Stop Right There

A little while ago at a car show I was told that my brake lights didn’t work. I was concerned for obvious reasons. The cars behind me can’t see me slowing or stopping, and the fact I’m running LED’s was a concern. It’s not as if I had a blown bulb or something which would be an easy fix. The guy told me that while we were in a long queue to get into the show he “didn’t see my lights come on at all”.

After he left explaining it to me my fellow Mustang mate David heard what he said and suggested I pressed the pedal so he could take a look. I pressed the pedal as I normally do when braking and the thumbs up and a “yep fine”, no problems there then. We swapped places and he pressed the pedal, no problems again as the lights came on as expected. This is now turning into a puzzling scenario. Perhaps an intermittent switch fault, or is it the fact I am very light on my brakes? I don’t pull away with a boot full of revs and I don’t jump on the brakes to stop me either. In traffic I pull away gently by just letting the idle move me forward, when I brake it’s just a light pressure enough to stop. Less wear and tear on the engine, less fuel used, it will help avoid a boil over and the big positive is there will be less brake dust on my chrome wheels to clean as well.

I made a trip to Mustang Maniac to be in the company of fellow petrol heads and I explained what had happened to Adam. He suggested a swap over of the switch for the power assisted disc version. When I asked what the difference was he told me the spring for the switch was not as strong and the wires were on the other side of the switch bracket. This translated means that the normal drum brakes need more pressure to apply the brakes with a longer pedal travel. That switch is stronger as the brakes don’t actually apply until a reasonable force is used. The power assisted disc brakes need less pressure before the brakes apply, so the switch needs to be activated a little earlier. Simple when you think about it. So with advice from Adam of course I was going to replace it.

Here the two are side by side. Old drum brakes on the left (still working when tested with multi meter) and the new one for powered discs on the right. It’s also the same switch for a 67-68 as well.

I got to work where the switch is attached to the pedal via, which is in turn mounted around the master cylinder lever, which is also attached to the pedal via the same pin. The switch and the lever are held in place by a fairly strong retaining pin which needs to be removed.

Depending on the state of the pin it could be rusted and a little penetrating oil may help with the removal. I used a long pair of angled pliers to pull it out, be careful you don’t slip and take a chunk out of your steering column.

With the pin removed the connecting bar to the brake master will be able to be pulled off the pedal to the side.

Move the brake lever halfway off the pin. This will release the closed part of the switch casing, a hole which the pin fits through in order to stop the switch from coming off the pedal itself.  The switch itself can now be pulled down as the opposite side of the switch is open at the top of the casing to allow the switch to be removed. This saves having to completely remove the brake lever bar if you didn’t want to. While I was at it I decided to regrease the pin and plastic bushings. When removing the pin take care to retain the plastic bushing inside the lever bar. There are also a nylon washers on either side of the pin which don’t need to be removed, but you can if you want to. Below is the pedal push rod to the master cylinder being removed.

I sprayed the pedal pin with some white grease ready for reassembly later and also the inside of the push rod and bushings. If they haven’t been replaced for a while, replace them just for the sake of it  as they are very cheap replacement parts. That would also eliminate and play in the pedal, if you have any that is.

Side by side with the closed side of the switches compared. The powered disc brake version on the right with the terminals on the closed side of the switch. The left has the terminals on the open side.

The other side of the switch where you can see the open side as it were. Notice the terminals on the left manual switch are now facing up.

Once the removal has been completed now it’s a simple the reverse to fit it. Apply grease to the pedal pin that locates the push rod bar and the bushings. I used plenty and can always wipe it up after. If you go mad with the grease you could drop or run grease onto your footwell carpet, be careful or lay some old rags around, just in case.

Place the switch up to the push rod bar which will sit between the open and closed sides of the switch. Align the holes and slip it back over the brake pedal pin. You may need to slightly rotate the switch so that the open end is located all the way up to the pin. The switch itself should sit square at the end of the brake push rod, in line at the end of the lever bar as shown here. If the switch is not located square, the lights could be on all the time or not come on at all.

The push rod lever bar has straight edges deliberately, this means when the pedal is depressed the lever bar moves on the pin’s axis and the edges press the top of the switch down to make the contact.

Check the motion of the pedal and you should here a very faint click as the switch engages. The retaining sprung pin can be located into the hole in the pedal pin. This retaining spring is quite a tough to open around the pedal pin in order to be properly located. Here just the retaining pin tip is located in the brake pedal retaining hole.

You may need the pliers on the spring a little to get it passed the pedal pin and snap it into place.

A little more spray on white grease and pump the pedal to make sure full and correct operation.

Lastly you just need to swap the connecting block to the other side of the switch. It’s possible that you may need to free up a little more cable but you should have enough slack in the loom to allow you to do this. Here the switch is fully assembled with the connector in place with the red and white wires showing, before I re-wrapped them again. The connecting block can only fit on in one direction as the male terminals are set at angles.

From a slightly different angle.

Again, check the FULL motion of the pedal and make sure everything is clear from snagging. You should now be able to check that your brake lights are now working correctly. Lastly you can either clean up the grease on the visible parts or leave it as is. I left mine for a couple of trips in order to let it all work around, then I cleaned it up, but not to much as you need the lubrication there.

