Wednesday, 2 September 2020

I have been thinking that we have not used the RBRR Blog, so whilst we have a few months before we re-start the organisation of what is now the 2021 RBRR, what better time to write something for it. 

One of the things that is always interesting about events that are organised by car clubs such as Club Triumph are how and why do people become involved. Therefore, I thought it would be nice to write some words about my colleagues within the organising team, here goes: 

 

Nigel Abdullah 

 

Nigel joined CT in 1980 to take part in the RBRR, entering with a friend in the latter’s Vitesse mk2. He has now taken part 3 times enjoying 100% completion, the last time being with his good friend Dale Barker who of course is the Editor of the Club’s magazine ‘Club Torque’.

Nigel is our route-master, becoming involved when he took over from one of the originators of the event, Les Mills in 1992.  Les had devised the route for the first RBRR in 1966 and continued to do so until 1990.  Nigel with his love of maps and the highways of the UK was a natural successor and has continued to evolve the route. In 1990 Les Mills and Derek Pollock introduced the charity fund-raising aspect of the event.  Nigel views 1994 as a milestone, undertaking a complete reconnaissance of the proposed route, using the Plough at Crews Hill for the first time, and getting involved with the charity for that year, Leukaemia Research Fund.  His cousin Gillian [RIP], having suffered from the disease, helped flag the cars away. 

Nigel was a keen autotester in the 80s and 90s, firstly with an 850cc Mini, then a Mini-based special that he used to trailer across the country doing events.  A very skilled driver, who is still actively involved in rallying and autosolos, Nigel’s RBRR task has become easier with the advent of GPS mapping systems such as Google Maps.  Before the advent of that type of software, changes to the route involved getting into the car and physically driving the route, recording mileages, road numbers and prominent features.  Nigel and I have travelled many a mile together in search of interesting roads.  All the route pages within the Road Book are devised by Nigel, giving an advised route, utilising the vast range of roads within the British Isles.  Nigel’s enthusiasm for the event is undimmed even after 30 years and as well as organising the route he will run ‘Central Control’ over the weekend of the RBRR. 

 

Jason Chinn 

 

Jason is a keen Triumph man having owned Triumph cars since the 80s, his favourite model being the Vitesse, of which he has owned a few. He presently owns a late model TR6, that he has used for one RBRR. Jason with his keen analytical mind took over the administration of Entries in 2008 as the number of entries grew as the popularity of the event become very high in the 2000s. Keeping on top of the entries and all the revisions that are made by crews is a difficult job, although the website entering system has made the task easier as we now expect crews to modify their own entry as they make changes. If ever the RBRR team want some sensible logical cast iron thought to be applied to an aspect of the event, Jason is the ‘go to’ man. Jason often curses me when I add late entry crews to the entry literally on the eve of the event and mess up his entry tables. Jason also manages the Drivers Meeting for us, this has almost become a stand alone event for the Club! It must be said the DM is now a very professionally run meeting. Jason is very interested in the history of long distance rallying, his knowledge of the 1970 World Cup Rally being quite deep. 

 

Dave Langrick 

 

Dave is another long-standing Triumph owner, having owned examples of the marque since the mid 80s. Dave first took part in the RBRR in 1990, and has a 100% completion record. His infamous white Spitfire mk4 with GT6 running gear is a formidable car that has been honed for RBRR use throughout its life. Dave has been present within the team since the 2012 event, his enthusiasm and lateral thinking contributing to the event’s continued success. Dave has been ringing the main entrants those crews that are new to the event and gives out cool headed logical advice. Before Covid struck we have held RBRR organisational progress meetings and Dave is always more than happy to travel over 100 miles to attend these meetings. Everytime, we run the event, soI have been thinking that we have not used the RBRR Blog, so whilst we have a few months before we re-start the organisation of what is now the 2021 RBRR, what better time to write something for it. 


One of the things that is always interesting about events that are organised by car clubs such as Club Triumph are how and why do people become involved. Therefore, I thought it would be nice to write some words about my colleagues within the organising team, here goes: 


 


Nigel Abdullah 


 


Nigel joined CT in 1980 to take part in the RBRR, entering with a friend in the latter’s Vitesse mk2. He has now taken part 3 times enjoying 100% completion, the last time being with his good friend Dale Barker who of course is the Editor of the Club’s magazine ‘Club Torque’.


Nigel is our route-master, becoming involved when he took over from one of the originators of the event, Les Mills in 1992.  Les had devised the route for the first RBRR in 1966 and continued to do so until 1990.  Nigel with his love of maps and the highways of the UK was a natural successor and has continued to evolve the route. In 1990 Les Mills and Derek Pollock introduced the charity fund-raising aspect of the event.  Nigel views 1994 as a milestone, undertaking a complete reconnaissance of the proposed route, using the Plough at Crews Hill for the first time, and getting involved with the charity for that year, Leukaemia Research Fund.  His cousin Gillian [RIP], having suffered from the disease, helped flag the cars away. 


Nigel was a keen autotester in the 80s and 90s, firstly with an 850cc Mini, then a Mini-based special that he used to trailer across the country doing events.  A very skilled driver, who is still actively involved in rallying and autosolos, Nigel’s RBRR task has become easier with the advent of GPS mapping systems such as Google Maps.  Before the advent of that type of software, changes to the route involved getting into the car and physically driving the route, recording mileages, road numbers and prominent features.  Nigel and I have travelled many a mile together in search of interesting roads.  All the route pages within the Road Book are devised by Nigel, giving an advised route, utilising the vast range of roads within the British Isles.  Nigel’s enthusiasm for the event is undimmed even after 30 years and as well as organising the route he will run ‘Central Control’ over the weekend of the RBRR. 


 


Jason Chinn 


 


Jason is a keen Triumph man having owned Triumph cars since the 80s, his favourite model being the Vitesse, of which he has owned a few. He presently owns a late model TR6, that he has used for one RBRR. Jason with his keen analytical mind took over the administration of Entries in 2008 as the number of entries grew as the popularity of the event become very high in the 2000s. Keeping on top of the entries and all the revisions that are made by crews is a difficult job, although the website entering system has made the task easier as we now expect crews to modify their own entry as they make changes. If ever the RBRR team want some sensible logical cast iron thought to be applied to an aspect of the event, Jason is the ‘go to’ man. Jason often curses me when I add late entry crews to the entry literally on the eve of the event and mess up his entry tables. Jason also manages the Drivers Meeting for us, this has almost become a stand alone event for the Club! It must be said the DM is now a very professionally run meeting. Jason is very interested in the history of long distance rallying, his knowledge of the 1970 World Cup Rally being quite deep. 


 


Dave Langrick 


 


Dave is another long-standing Triumph owner, having owned examples of the marque since the mid 80s. Dave first took part in the RBRR in 1990, and has a 100% completion record. His infamous white Spitfire mk4 with GT6 running gear is a formidable car that has been honed for RBRR use throughout its life. Dave has been present within the team since the 2012 event, his enthusiasm and lateral thinking contributing to the event’s continued success. Dave has been ringing the main entrants those crews that are new to the event and gives out cool headed logical advice. Before Covid struck we have held RBRR organisational progress meetings and Dave is always more than happy to travel over 100 miles to attend these meetings. Everytime, we run the event, some new piece of legislation or problem springs up, Dave is just excellent with coming up with sensible simple ideas that really help, it must be said that he also sometimes comes up with surreal answers, but as with any talk with him will prove, they are really entertaining thoughts! As with Jason, expect to see Dave charging along on next year’s event in his ex Andy Thompson green coloured patina’d LHD 2000 mk1 saloon, called Morgan.  


 


Andy Pearce 


 


Andy is another long-standing Triumph man, starting off with a white Dolomite Sprint and he seems to be working his way through the whole range of Triumph cars, the latest being a very strange Spitfire 1500 that has been bodged to within an inch of its life by its previous owner, modern Mini headlights in a fiberglass bonnet anyone? Like the rest of the team, Andy has a bright mind that like Dave is full of slightly off-centre ideas that are sometimes exactly what is needed. Andy has a real dislike of crass phoney talk and can see through a fraud, his Cumbrian upbringing giving him a down to earth nature. Like Jason his humour can be shall we say salty and during meetings I sometimes feel like a teacher controlling naughty lads, however this can be necessary as my seriousness sometimes needs to be broken down. Andy has a keen aptitude for classic rallying having taken part in a number of endurance rallies and club events in the 2000s, before the advent of his Children, like Nigel, he is another one who can ‘drive’ a car. Andy runs all the social media and online activity for the event and like the rest of the team just seems to have an avid delight in taking part in the RBRR. 


 


Mark Bulford 


 


Mark is newest recruit to the team and has taken over the liaison with the chosen charity from me. Mark was the advocate for Motor Neurone Disease Association and made a strong case for our supporting of the Charity, however, little did he realise that his support would lead to an invite to the group! Mark has been a TR Register member for a long time who was attracted by the RBRR back in 2010, joined the Club and has now become another disciple of both the RBRR and the Club’s European event, the 10CR. He owns a gorgeous royal blue TR4A, that is proving to be dead reliable and has joined the large group of exciting Triumph cars that are owned by the membership of Club Triumph and used within our events. It is refreshing to see that Mark is out and about in all weathers in the car, this one being no show car, ‘get out and use it’ being his motto!  


 


It must be said that working with these guys and their predecessors is always fun, our meetings are always a complete gas, the chat being very free flowing and lively. Jason always has some new app or website that he has found that we seize upon to further the event, this sometimes confuses the hell of me and the less IT literate members of the group! All the paperwork such as spreadsheets that we produce are shared upon google drive enabling us all to review and add when away from the group. The organisation of the event takes 17 months leading up to the October, of course it is not continual, however the sporadic nature means that a programme of work must be used to ensure topics are not overlooked.  By the way, all of the team have volunteered to help and I believe that as they are still here, they must enjoy it! 


Since I took over as the main organiser of the RBRR in 2004 other CT members have been within the organisational group, Andy Martin and James Carruthers having come and gone, pressure of work being the cause. 


 


The Club’s membership always answers the call when we need Marshals to run the Control Stops that are scattered around the UK, the response being fantastic. The demeanor and helpfulness of the Marshals really contribute to the massive sense of camaraderie that exists over the weekend of the event. It must also be stated that the whole of the Club Triumph Committee group over the years has been very dependable and willing to help out in any way, so I must take this chance to name and thank them: Bridgette Snook, Madalane Warren, Shirley Shewry, Tina Lacey, Andy Lacey, Bob Banks, Chris Allen, Chris Banks, Dale Barker, Darren Sharp, Dennis Allen, Ellis Stokes, John Millidge, John Snook (RIP), Keith Bennett, Malcolm Warren, Martin Randle (RIP), Mel Evans, Mike Charlton, Mike Helm, Steve Waddingham, Tim Hunt and Tony Pulis.  


 


The reward in running the event for all of us is the start of the RBRR and the taking part in the actual event. When we used to use The Plough, the physical shape of the car park did not make it that apparent how many cars were taking part, since changing to Knebworth, the rectangular car parking area really gives off the sheer size of the event, its almost mind-blowing! Jason who is not one for being over-awed was amazed at the start of the 2016 event, he just could not believe how great all the cars looked together. He was right, the cars looked so good, set off by the beauty of the Knebworth estate. For me the start of the RBRR is just the best thing, to see all the entrants re-newing friendships, showing off their cars and really looking forward to a great weekend of motoring is a such a tonic. I think next year’s event will feel all the more important as we move away from this awful period of the Covid pandemic. 


And finally, within this Blog entry I must mention the originators of the event whose crazy idea the RBRR was back in 1966 and who have sadly passed on, Derek Pollock and Les Mills. I know that Derek was amazed at the way the RBRR had grown from its humble beginnings of 6 cars in 1966. 


 



me new piece of legislation or problem springs up, Dave is just excellent with coming up with sensible simple ideas that really help, it must be said that he also sometimes comes up with surreal answers, but as with any talk with him will prove, they are really entertaining thoughts! As with Jason, expect to see Dave charging along on next year’s event in his ex Andy Thompson green coloured patina’d LHD 2000 mk1 saloon, called Morgan.  

 

Andy Pearce 

 

Andy is another long-standing Triumph man, starting off with a white Dolomite Sprint and he seems to be working his way through the whole range of Triumph cars, the latest being a very strange Spitfire 1500 that has been bodged to within an inch of its life by its previous owner, modern Mini headlights in a fiberglass bonnet anyone? Like the rest of the team, Andy has a bright mind that like Dave is full of slightly off-centre ideas that are sometimes exactly what is needed. Andy has a real dislike of crass phoney talk and can see through a fraud, his Cumbrian upbringing giving him a down to earth nature. Like Jason his humour can be shall we say salty and during meetings I sometimes feel like a teacher controlling naughty lads, however this can be necessary as my seriousness sometimes needs to be broken down. Andy has a keen aptitude for classic rallying having taken part in a number of endurance rallies and club events in the 2000s, before the advent of his Ch

ildren, like Nigel, he is another one who can ‘drive’ a car. Andy runs all the social media and online activity for the event and like the rest of the team just seems to have an avid delight in taking part in the RBRR. 

 

Mark Bulford 

 

Mark is newest recruit to the team and has taken over the liaison with the chosen charity from me. Mark was the advocate for Motor Neurone Disease Association and made a strong case for our supporting of the Charity, however, little did he realise that his support would lead to an invite to the group! Mark has been a TR Register member for a long time who was attracted by the RBRR back in 2010, joined the Club and has now become another disciple of both the RBRR and the Club’s European event, the 10CR. He owns a gorgeous royal blue TR4A, that is proving to be dead reliable and has joined the large group of exciting Triumph cars that are owned by the membership of Club Triumph and used within our events. It is refreshing to see that Mark is out and about in all weathers in the car, this one being no show car, ‘get out and use it’ being his motto!  

 

It must be said that working with these guys and their predecessors is always fun, our meetings are always a complete gas, the chat being very free flowing and lively. Jason always has some new app or website that he has found that we seize upon to further the event, this sometimes confuses the hell of me and the less IT literate members of the group! All the paperwork such as spreadsheets that we produce are shared upon google drive enabling us all to review and add when away from the group. The organisation of the event takes 17 months leading up to the October, of cou

rse it is not continual, however the sporadic nature means that a programme of work must be used to ensure topics are not overlooked.  By the way, all of the team have volunteered to help and I believe that as they are still here, they must enjoy it! 

Since I took over as the main organiser of the RBRR in 2004 other CT members have been within the organisational group, Andy Martin and James Carruthers having come and gone, pressure of work being the cause. 

 

The Club’s membership always answers the call when we need Marshals to run the Control Stops that are scattered around the UK, the response being fantastic. The demeanor and helpfulness of the Marshals really contribute to the massive sense of camaraderie that exists over the weekend of the event. It must also be stated that the whole of the Club Triumph Committee group over the years has been very dependable and willing to help out in any way, so I must take this chance to name and thank them: Bridgette Snook, Madalane Warren, Shirley Shewry, Tina Lacey, Andy Lacey, Bob Banks, Chris Allen, Chris Banks, Dale Barker, Darren Sharp, Dennis Allen, Ellis Stokes, John Millidge, John Snook (RIP), Keith Bennett, Malcolm Warren, Martin Randle (RIP), Mel Evans, Mike Charlton, Mike Helm, Steve Waddingham, Tim Hunt and Tony Pulis.  

 

The reward in running the event for all of us is the start of the RBRR and the taking part in the actual event. When we used to use The Plough, the physical shape of the car park did not make it that apparent how many cars were taking part, since changing to Knebworth, the rectangular car parking area really gives off the sheer size of the event, its almost mind-blowing! Jason who is not one for being over-awed was amazed at the start of the 2016 event, he just could not believe how great all the cars looked together. He was right, the cars looked so good, set off by the beauty of the Knebworth estate. For me the start of the RBRR is just the best thing, to see all the entrants re-newing friendships, showing off their cars and really looking forward to a great weekend of motoring is a such a tonic. I think next year’s event will feel all the more important as we move away from this awful period of the Covid pandemic. 

And finally, within this Blog entry I must mention the originators of the event whose crazy idea the RBRR was back in 1966 and who have sadly passed on, Derek Pollock and Les Mills. I know that Derek was amazed at the way the RBRR had grown from its humble beginnings of 6 cars in 1966. 

 

JOG year 2000 ..when we had hair..

 Farewell 2020...you have been rubbish!

Bring on 2021! in fact bring on October 2021 when the rescheduled 27th running of Club Triumphs iconic event will happen 

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Regards the RBRR team