September - The Centenary Run

Line up at Gaydon - in a priveledged position Blasting round Donington
Navigator in charge of the camera Organised to celebrate the official Centenary of the motorcar, we opted for the Gaydon to Donington route. Highlight was a few laps of the Donington circuit. Donington was a Grands Prix circuit in the 1920s but fell into disuse. Restored and rebuilt by the efforts (and cheque book) of Tom Wheatcroft, it has hosted a couple of modern Formula 1 Grands Prix but is mainly used for bike and sports car races. Also has a museum with many historic racing cars, classic and modern.

August - East Sussex and Kent

Littlestone and Greatstone-on-Sea
places I hadn't been to for 40 years. Narrow-gauge Romney
Hythe and Dymchurch railway Battle of Britain memorial A week's free-style touring in 'Vee'. We stayed in Battle - home of '1066 and all that', and Canterbury. West Sussex, and everywhere else in Kent was fine, but Canterbury was a dreadful place, we left a day early.

July - Fairford Air Show

The Red Arrows 'syncro pair'. Concorde
not that it needs any introduction. The Battle of Britain Memorial Flight - Hurricane
Lancaster and Spitfire. Fairford is an airman's air show, by which I mean it is full of military, commercial and display pilots watching the show as well as taking part. It was a blisteringly hot day, almost too hot, really. Space in the shade of the wings of the larger static displays was at a premium. Concorde made several low, high-speed passes and circuits and bumps. It took off and landed at the airfield in order to give a number of lucky people joy-rides. Concorde, the Red Arrows and the Harrier can be guaranteed to stop people in their tracks for the duration of their piece. The most outrageous (but very amusing) event was the commentary accompanying the Turkish All-Stars Display Team. Suffice to say that when the next event was due the show commentator asked "How do I follow that?".

July - MGC Day, Avoncroft

Bit of a disappointment as although the site was open there were none of the usual activities going on.

June - Arden Run to Banbury steam fair

Hundreds of traction and stationary engines all in steam. An unusual 'highlight' was the sight of a Challenger tank charging round the arena flattening cars. I say 'highlight', but it was a bit of an anti-climax since the tank just drove straight over them as if they weren't there. The bodies were literally flattened and the engines and axles were pressed into the ground. The smaller armoured vehicle was more entertaining - it was lighter, and although it made a bit of a mess of its cars, it didn't completely flatten them, but converted them into ramps that launched it flying through the air.

It was the day of the British (I think) GP and we had set the video while we were out intending to watch the race in full that evening. Whilst strolling round the exhibits something caught our eye - a black-board with "Damon wins British GP" on it!

June - LE JOG 4X

Not a beer, but 2500 miles round Britain in five days. It started out as a straightforward 'Lands End to John O'Groats' (LE JOG the longest point-to-point journey in the British Isles) but a friend convinced me to go for the Northerly, Southerly, Westerly and Easterly extremities (4X) of the British mainland as well. I wrote which was published in the MGOC magazine, 'Enjoying MG' (seems apt), in September the same year.

I decided I wanted to have a dashboard plaque made to commemorate the trip and found a local engravers. Took the artwork round, and the chap looked at me and said "Don't I know you?". Turns out he was at Hanbury Hall 9 months previously - just visiting the house and gardens, nothing to do with the MG event there - and we had passed each other on one of the paths! "I never forget a face" he said.

April - The Kimber Run

Chose the D'Arcy route, via the High Peaks. There had been a significant snowfall throughout the Midlands on the previous Friday, so I checked with the organisers as to the road conditions - "Fine", they assured me. Came as a bit of a shock to find a foot of snow still lying on the ground in the higher areas. Snow I don't mind, but of course it had been gritted and salted - NOT what I had restored 'Bee' to be inflicted with. Gave her a good hosing down when we got home and it doesn't seem to have done any lasting damage.