2014 Baden Classic Rally Program

Next weekend I will be competing in the Baden Classic Rally which will be held in Baden Baden, Germany.  I will be navigating for Harald von Langsdorff in his 1958 Mercedes-Benz 220S Cabriolet.  This will be the fourth time that I will have been able to compete in this rally.

Bild 129

Harald von Langsdorff And Myself At The 2012 Baden Classic Rally

The organizers have published a program that outlines the rally.  I have included a link to the program below.  As would be expected the program is in German, but if you look at Pages 13 through 31 you can see pictures of the cars that have entered the rally listed by their competition number.  For this event our car competition number is 42.


This two-day rally uses a “Monte Carlo” timing and scoring system with mostly on-road sections, but it will include a few special “tests” that will be located on private property.

The daily routes of the 2014 Baden Classic are shown on Pages 33 and 35.  These route graphics were put together primarily for the public, who are invited out the see the cars at the various stops that we will be making during the rally.

Harald and I are both looking forward to competing in the Baden Classic rally once again.

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Richard Last’s Parnell-MG Racer

Next month I will be navigating for Richard Last in the H&H Classic Rallies Paris-Madrid rally.  Richard is a very experienced race car driver, who among other things has raced his 1936 Parnell-MG at the famed Goodwood Festival of Speed.

Richard Last Goodwood 2008

Richard Last And His Parnell-MG At Goodwood in 2008

From what I can determine, it seems that the car was originally a MG K3 Magnette  similar to the car that Tazio Nuvolari drove to win the Ards TT in 1933.  The car was subsequently converted to a single-seat layout.  Well-known British racer, Reg Parnell, bought this car in 1935 and raced it in British racing events. Parnell then converted it to a twin-cam engine and he raced it until 1937, when he sold the car.  The car has ended up in Richard Last’s ownership.  And it is obvious that Richard actively races the car.

Parnell MG Race Car

The MG Racer At Goodwood in 2013

For the Paris-Madrid Rally, Richard and I will be in a more modest performing Ford Model A.  I am pleased to be able to compete with Richard Last, as he is obviously a very competent driver.

Richard Last+leaving+the+holding+paddock+revival+2013

Richard Last Heading Out To The Track at Goodwood in 2013

The Paris-Madrid Rally starts on the morning of May 23 in Paris and ends on May 25 in Madrid.  In addition to the 850 miles or so between Paris and Madrid, we will have to cross over the Pyrenees Mountains which form the natural border between France and Spain.  This should be a both historic and a very scenic route for the Paris to Madrid Rally route.  For more information about the rally, check out the H&H Classic Rallies website – www.hhclassicrallies.com

I know that I will enjoy competing with Richard in the Paris-Madrid Rally and hearing first hand about the Parnell-MG race car.

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Special Tests Will Be Part Of The 2014 Baden Classic Rally

Later this month Harald von Langsdorff and myself will be traveling to Germany to compete in the 2014 Baden Classic rally.  As part of the material being made available to competitors, the organizers have released maps of some of the special tests that will be part of the rally.

Skizze 1

Course For BZK 19 and BZK 20

The plan above shows a course defined by traffic cones that appears to be in a parking lot or some other open area.  The same control point will be used for both BZK 19 and BZK 20.  The overall course appears to be twice around a crooked course which has almost no straight sections. It should be noted that there is no stopping at these BZK controls, so when we go though control BZK 19, then we just keep going to get through the BZK 20 control.  At each control an electronic timing light will be used which will time the cars to the 1/100 second.

Skizze 2

Course For BZK 34

The course for BZK 34 is somewhat longer than the other courses.  In the bottom right hand corner of the map it shows that the first time we come to the end of the parking lot row we turn to the right to then travel along the bottom row of the parking lot, then we return to the same point noted above where the second time we turn to the left to go through the timing light at BZK 34 and then exit the parking lot.

Skizze 3

Course For BZK 37, BZK 38, and BZK 39

The course shown in the map above is located in a very nice parking lot in which we had a similar course laid out in the 2013 Baden Classic rally.  There are many trees and curbs in this parking lot.  Traveling down the rows is straight forward enough, but the short cross-overs between parking lot rows consist of widened sidewalks, which are just wide enough for a full size car are challenging.  The timing light for the BZK 37 control is located in the central part of the course.  The same timing light is used for both BZK 38 and BZK 39.  After we go through the BZK 38 control we will turn left at the next cross-over to loop back around to run through BZK 39 then go straight to leave the parking lot and drive toward some distant BZK 40.

All of these sections at the 2014 Baden Classic will be challenging for Harald and I as we will be in a 1958 Mercedes-Benz 220S Cabriolet.  This is a lovely car, but the target time for these sections will be the same for all cars in the event.  Our class includes cars made up to 1965.  Some specific cars entered in our class that we will be directly competing against include a MGA, a Porsche 356, a big Healey, and a Ford GT40 clone, which are all a little more nimble than our car.  As a result of the expected brisk speeds in these sections, we cannot afford any mistakes in any of these sections, therefore I have to make sure that I give Harald the proper instructions.  Stopping for course corrections would be devastating for our time at these controls.  And because of the cumulative timing method used in the Baden Classic rally, if we lose 10 seconds at say BZK 37, then we could also be 10 seconds behind at BZK 38 and BZK 39.  Note that we will be given target times for all controls.  I am glad that we are given a chance to look at these courses before we have to run them.

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I Will Be Competing In The 2014 Paris-Madrid Rally

I am pleased to be able to post that I will be taking part in the 2014 Paris-Madrid rally put on by H&H Classic Rallies. This year will be the second running of this event by H&H Classic Rallies following the successful inaugural running in 2013. This current rally is based on a recreation the fateful 1903 Paris to Madrid open road race. The 1903 Paris-Madrid was the last of the “city-to-city” races that were being held in that era. Due to a large number of deaths of both spectators and competitors, the race was cancelled in Bordeaux at the end of the first leg. After this event, car races were held on circuits.

Gabriel Arriving in Bordeaux

The Declared Winner Of The Shortened 1903 Paris-Madrid Race, M. Gabriel in a Mors,  Arriving At The Bordeaux Checkpoint.

H&H Classic Rallies have put together a three-day event with mostly pre-1941 cars and a special pre-1974 class for some modern cars, such as the ex-Paddy Hopkirk Mini Cooper S that is entered by the “Bring A Trailer” folks from the USA. This car finished third in the 1966 Monte Carlo Rally.

I will be navigating for England’s Richard Last, who has great experience in racing pre-war MGs and also is an experienced car mechanic. We will be in a Ford Model A that will challenge some of Europe’s best pre-war cars such as Bentley, Alvis, Peugeot, Riley, and Alfa-Romeo. This should be fun.

Scene From PM 2013

Some Of The 2013 Paris-Madrid Entrants

The rally will start in Paris on May 22, with the first car off early in the morning of May 23 and then finishing in Madrid on May 25. More information about the 2014 Paris-Madrid rally can be found at the H&H Classic Rallies website at www.hhclassicrallies.com

Paris-Madrid Scene 2013

Finish Of The 2013 Paris-Madrid Rally

I will have more information about this very interesting and exciting rally over the coming weeks as I get prepared for this rally. I also plan on posting daily updates during the rally.


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Great Story About The Morley Twins

A couple of weeks ago I got an email message from Leigh Trevail of the Eastern County Motor Club in England about information on the Morley twins.  I had written a little about the Morley twins in some recent posts about the rally successes of the big Healeys.  They were a very successful rally team, but they always put rallying in second place to their “day job” which was farming.  This annoyed the BMC rally team management because the Morleys would not compete in a rally if it was harvest time.  Sadly the last Morley twin, Erle Morley, recently died at age 83, while Don died in 2006.  These guys were legendary.

As it turned out Leigh did not need my assistance on her story about the Morley twins, but she was kind enough to forward her story to me.  You can read her Morley twins story by clicking on the file below.


Leigh also sent me a link to the website for the Eastern Counties Motor Club.  There is a lot of interesting information and good reading available there.  I would recommend going to their website by clicking on the following link:


I am appreciative of Leigh who has allowed me to include her story on my website.

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Shanna Is OK But It Looks Like We Need A New Car!

As a result of an unfortunate accident it  looks like  we need a new car.  This past week my wife was in a serious accident with our 2011 Subaru Outback.  While Shanna is OK, the car is not.  From what I understand Shanna had difficulty exiting an off-ramp, got up against the guard rail, then rolled over the guard rail, and ended up against a chain link fence.  The pictures of the accident included in this post came from the Milford Daily News.

Front View

Shanna and I are very thankful to local good Samaritans who rushed to help get Shanna out of the car.  At some point the car somehow caught fire, so it was a scary situation.  Those people who came to Shanna’s rescue were very brave!

Car on Side

Shanna was taken to the hospital where they check her over and then released her in a couple of hours.  She has a mark on her neck caused by the shoulder belt and she is a little sore from the rough ride.

Milford Daily News Photo

The Subaru Outback was a good car and Shanna particularly liked it.  It looks like we might need to get a new one!

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Triumph Returns To Victory At Daytona!

Triumph is back!  A Triumph motorcycle racer, Danny Eslick, dominated last weekend’s 73rd Daytona 200 AMA Pro GoPro Daytona SportBike race at Daytona International Speedway, winning from the pole and leading 44 of the 57 laps.  This victory came 47 years after the last Triumph victory at the Daytona 200 by Gary Nixon in 1967.

Triumph Daytona 200 Winner 2014

 Danny Eslick Won The 2014 Daytona 200 On A Triumph 675 (Brian Nelson photo)

For Triumph, this was the last chance to win at Daytona with the Daytona 675 model.  Next year the Daytona 200 returns to the SuperBike class.

Triumph-Daytona-675-SE (2)

Stock Triumph 675 Daytona

As a Triumph motorcycle owner and as someone interested in the Triumph motorcycles of the 1960s, I thought that I would include an image of Gary Nixon’s 1967 Daytona 200 winning motorcycle.

triumph nixon

Gary Nixon’s 1967 Daytona 200 Winning Motorcycle

In 1967 500cc motorcycles were raced in the Daytona 200.  Triumph had a 500cc T100R twin-cylinder motorcycle that was modified for the race and it was the dominant the dominant motorcycle.  Another Triumph finished 2nd to Gary Nixon in 1967.

Triumph T100R Daytona 1967

1967 Triumph 500 T100R Daytona

The top 10 finishers in this year’s Daytona 200 are listed below:

AMA Pro Daytona SportBike Daytona 200 Results 2014

1. Danny Eslick (Triumph)
2. Jake Gagne (Yamaha)
3. Jake Lewis (Yamaha)
4. Bobby Fong (Triumph)
5. Garrett Gerloff (Yamaha)
6. Kyle Wyman (Yamaha)
7. Luke Stapleford (Triumph)
8. Jake Zemke (Honda)
9. Bostjan Skubic (Yamaha)
10. Steve Rapp (Triumph)

It is clear that the Daytona 200 race in 2014 was mainly a race between Triumph and Yamaha.  The other thing that I noticed about this list of the top 10 finishers is that if your first name is “Jake” then you had a good finish!

It is good to see that Triumph is a winner at a major racing event, again.

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