Connecticut British Reliability Run

Due to the success and participation in our first Reliability Run, we are planning on doing it all over again this year!!  Presently it is in it’s pre-planning stage, and any updates will be posted here……..

Below is a review of the planning and organization of the 2018 CT British Reliability Run.  The CTR and MG club groups worked together for more than six months to prepare for the event, and the success of the project depended on all of their careful planning……….

 

Last year’s starting point was at GMT Racing in Newtown, where we had a great breakfast, sponsored by Cardone and Daughters.  we were all fascinated with the
array of race cars being worked on in GMT’s spacious workshop. Eventually I rounded
everybody up to welcome them to the Run and go over the day’s drive. We handed out the excellent road book that Jay and Linda had compiled, the goody bags that Susan put together and the smart baseball caps donated by Ed Cooke and Abingdon Spares.

(CLICK ON A PHOTO TO SEE ALL ENLARGED)
When the hour for departure came, our bagpiper John Henken gave our small group a rousing send-off on our trip north. The weather was a bit too British as we set off with a fine drizzle falling, but the forecast was for clearing and by the time we reached our first rest stop the skies were much brighter and the sun was about to put in an appearance.
Finding suitable roads for our cars in Connecticut can be a bit of a challenge but with some help from Alex Thomson I was able to come up with a route that kept us on quiet rural roads with enough bends and hills to make it interesting. Our journey took us through Southbury, Roxbury, Washington Depot and on past Lake Waramaug to Warren, dropping down to the Housatonic at Cornwall Bridge and then up and over a ridge of
high ground to Sharon. We left Connecticut and entered NY State making our first acquaintance with NY 22 at Millerton.
We stayed on NY State’s longest north-south route as far as the intersection with NY 2 in
Petersburg where we headed up and over the Taconic Trail into Massachusetts for our lunch stop at the 6 Pub in Williamstown. The road over the mountains on the NY side was in need of attention but the frequent bends and uphill climbing still made for an exhilarating drive in the midday sunshine, while the drop down to US 7 on the other side required some caution. A sand-drag for trucks at the bottom has probably earned
its keep over the years.
We followed US route 7 to Bennington and stopped at Hemmings as it was a designated refueling stop. Most of the group browsed the gift shop and I was especially pleased to come away with a picture book describing British light commercial vehicles from 1948 to the early Sixties.
From Bennington we crossed back into New York and drove through some pleasant rural
communities until joining US 4 a few miles south of Fort Edwards. The road runs alongside the Champlain Canal which still sees commercial traffic, though sadly not when we were alongside.  The group all reached the Queensbury Hotel with
no issues, checked in and following happy hour, went in search of food in Glens Falls’ compact but vibrant downtown.
The teams assembled in the hotel lobby the next morning for a brief drivers’ meeting before setting off to explore the Adirondack Park. Our route took us along the shores of Lake George and Lake Champlain before we turned inland towards Lake Placid on our way to Whiteface Mt. The ascent up Whiteface Mt wasn’t the worst climb in the world but it was around 4 miles of fairly steep climbs and sharp bends to reach the 4,600′ mark.
The view from the summit was spectacular. An approaching rainstorm, which
eventually passed to the other side of the mountain, made the scene even more dramatic.
All cars made it safely back to the bottom and we continued our exploration on the western side of the Adirondacks Park through Saranac Lake, Tupper Lake and Long Lake before heading back towards Glenns Falls where food awaited.
Sunday morning saw us checking out of the Queensbury, cars once more loaded with about all they could hold to sustain two people over a weekend. Teams compared notes in the car park, many were amazed at how much you can carry in a Spitfire.
Our journey out of Glens Falls covered the same ground as we had arrived over but eventually crossed the Champlain Canal and continued south on US 4 for a while. At Schuylerville we turned away from the water and followed some rural and obscure roads that ran through tranquil rural scenes until we met up again with NY 22. This took us onwards for several miles before we headed east on NY/MA 71 towards Egremont,
eventually picking up MA/CT 41 to get to our destination at Lime Rock Park.
Lime Rock Park had the gates open for us and lunch was almost ready. We parked the cars in a line in the paddock area and congratulated each other on completing the run with the minimum of drama, ample proof if it were needed that of course British cars are reliable. And then we went to enjoy a well-prepared lunch.
It was also time to reflect on what we’d achieved. The real goal of the run was to see how much money we could raise for The Hole In The Wall Gang Camp. The outcome, for a relatively small number of teams, was excellent: Janet Thomson, who was the liaison with the charity, was able to hand over a large cheque for over $9,100. Once some corporate matches are included, the final tally should be over $10,000.
We lined our cars up on the straightaway at Lime Rock for a team photo before heading in different directions to home. I think every team had enjoyed the weekend, could take pride in what had been accomplished and will be up for a future challenge.
In closing I would like to thank the team that made it happen. Janet Thomson did the research into suitable charities and liaised with The Hole In The Wall Gang Camp. Mark Barber also worked with the charity and put in a lot of work with sponsors, especially Lime Rock Park. Ed Cooke was our webmaster, made the arrangements with GMT Racing, and also donated hats which I have since seen in evidence at car gatherings. Jay and Linda Jablonski did the usual professional job putting the road book
together. Alex Thomson provided support for the financial transactions and record keeping, and David Semple designed our 2018 CT Britiah Reliability Run logo. 
Last but by no means least Susan Schiavi worked with the hotel and restaurants so that we had a place to sleep and eat, assembled the goody bags, found us a piper and put together the breakfast at GMT Racing.  
I also would like to thank our sponsors, in no
particular order: GMT Racing for opening their shop to us to start the event and Lime Rock Park for opening the track to us at no charge at the end of the event, Cardone and Daughters for sponsoring the breakfast on day 1, Ed Cooke and Abingdon Spares for funding the web site and providing the hats, Dere Street Restaurant for the
prize for most money raised, and although we did not need it, Hagerty Insurance for providing roadside assistance coverage, and the British Marque Car Club News.
It’s a beginning, and I know next year we can beat this year’s performance. As our piper asked at the beginning, “will ye no come back again?”Triumph Reporter

