12:38pm 11th December 2013
Members of Woolbridge Motor Club gathered at the Frampton village hall to honour their members who have excelled during the 2014 season in the various motor sporting disciplines that the club present across the south of Dorset and East Devon.
For the second year, Dorset’s premier motor club, now with a membership of in excess of five hundred, promoted the awards presentation at an informal lunchtime gathering rather than at the more formal black-tie Annual Dinner and Dance which had previously been the norm.
Competitors who partake in rallies, trials, and speed hill climbs celebrated the success of their fellow members and none more so than Axminster resident Keith Grant who claimed the Champion Driver award in the Navigational Challenge series in addition to the Motor Sports Association Silver Jubilee Salver, which he received acknowledgement of his involvement in the club not only as a competitor but also for his efforts throughout club in non-competing activities. The Volvo driver completed a triple also securing the Newlands Trophy.
Dorchester’s Merv Brake, claimed the Champion Navigator title whilst Antony Pope won the award for the best Beginner Driver and Neil Cowell claimed the Rod Purkiss Memorial Trophy as the best Beginner Navigator.
Speed events are a major part of the Woolbridge club’s annual programme with events at Wiscombe Park and Charmouth’s Manor Farm. Such events counted alog with a larger series of qualifiers which saw Weymouth’s Geoff Blake win the Silver Jubilee Trophy as Speed Events Champion. The Westfield sports car driver fended off challenges from racing car driver Mike Lee (OMS S2000-Suzuki) and Yeovil saloon car exponent Simon Neve in his Mitsubishi Evo 6RS.
The 4X4 Trials Championship comprised of four individual classes with Stan Johnson winning the Upwey Challenge Cup, Andy Vickery taking the honours in Class B along with the Wessex Trailers Trophy whilst Paul Johnston was at the top of the table in Class C and received the South Dorset Trophy as well as finishing runner-up in the Production Car Trials Championship. The final all-wheel-drive award went to RTV class winner Garry Arnold who took home the 50th Anniversary Trophy whilst the Overall Championship was gained by John Tite from Lyons Gate near Cerne Abbas.
The premier award in the car trials category, the WMC Field Events Trophy, was won by John York in his MG Midget. The Weymouth driver was also triumphed in the Victor Ludorum Championship for the best performance across a number of different motor sporting events. Garry Arnold claimed the runner-up position with the Junior Victor Ludorum (under 23 years of age) title going to Jamie Livingston.
The Committee Cup and the Carpenter Shield were two awards made to non-competing members. The former, for the person who marshalled at most events, was won by Bridport’s Mike Furse whilst the latter was awarded to the person who, in the opinion of the club’s committee, had worked most successfully for the benefit of the club and that was Hayley Thorne from Charminster. Having taken the year off of driving her mighty five litre Pilbeam MP43 sports racer Hayley became heavily involved in the administration of the club’s major speed events.
During the season the club has also run a photography competition with sponsorship from Wessex Photos which included four category winners. Andy Webb and Tony Freeman from Weymouth, Phil Gale from Winfrith in addition to Charminster’s Richard Thorne, aged seven, who claimed success in the class for photographers under sixteen years of age.