinto engine with 180bhp - it was outrageously fast and handled like a roller skate).

    The next shot is taken on one of the roads used by Top Gear for car tests (it's in Yorkshire)

    The MkI Escort is an animal, with massive arches, and a big V8 Rover engine. Well over 200bhp, and the noise of this thing literally scared small children.

    There were very few breakdowns, only 1 very minor accident (1 car reversed into another), but I was getting concerned by an odd noise coimg from the engine which was getting worse all the time. Turned out to be a heatshield that had cracked and was vibrating. Easily fixed by fitting a washer to hold it in place.

    Another big night was had, and I was up at 6.15am yesterday, and had packed up & left before 7am. 8.30am had me refuelled (again) and in back in Birkenhead (sat nav rocks). My return journey was even worse through Belfast (hence the Rallye Tags), but I slept well en route, and got off the boat at 7pm.

    So that's 4 vices you have. Where do you find the time?


      200 BHP in that MKI, wow...looks nice
      \"As she lay there dozing next to me, one voice inside my head kept saying, \'Relax, you\'re not the first doctor to sleep with one of his patients\', but the another kept reminding me, \' you are a veterinarian!\'\"


        I didn't have the pleasure of meeting Norman, but he got well and truly into the spirit
        of the tour.....[img]smileys/lol.gif[/img]


          [img]smileys/lol.gif[/img]Looks like he was having fierce problems getting out of reverse Gear.
          \"As she lay there dozing next to me, one voice inside my head kept saying, \'Relax, you\'re not the first doctor to sleep with one of his patients\', but the another kept reminding me, \' you are a veterinarian!\'\"


            That a Mk II Escort you are driving?


              Yep. A MkII RS2000.


                Looks and sounded like a fabulous weekend. Glad you and the car are in one piece. The most dangerous of the journey being the Belfast leg in an orange car[img]smileys/biggrin.gif[/img]!



                  That mk I looks class dermot. Any idea how much it is worth?


                    It's a very nice car, but hard to value, as it's a custom build. I know the shell was bought for a small figure (non RS bodyshell), but there's been a lot of hours & money gone into it since.

                    There are no back seats, and the steering column and seat placement mean you sit low, and way back in the car. Suspension wise it's very firm.

                    I'll have to find an audio/video of it at full tilt. Sound is awesome. It has huge twin exhausts, and the popping and belching on the over run are highly impressive.


                      Sounds like a great time was had by all.Reminds me of times away with my old BMW........Brands Hatch,Silverstone,Spa..........God those were the days.[img]smileys/biggrin.gif[/img]
                      If it wasn\'t for venetian blinds,it would be curtains for all of us....


                        In car video from the MkI V8.

                        Gives you an idea of the noise, acceleration, cornering, and braking abilities of this old car.



                          It's almost 12 months on now, and we're hitting the road for Dublin Port (hopefully) at c. 4am Friday.

                          The car is currently in the body shop getting some damage (hit and run) repaired. It's going to be close, but I hope I'll be driving a 1979 orange car, and not a 2009 red one.


                            Have a blast Dermot, hope the weather holds fine for ye[img]smileys/biggrin.gif[/img]
                            If it wasn\'t for venetian blinds,it would be curtains for all of us....



                              Made it back at 8.30pm last night.

                              Preparation was stressful. I finished preparing and packing the car at 10.30pm Thursday night. I was up again at 3.25am Friday morning! [img]smileys/shock.gif[/img]

                              Great w/e as usual, but the weather on Saturday on the tour itself was awful. Very cold at night too. Camping was comfy enough nonetheless, dry, and warm once you wore enough clothes (socks, 2 t shirts, boxer shorts, and a wooly hat in bed).

                              Car performed perfectly btw.