London to Brighton Land Rover Run 02/10/05
The L2B was a great success this year, the weather was excellent and over 700 Land Rovers turned up on the day.
We woke pretty early on Sunday morning (about 5am) and after a cup of tea we got up and ready to hit the road. We left about 5.45. I decided to drive up to Fleet and fill up there, as last year we drove all the way to Crystal Palace and only just made it there. It was a fairly uneventful trip up, as this year I had the Sat Nav in the Lightweight, so we got there with the minimum of fuss.
As soon as we pulled into the gate at Crystal Palace it was very clear that there were a lot of Landy's there. The year before we go there a lot later and managed to park along the front, this time we were up along the back section about a 3rd of the way down. We went off to register and as per last year, the organisation was very good and this only took a matter of minutes.
After a fairly long queue for the Toilet (there were only 2 Gents there, which did seem to be a bit short for the amount of people), Marie got a couple of bacon Rolls and teas in before the brief driver briefing that was put back for a bit to allow for all of the hundreds of people who turned up. We then headed back to the Lightweight to wait for all of the motors in front of us to make their exit.
Once we got out onto the open road, it was pretty slow going all the way out of London, possibly due to some 700 odd Land Rovers on the road, but it did seem busy anyhow and the roadwork's didn't help. We were doing well following a couple of military drab 110's when we got to the A23/M23 junction, I ended up following them onto the M23, rather than the correct route, the A23. It is funny how having the route in front of you and it stating clearly take the A23 all goes out of the window as soon as you see the vehicle that you have been following for the last few miles take a left. The auto pilot follow mode just seems to kick in even though you know it s wrong.
After a few miles on the M23 the two 110's pulled into the services and we were on our own. After a short while we got back onto the A23 and started to see lots of Land Rovers again. We then made good progress all the way until hitting traffic again about 3 miles out from Madera Drive.
I ended up getting collard again on the way in to have a chat with the man with the microphone. He asked a few questions which I answered then went to find a parking spot. Jenny Morgan who took some photos of the Lightweight a few years ago happened to see us come in and said hello. Whilst we were sat in the queue waiting for the motors in front of us to park, the engine just died! I had that nasty sinking feeling after trying to restart it and it wouldn't fire. We ended up getting pushed back into a parking spot were it died. Which was a little embarrassing, made even more so by Jenny rushing over to take some photos of us being pushed, no doubt these will be in a forthcoming LRM. I suspected one of two things, either the MSD ignition system was playing up again, or we had ran out of petrol. We took a long walk to the nearest petrol station to get a can of fuel just in case, but it was not empty anyway, so I suspect that there is still an intermittent fault with the Ignition system.
We decided to make the most of the nice weather and location so just walked up the town for a look around and to get some lunch. We would worry about getting the Lightweight started when it was time to leave. After having a good look around and taking a quite a few photos the man on the microphone announced that the day was over and have a safe trip home. So we got in and I turned the key, the engine fired up immediately and we drove all the way home with no problem, arhhhgggg. I hate intermittent faults like that!
It was great day and I met lots of nice people who were interested in the Lightweight.
Looking forward to next years event, who knows maybe there will be near to 1000 Land Rovers!!!
Below are the pictures that I took on the day: