4x4 Off Road Championship 2001/2002.

Round 3, Vernon Mount, Cork.
Munster Motor Cycle & Car Club, 11th November 2001.

Report by Jonathan Blackmore.

"Timmy the man" puts it up to the old hands!!

Sunday the 11th of November will be a date that Timmy O'Dwyer will find hard to forget and for good reason. Widely tipped as this year's dark horse favourite, Timmy has stamped his authority on two very difficult courses. Well done from all the lads! The weather held and by 11am many if not all the competitors were finished or about to finish scrutiny. Test No 1 would set the tone for the day with a tricky 6 and 5 gate. As ever the start up took a bit longer than usual as we waited to see how the more experienced drivers didn't do it.

Spring bender & Shaft snapper

20 mins changes 1 half shaft?

The very nature of Vermont means that if you go beyond the limits you get punished and this would become ever apparent on tests 2&3 where by late morning the place was starting to look like Brian Berkerys garage. The damage done, many drivers were able to get back on track and this was only due to the generosity and good sportsmanship of fellow competitors such as AC/DC (Armshaw/Cummings –Demolition Contractors) who happened to have a spare half shaft for Timmy O'Dwyer or spring or tumble dryer door in the case of J.Blackmore and C.Thomas who it is rumoured are in sponsorship discussion's with whirlpool tumble washers at present.
Test 4 brought many of the top drivers closer together in the early part of the afternoon with a deceivingly difficult 4 gate plus 3 and 2 gates which tested both man and metal. The second half of the day seemed to fly past as we made our way round the by now familiar sights of Veron Mount (steam, mud, blood and the occasional thud). Test 5 was by now slippier than an advertisement for a cheap Suzuki, the points were starting to accumulate, the cool composure of the early morning was now being traded for the self preservation skills of a great white shark. Test 6 sorted out the lucky from the deserving. Gates 6,7,9 recording the highest number of human error incidents. Not one zero was recorded on this test so if you pulled a 2,3 you were still in with a chance.

Above test 1 gate 6/5 over come by a Landy

Yes Land Rover V8'S do need air and lots of it!!

Timmy O, Dwyer and Liam Hogan were by this stage engaged in a deadly game of move and counter move unknown to each other, by test 7 it was 10 point apiece and both drivers facing into the final and most challenging test of all test 8. Test 8 at the highest point of the Vernon Mount estate turned out to be a white knuckle ride for many of the novices and more alarmingly the battle hardened pro's. Liam Hogan would pick up a 7 on this test which would leave enough light through the door for Timmy to see his way to a 3 score and an overall 1st place title

All in all a combination of good weather and the hospitality of the Munster Motor Cycle & Car club made for a very enjoyable day for all. In rounding off it has to be said that test one was truly enjoyable to watch and the competitive element of the sport can be ignored here, as the following photos do no justice to the shear task of getting to what looked like an easy zero. In the line up we have the usual suspects.

After Round 3 the top 5 overall placings have a points difference of 9 between overall first B.Berkery on 75 pts and J.Hicky on 66pts in 5th C.Hanley takes 2nd,P.Hoganon 72 in 3rd and T.O'Dwyer on 66 pts to grabs on to 4th overall.

So Nero the zero

Last shout

Welcome back to the fold John after what? 4 years……….


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