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Kimber Run Part 1

I'd wanted to do the Kimber Run since we'd got hold of the B. We'd seen it a couple of years' back when we'd been visiting Chatsworth, and it being one of our favourite locations anyway it seemed an ideal place to do our first run.

We really had no idea what to expect, though I'd pictured a tour around local roads following a route map, nothing too strenuous for these old motors, especially as some cars taking part were twice as old as mine. In reality it turned out quite different!

We pulled into the Chatsworth Estate and immediately saw the line of nearly 100 cars parked up in front of the house wall, everything from a 1930s J2 and a TB to the modern TFs. We registered and picked up our rally board and a 'map' which turned out to be a series of 60-odd tulip diagrams with miles between points marked. This could be tough if we missed a turn!

The setting of Chatsworth was a great background to the start of the run, made more interesting by negotiating grazing sheep and gateposts as we made our way across the field on the way back out.

The run started in earnest pretty much straight away, after a few miles of local roads we pulled off down a road running along a field. This quickly became narrower as it climbed higher and through small clusters of houses, abruptly ending in a tiny crossroads and a hairpin up an even steeper single track road. Of course after passing a group of hikers on the way up we meet a local car on his way down! There was no way I could reverse back down and around the corners with the hikers behind us, especially with the car already showing the needle in the red zone on the temp gauge, I was getting concerned overheating would put us out of the run before we'd really started. Luckily after a little insisting the local relented and reversed to let us past and at the top we pulled into a lay-by to take a break and let the B cool down a little. (Note to self: see if retarding the timing lets it run cooler, failing that some water wetter or always-open stat will have to be deployed!)

While the car was taking advantage of the shade and rest, I walked back to the lay-by 50 yards back down the road to chat to the drivers of the only TD in the run. They turned out to be locals and mentioned how the same hairpin last year had caused a real tailback as cars negotiated the tight turn.

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