The noticeable difference being that the pedal moves less now before the brake lights come on which suits my style of driving. Also even if I just cover the brakes it should give the car behind earlier warning that I am actually slowing down and avoid being rear ended.

In total it took around just over half an hour plus taking the pictures to complete. It took a further few hours for my back to recover after laying upside down in a Mustang footwell and twisting into positions that any circus contortionist would be proud off. The cost of the project was £16.80 from Mustang Maniac, click here for the link for the switch I used. A small price to pay to be safe.

Quite what the issue was with the brakes not working or just the switch playing up i don’t know. Replacing the switch is simple and like I just said, it’s better to be safe than sorry. Quite what my next project will be I’m not sure, but I will find something no doubt, hopefully without having to book an appointment with a chiropractor! 🙂

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The Results Are In

At the end of my last post “Sweet & Sour part 2”, I asked for the my readers / followers view and response to my dilemma of the cheating allegations that I aimed squarely at Ted Brooke the owner of the 1961 Morris Minor. I won’t go back into what I saw over the weekend I have documented and evidenced that. I created a Poll and asked should I leave my cheating report up, or take it down?

Thank you to those that voted along with your support. The results were a conclusive and massive over 95% in favour to leave it up.

So my evidence of what I saw stays posted.

I have been asked how these posts even got to the point it has now. The answer is quite simple; people started to press my buttons, pressing my buttons does make things happen in my head, I just have to deal with it and can’t let it go. The most basic explanation is when I confronted those involved with the evidence I had, it was laughed off and laughed in my face, it was ignored completely, I was told to go away, I was called a “liar” and a “sore loser”, I was even threatened with legal action, and that little lot just started to rub my nose in it. A little gaggle of cheaters sitting behind the car laughing and celebrating that they had ‘Won’ the ‘well deserved’ trophy didn’t sit to well with me or the others that were there in either. So, not only did I/We witness bad things, but it was then blatant they had no qualms about cheating.

To the point of this post; behind the scenes I had told people I emailed Lancaster my concerns and if I got a response I would too also allow them their fair say. Lancaster did respond and so did Clarion. I will show what I wrote to Lancaster and the responses in a second.

But first; I would like to make it clear that I have no grudge(s) with organisers / partners of the event at all, in fact a little more respect as they had the balls to reply to me knowing full well I would be commenting on their replies, I know they will be reading this. So Thank You to those that have contacted me and replied to me. I will keep their personal contact details out of it as I see no benefit to splash that level of detail all over the internet. All I am doing here is fighting for a pure point of PRINCIPLE, I’m not here trying to ruin events or their jobs.

I wrote an email to Richard Morley, Operations Director, Lancaster Insurance. The email was sent Thu 14/11/2019 13:45  the cut and paste reads as follows; (including a couple of typos, I had at the time and still have tonsillitis, that’s my excuse for the unforgivable errors! 😦

Afternoon Mr Morley,

I would like to start of with big thank you for such an enjoyable weekend 8-10 November at the NEC Birmingham. I was one of the lucky 20 entrants able to display on the Pride of Ownership a real honour. However I would like to ask the official stance on cheating within the competition you are sponsoring. Throughout each of the three days at the event the owner of the winning car the pink Morris Minor, was seen cheating by myself and others. He filled in his own voting slips and putting them into the vote boxes, passing pre filled forms to visitors asking them to post the forms as well. He even told the visitors where to tick for his car, he also took wads of the voting forms to club stands to be filled in on a few occasions. As he was next to my car it was clear to see. The joining instructions clearly stated that any cheating would mean disqualification and be asked to leave. Especially as the joining instructions specifically said there was complaints and cheating the year before as well. Vigilance should have been a priority.

The cheating was reported to the NEC organiser who confirmed in a text to me that that the cheating votes were not going to be  counted, obviously many were going to be missed.

With such a blatant knowledge of his cheating the organisrrs and your staff still allowed the entrant to continue. I and others also reported the underhanded tactics to Lancaster staff in white t-shirts who didn’t seem to take it too seriously. Yet still he was not disqualified. I took a photo early Sunday morning where he was sitting at a table with voting forms going through his phone looking for contacts to complete the forms. I witnessed it.

As I’m a good sport I did not make a scene at the awards and spoke immediately to the guy representing Lancaster giving the awards and showed him the evidence. His response was an astonishing “I just write the cheques”. I showed the evidence to the Morris Minor owners club who just denied it and laughed. You representative was seen to go over to apologise the club for any misunderstanding. Again no offering to look into the evidence. I know thwt the Morris Owners club had stacks of forms on their stands, which shouldn’t of been there in the first place. I have the photograph and also the screen shots between me and NEC where the organisers KNEW of cheating and even acknowledged the cheating via text messages, yet still allowed the car to go on and win. By saying we removed the blatant cheating forms has condoned the practice to not remove the car. If you are caught cheating in an exam the exam is void, not just the question you cheated on, if you cut corners on a running track you are disqualified, not just ignore that little bit. I could have been handled without fuss by not placing the car at all, if you didn’t want the bad publicity. An even playing field was all that we requested now I feel that I need to expose this wrong doing. I am happy to have my message logs to be examined by the phone company to prove the messages were indeed sent and received as they were just text messages not WhatsApp encrypted. 

Please could you let me know if you want to see the evidence where I will be happy to send over. Also what if anything does your company intend on doing about the obviously squewed results. I don’t want publicity, i dont want free insurance, I just want the moral and integrity high grounds to be fought for. The guy wanted the trophy so bad be managed to pull it of in the biggest classic car show in the country and you (organisers) were told about it. 

I’m sorry that this has had to be noted to you in such a way.

Based on the experience of your company to date I feel that I can never be insured with you as I don’t know that I can trust the company as a whole. I am in no way suggesting you on any others at your level knew about it. But, it was raised over the whole weekend to many people. In fact there were others entrants also cheating, unfortunately I don’t have 100% proof of that. 

Sour grapes from me? Not at all I had a great time there. It just seems that my principles are greater than others. Many people are the opinion “let it go” but that’s not the point. I have no doubt what so ever than I will now be black listed for events as a trouble maker.

I look forward to your responses.

I’m very dissapointed and feel let down.

Regards,

Mart Dawson.

Mr Morley’s job title is now different to the documents that I had researched at the time, so perhaps this wasn’t the idea person to speak to, but to be fair – Mr Morley took ownership of it and moved it along for a resolution. A good positive there.

‘Poppyseed’ Clarion’s PR Agency tried to contact me:

Wednesday 15th November 2019 at 15:38. I was unable to answer as I was unable to speak as I had completely lost my voice. A pleasant email was left on my voice mail to call back.

Monday 18th November 2019 at 11:14. I was actually asleep at this point (recovering from a fate worse than man flu obviously) although my voice was starting to come back to the dulcet tones of Barry White. A pleasant voice message was again left for me.

I tried to call PoppySeed on Tuesday 19th November 2019 12:53, unfortunately they were in a meeting all day. A text message very shortly after my call to me to say that emails were going to be on their way back to me later that afternoon. I was slightly surprised that written correspondence was going to arrive, but this is again a positive.

The first email response the next day was from Lee Masters of Clarion the ‘Show Director’ on Wed 20/11/2019 10:59

Dear Mart

Andrea Seed from our PR Agency (Poppyseed Media) and Richard Morley from Lancaster Insurance have brought my attention to both a letter that you have written to Mr Morley and also a social media blog that you have written entitled ‘One Man and His Mustang’.

Firstly, can I thank you for your encouraging and positive words and photos that you took at the show. It’s good to hear that you enjoy the event as much as we do. I would also like to thank you for entering your superb Mustang into the Lancaster Insurance Pride of Ownership Competition.

It is with regards to the competition that I am writing, and I want to reassure you that your concerns about cheating are being taken seriously. The Pride of Ownership Competition has been running now for four years at both our March and November shows. The competition is about bringing together some of the UK’s best privately owned classic cars and asking the public to vote for their favourite (top three) cars. This is all done in a good-natured spirit of fun, enthusiasm and passion for the classic cars that we all love and cherish.

For clarity, the competition is organised and run by Clarion Events Ltd as the owners of the Lancaster Insurance Classic Motor Show. Lancaster Insurance is the sponsor of the competition.  The organising, administering of the terms and conditions, voting process, vote counting and conclusion of the final results are done by Clarion, independently and without prejudice.

Should any of the competition terms and conditions be possibly contravened then the situation would be raised with me as the Show Director and reviewed by the competition organising team. I confirm that all of the voting forms for all competing cars were diligently inspected and a number of ‘non-qualifying’ votes were removed (not just from the Morris Minor) and were discounted from the final results. I also confirm that this did not affect the outcome of the top three places.

Whilst we do state disqualification in the terms and conditions, in most circumstances, once we have removed ‘non-qualifying’ votes there is not a need to take such action – it really is a last resort as we want this to be a gracious and good-natured public vote.

Finally, I don’t want you to be unhappy and we will as a result of your feedback conduct a review of our processes and Terms and Conditions for our next event. Please also be assured that you will not be black-listed as you put it. I see you as a friend of the show and your comments will help us in the future. As a gesture of goodwill, I would happily offer you guest tickets to our spring NEC show or Reis Race Retro if you would like to join us.

My very best regards

Lee Masters

Show Director

Second email response was from Mr Morley Wed 20/11/2019 11:31 some thirty minutes later with the following: (Personal contact details redacted).

Hello Mr Dawson  

Thank you for your email.

Apologies for the delay in my response, following your communication we have shared your email with Clarion Events and have been having discussions with the team there.

Pride of Ownership is an integral part of the weekend and we’re delighted that you were able to join us at the show. I understand you spoke to Andrea Seed on the Sunday of the show regarding your concerns and she has been trying to get hold of you following your email to myself. I’m sorry to hear you have been suffering with tonsillitis, I hope you feel better soon.

Lee Masters, the Show Director, has emailed you this morning and we hope that this has reassured you and addressed your concerns.

Please be assured that all feedback is greatly appreciated, and we certainly take on board all comments. We also hope to see you at future events.

Kind Regards

Rich Morley

Broking Director

OK, really nice to get the emails which I won’t forensically deconstruct the emails which would be fairly easy to be honest, I will just point out a few little things for you. It’s also quite clear that they spoken with each other and the organisers and the sponsors are not going to throw each other under a bus for bad publicity that’s for sure. The show works well as a whole and I hope it continues to do so. It’s a great show at the end of the day.

We are not stupid either that the voting forms are also a way of the sponsors being Lancaster Insurance are gaining contact details for leads for classic car insurance with renewal dates. A little side note: Classic Car Insurance is a good risk for a number of reasons; people who own these cars trailer or drive them very carefully. Restricted number of drivers also tend to be in the more mature age banding. These cars are simply not thrashed around. They are very well looked after, more so than modern cars. Restricted annual mileage means less exposure to road risks. They are usually kept very secure. Although the downside is the value of the cars for a total loss which can be high, the overall claims ratios still make this a profitable book of business.

Lancaster’s response email from Mr Morley; is worth noting that their email didn’t address a number of my specific points directly about the insurance company itself. This is partially seen to be addressed by Clarion’s response(s). Hence Lancaster have played their keep it clean card to keep out of any potential ‘misunderstandings’ from the show. Lancaster doesn’t address the behaviour of their representative towards me either.

Clarion’s response email; This was always going to be a text book response for an email. They had the right to do what they wanted regarding the Terms & Conditions when you break down the structure. The ‘non-qualifying’ references instead of the ‘cheating’ which softens the public perception of the terminology is now being used. The fact that even with the ‘non-qualifying’ votes removed the results will still stand. In other words; we don’t need to recall the trophies, we don’t need to announce any ‘errors’ Ted Brooke and others are not seen as a cheater and all is good with the world. In fact the email states “a number of ‘non-qualifying’ votes were removed (not just from the Morris Minor) and were discounted from the final results“. So it seems rife that cheating takes place and acknowledged.

However – There is no way that you can guarantee that you removed all the cheating votes, hence the call for disqualification we wanted, or just not place the car at all would have been the easiest answer on the day. The Clarion email says this little paragraph;

Whilst we do state disqualification in the terms and conditions, in most circumstances, once we have removed ‘non-qualifying’ votes there is not a need to take such action – it really is a last resort as we want this to be a gracious and good-natured public vote.

So it’s OK for the cheaters that they weren’t going to be thrown out, and the other entrants may as well not turned up by the sounds of it.

The upside is that Clarion offered me a good will gesture, this was always going to be a difficult one for the organisers if they did it at all. To much good will would have looked like a pay off, and too little would have been a slap in the face. I think they got it right to be fair to them and a nice offer. To save any face on either side I won’t be taking them up on their kind offer, I know that on the day it would have be fine.  Thank you again Clarion for the offer.

Lancaster couldn’t do anything, as I already said I didn’t want anything from them, however they could of offered to try to beat or match my current insurance terms at renewal on a fair basis by speaking to them. I respect their response that they didn’t try that approach, by the tone of my letter they were not going to win my custom anyway. Again I would have declined any of their offers or quotes for this years premium which was a lot more than I currently pay anyway.

Conclusion:

Both Lancaster Insurance and Clarion replied. Their responses were nothing of a surprise to be honest. Organisers and Sponsors are both needed to make these things works. Both Lancaster and Clarion pull these shows off well. Both of the have taken my points on board to make it better. Despite how this reads I did have a great weekend with Andrea and she has a great sense of humour and we did laugh together. There is no animosity on my side that’s for sure. It’s also great to know that I haven’t been black listed, but the jury remains out on that one for a while.

There is nothing else I can say with my journalistic report on the weekend now. The results won’t change – that was always going to be a certainty. The explanations were always going to be text book responses and these emails are just great examples of that. My experience was tainted at the end knowing that this pink Morris Minor will be paraded around as a genuine winner.

It’s up to the readers now to make their own minds up.

Email’s now exchanged and they hope the man with a Mustang drops it and moves on. I can confirm that he will indeed now move on and not to keep bringing this up. But, if I am at a car show and I get asked what went on I will explain it. My quest is complete, I have exposed what went on, no more actions will or can be done now, those ranks have closed. I only wanted a point a principle to be upheld, you cheat – you’re out!

At the end of the day I’m just one man with a Mustang, what chance did I really have? My next posts will car related again you will be please to hear.

Thanks to Chris Tilley for these great pics more of these which will be on a post soon.

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Sweet & Sour (part 2)

The Sweet (part 2)

Saturday morning arrived all to soon and this was going to be killer of a day, 9 to 6.30 I virtually never left the stand at all. Like a regimented soldier I stood on duty, One of the other exhibitors had a spare chair which they lent to me and was a real life saver. My feet were killing me and so was my throat. I went in via a different route and took more pictures of different cars.

Saturday evening I popped round to see the Mustang Owners Club Of Great Britain to say hello while they were resting after a busy day too.

The Super Sweet

Later in the day there was a little group of people following a lovely model around, and I thought to myself, “I hope that lot comes over here, otherwise I will miss them”. They did more than that. The photographer approached me and said they wanted to take some pictures of the model with my car. I wasn’t going to say no was I? It turned out the model was absolutely fantastic with a great sense of humour and she kindly allowed me to take pics as well looking at me rather than her official photographer. I took rather a lot of photo’s should we say, hoping to get that one great photo.

Thanks to this lovely lady and model who had time for me at my car, she was professional, funny and courteous. The only down side? I hade to wipe the finger prints of my car. Such was the sacrifice I made in the name of my car.

On the Sunday mornin’ we finished an hour earlier and was also the award day. A good friend of mine Chris Tilley came to replace me by the car so I could have a look around, which was very kind of thim, thank you Chris. I was off like a ferret on a scent looking for more pics. I found the Classic American stand and the car I like the most won it and well deserved, what an amazing car.

I found my friends at Meguiar’s

Then a random selection of some cars that took my eye.

Then a new Hyper car LM69 costing a huge £1m based on the Jaguar XJ13 body and engine.

And the driving position of this car was just mad, almost laying down, lower than a GT40.

Awards

The award was to be voted for by the public, there is a voting form with all the cars on from the stand. You picked your favourite car and you put your name on the back, posted and job done. These forms were on the voting booths with Lancaster staff manning them to help along with trying to also get people to win a car competition. The little white boxed stand had a letter box style opening in the middle that was regularly emptied during the show days. Here is that form;

There was a winner and two runners up which were to be announced at 2pm on the Sunday. The winner getting a year free insurance and a glass trophy, all very exciting. The pink Morris Minor (one million edition – not the one millionth car) won the show, with the MX5 in second and the BMW in third place. The fact that I didn’t place wasn’t a problem as I enjoyed my time there taking part in a great show – I MUST stress that point again and a superb experience weekend.

BUT –  and a very big but…


The SOUR

I have seriously thought very long & hard about this next section and I need your help with it.

Do I leave it here or Remove it?

There was a covering email sent out to the entrants, for joining the show with this clause;

It’s up to you if you stay with your car the whole weekend or not. Some owners like to stay and chat to visitors, even campaigning as visitors will be invited to vote for their favourite car of the 20 displayed. However, we have had issues with cheating and complaints in the past so please familiarise yourself with the attached terms of entry. Its important we all play nice and enter into the spirit of the event. Those who don’t and breach the T&Cs will be asked to leave the show.

Those terms and conditions are as follows:

Terms and Conditions:
Votes will be counted and verified by Clarion Events Ltd and the organisers decision is final.

Clarion Events Ltd will not contribute to any transportation or accommodation costs for entrants.

A car can only be entered once in a three-year period

An owner can enter one car per year, but can enter a different car each year.

While the owners can engage and campaign with other entrants and visitors, any form of intimidation, cheating, derogatory remarks or bad mouthing is not tolerated and those involved will be disqualified and asked to leave.

This is not a concours competition. However, Concours winning cars are welcome to enter but should not expect to be judged in the same way.

The competition is presented in the spirit of like-minded enthusiasts coming together to celebrate their vehicles and entrants are asked to keep this in mind when joining the competition.


Bearing in mind the above statements let me explain a little more, then you can make your own minds up. Perhaps I should just let it go, or try and expose what I saw and witnessed along with others on the stand. This is a true statement:

Friday morning the box of voting forms were brought down to the stand and placed on stand up tables. At which point things immediately started to go wrong. The owner of the Minor took a wad about an inch thick and literally run of with them to club stands, a little later on similar thing happened again. At this point it was mentioned in conversation to the organisers.

I will refer to the organisers as ‘They’ to protect their anonymity, I’m not out to embarrass them, but it was mainly one person in charge.

Then I saw the forms being pre filled in with his own car ticked, when he spoke to people he gave them his pre completed form to be posted at the same time as the person’s own vote. This was on the Friday when I sent messages to highlight the problem as They were not about to see it. Noted here on the Friday messages.

Saturday there was more incidents and there was a large wad of forms placed in the box. This was formally mentioned to the Lancaster people and They when we saw them. Not just by me complaining, but others as well who witnessed it.

Sunday morning I arrived early to catch the owner with a few voting slips taken from the stands an being filled in at a table. I took a photo as he was scrolling through his phone for contacts to fill in. Note; the sideways picture shows the back of the voting slip. The slips shouldn’t even be there.

Again They were notified by various entrants and complained bitterly. Another entrant was told around lunch time that he and another were going to be disqualified. Maybe told that to us to keep us quiet? I don’t just don’t know, we were then a lot happier that we were on a level playing field for all of us.

At 2pm a celeb who doesn’t need to be mentioned (who obviously had nothing to do with it), gave the usual speech, plugged his tv show etc and then gave the winning award to the Morris Minor. Immediately after the prize giving I showed the picture to Lancaster and told them we had complained about the cheating. The head of the Lancaster I spoke to wasn’t interested and said to me, “I know nothing about it and I just write the checks.” I showed him the photo and screen shots he walked away.

I immediately texted They and sent the picture to which the second screen shot of the messages shows you. They response was obvious this:

We’ve discounted all the forms that we can see are clearly cheating, same handwriting etc.

So They did know of the cheating yet allowed the entrants to continue. Thus, They condone cheating entries as They didn’t disqualify him or the other entrant that we didn’t have as much proof only witnesses and verbal communication.

We remained respectful for the presentations like good sports for the event. However after a number of complaints made after the awards I showed the Morris Minors Owner Club the evidence to which they denied it but didn’t look shocked. The Lancaster representative went over to the Morris Owners and apologise for the ‘confusion’.

After a little research on the Lancaster Website this can be found:

Lancaster Insurance has announced that it will be widening its Morris Minor schemes, further strengthening its association with the marque. The scheme, which is now live, is available for all Morris Minor enthusiasts, of all ages, who use their Morris Minor as a second vehicle with limited mileage.
Additionally Morris Minors Owners Club members will be able to take further advantage of the scheme with up to a 25% premium discount available for members as well as the option for multi vehicle, providing one is a Morris Minor.
Andrew Evanson, Senior Operations Manager for Lancaster Insurance, comments: “Here at Lancaster we have a close affinity to Morris Minors, with our Car Club Manager even owning several over the years. We’re delighted to be able to arrange cover for all ages providing they are using it in a cherished way.

Source:

https://www.lancasterinsurance.co.uk/news/2017/march/08/lancaster-insurance-to-arrange-cover-for-all-ages-of-morris-minor-drivers/?page=28

So perhaps this is a genuine misunderstanding for Lancaster, maybe they chose to ignore it not wanting bad publicity for a scheme they have.

I will never insure with a company that knowingly knew of cheating but didn’t take steps to follow their own terms and conditions. Remember;

any form of intimidation, cheating, derogatory remarks or bad mouthing is not tolerated

I hope this guy can live with himself for knowing that he won only because he cheated!

As this gets posted today, I have also sent an email to Richard Morley the Operations Director for Lancaster Insurance on 14 November 2019 at 13:47

As yet there has been no response from Lancaster Insurance. If I do get a response I will post my email and their response too.


So there you have it, the sting in the tail was deeply troubling and uncomfortable as he was the car next to mine. That’s how I KNOW what went on as he was only a few feet away from me. The atmosphere after the awards on the stand you could cut with a knife, the winning owner disappeared for a while too, perhaps he was busy doing things.

I didn’t enjoy typing that report at all, I take no pleasure from it. But, if he admits he cheated then he is better man than I thought. Not for one minute do I think that will ever be the case though.

Am I a bad person for bringing this up and maybe bringing the show into disrepute? I suspect I will now be black listed for any awards or magazine articles, Not that I care. I’m not in it for trophies (although I have three now but have never posted about them), I just enjoy my car. The Morris Minor club is one of the biggest in the country and that has a lot of weight behind it with all it’s members.

I will say that I am a man of principles – I played fair and I expect others to do the same, after all it’s in black and white that we had to play nice before the show started. I was going to frame my certificate (as we all did), I got for the show as a finalist, but now I when I see it I can’t help but think of the man that got away with cheating at the biggest car show in the country. That grates on me big time. That certificate is now in the bottom of a draw and I doubt it will come out again.

Sour grapes for not winning? Nope not at all, I don’t like cheats. I had a blast all weekend I even met an elderly chap (like me now) with the same surname as me, he also has a 1964 Mustang. What are the chances of that? 😀

Like I said a number of times, a fantastic weekend wonderful people, some great chats, I put faces to names I have often heard about. The Mustang Owners Club visited me, and for some it got better as I lost my voice!

I am also a bit upset that the lovely model is having to sit within the same post as such terrible reporting of the show’s last few hours.

Please vote and let me know what to do?

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Sweet & Sour (part 1)

Over the weekend of 8th to the 10th of November 2019 I was asked to join the other twenty finalists for the Pride Of Ownership awards in the centre of hall three. I was thrilled to be a part of the show. This show certainly hit the sweet spot for me – Part 1.

During my time there I had a great time and spoke to many fantastic people and lost my voice as a result. Some might say that is good thing though! I even let a could of people sit in my car.

The show attracted over 3000 cars, some on show & some for sale, all of which made for a spectacular show. I took around 400 photos way to many to put on my little ol’ blog so I decided to split the weekend event into two sections. As the title suggests a fantastic time was had by all and i totally enjoyed my time there and a wonderful experience I doubt could be bettered. However – it was badly tainted with a nasty twist and sting in the tail, I will explain all of that in part two in greater detail.

I will start with the events up to the opening. All entrants for the show needed to arrive on Thursday 7th from 10am onwards up until 8pm when the building was secured for the night. I set off from home just after 7am in the rain. Yep I got the car out and it rained. I didn’t stop raining ALL the way to Birmingham all be it in various intensities I should say. I eventually arrived at ten past ten a little over three hours later. There was a couple of us early birds, promptly followed by a few more a short while later. The organisers directed us to the parking positions on the stand, well a bit of carpet actually. This is view of the hall before it started to take shape, a few behind the scenes as it were. There was a long que to get us into the correct area locations.

I started cleaning from 10:15am until 7:45pm when the place was being shut down and us stragglers who were there got turfed out for the night – I was still cleaning at that point.

The car was the dirtiest it has ever been. Chrome looked like faded aluminium and the paint a shade of grey dirtier.

Some other cars arriving as I was cleaning, these guys took it super serious with ramps and all sorts with mirrors under the car, some even trailered in with plastic wraps on the wheels.

I decided to waterless wash the car twice very carefully, then i wanted to strip the old wax off and start again. That was done by 70/30% mix of isopropyl alcohol and water. With that done I could then start to add a couple of layers of clean wax to build it up again. I took my pre packed case that I thought I would need- I needed it all.

With the car pretty much where I wanted it to be I could cover it for the night and start early in the morning for the interior and finish the wheels.

Early on in the morning there was out info sheet that was to be put into the stand next to the cars, this was mine.

 Here was the stand ready for the press and some public at 9am on the Friday morning. The Ferrari wasn’t completed as it turned up, but a few guys worked wonders on it ready for the show. then carried on with the work after the show, each day the parts boxes getting less and less.

At 7.45 we were not allowed in even a few minutes early as exhibitors, mainly down to ‘jobs worth’ security guards. So a few of us sat here looking at this for quarter of an hour.

Early and late evening I could wander around and take a few pictures without people in the way. So in no particular order because I can’t remember here are a number of pics.

So real nice old timers.

 

Something different, not everyday you get run over by a tank!

Once the day got busy I hardly left the stand. The other exhibitors were great looking after each others cars (except for a couple of owners).

The car got plenty of attention throught the day and weekend and was non stop.

So what got me so fired up? Read the next post and find out, it’s not pretty reading!

Part two will be at 2pm tomorrow! 

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Not The Last Car Show After All!

A couple of posts ago I mentioned that I had attended the last car show of the season, with a possibility of another if didn’t rain. Well, that was indeed the last car show for me as the next intended show did in fact rain so I didn’t go as my car has gotten wet enough this year already. However, earlier in the year I had applied to the Lancaster Insurance Classic Car Show to be considered for the “Pride Of Ownership” section of the show. The expectation was not to hear anything due to the standards of cars out there. Then I got an email to say that I had been selected as a finalist at this years show. That means I will be going to another show, hosted inside the National Exhibition Centre, Birmingham, UK.

The Birmingham NEC hosts and boasts the largest classic car show in the country with over 71,000 visitors across 7 show halls over a very busy weekend. This year the sights have been set even higher for even more visitors. The show is a full on Petrol Head event with over 3000 cars, many, many trade stands, autojumble, talks, live demonstrations and they are trying to build an E-Type Jag in a weekend!

There will be a total of 20 cars in the Pride of Ownership final, the winners will be decided by the visitors voting on the show days at the stand. The Lancaster Classic Car Show and the Birmingham NEC have been posting regularly now on social media and email shots. My car has been shown on a number of posts with this one taken at the Mustang Maniac yard;

This is the first press release on their website to show the first 10 cars selected for the category.

If you click this picture it will take you to the home page of the LCCS so you can see what is going on if you want to make a day or two of it.

My car was last at this show just after the restoration was completed in 2015 on the Mustang Owners Club of Great Britain. That was a manic three days where I started to loose my voice at the end of the weekend talking so much.

I’m so excited this year about being there again as an exhibitor and hope to see lots of people all weekend. Please come over and say “Hello” to me and mention my blog so I can meet some of my readers with little luck. Of course if you then think I’m a proud enough owner of my car more so than the other car owners, then maybe drop in a vote for me.

There is going to be some amazing cars there on this stand as my competition, actually that’s a little unfair, they are all fellow enthusiasts just like me. Win or loose it’s a privilege to be selected to appear at this event regardless. In fact I already consider myself to have won, just because I’m taking part. Sounds corny right? Maybe, but its true. My car is for me to enjoy driving it about and is not some trailer queen just for show. If I don’t win then I can at least enjoy my trip back home again. As you probably know I also use and show the car for some good causes too.

The journey will take me a little over two hours according to my mate Tom (Tom Tom Sat Nav), so I can add another half hour to that as I wont be thrashing the ol’ girl up the motorway to do the 120 miles fast as possible. I will not doubt be travelling in the wind & rain to get there and spend a total day getting her cleaned up again after I get there. ‘Cause lets face it with my luck this year it will rain, won’t it?

Oh, just for the record I’m not on commission for the event, I just wanted to shout about it as I’m mega excited and just can’t wait to be there. There is even a countdown timer I added to the show opening.

I honestly hope to see you there. 🙂

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End Of Season Show?

It’s almost the end of the car show season and I have potentially attended the last car show of the season for me. There are two more shows in my diary that I intend to go to, one of which is at the end of this month and the other in the middle of October. Past experience tells me that these are going to be rained on due to the UK winter being under way. So I won’t be getting the car out for those, even if there is the slightest chance of rain.

Last weekend was the Fornham Classic & Sports Cars by the lake show, a lovely setting that is more like cars by the large pond rather than lake to be honest.

This is a popular show and you have to be booked in, to get in. There is a huge selection of different cars on display without it being to big a show that you rush around to see it all. The weather forecast was for a sunny day and it did last all day I’m pleased to say. The car show is only located twenty odd minutes away from me, so I even had a little snooze before I needed to get up and be there by nine thirty. I arrived at the farm’s turn off and we were ushered in without hardly any delay, they had opened both ends of a field to filter the cars in. A great job by the marshals all day in fact. I was parked up and a huge Plymouth Road Runner pulled up next to me, now I thought my car was long! So less words and on with the pics. These were taken as I worked up and down the lines of cars.

