On the 113th anniversary of the very first Shelsley Walsh, more history was made at the historic motor sport venue with a brand new all electric hill record being set by Mitch Evans driving the Jaguar Formula E car stopping the clocks in 30.46 seconds. On a slippery track that was not at its best after morning rain the Kiwi left the line quicker than some of the regular lightweight hill climb cars to then be pin point sharp through Kennel before slithering through the sightly damp Esses to then use the huge torque of the electric powertrain up the finish straight to record his time. The previous record was shattered by Evans to the tune of 6.84 seconds quicker but on a fully dry day at Shelsley there is a huge opportunity for another 2.5 seconds to be further shaved off.
Thanks to Worcestershire based GKN Driveline, the FIA Formula E car was arguably the most technically advanced cars to ever ascend the world famous hill climb that first started in 1905 with many of GKN’s ground breaking technology on board many other cars that have set class and outright records on the hill. Through YouTube the runs of Evans were streamed worldwide, which for Shelsley in the leafy Teme Valley was also a first.
Evans said after returning to the base of the hill, “It was a great honour to drive the Jaguar I-TYPE 2 at such a historic venue, and the whole team was elated with the record time we managed to achieve. Formula E fans in the UK were incredibly welcoming, and it was great to see them so excited about the car’s debut run here. I’m proud to have moved the class-best result a step further towards a potential pure electric outright hill record in the future.”
The British Hill Climb Championship drivers had their thrilling Run Offs too with Will Hall once more taking top honours not just once, but twice out of the two high points of the day adding a further 20 points to his title chasing tally. Hall collected a brand new MHD Watch for his win from automotive designer and horology expert Matthew Humphries.
Reigning British Champion, Trevor Willis from Worcestershire, continues to lead the British Hill Climb Championship 32 points ahead of Hall with four weekends of hill climbing remaining at Gurston Down, Prescott, Doune and Loton Park.
Other cars present celebrated the twelve decades of racing at Shelsley Walsh such as Spider that held the record in 1926, the Vauxhall Villers that was dominant in 1929, the Brabham BT16 that held the record in 1967 and the Hepworth 4WD that broke the 30 second barrier in 1971 all the way through to the outright record holder and the King of Shelsley Walsh, Martin Groves whose 22.58 seconds that he set in August 2008 is now the longest standing outright record ever at Shelsley Walsh.
The three fastest ever people at Shelsley Walsh were also reunited with Martin Groves who did 22.58 seconds, Scott Moran, 22.83 seconds, and Jos Goodyear who did 22.86 seconds together on the start line.
The next racing at Shelsley Walsh takes place over the weekend of 15th and 16th September for the Autumn Speed Finale.