In contrast to last years wet event, the sun shone strongly this year, which again started off at Gt Dunmow, with ten teams taking in some of the best Essex countryside with places such as Thaxted and Finchingfield, which were both holding festivals. These delights were complimented by the spectacle and noise of flights going into Stansted Airport throughout the afternoon.
Two good signals were heard at the start – though a couple of teams needed approximate bearings due to problems with their sets.
It was the year that Tim’s son (Gary Parker) decided to take the old man on at national level. It started well – Gary ended up with the good receiver whilst Tim heard nothing at the start due to a malfunction. Gary also commandeered Tim’s usual crew. It got even better - Gary set off to the westerly B station and took a chance that this was in Rowney Wood next to the old Debden Airfield. Gary found the operator’s car south of the wood at 1:50 and, taking the long run in in his stride, was in the wood with his team (Roy and Graham) for the 2:00 transmission. By 2:15 they were thrashing around worryingly close to the transmitter, taking little notice of the 150 metres of aerial. Graham actually looked into the station but failed to spot the Tx. By 2:26 Gary was in however, and the team off – really off - getting well and truly lost on the way out of the wood! This allowed Dad to catch up and overtake on the way over to the A station.
The A station was located at the top of a long footpath, also at the edge of the map, just north of the old Wethersfield airfield, now being used for Police dog training. The Tx was fairly close to the road, well hidden on the south side of a water filled ditch. Whilst seven of the ten teams had gone to the B station first, three had started with A. Peter Larbalestier had done fairly well and found the Tx by 2:30 pm, followed closely by Peter Graves, who was out with DF set in hand for the first time for many years. Graham Phillips was though still on site when Geoff Foster arrived, having been to Rowney Wood already.
Geoff made the whole event look fairly easy, finishing at five past three, with Tim and Peter Lisle coming in close behind ten minutes later.
Nine teams found both stations before the close, with Peter Graves opting to satisfy himself with his success at the A station.
Another good tea was had at Saling village hall with Peter Lisle and Brian Bristow qualifying.
|Position||Competitor||Finish||Time A||Time B|