Author Topic: Goodwood and Microcar rally musings  (Read 2439 times)

Big Al

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Goodwood and Microcar rally musings
« on: July 30, 2015, 09:35:33 AM »
Goodwood Revival (By L'oreal? ;D) Meeting 11th - 13th September

Not an event on my horizon. But I now understand why Beaulieu Autojumble took the chance to take a pace forward in the calander of weekends, to clash with The Great Dorset Steam Fair. It knows from feedback it cannot clash with Goodwood and survive. So despite giving up its traditional weekend of the second weekend in September to Goodwood, its better to be an adjacent weekend and feed off the same punters. How will this go down with the GDSF? While it might not attract Beaulieu's punters in full numbers, GDSF does attract the stallholders? What I do not know is if Goodwood is offering an autojumble area. If it is not, might it see the benefits of doing so, now there is a free, and traditional, jumbling weekend. Could the Beaulieu Autojumble find itself between a rock and a hard place. Only time will tell, but the new boy on the block appears to have kicked sand in the old beach bullies eyes.

For our little world it means that September's first two weekends have really become rather difficult. As it is also the traditional time for the National Microcar Rally. In an ideal world Goodwood, Beaulieu Autojumble and the GDSF are all events that need avoiding to ensure a good attendance for a National, particularly from the south of England. This has been proven in the pasr. Go later in September and its not school holidays, the weather falls away and evening draw in. August Bank Holiday is traditionally DWAC's weekend, though few Brits seem to trouble to go any-more, and has been untouchable since the start of the National.

So if this is to be the future case, is the National Rally really ever going to come as far south as it has in the past? For having it, say, near Newbury, will be pointless, if the Southern attendance is increased by only a few, at the expense of the more likely attendance from more stations north of proven reliability. Is the National a more northern event, as has been the general drift?

Yet the 10 days of the three big events should be a huge draw for our continental chums. So tagging the National into that period might well see some take up from abroad. Not confrontational dates, but dates offering a continued menu of vehicular activities. that would mean, probably, a reasonably accessible venue, for the National, to the other events and the Channel crossings. One could even be left field and use a venue midweek taking up the dead days between Beaulieu/GDSF and Goodwood offering a conveniently placed secure parking area for classics left behind on either weekend! I can imagine some very entertaining evenings resulting.

Following on from that thought it becomes clear that given a habitually more northerly National, the Bath Rally really does become very important if there is to be Microcar activity in the South West, possibly even the South in its entirety. It being the lone extended weekend event most years recently, down here. Yet this year Bath was really supported by a group from up country, another from Essex and those from Devon and Cornwall. Off the closer area only the Southampton area really showed up in numbers. The locals were conspicuous by there absence, as was the South coast. Talking to Wynford an attendance of 35 cars is the minimum that the accounts can really accommodate. A reduction in day visitors this year was noted, the other earner. So Bath continues, but it is near the edge, and really needs more support.

Yet reports from events seem to confirm that unless there is something special going on, 30 cars is a normal showing, with often a fair few folk attending with no car. So Bath is not unusual, or if it is, its in getting that few extra folk along.  The one off Ken Piper do, by contrast, has some 60 Schmitts booked in. Proof, if it were needed, that the support is there for a better quality event - traditional run, reception, beef roast and barn dance, showing area and more, all in private grounds.

All the above is done with minimal advertising or media support. Unlike the three big Southern September dates. Its no competition as to who is going to collect those not within the easy reach of Microcar Club information. So if this is a trend set, then it would seem that Bath might be more the saviour of Microcars in the South, than the National Rally. In effect a better Bath would offer the National its sloppy seconds, if it were to re-engage some enthusiasts down here. More so than relying on a National coming south of the Cotswolds, say, for one year, to revitalize an area during just the time of greatest distraction. Its all food for thought.

As is the option of escaping the stiff competition at the end of summer and replace the September date with one in May, or even April.   
« Last Edit: July 30, 2015, 09:48:00 AM by Big Al »
Messerschmitt set, Goggo Darts, Heinkel 175, Fiat Jolly, Autobianchi, Fairthorpe Electron Minor, Borgward, Isuzu Trooper
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For sale - Vellam Isetta, Bamby, AC Type 70, Velorex, Church Pod, Reliant Mk5, KR200,  Saab 96, Bellemy Trials, Citroen BXs

DaveMiller

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Re: Goodwood and Microcar rally musings
« Reply #1 on: July 30, 2015, 10:34:00 AM »
Goodwood Revival (By L'oreal? ;D) Meeting 11th - 13th September

... given a habitually more northerly National ...

Mmmm.  Never struck me as particularly northern.  I've only had microcars since 1997, but in that time it's been in northern extremely-south Wales, northern East Anglia, that very northern location of Swindon, the surprised-to-find-itself-having-anything-to-do-with-the-north Cambridgeshire, the damn-nearly-Scottish Buckinghamshire, and the hell-almost-as-far-north-as-the-Midlands Gloucestershire.    :-\

richard

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Re: Goodwood and Microcar rally musings
« Reply #2 on: July 30, 2015, 11:12:59 AM »
With you there dave !!! Northern ? I think not , then again I have only been bubbling since 1985  :)
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AndyL

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Re: Goodwood and Microcar rally musings
« Reply #3 on: July 30, 2015, 11:44:35 AM »
Personally i think local runs would be of more interest.

Trickier to organize in the days of written and verbal communication only, but with the reach of t'internet, I think it would be easier to get off the ground.

Choose easy but topical points to meet up at, Ace Cafe is good place not too far from me, with a preplanned route to a place of special interest, with maybe a stop off for a bite to eat and some refreshment.

Got to get my car going first though. Currently working on my front suspension units. Found a couple of nasties owing to poor maintenance, but nothing too serious.
1959 LHD 3-wheel Isetta.

Big Al

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Re: Goodwood and Microcar rally musings
« Reply #4 on: July 30, 2015, 12:55:21 PM »
Goodwood Revival (By L'oreal? ;D) Meeting 11th - 13th September

... given a habitually more northerly National ...

Mmmm.  Never struck me as particularly northern.  I've only had microcars since 1997, but in that time it's been in northern extremely-south Wales, northern East Anglia, that very northern location of Swindon, the surprised-to-find-itself-having-anything-to-do-with-the-north Cambridgeshire, the damn-nearly-Scottish Buckinghamshire, and the hell-almost-as-far-north-as-the-Midlands Gloucestershire.    :-\

I am talking north from the perspective of southern England. Not North as in the north of Britain. That starts about the Lake District.

Remember the tradition began in the Cotswolds, moved just north of them, flitted and then headed to my favourite location, and venue, at Weston Park. That is officially, I believe, the Midlands, possibly North Midlands. Its 100 miles bonk from here, and very accessible via motorway, or less large road routes. There was squeaking from the South Coast but they came. From then on the event has wondered where it will.

I still take the watershed as Toddington, 1999, as the last of the older type 'all in together' events, to the newer camper, smaller groups gathered in field, events, that seem to have come in latterly. That could be because a group of us marked Toddy as the end of our involvement, though, for the feeling the above was coming true, experiencing the difficulties of getting folk moving, and not wanting to listen to whinging about things the small tent with Microcar folk were more than happy to have as services. Whatever, from 2000 the baton was handed on and its been what its been since then.
 
I do not recall a National in Swindon, Ah, you mean Calne of bthe more modern era, silly me. Yes that is very South. And it did rather fall between two stones. On the one hand I missed a lot of folk in the South who I expected to be there, but equally there were a lot of folk who came who had not been to a National for quite a long time. Honours even. Cardiff might be more South but its behind a tarrif barrier, if your in the South and South West of England, and it chose to clash with Beaulieu and itself, which was an error. Lets face it, Malvern was well placed for the South West. It did not turn up in numbers, despite some of the best weather. Blimey, it was the first time I had been to Malvern and not got wet! I was disappointed for both the event, and the organisers. It deserved a better turnout.

So with results like that, what I am saying, is the South has no claim on the National, as it did years ago, on numbers, or tradition. Should an event be planned at, say Newbury, I could see the NMRC meeting organised post the previous rally taking a rather dim view of it, hoping that something more north, not North, might be on offer. Ultimately, though, unless there are competing bids, its rather down to the organiser to nominate his ground.

Bath on the other hand has hardly moved 5 miles from its first incarnation. It is the natural home of South West microcars. It needs a bit of a nudge to help it along. Depending on other things I have to do, I might be able to do that. But then I might be living up near Carlisle managing a project next year. That's in the North, I think, before moving south again.


There does seem a real move to remain nearer home, doesn't there. All understandable. but you will never get the mass of all sorts of microcars, a melting pot of conversation. That's what I lived for, but its in short supply. Take a localised view and then you join in with local classic car organisations. Most of there active events are not organised with microcars in mind, and you cannot keep up. Leaving many to tend to frequent local shows. Without three keen micronauts it is my experience an area struggles to get its microcars out in numbers to warrant the effort of a microcar specific road run. We might yet give it a whorl but I fear it might be a thin event. To be honest I think part of the reason for doing it will be as preparation of a car for going over the channel for a serious bit of eventing.
Messerschmitt set, Goggo Darts, Heinkel 175, Fiat Jolly, Autobianchi, Fairthorpe Electron Minor, Borgward, Isuzu Trooper
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super-se7en (Malc Dudley)

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Re: Goodwood and Microcar rally musings
« Reply #5 on: July 30, 2015, 05:29:43 PM »
Well this years national is 25 miles south of Weston park and the road run is just over 20 miles north of Burford so can we say we are in the south or are we still in the north as my father said the north starts at Watford.

Big Al

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Re: Goodwood and Microcar rally musings
« Reply #6 on: July 30, 2015, 05:58:35 PM »
Its certainly pretty central. I have hopes it will bring out a few folk not seen for a long time.
Messerschmitt set, Goggo Darts, Heinkel 175, Fiat Jolly, Autobianchi, Fairthorpe Electron Minor, Borgward, Isuzu Trooper
Citroen BX 17TZD & GTI 16v
Held - MG Magnette ZB & 4/44
For sale - Vellam Isetta, Bamby, AC Type 70, Velorex, Church Pod, Reliant Mk5, KR200,  Saab 96, Bellemy Trials, Citroen BXs