Hillclimb greats return to mark Prescott's 80th anniversary

Multiple British Hillclimb champions and 30 previous hill record holders are to gather at the famous Gloucestershire venue to mark its milestone

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Some of the greatest names in hillclimbing are to gather at the famous Prescott venue on July 14 to mark 80 years since it held its first meeting.

The line-up includes no fewer than 30 previous holders of the Prescott hill record, as well as several British hillclimb champions. This includes David Boshier-Jones, who won three championships in a row from 1958 to 1960 as well as set the hill record on both Prescott’s original ‘short course’ and its extended layout – for which he cut the ribbon when it opened in 1960.

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Scott Moran – who won the most recent of his titles in 2016 – will attack the Prescott hill in the Gould GR61 in which he has won six championships, making it the single most successful car in British hillclimbing.

David Franklin, the 1978 champion, as well as Martyn Griffiths, Alister Douglas-Osborn and David Grace – a trio with 11 titles between them – will also be there. Each will take to the hill in parades or as part of the main competition, which has a capacity 150-strong entry.

Two-time champion Chris Cramer will compete in the Gould 84G-Hart with which he won his 1985 crown. He started his hillclimbing career in 1969 in a Mini Cooper S, in which he won the ‘Prescott Gold Cup’ and set 27 national class records.

Cramer achieved outright course records at eight of the ten venues in the championship, including Prescott, and was voted British Club Driver of the Year at the 1985 Autosport Awards, beating Damon Hill, Johnny Herbert and Mark Blundell.

It will also be the first time in more than 30 years that Cramer has stepped into a hillclimb car’s cockpit at Prescott.

‘I have no intention of doing anything heroic,’ said Cramer, ‘but I’m grateful to Gould-Racing and the Bugatti Owners’ Club for giving me this wonderful opportunity to roll back the years.’

Also present will be former rivals Joy Rainey and Margaret Blankstone-Schoiber, who took turns to break the ladies’ record during one memorable weekend in 1980. Sandra Tomlin and Sue Young also will be tackling the hill; Young was the first woman to climb Prescott in under 40 seconds.

There will also be a line-up of Bugatti saloons, sports cars and single-seaters, reflecting the fact that Prescott was founded by the Bugatti Owners’ Club, which still owns and operates the venue to this day. Among many other attractions, the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight’s Hurricane will perform an evocative flypast.

Further details on the event can be found here.

Images courtesy of LAT Archive

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