1966 UAC Boxing Day Trial

Ken Shields tried hard to match Woodside in his 1.3 VW, but still managed to come 5th on handicap.


This account is from AUTOSPORT, JANUARY 6, 1967

As usual the UAC’s Boxing Day Trial attracted a very large entry – this time there were 74 cars, ranging from the most expert down to complete newcomers, plus some old hands who make this their annual event to shake off the effects of the previous day’s excesses. The compact 4O miles course to the South of Dromore consisted of ten driving tests and two observed sections on a hilly field.

On the first run this section was up the hill, but it was soon obvious that not even the specials were going to get past the first comer, so it was scrubbed before the site became completely chaotic with bogged down cars. Next time the cars were routed down the hill, and this just proved to be on for some of the more expert throttle and brake controllers, although the situation very definitely favoured the early numbers.

The very easy winner of the event was Robert Woodside in his 1500 Volkswagen Beetle, who completely dominated his class to such effect that the next man in the class lost 89.8 marks to him (on the UAC’s class-fastest-loses-no-marks basis). However, if the class opposition was weak Woodside’s supremacy was complete in every way, for on a scratch basis he was also fastest with a loss of 241.4 marks. This is quite a phenomenal performance when the number of specials, Mini-Cooper Ss and Spridgets which were present is considered.

Second was that canny driver Ted Hobson, who was in the very competitive small saloon class and only sustained a loss of 0.4 marks in one test in his 848 Mini, as well as being seventh on scratch with 264.4. Making one of his rather rare appearances in the Hayrake, Dr. Thompson Glass suffered from the attentions of Lee Lucas and Roger Cree in the same class and was third with a loss of 3.6, but second on scratch, seven marks behind Woodside.

The up to 1300 cc rear wheel drive class was very competitive, with the 1300 VWs of Derek Boyd, Ken Shields and Reggie McSpadden giving each other no quarter! Boyd and Shields did well to take fourth and fifth places respectively. The front wheel drive 1300 class was even more of a rat race with hoardes of Mini-Coopers vying for the honours. In this class Ronnie McCartney was the outstanding driver, but he clouted a pylon in test four and, despite driving so well thereafter that he was fastest in every test in his class, he could not make good the deficit — one of the chief failures of this marking system, and eventually finished sixth and pulled up to third on scratch, just nine marks
behind Robert Woodside.



On handicap:

  1. R. J. Woodside (VW 1500), 0.0 marks lost:
  2. R. E. Hobson (Mini), 0.4;
  3. Dr D. T. Glass (Hayrake Special), 3.6;
  4. D. D. Boyd (VW 1300), 5.0;
  5. W. K. Shields (VW 1300), 6.6:
  6. R. J. McCartney (Mini-Cooper S), 11.4.

On scratch:

  1. R. J. Woodside, 241.4;
  2. Dr T. Glass, 248.0;
  3. R. J. McCartney, 250.4;
  4. E. A. Lucas (Grasshopper), 261.6;
  5. B. J. Faloon (Mini-Cooper $)_ 262.8;
  6. D. D. Boyd, 263.0.