Hillclimb competition


A successful hillclimb competitor from 1979 to 2003, sharing cars for many years with his brother Andy and subsequently those of quite a number of equally trusting friends, Simon clambered back into the cockpit again in 2015 in a Swift SC92F Kent-engined Formula Ford single seater. With a Pre-1994 Formula Ford Kent engined class having recently been introduced at his local hillclimb, Gurston Down, near Salisbury, Wiltshire, the long-suppressed urge to compete again could be unleashed once more.

Despite a slightly late start to the 2015 season, missing the first round of the Gurston Championship, Simon went on to take two wins and three second places from six events entered and he won the class in the Gurston Championship, fittingly sponsored by his new publisher Veloce Publishing.

He repeated the feat in 2016 with five wins and one second, including winning the inaugural Veloce Publishing-sponsored Hillclimb FF Fest in July 2016 with a new class record time. 2017 produced a 100% win rate at Gurston Down and victory once more in July's Hillclimb FF Fest against 23 competitors in challenging conditions. He again won the Gurston Down FF class championship.

In 2018 he competed at Prescott and Loton Park, venues he had not competed at for 25 or so years, taking in selected rounds of the MSA Hillclimb Leaders and Midland Hillclimb Championships, as well as tackling the Hillclimb FF Fest at Gurston Down once again. With two wins and five second places he finished second in the FF Fest, second in class overall in the Midland Championship, and won the FF class in the national MSA Leaders championship in the first year of the FF class's inclusion. Figuring that, at 62 years of age, it wasn't going to get any better than that, he decided to retire from the sport at the end of the 2018 season after a 42 year involvement.

Simon had worked until the end of 2015 as one of the MSA-approved Instructors at the Gurston Hillclimb Drivers’ School. "I hope my experience in speed hillclimbs all over the UK mainland helped me to help newcomers and experienced hillclimb competitors alike to enjoy their sport even more. Gurston Down has been my local venue throughout my hillclimbing career, and I held the class record for up to 2 litre single seat racing cars for several years. I had also driven a wide variety of cars in most categories from Minis to unlimited capacity single seaters up the hill.'

 

Simon McBeath Pilbeam MP54

The Pilbeam MP54 rebuilt and shared with brother Andy for many enjoyable years

Simon McBeath DJ Firehawk

Aboard the first DJ Firehawk

Simon McBeath Swift SC92F

On the way to the first of several class championship wins! 'The Swift was great fun to drive.'

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Contents copyright Simon McBeath 2004-19