‘Get your entry in now’ is the urgent message from the organisers of October’s Andy Mort Tour. The 2300 Club of Blackburn have received an unprecedented level of interest since the regulations were published last week. “We were delighted to get almost 20 paid-up entries in the first 24 hours,” explained chairman Neil Molyneux. “Since then the numbers have been steadily rising, and we are now approaching the 40-mark, which leaves us with just ten more spaces left. The Andy Mort Tour has always been popular, but I think the ‘Paddy Factor’ has really taken effect this year.”
Thanks to Mini Sport and their managing director Chris Harper, the club will have the legendary Irish rallyman Paddy Hopkirk as their guest of honour on the day. The Padiham-based Mini specialists enjoy close personal and business links with Hopkirk, and have been entrusted to look after his famous works Cooper S replica 6 EMO, in which he won the 1990 Pirelli Classic Marathon. “Paddy will be flagging off the cars off from the start at West Bradford Village Hall, near Clitheroe, and greeting the finishers later in the day, “ said Chris. “And to round off a great day, there will be an unmissable talk by Paddy recounting some of the highlights of his long and illustrious career in motorsport, followed by a question-and-answer session with renowned rally navigator Ian Grindrod.”
Early entries include 2015 HRCR clubmans champion Steve Entwistle, who will be giving 6 EMO a run-out ahead of November’s RAC Rally of the Tests.
The 2300 Club are also appealing for marshals to help on the day, and volunteers will get a free supper and entry to the talk by Paddy Hopkirk. Anyone wishing to marshal should contact Simon Bibby at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The regulations and entry form for the 2300 Club of Blackburn’s eagerly-awaited Andy Mort Tour will go live on their website on Sunday, August 4 at 10am. And it promises to be a memorable day in more ways than one, with the organisers mapping out a route with a difference this year. “We have spent a long time making sure it will be substantially different from previous years, and we’ve found some lanes that many people will probably have never seen before,” explained club chairman Neil Molyneux. “All of these roads are non-damaging and perfectly passable in a road car, so there’s no need for sump-guards or roll cages. There is no competition element, it’s all about the enjoyment of driving on some of the best roads in Lancashire and Yorkshire. “We also looking forward to having Paddy Hopkirk with us for the day, which will make this year’s Andy Mort Tour very, very special. Although Paddy won’t be driving, he’ll be at the start at West Bradford Village Hall to meet everyone, and flag the cars off. He will then join us at the lunch halt at Blubberhouses before greeting the finishers back at West Bradford. “The day will finish in style with a talk by Paddy on his momentous career in motorsport, hosted by the equally-legendary rally co-driver and 2300 Club member Ian Grindrod. “It promises to be a fantastic day out for any motoring enthusiast, and we anticipate a lot of interest.”
*The Andy Mort Tour is a non-competitive ‘Touring Assembly’ starting and finishing at West Bradford Village Hall, near Clitheroe on Saturday, October 19. It is run in honour of club member Andy Mort who was competition liaison officer on the Tour of Mull Rally for many years, and a top National-level navigator in his own right. He sadly lost his life in an accident on the 2015 event. Open to any ‘vehicles of interest’, the Tour will see crews embarking on a scenic route of at least 100 miles using simple navigation of tulip diagrams or map references, with code-boards and marshalled checkpoints. With a limit of 50 cars allowed, the organisers expect the entry list to fill very quickly. Entry fee for the Andy Mort Tour is £50 for a car and two occupants. Extra passengers are £15 each. For enthusiasts who cannot take part in the Tour, but would like to come to the Paddy Hopkirk talk, tickets are available at £10 each for the evening meal and entry to see the guest speaker. Pre-booking for these tickets is essential. Regulations and entry forms for the Andy Mort Tour, along with booking information for Paddy’s talk, will be on the club website www.2300club.org or their facebook site: Tour of Mull by 2300 Club.
Paddy Hopkirk will be greeted with a familiar sight when he flags off the crews at October’s Andy Mort Tour – his own Mini Cooper S!
Although entries don’t open until next month, Mini Sport of Padiham have confirmed that Paddy’s 1990 Pirelli Marathon-winning car, 6 EMO, will be among the starters. The iconic red-and-white machine is still owned by Hopkirk,and is prepared and maintained by Mini Sport. Managing director Chris Harper said: “We were delighted to be able to facilitate Paddy’s appearance at the Andy Mort Tour, and it only seemed right that 6 EMO should be there too.
“Although Paddy won’t be driving on the day, he will flag off all the cars at West Bradford village hall and then meet up with everyone at the lunch halt, before greeting the finishers back at West Bradford ahead of his much-anticipated talk.” Mini Sport have invited rallyman Steve Entwistle, who drove 6 EMO on last year’s RAC Rally of the Tests – and led for much of the event – to drive the car on the day. Entwistle, from Rishton, near Blackburn, is one of the favourites for victory in this year’s Rally of the Tests in the same car.
Organisers 2300 Club of Blackburn are expecting a bumper entry for the Tour, which takes place on Saturday, October 19. It is run in honour of club member Andy Mort who was competition liaison officer on the Tour of Mull Rally for many years, and a top National-level navigator in his own right. He sadly lost his life in an accident on the 2015 event. Club chairman Neil Molyneux said: “It promises to be a memorable day out for any enthusiast. Coffee and bacon sandwiches are served to all participants before the first car gets underway at 10am, driving a 120-mile route through stunning Lancashire and Yorkshire countryside.
“There is a lunch halt where crews can purchase snacks and drinks, before the afternoon leg which is due to finish around 4.15pm with the option of a couple of fun driving activities on private ground. “An evening meal will be served at about 5.30pm and after that we have the legend that is Paddy Hopkirk entertaining us with anecdotes and stories from his glorious career in motorsport. “There will also be the chance for to ask Paddy questions before the day wraps up at about 8pm.”
*Entry fee for the Andy Mort Tour is £50 for a car and two occupants. Extra passengers are £15 each. For enthusiasts who cannot take part in the Tour, but would like to come to the Paddy Hopkirk talk, tickets are available at £10 each for the evening meal and entry to see the guest speaker. Pre-booking for these tickets is essential. Regulations and entry forms for the Andy Mort Tour will be out next month, along with booking information for Paddy’s talk, on this website.
Heads-up – here’s a date for your diary. This year we will be running the Andy Mort Tour, starting at West Bradford Village Hall on Saturday 19th October. The formula will be similar to previous years, with the exception that we plan to bring a very big rally name to the Forum in the evening after the event.
Keep your eyes on our website for more information as and when it’s available
The Andy Mort Tour 2018 was run on the 20th October, receiving praise from all involved. One of the Competitors, Owen Frankland in Car 10, has prepared a blog and video on YouTube, which are linked below: