Between the Downs Rally

1st rally organised by Rocket MCC on 31st July 1981.

It pains me to admit I didn't spend all weekend at this rally. This is only slightly helped as I can claim this was due to pressure from my club, (I mean the main YOC, not the Surrey Section), and all of us were required for the Sunday morning at the Silverstone Grand Prix, to ride a fleet of pro-am bikes around the track waving flags of all participating nations.

Anyway, those of us that went were still able to spend one night in our tents and participate in the games on Saturday afternoon. It would have been nicer if it hadn't been appalling weather all day.

Some of our friends had an interesting tent, which I had never seen before, or have since. It appeared to be a pub-table sized umbrella with sides. It had one central pole and spines held up the roof. Remarkably simple and it appeared to work. It certainly worked better than the kitchen end of the - otherwise quite small - marquee, which was not having a very good weekend. A lot of people visited the marquee before putting their tents up, (not always a good idea, in my experience), to dry out a bit before attempting an erection.

The Saturday, or at least what we saw of it, was a lot better, stopping short of actual sunshine. There was a large pool in a depression in the field that was, of course, being used to drop people in. Given that people would be trying to dry out after a rather wet night, most of the games seemed to consist of covering people in water. I am not convinced that the pool would not have featured in the tug-of-war, if there was one. Later in the afternoon, though, my club made our excuses and left, regrouping at the section secretary's house for the night before an unpleasantly early start off to the races.

At least we got in for free - and got free jumpers!

- Phil (the Spill) Drackley