After a couple of seasons of poorly supported grids culminating in entries as low as eight it became apparent that sustainability of any realistic race series, together with the RAC MSA not likely to sanction a series with this sort of entry then the future survival of Healey racing did not bode well.
It was with this in mind and also the imminent ‘retirement’ of long time series coordinator Joe Cox that major changes had to take place. A decision was taken at the annual drivers meeting that the Austin Healey Club Championship would be ‘shelved’ for the near future. But what of the small band of racers who had loyally supported the series? Enter Championship sponsor Robin Lackford!
Robin, of Lackford Engineering, had sponsored the Healey series and the M.G.Midget Challenge during the past couple of seasons and the idea to amalgamate the two series was mooted. After a lot of negotiation and planning, with Robin at the forefront supported by Joe, a viable series was decided upon. It would mean the introduction of two further classes in the already established Midget series, which would see the Sprites being able to race with no modification at all. The big Healeys of course would not be accommodated, but with the majority of these cars seeking races elsewhere this was not seen as an issue.
The classes would be ‘D’ and ‘E’ running to the same rules as in the Healey series, ie. limited modifications in class D and race modified with treaded tyres in class E.
So as such, everyone is happy, the series is to be known as MGCC Lackford Engineering Midget and Sprite Challenge, the Championship is to be held over 9 rounds as follows :
Donington Park 8th April rounds 1 and 2 Brands Hatch 5/6th May rounds 3 and 4 Silversone 23/24th June round 5 Oulton Park 11th August round 6 Thruxton 8th September round 7 Snetterton 13/14th October round 8 and 9
There are well over 30 entrants in the series including Tom Walker, who is swapping his Big Healey for a Sprite, and returnee after many years, Richard Perry. Come along to any of the events and witness what promises to be an electrifying series with close racing throughout the field.
by Phil (scoop) Broster
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