News Of A New McLaren F1 and When I Met One In 1994

Seeing the news today from Autocar of a new McLaren F1-inspired Hyper-GT reminds me of when I was at Bruntingthorpe Proving Ground back in 1994, and an original F1 prototype turned up for high speed stability testing. A pretty gob smacking moment for me as a young ‘petrolhead’

I was and still am a big Ford fan, and almost all my cars have been Fords. I’m not saying they are ‘the best,’ just that I’ve always admired them. So I’ve read many books and mags about their cars, including a mag called Performance Ford, edited by the late Dennis Foy. In one issue I saw this competition advert and decided to enter. You never know!
PF GGR Comp Ad 1994
Competition in Performance Ford mag circa 1994
Well, I won! And on 1st July 1994 myself and four other lucky winners found ourselves with our cars at Bruntingthorpe. It was a great day, made all the better when a prototype McLaren F1 (must find out which number as there were a few being tested, the most famous being XP5, which achieved a world-record top speed of 243 mph) arrived at the end of our day. I hung around for a bit but it didn’t run so after we all had a lap of the circuit on our own, we all left.
The Cossie was awesome. I had one lap with Graham driving, reaching around 170 mph on the straight. I then drove it for a lap under Graham’s tuition. I didn’t do so bad, achieving just over 160 mph. Only gripe was one lap didn’t give us much time to learn a lot, but we were pressed for time as it was a very busy day at Brunters.
RS2000 at Bruntingthorpe April 1994
My RS2000-16v meets the McLaren F1
PF GGR Comp I've Won Letter 1994

PF GGR Comp Final Letter 1994

PF GGR Comp Itinerary 1994

Messed up

I’m not in a nice place at the moment.

I woke up at 11am today. I’d stayed up to 2.30am watching tv, actually rather rubbish horror films on the Horror channel.
Sleep wise this is not were I want to be, my sleep pattern tends to be – go to sleep in the early hours and get up late. I’m also not wanting to be awake, sleeping and dreaming is much more enjoyable. I think I’m trying to hide from reality.

The thought of going out, leaving the house, is bringing on panic attacks. My heart starts racing and I start to sweat. I had made plans to meet my friend Andy in St Annes this Saturday morning, but I couldn’t get motivated to get up and go out, so I missed him. I said I’d meet him again Sunday, but that didn’t happen. I have become unreliable. This is upsetting me, I need to sort myself out.  Once i am out, I usually feel okay and have a great time.

There are other issues too, like trying to get a job and losing confidence in myself. Also my memory seems to be deteriorating, I really struggle to recall names and places in particular. For example, my Dad lives near Ramsbottom and I cannot remember this place name at all. I have to think of goats, which makes me think of male goats, hence rams and then I’ve got it. A few minutes later the name has gone again.

I need to see the doctor probably. I’m taking anti-depressants which have helped keep me calmer than I used to be, but I’m years overdue for a checkup for cholesterol and blood pressure, diabetes and my liver needs regular monitoring due to the heart meds I take. Going to the doctor scares me as does the dentist, who I’ve also now stopped going to.

My friend Steve has messaged me about meeting up for our weekly walk. I dread replying as I’m scared of committing and letting us both down.

My wife was on leave on Friday, so we got the bus into Lytham and both did a couple of chores. Then we met up and had lunch at Ego. This was very nice and quite rare these days. The food was excellent and one of our favorite waiters was working so we had a chat with him. He’s from Morocco, and for 14 years learnt his trade in Spain at a family restaurant, before coming to the UK 10 years ago. 25% off the food bill was nice too.

At the moment I’m thinking of what to say to Steve, avoiding speaking to Andy at all and psyching myself up to go out shopping.

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Our neighbours, the cows.

This week cows have appeared in the field opposite our house. They’ve replaced the sheep, and lambs, that were there earlier in the year.

They’re nice creatures, but surprisingly noisy, often waking us in the middle of the night.


Late night tv

It’s 00:20am and I’m wide awake. That’s the trouble with having an evening ‘snooze,’ I usually cannot get to sleep at a ‘normal’ time. 6pm I decided to have an hour’s snooze, I didn’t set an alarm, and so two and a half hour’s later I awoke. Oh well.

So I’ve decided to watch one of my favourite DVD collection’s, Around The World In 80 Days with Michael Palin. I’ve seen it many times, and I just adore it. Michael’s dry wit, the characters he meets, the interesting countries he travels through and the struggle to meet the deadline as he falls behind schedule are brilliant. Watching this series is like comfort food for me.

I’ll probably get through the first dvd, 3 hour-long episodes. I’m settled on my sofa under a blanket with my two cats asleep beside me, so here we go. Tick tock tick tock…


Posted in General, TV. Tags: , . Leave a Comment »

A walk around Lytham

I started at the entrance to Green Drive


after walking through Green Drive I arrived at Lytham Station


from there I entered Witch Wood


and passed a sunbathing squirrel along the way


after leaving Witch Wood, a short walk took me to the White Church at Fairhaven


and after passing some nice apartments


I arrived at the beach. This view looks North towards St Annes


Some expensive properties with fabulous views across the Ribble estuary to Southport, and Wales on a clear day.


after a brief stop I walked back into Lytham town centre along the promenade and reached the Vinyl Groove café


and a full English breakfast.


James Kendrick’s website “JKOnTheRun” is back!

One of the first websites I started following in my early online life was JKOnTheRun by mobile tech blogger James Kendrick. James was soon joined by Kevin Tofel, and together they produced some excellent reviews and videos of mobile tech.

Many of my purchases at that time were influenced by their hands-on, written and video reviews. A few of the stuff I bought were the Samsung Q1 SSD, HTC Advantage phone/tablet and BlackBerry Storm touchscreen smartphone, amongst many others.

James’s regular “A Day In The Life Of” series was always a good read.


A couple of days ago I stumbled across a link to the site, which had been absorbed into GigaOm when James and Kevin went to blog for them. Recently GigaOm collapsed and James has obtained the rights of JKOnTheRun again. You can read all about these events and the history of the site here It’s a very personal view of tech, and how he uses it in his work environment, at home and on the road. Certainly recommended.

Posted in Tech. Tags: , . 1 Comment »

A cold walk today along Lytham Promenade approaching the Windmill and lifeboat station



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