Getting started in Hillclimbing

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To compete in motorsport events you need to be a member of a motor club. There are numerous clubs about. Harewood is the Yorkshire Centre of the British Automobile Racing Club and you can get membership from the BARC website. Club annual membership including Yorkshire Centre membership, is around £50. For this you will be able to enter a large number of events, you will get a copy of the centre magazine The Times, the BARC magazine and reduced event entry fees at Harewood.

To enter any recognised motorsport event you will need a motorsport uk licence. There are a number of different licence types. For most sprints and hill climbs you only need an Interclub licence.

You can download a licence application form and other details from the motorsport uk website

Along with your licence you will get a motorsport uk Competitors Yearbook – 'the Blue Book'. This is the bible on motorsport rules. You will need to read this to understand what you can and can't do. It also lists all clubs and their contacts. You can enter almost any kind of car from road going hatchback to a full blown racer.

Cars are grouped in to classes at each event. Depending on what type of car e.g. saloon, race car etc, what modifications have been made (if any), the tyres used and the engine size, these points will dictate which class you should enter. Event regulations explain what the classes are. If in doubt contact the Competition or Entries Secretary for the meeting.

Again the Blue Book is a good source of the rules, along with the event Regulations.

At the start of each event a scrutineer will examine your car to make sure its safe and complies with the class in which you are entered.

Your car will need to have a vertical timing strut fixed on the front (see the Blue Book for specification). You will need a helmet meeting the motorsport uk standards, check the Blue Book for latest details, but buy the best you can afford – you only have one head, so protect it. At your first event you will need an motorsport uk helmet sticker from the scrutineer. At each event the scrutineer will check your race helmet for condition and that it is of the correct standard. You will need a set of fire resistant race overalls and gloves too. These are available from a number of race specialist shops and via mail order. The Blue Book lists the approved standards for race overalls and the scrutineer will check them at the start of each event.