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Review – Henry Surtees Foundation Team Karting Challenge

30th October 2016

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Lloyd’s Motor Club recently entered a team in the fifth annual ‘Henry Surtees Foundation Team Karting Challenge’, which took place at the Mercedes-Benz World Circuit, Brooklands on Tuesday 5 July 2016.  The Henry Surtees Foundation was inspired by motor sport legend John Surtees CBE, following the tragic death of his son Henry, killed aged just 18 years old whilst competing in Formula 2 race at Brands Hatch in 2009.

An impressive grid of 32 teams competed  in a two-hour endurance race using Daytona Motorsport’s D-MAX 125cc two-stroke karts, with sports racing driver David Brabham flagging the competitors away at the start.  The field included teams from the motorsport world, so the LMC team’s drivers found themselves up against numerous experienced young single-seater, sports endurance and karting racers (including Jack Harvey, the 2012 British F3 champion and Ben Barnicoat, GP2 and European F3 racer), in addition to corporate teams from the worlds of business and the media.

After an early hiccup when the teams’ first driver Dan Walsh was tipped into a roll by a spinning kart – fortunately without injury – which left the team 32nd and last while a replacement machine was fettled, Dan and his team-mates Brian Hunt, Mark Figes and Paul Griffith steadily made their way back up the field over the course of the two-hour race, finishing in a very creditable eighth place (with Paul closing fast on seventh place at the flag!).

Before the race, Derek Bell MBE drove the Team Surtees TS14 Formula 1 car which Mike Hailwood and Carlos Pace drove in the F1 World Championship in 1973, and John Surtees CBE drove a Lola T70 to commemorate the anniversary of him winning the inaugural and prestigious Canadian-American Sports Car Championship in 1966.  Wearing his father’s original race suit and helmet, David Brabham commemorated his father’s Formula One World Championship in 1966, driving a Brabham BT11/19 which father Jack used as a development car for his 1966  Championship year.  Other highlights included former TT racer Stuart Graham riding John Surtees’ 500cc 4 cylinder MV Agusta, and Ben Barnicoat in an ex-Carlos Pace Surtees TS15 Formula 2 car.

The prize-giving took place in the impressive Mercedes-Benz World building, with the trophies being presented by John Surtees CBE.  The evening was hosted by Henry Hope-Frost, and culminated in a fundraising auction by Malcolm Barber of Bonhams featuring exclusive artwork, memorabilia and experiences raising a staggering £22,000.   Overall, the event raised an estimated £60,000 for the Henry Surtees Foundation and Brooklands Museum.

The Henry Surtees Foundation aims to raise funds to support accident care, with particular emphasis on head injuries, and help educate and train young people with motorsport-related programmes in technology, engineering and road safety instruction for two and four wheels. The worthwhile causes supported by the Henry Surtees Foundation include the Kent, Surrey and Sussex Air Ambulance Trust, the Great North Air Ambulance, and its regional Blood Bike groups, plus the Midlands Air Ambulances and Great Western Air Ambulances. The Henry Surtees Foundation has a special relationship with Vauxhall and work in partnership to provide special lease terms for our support of transportation of blood between hospital and Air Ambulance.

With thanks to Rebecca Leppard, PR Manager, Henry Surtees Foundation, and Jakob Ebrey Photography.”

Brian Hunt

 

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