There were some amazing super cars there which I have grouped together here;

Perhaps the best looking Fiat to be accepted as a Ferrari, the achingly beautiful Dino!

Then ultra modern Lambo, the first I have seen in the wild as it were.

A nice selection of Mustangs, both old and new;

Some super old pre war category cars;

By around lunchtime the show was packed and full to the brim.

Then I found this Triumph at the end of a line, for me this was my car of the show.

Yes, that really is two child seats that pull up in the trunk area almost hanging out the back of the car. Seat belts? Nahh, not in those days.

Some more of the cars that caught my eye;

When I got back to my car I decided to get the hood up and compare the Plymouth next to mine. It must have been a good half meter longer than mine.

My final arty pic of my car, please with the shine on this one.

I hope I have a more shows to finish the year of nicely. But, I’m not gonna get to excited just yet though, knowing my luck the clouds are already gathering for me. This is a popular show and seems to be getting bigger by the year, but with the other hugely popular show in the area ‘Nowton Park’, being cancelled this year because it got to big for the small car club organisers to handle believe it or not. This show looks like it would need to restricted the numbers, or at least make it only for cars that are over twenty years old. There was a lot of cars that were pretty much brand new in show, like I have said before, I can go to any super market car park to see those. And yes, that goes for the new Mustangs as well.

If this is the last show of the year for me, it was a great way to end the season.

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On My Own

Last weekend was another double header car show, both of which I was looking forward too. On the Saturday was the Knuckle Busters shows at Stonham Barns for American cars to be held over the full bank holiday weekend, that’s four days if you read the leaflet. Then on the Sunday it was Lavenham Classics Car Show. Last year it absolutely poured down with rain, a show that I left early from as it was that bad. So this post is a double car show delight. The weekend was promised hot days everyday and they weren’t wrong.

Saturday: I got up a little late as the snooze button was to much of a temptation as the dogs couldn’t settle and kept me awake for a fair amount of the night. Everything was ready the night before and I just had to fall out the door and get in the car. Knuckle Busters is an all American affair which I was eager to be a part of. I arrived at ten(ish) thinking there would be a queue to get in. Driving closer to the main entrance no cars. They were doing well with the marshalling. Then I got to the main entrance, I was told it would be £10 to enter for the day, it was £10 each day actually. When I looked at the field it wasn’t full and they marshal felt sorry for me (I think) and let me in, free. I was told what area to park in and I could take my pic. The options were (not) limited.

I checked the leaflet to make sure I had the right day!

Yep, Friday, Saturday, main day on Sunday and leave Monday so it says. A little bemused I wandered around the only stall that was set up and listened to the conversation. People were supposed to turned up Saturday evening for the bands and not during the day for a pre show as it were. Well, apart from the odd car, I was the odd one!

The food stalls weren’t open so I was missing out on a bacon roll, people were wandering back to their caravans while pulling barrels of water which were dotted around the outside of the field with the odd American tucked up next to them.

After an hour nothing was happening, for the first time at a car show I was bored. I had read the news on my phone, checked my emails and posted a social media or two. I heard a nice v8 rumble and got excited, only for it to coast go back to the caravan. I was the only car on the ‘Show Field’. I played a little game – I decided that I was the judge for the day.

Obviously I won the (imaginary) trophy for ‘Best In Show’. 😂

I know this is a good show on the Sunday, but don’t post it as a weekend event if it’s not!! The funny thing is that I filled up with fuel on the way home, I had a couple of conversations in the petrol station about my car which was more than the whole time I was at the car show. 😀

Sunday: Up bright and early with everything being set out ready the night before. Not quite so local this show, but it’s a beautiful drive through the countryside with some wonderful scenery going through some tiny little villages. Lavenham Classics Car Show is a charity event and cost £10 to get in. I arrived at the gates as was marshalled in, there was no queue. I pulled into the field and people were parking up. I was shown to the American area and Again I had pick of the area as I was first there. I parked on the end which would be one of the first cars you see when you walk in and look to your left.

This is a unique show as it’s arranged in a circle and not straight lines. shortly after I arrived and messed around with the cleaners I started to chat with the other arrivals. A ’67 Convertible, and a lot newer Roush powered S550 Mustang. There was also some Corvettes who took up the rear of the area, we were all spaced out nicely. I took a walk around the relaxed and very friendly show, I just walked around clockwise.

This Renault was a huge car and a full nut and bolt restoration.

This very early MG had a rare kit for a bolt in super charger.

A few super cars turned up which were parked near the entertainment tent and the BBQ food. There was a guy on an acoustic guitar that played a long set which included a couple of Pink Floyd songs, one of which was Wish You Were Here, simply brilliant.

A Beautiful Bentley

The rest of the cars.

Then back to our Americana little section.

There are a number of behind my car shots, if you are wondering why; I had the luxury of finding some shade instead of keeping out of the rain.  😎

The overall view from my slightly up on the hill pearch?

This week I was going to post a little bit of work I had done on my car after the Stonham Barns show where I left early. That can wait till the next post now.

A great weekend with beautiful weather for a UK bank holiday for a change. 😃

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