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MINI In The Park - Santa Pod August 2013

Posted by Adrian Ainsworth on August 12, 2013 at 2:20 PM Comments comments (0)

Another early morning start for us and another day out with cars - we love it.

This time we travelled to Santa Pod  in Northamptonshirefor the annual Mini in the Park show which gives us a chance to meet up with old friends that we don't see so much now that there are fewer  runs and outings than there used to be.

With a few miles to go we caught up with three Gen 1 GPs and again thought how much we would like one, that itch never goes away for us and then we travelled into the show with them. We took the Clubman this time as he hasn't had many outings lately because of the new boy - SilverBeast our JCW MINI Coupé - and we didn't  want him to feel left out. We arrived just after 9 and the Clubman Register stand was already set up and everyone had left for their breakfasts.

We had a slow mooch through the stands and stalls, were tempted by a few items but returned empty handed to the Clubman stand where we began to make our bacon baps, tea and coffee. Then we heard a rumour that there were MINI bags of cleaning products for sale at one of the stands for £5, not sure how we missed them, but Beastie dashed off to pick one up while I battled with two nearly empty gas canisters before finally finding a decent one, and at last the kettle  boiled.

We had a long brunch chatting and catching up with old friends. Brettles was there with his son Branston who had also brought his own MINI a very tast pedal powered red JCW! Czar too was there in a brand new Generation 2 MINI GP, which was a lovely car, but being on a Clubman stand it was alas naturally outshone by the infinitely more handsome Clubmans on show! We spent some time putting the world to rights with Czar and then made another tour of the site stopping briefly to watch the rocket powered car go down the drag strip.  We had bumped into our old pal Elliott and chatted with him, while we watched the rocket powered Mini do its stuff.  He was on fine form as always and had us in stitches as he outlined the alternative options he had for his Sunday before electing to come along to Santa Pod. After a while we realised that rocket power was not for us though and after a few pictures we left to explore some more.

We bumped into an old pal from The NewMINIseverns days Emu_P with his girlfriend Helen on the New MINI Surrey stand and admired his Cooper SD before heading back to the Clubman gazebo and more tea! The weather had slowly improved through the day and as the sun was shining we treated ourselves to an ice cream and pondered upon how much we like this life in the fast lane. hey don't mock, if you are slow with tose ice creams they can melt real quick!

After a last trip around the show, we all packed up and headed home about 4 o'clock after a great day out.  no its not wildly exciting but  it was nice to be outside enjoying the day and with promises to meet up again at the Big MINI Show in September, we felt we had nicely satiated our MINI love for a while. We'd still love a Generation 1 GP though...

Click on The GP for a wall of Photos from the day and on any of the other images for a slideshow from the day!

Wilton House Supercar and Classic Show August 2013

Posted by Adrian Ainsworth on August 4, 2013 at 4:50 PM Comments comments (0)

We needed an early start to get to Wilton House for this event and we were still a little late as it is always further than we think. As we had signed up with Pistonheads we had a space on their reserved parking area which overlooks both the show and the house. The parking area is set up on a bank making it a very pleasant place to park and to enjoy your picnic later and being full of Pistonheads too, there is an abundance of nice cars to see in the field.

Driving into the show is always fun as there are many interesting cars to spot on the way in. We took the Opel GT as it still turns head and has a proper place at a car event being a rare creature itself.

We met up with Dealmaker and Star Girl when we got there and Fandango and The Elf shortly after and spent a while looking at and in, the many new cars on show on the  Dealer stands, Then we browsed the old and the rare before finally heading off  to watch the parade of supercars at 12 noon.

Soon it was time for lunch so we headed back to our car and set up our stove for bacon baps, tea and coffee. From our position we had an amazing view of the stunt bike display and got a real sense of just how far and high they flew. God that was seriously impressive.

After lunch we went to explore the Supercar display now that they were all parked up and watched the helicopter display as we walked. We are definitely in a Porsche mood at the moment and it was the  classic 911s that persistently caught our eye. You might get a sens of this when you browse our photos from the day by clicking on the photos.