—Neville Wardle


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The CT Triumph Register in conjunction with the CT MG Club is pleased to announce its first CT British Reliability Run, September 14-16, 2018. The goal is to field 24 British cars/teams and raise funds to benefit The Hole in the Wall Gang Camp. The event is not a race. The run is conducted on public roads at posted speeds. It is not a road rally either, as there are no checkpoints or time/speed/distance parameters. It is an endurance test of sorts, intended to be challenging but fun for the participants. The event will begin in CT, run through the Adirondacks over the weekend, and will end in CT. It will be a great fall drive through beautiful countryside in the company of fellow British car friends.      Please join us ——– Neville Wardle.

Reliability Runs were something of a tradition in England that has now been continued by British car clubs on both side of the Atlantic. The C.T.R. in conjunction with the CT MG club is proud to present the first Connecticut British Reliability Run?

What is a Reliability Run? 

This type of driving event has its roots in England. Owners of British cars whose marque had a reputation for poor mechanical reliability would gather and do long continuous drives around England to prove that their cars were indeed reliable.

British Reliability Runs continue to this day, benefiting children’s charities in England, then in 2002 Blake Discher of the Detroit Triumph Sportscar Club, founded America’s British Reliability Run (ABRR).  He had help and guidance from former Triumph Standard executive and British Reliability run veteran John Macartney. The ABRR spirit is now spreading throughout the USA with multiple regional runs. The ABRR is a challenging and fun driving event that so far has raised more than $215,000 for worthy children’s charities here in the United States.

What is the CT British Reliability Run?

The CT Triumph Register in conjunction with the CT MG Club is pleased to announce its first CT British Reliability Run September 14-16, 2018. The goal is to field 24 British cars/teams and raise funds to benefit The Hole in the Wall Gang Camp. The event is not a race. The run is conducted on public roads at posted speeds. It is not a road rally either, as there are no checkpoints or time/speed/distance parameters. It is an endurance test of sorts, intended to be challenging but fun for the participants. The event will begin in CT, run through the Adirondacks over the weekend, and will  end in Connecticut.  It will be a great fall drive through beautiful countryside in the company of fellow British car friends.

The Charity HoleSeriousLogoCMYK

The only competition is how much each CT Reliability Run team can raise for the chosen charity: The Hole in the Wall Gang Camp, founded by Paul Newman. This organization is dedicated to providing “a different kind of healing” to seriously ill children and their families throughout the northeast, free of charge. It’s a community that celebrates the fun, friendship and spirit of childhood, where every kid can “raise a little hell.” We visited the camp in Ashford and were very impressed with the work that they do to allow seriously ill children to have camping opportunities that we perhaps take for granted. – Janet Thomson

The CT British Reliability Run: the story so far

The story started at the VTR convention in Princeton last summer. I’d seen stories about the Reliability Run but hadn’t spent a lot of time trying to learn about it. On the schedule of events at the convention was a tech session about the Run, presented by Dave Hutchison, so I decided to go along and see what it was about. One hour later I came away with my mind made up: this was an event that we should sponsor here in Connecticut because it looked like a lot of fun but more important it was a way to give something back to children in need. My next step was to sign up for one of the events that were being held that autumn. I joined the Reliability Run being held in New Hampshire by British Motorcars of New Hampshire, led by Bob Dougherty. The weekend was one of the most enjoyable times I’ve ever had with my car, the event was extremely well-organized and successful, raising $16,000 for Boston Children’s Hospital.  As the 2017 driving season came to a close, work started on organizing our own Reliability Run. The club agreed to sponsor the event, to be held in conjunction with our friends in the MG club. A group came together to take on the different tasks involved, and here’s what we’ve done so far:

The route:  when planning a route, you do need to know where you are starting from. With the Adirondacks as the destination it made sense to start on the western side of Connecticut to avoid the unpleasantness that is the I-91 corridor and the awkwardness of crossing the Connecticut River.  Ed Cooke persuaded J.R. Mitchell at GMT Racing in Newtown, CT to have his premises be the starting point for our trip.

From Newtown we will take ordinary two lane roads to make our way north with a lunch stop planned for Williamstown, MA and then on to the Hemmings Museum in Bennington, VT. After visiting the museum we will continue towards the north country and our headquarters in Glens Falls. Saturday will be devoted to a long day’s drive around the Adirondack Park in upstate New York before returning to Connecticut on Sunday morning. We hope to have a surprise visit on the way back to Connecticut and will conclude the event with a cook out.

Accommodations:     queensbury hotelthe Reliability Run in the UK is a 48 hour event that covers 2,000 miles with no overnight stops. We are not quite that crazy and will be spending two nights in a hotel. Susan Schiavi (a.k.a. the Navigator) spent a lot of time on the phone with hotels and the Lake George Chamber of Commerce and finally secured us a block of 24 rooms at the Queensbury Hotel in Glens Falls. We’ve visited the hotel and it appears to be a good choice.

Next steps:  I hope we will have a good participation rate in the Reliability Run. You need a good car and an appetite for driving it on some of the best roads in the Northeastern United States, and above all a passion to help sick children in need!   We have created a special website for the CT British Reliability Run at https://www.ctbrr.org/  —— It has everything you need to know, and you can sign up for this great event!