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Peter Johnson was a teacher at Bromley Tech School and he organised the South East Schoolboy Championship event/s(?) held at his school and the track used was probably built by Bromley Tech's pupils as part of their woodwork classes etc as was the case at Battersea Grammer where their track was constructed as part of woodwork teacher Mr Fone's (I think that was his name) lessons.

BGS held regular club meetings and some open meetings, or at least open to schoolboy racers and they were well attended I seem to remember. The track was really well built and quick too. The Mark brothers together with their Dad were prime movers in the project and subsequent club and it was down to them that we got on Blue Peter! I still have the badge!

The so called 'National Schoolboy Championships' were held at Bromley in 1966 and 1967 and Steve Gurl and I won the team event in '66 and Steve won the junior individual event in '67 and me the senior. There weren't many guys from outside of the south east - if any - and the use of the word 'National' was entirely down the choice of Mr Johnson who wanted to make his efforts seem as grand as possible. And why not? At the time I don't think anyone else had claimed the epithet!

Steve and I were, I think, using can motors with our own rewinds (we used to do them for customers of Bec Models at 5 bob a throw I think) in either a Revell chassis (Steve) or scratchbuilt and in '66 we used Cortina bodies which were modified with very wide wheel arches a la Doc Merfield and Terry Drury's full size V8 powered prototypes. At the time wheelbase and track had to be to scale + or - 1/16th of an inch and the modded Cortinas offered a much wider track and thus much enhanced cornering capability than just about any other closed wheel prototype of the day. Nobody believed that our cars were legitimate until we produced signed letters from both Doc and Terry confirming the dimensions and despite some grumbles the organisers had to let us run as we complied fully with the regs!

Mr Johnson in particular was a bit put out by all this and not happy that visitors from outside of his school had exploited the rules to the max and won. All in all they were a soft couple of wins but Steve and I had a great time nonetheless.

I don't know what happened to the BGS track or indeed the Mark brothers but doubtless someone out there does?

Cheers

Norm
 
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