Jason Flay wins Record Bovey

Jason Flay has only competed on the Bovey Down Trial twice. In 2004 he won the inargual event in his Lorcha, a feat he repeated in 2016 in his recently acquired Morrs Trialsmaster. It was a close thing though. Harvey Waters finished equal on the hills with his Class 7 Pop but Jason was faster on the Special Tests.

Organisers Paul Brooks and Nick Farmer present overall winner Jason Flay with his award (Photo by Liz Hobbs)

Video by Phil Parker

Nick Farmer Reports:-

17 April 2016 saw a record entry of 42 for the Bovey Down Trial, from far and near, beginners and experts, and with 2 new sections introduced Windwhistle Motor Club were hopeful of a good days motorsport. After a final check of the sections and a drivers briefing the 41 starters were sent off in 2 groups at 9.30.

Round 1

Norton bounces as Katrina Selwood re-starts the Cannon Alfa. The picture shows the amount of logging that has taken place in the forest.

After the first round of 9 sections competitors returned to HQ for a break, class 1 being led by 2015 winner Nick Cleal in his 205, already 59 points up on the Fiat Panda of WWMC member Peter Turner. Class 3 was being led by Ed Broom in his Mk2 Escort, a mere 2 points in front of Brian Hampson in the BMW Compact. The all Beetle class 4 battle was currently going the way of Craig Allen by 6 points from Alex Radford in Tony Young’s car, Ben Gladwyn just 3 points further back waiting to pounce at any time.

Class 5 had 12 starters, all in Suzuki X90s, and there were 4 drivers covered by 1 point after the first round, Matt Mills and Kevin Sharp narrowly ahead of Roger Beaumont and Martin Matthews.

The bigger engined Beetles in class 6 were being headed by Graham Sweetland. Class 7 was led by Harvey Waters in the Ford Pop, 1 of just 5 cars still with a clean sheet at this point, followed by Dick Bolt in the similar car but with Duratec power. In class 8 there were still 4 cars clean, previous Bovey winner Bryn Corfield in his Shopland Special, Tris White in the Troll, Jason Flay in the ex-Carl Talbot Trialsmaster(still looking for his first finish with the car) and Katrina Selwood in her Cannon Alfa passengered by young, but very experienced son Norton.

Round 2

Roger Beaumont in one of the twelve Suzuki X90’s on the event. Roger was second to Kevin Sharp in Class Five (Photo by Alex Brooks)

Clerk of Course Nick Farmer set about altering the sections slightly during the break ready for round 2, ably assisted by marshals with more than ample experience such as Dave Haizelden, James Shallcross, Keith Sanders, Adrian Dommett, Pete Hart, and Mal Allen to name just a few.

With round 2 complete Nick Cleal had now doubled his lead in class 1 over the under powered Fiat Panda and in class 3 the honours were reversed with Brian Hampson now leading the Escort of Ed Broom by a single point. The class 4 battle was still close with Alexander Radford heading the other beetles after 2 rounds. The X90 class was currently going the way of Roger Beaumont who had a 2 point lead over Kevin Sharp, this large class had usual Escort expert Colin Jeffery out for a run in an Suzuki for the first time. Graham Sweetland had increased his lead over Pete Daniels in class 6. Harvey Waters was firmly in control of class 7 despite dropping a 9 in this round on Adrian Dommetts section, Dick Bolt retired with a severe oil leak leaving Nick Gibbs and Alex Reynolds to battle it out for 2nd both driving Marlins.

Class 8 clean sheets were halved by virtue of Bryn Corfield retiring with suspected diff or driveshaft failure

Katrina Selwood failed the restart under the watchful eye of Pete Hart, but running as last car Katrina certainly had the worst of the conditions on the restart, this was also after losing the brakes on the Cannon Alfa, but in true classic trials fashion it was her competitors Paul Merson and Nick Sherrin who came to the rescue and got it sorted…..well done chaps! Tris White and Jason Flay were still battling it out both on clean sheets.

Round 3

It was nice to see Dick Bolt back behind the wheel after being out of action for some time. Sadly Dick retired after the second round. (Photo by Alex Brooks)

Another stop for refreshments for competitors and marshals provided by the Sid Vale Carnival Club allowed the sections to be altered again slightly for a shorter third and final round. Dave Haizelden and Adrian Dommett were on the ball toughening the restarts for class 7 and 8, in an attempt to avoid finishing with more than 1 clean sheet.

So at the end it was Nick Cleal who wrapped up class 1 by an astounding 184 points, a good advert for a car which rumour has it might be up for sale soon.

Class 3 was won by the BMW Compact of Brian Hampson,from WWMC member Gary Hobbs who just pipped Ed Broom, both driving Mk2 Escorts. Class 4 was being led by Torbay Trial winner Craig Allen until the very last section where Craig dropped an 11 handing the win to Alexander Radford, with Ben and Nicola Gladwyn and sons coming home in 3rd. The ultra-close class 5 battle certainly went down to the wire with Kevin Sharp beating Roger Beaumont on test times, both ending up on 45, with Matt Mills 1 point behind on 46 in only the cars 2nd event.

Class 6 was was won by Graham Sweetland, with Pete Daniels unfortunately retiring. Dave Haizelden’s restart was tough but cleanable as Simon Woodall and Harvey Waters proved by scoring 0, this left Harvey to take class 7 Honours on just 9 points, from Nick Gibbs, closely followed by Alex Reynolds. Lynette Vile, driving father Neal’s Vauxhall powered fugitive and Jason Flay also cleaned the Dave H restart but came to grief on the upper deviation, with Lynette apparently seen trying to design her own section !!

For those of you that are only used to seeing Bovey Woods in January in the dark this is what it looks like in the sunshine . Overall winner Jason Flay approaches a deviation and restart. Many thanks to David Haizelden for the photo

The class 8 only restart with Mr Dommett on the flag proved too much with no competitors getting away, although it was possible as the Clerk of the Course was to prove in his Fugitive on road pressures much to his surprise! This left class 8 honours to Tris White in the Troll on 12 points, Katrina finished a very creditable 2nd on 17 points, closely followed by Simon Woodall on 19.

The 1st overall award was won by Jason Flay, who tied with Harvey on 9 points but won on test times,this is the 2nd time Jason has won the Bovey Down event but he was equally as pleased to get a finish under his belt.

Windwhistle Motor Club would like to express thanks to all marshals and competitors for a successful and competitive days motorsport, and look forward to seeing you again in 2017.


First Overall – Jason Flay (Morris Trialsmaster)  9
Best Novice – Stuart Holton (Suzuki X90) 55

1  Nick Cleal (Peugeot 205 GTi) 42
3  Brian Hampson (BMW Compact 318ti) 91
4  Alexander Radford (VW Beetle) 43
5  Kevin Sharp (Suzuki X90) 45
6  Graham Sweetland (VW Beetle) 62
7  Harvey Waters (Ford Popular) 9
8  Tristan White (Troll) 12

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