The Second test

The 15th of October was a day we had been waiting for. The 26th of June seemed like a long time ago and we were all eager to get K3 wet again.

One adjustment had been made on the vee drive, we had cured a minor oil leak on the engine ,fitted lanyards to the magneto switches, some minor paint work, put two extra wheels on the rear axle attached to the cradle, along with other small improvements. We had also attended our local festival of transport for three days and Goodwood Revival for a week on display. This really was turning out to be a busy 75th year celebration!

The day started early with the alarm going of at 6.30am. I had not slept much with all the excitement. At 7.30 the phone rang and it was Radio Sussex ready for a first interview of the day. I put them straight on a few facts and it all went well.

After a quick cup of tea and breakfast I was of up the yard to get Bluebird out of the workshop ready to load for 8.30am. Mick Waller and Martin Anderson were already and willing to lend a hand. In about 15 minutes K3 was out and ready to load. The weather looked unsettled but we were going ahead with the test. Dave from 360 Diggers turned up along with Andy Taylor and friend Brett. Dave said the lorry is on its way and Gary had over slept. Gary did not get to us until 10am and you could say we gave him a bit of a hard time. During the loading Richard Millar arrived and Lisa and Phill Beaney our ace photographers all gathered.

At last we were ready to go.

We arrived about one hour late and we had been through several heavy showers of rain, plus the wind had got up and the surface of the water looked choppy to say the least. We meet up with the CMBA boys, Geoff Allchorn, Steve Carpenter, David Knight, and Clive Boggis. Their help is always invaluable and David Knight had bought his beautiful classic Bosch speed boat as fast tender.

I had not even got out of the van when I was accosted by Radio Sussex for another interview. Robin Gibson from South East Today, and Meridian TV were also there and wanting interviews. Stardom at last!

In the meantime K3 was unloaded and swiftly put in the water. We were running late. I got the white team overalls on, together with the flying hat and goggles and got into the cockpit. All the checks had been done and I went ahead with the start procedure. Bluebird fired instantly and we warmed the engine up. It was soon time to cast off and be towed to open water for a run.

We stopped the engine engaged the dog clutch and were soon under way on the first run.

Bluebird was slow to pick up , but cleared her pipes and we were soon up and planing. It was very bumpy compared to the 26th of June and there was more spray coming from the bows. We had planned a slightly different course so that I could return across the reservoir running parallel with the club house for the TV. This involved a starbot turn which we had not done yet. As I was racing across in front of the club house again it was fairly bumpy but we got up well and were slightly faster than the outwood run. All to soon it was time to slow down and return to the jetty. K3 turned well to starbot and was easy to control back to the stop point where she was towed back for a check.A good first run. We also got confirmed at 40MPH via a GPS watch that I was wearing and we were still under half throttle. All looked good to try and go a bit faster.


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