Late afternoon it started to rain a little so it seemed a good time to head home, tired but full of dreams. It was as always a lovely show in a beautiful setting, good value for money and a very good day out all round, with great company to top it all.

Click the photos to see a slideshow of pictures from the day.

Click on this photo to see our iPhone snaps from the day.

Movie Of The Week - Charles Morgan's Aeromax

Posted by Adrian Ainsworth on August 2, 2013 at 4:05 PM Comments comments (0)

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I subscribe to Xcar on YouTube and I do enjoy their videos. I am a huge Morgan fan and I'm not exactly objective here, but I loved this video from start to finish!

Car Of The Week - Morgan Brooklands Edition

Posted by Adrian Ainsworth on July 28, 2013 at 5:45 PM Comments comments (0)

Morgan has announced a new limited edition, which really is an irresistible combination of raw power, retro chic and iconic good looks. Charles Morgan used a phrase to describe Morgan cars and it is very true with these fine limited editions - "kinetic art."

Here is the information on these gorgeous new models as put out by the Morgan Motor Company.

The Brooklands circuit was the brainchild of Hugh Locke-King, and was opened on 17 June 1907 as the first purpose-built banked motor race circuit in the world.


Requirements of speed and spectator visibility led to the Brooklands track being built as a 100 ft (30 m) wide, 2.75 miles (4.43 km) long, banked oval. The banking was nearly 30 feet (9 m) high in places. In addition to the oval, a bisecting “Finishing Straight” was built, increasing the track length to 3.25 miles (5.23 km), of which 1.25 miles (2.01 km) was banked. It could host up to 287,000 spectators in its heyday.


Along the centre of the track ran a dotted black line, known as the Fifty Foot Line. By driving over the line, a driver could theoretically take the banked corners without having to use the steering wheel.


Brooklands was more than a great sporting arena. Brooklands was the birthplace of British motorsport and aviation, home of Concorde and the site of many engineering and technological achievements throughout eight decades of the 20th century.

These Limited edition Brooklands inspired Morgans have been designed to celebrate the ancestry of British racing cars and their styling. An unusual arrangement of classic colour-ways, black detailing, and satin finishes are both in vogue and visible on cars of the era. The cars focus on using the options currently available on a Morgan car in a cost effective manner.


Only 50 of each the Brooklands Roadster 3.7l V6 and 3 Wheeler vehicles will be buiilt. Each car includes a limited edition numbered dash plaque, an array of cost options, a Brooklands centenary book, and an annual membership to the Brooklands trust.

Roadster Std. Specification (from £40,000+VAT ex factory)

Jaguar ‘Brooklands’ green Body

Speed Silver Satin Bonnet and Cowl

Standard side screens A posts and cowl (silver) (see options list for NEW black)

Muirhead black leather (Matching stitch ) with perforated centresBrooklands steering wheel

Silver light pod surrounds

Black Alloy Wheels

Aero Racing Green front splitter

Enamelled Union Jack badge on bonnet

Black stonegaurd

Louvred back panel (+8 style)

Black hood

Black Bonnet Strap

New Performance Sports seats

Body colour (green) dash board

Black Rubber floor matts

‘Brooklands racing circuit’ vinyl limited edition graphic on back

Limited edition numbered plaque on dashboard

NEW sculpted gearbox cover

NEW more pedal space

NEW gear lever position

Twin anti tramp bars

Adjustable gas dampers all round

Round mirrors

Brooklands centenary Book

Annual membership to the Brooklands trust



Optional Cost Extras (Prices + VAT)

Polished aluminium bonnets and cowl £ 950.00

‘Black pack’ (glass house trims and head light surrounds) £ 120.00

4x Alloys with silver accents £ 1200.00

4x Stainless wires £ 1900.00

As above, including spare wheel £ 2475.00

4x black ‘Sport’ wires £ 1500.00

As above, including spare wheel £ 1975.00

Sports exhaust (Aftermarket) £ 1116.15

3 Wheeler Std. Specification (Price £TBC. Sept 2013 Launch)

Jaguar ‘Brooklands’ green Body

Polished cowl

Brooklands steering wheel

NEW Brooklands exhaust (after market) in polished finish

Black bonnet strap

Enamelled Union Jack badge on bonnet

Black Tonneau cover

Black pleated leather

Polished engine

Black Roll hoops, lamps, and details etc)

Black leather

Black Rubber floor matts

‘Brooklands racing circuit’ vinyl limited edition graphic

‘Brooklands racing circuit’ embossed graphic on dashboard leather

Brooklands centenary Book

Annual membership to the Brooklands trust


Optional Cost Extras (Price £TBC. Sept 2013 Launch)

NEW fully Polished body with extra rivets

Intercom system

Heated seats

TOAD immobilizer

Leather storage pockets


Movie Of The Week - Porsche Cayman Mk 1

Posted by Adrian Ainsworth on July 28, 2013 at 2:35 AM Comments comments (0)

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The original Porsche Cayman was a car that was loved by many, yet driven by so few. XCar took a look back at it’s life to see what made it so great.


Porsche Cayman

Engine: 2.9-litre 6cyl

Power: 265bhp

Torque: 221lb ft

0-62mph: 5.8secs

Top Speed: 165mph

A Cat Named Enzo - Chapter Five

Posted by Peanut on July 25, 2013 at 2:00 AM Comments comments (0)

Chapter Five - Let Sleeping Cats Lie


Enzo sensed the Boss was worried; he sensed it was something to do with their guest who was still out of sight in the storage box, as no normal person would willingly get in there. He looked out of the front of the van and saw the Boss laughing with some men outside.


Enzo jumped out of his bed and leapt up onto the padded seat of the box, stretched out and looked as sleepy as he could - it wasn't hard as he had years of practice under his collar. Footsteps and voices approached and the door opened.


"Oh, I see. You travel with a companion, do you Sir?" said the stranger." It's unusual to find a cat, not many like the travelling life. What's your name then, little chap?"


As he reached forward Enzo rolled onto his back. He wriggled and did his best to look appealing as the stranger stroked his chin and rubbed his tummy. The temptation to sink his teeth into this strangers hand was overwhelming, to do the full cat thing and grab him with the claws of his front paws and scratch him with his back, but that was not the plan here. He needed to make the man feel special and loved, so he wouldn't poke about in dark corners.


"His name is Enzo and he seems to be happy enough travelling with me." replied the Boss cheerfully. "Would you like to see his passport?"


" He is a lovely fellow isn't he? No, that won't be necessary at all. Everything is in order here, I can see. You couldn't get up to much trouble with a cat in tow, could you now?"


The two men laughed and agreed. Enzo closed his eyes as the door shut. After a few minutes the Boss climbed back into the driver's seat and started the van. Enzo took up his place in his travelling bed and settled down for a nap. No words were spoken for some time and then the van stopped again.


"You're a credit to the trade Enzo. What a master stroke."


The Boss climbed through the van from the driver's seat, and lifted the lid on a very flustered looking Luke.


"Did you have to leave it so long mate? It was sweltering in there and no air to breathe" Luke had clearly not enjoyed his stay in the box.


"Grumble as much as you like, but you are now on home ground. You may have noticed we did get searched but my little friend here kept you safe by sitting on the lid and being cute. It might have been a very different story." The Boss ruffled Enzo's head.

"We are at a roadside cafe so we can have a quick bite to eat then we must be off again." said the Boss. "We'll bring you something back for being a clever little boy, Enzo. Won't be long."


As the Boss and Luke left the van Enzo watched them walk into the nearby building. He left his bed and sought the comfort of the Boss's bed. It was much comfier and quieter than trying to sleep in the front of the van, and he was out of the way. The Boss wouldn't be back for a while and it was just the place for a proper sleep, all this travelling and adventure made a cat very tired. H e hoped Luke wouldn't be with them much longer, it wasn't the same with him around. He didn't like sharing the Boss with strangers, just the two of them was best. He laid his head on his crossed paws and let sleep overtake him as it so often did. It wasn't such a bad life.