Fri Sept 18 – Sat Sept 19, 2020 Natchez, MS

The North and South Shore met on Friday, September 18 in Ponchatoula and drove the back roads to Gloster, MS to meet the Baton Rouge convoy. It was mostly overcast so the temperature was just perfect with the top down, but the sun peaked through enough to not be gloomy.

The route Colin McCormick mapped out was tree-shaded with gently rolling hills and a few turns that actually deserved their reduced speed signs. Colin led in his 67 Sunbeam Alpine, followed by Cliff Hughes’ MGA, Benny Stielger’s 76 Spitfire (with his video camera riding shotgun), Allen & Susan Bradley in their MG Magnette, and then the “designated Japanese chase cars”. Linda H, Claudia M and Lilly S were in Lilly’s Kia Soul and Mark and Cathy Greensfelder in his Ford Escape

Cathy had planned to drive her ‘01 Jaguar XK8 but it had developed a “case of the vapors” the day before (“Reduced Performance” warning on the dash and codes for Air Temp sensor and Knock sensor). They ended up driving Mark’s Ford Escape. The route got far enough off the beaten path that Mark lost cell service and had to give up streaming his news show. But they had the SUV’s sunroof and windows open to keep in the spirit of the event!

In Gloster, MS the group joined up with the Baton Rouge convoy led by Danny Varnado (aka Colonel Mustard) in his 70 TR6. Jerry Willson drove his 73 TR6 and Randy Flemming was in his 81 Mini Cooper. From Gloster, Danny led the way to Natchez through the Homochitto National Forest via more 2 lane, tree-lined roads.

More BMCNO members arrived independently. Hugh Coleman brought his MGB, Rick and Mary Lynne Huber entered his Austin Healey. Hank and Betsy Harper were there with his MGC and Wally and Linda Wagguespack came in their Jaguar XK8.

Danny and Carol Meyer, their daughter, son-in-law Daren Forte and grandchild; Jim and Honie Smith and Rob Crowzer all came in their non-British cars just to enjoy the show. (Hey, if the MG won’t run, drive the GM!!) The club ended up with 27 people attending.

Saturday was great with temperatures in the upper 70s, a slight overcast (no sunburns!) and breezy.  Almost perfect for a British Car Show!. The site on the top of the bluff overlooking the Mississippi River was big enough that everyone could spread out. The participants were good about social distancing and wearing masks when they had to be up close. Cathy Greensfelder passed out cloth masks she made – she’s been sewing while staying home!  

It was a small show – only 39 cars, 11 of them from BMCNO – so there was a high percentage of small classes. Wally Waguespack’s Jaguar was the only car that didn’t place but there were 6 cars in the Jaguar class. (It would have been 7, if Cathy’s Jag had made it!)

BMCNO member Danny Varnado won the Best in Show trophy with his glossy black 1970 Triumph TR6. Danny has put a lot of work into the car. He replaced the (dim and unreadable) stock gauges on the dash with gorgeous backlit gauges that glow red at night. After the Friday reception he had turned the car on to show the gauges in the dark. They were bright enough you could read them from the back bumper but in a nice red that would preserve your night vision!! He had a lot of fun during the show putting the gauges in demonstration mode so they cycled up and down!

 

  • Allen & Susan Bradley ⇒ 1957 MG Magnette, 1st Place
  • Hugh Coleman Jr ⇒ 1978 MGB, 1st Place
  • Randy Flemming ⇒ 1981 Mini Cooper Estate Van, 1st Place
  • Hank & Betsy Harper ⇒ 1969 MGC, 1st Place
  • Rick & Mary Lynn Huber ⇒ 1964 Austin Healey 3000, 1st Place
  • Cliff & Linda Hughes ⇒ 1960 MGA, 1st Place
  • Colin & Celia McCormick ⇒ 1967 Sunbeam Alpine, 1st Place
  • Benny & Lilly Stiegler ⇒ 1976 Triumph Spitfire 1500, 1st Place
  • Danny Varnado ⇒ 1970 Triumph TR6, 1st Place, Best in Show!!
  • Wally Waguespack ⇒ 2004 Jaguar XK8
  • Jerry Willson  ⇒1973 Triumph TR6, 2nd Place

Wow, the weather this morning in the capitol city was incredible! Six BMCNO members showed up at the Cracker Barrel Restaurant before 7:00 in 4 LBC, and enjoyed brisk conversation with good friends. We learned about Rick’s Jaguar flywheel / starter replacement, car trailer incidents, and how much the new Jaguar 6-cylinder blocks cost – $18,000! Since Danny wasn’t there no mention of movies or TV shows were made.

Danny sent us pictures of himself and Dana camping and some of the hot rod guys were out of town for a car show, so it wasn’t a big crowd. But did I mention that cruising around town after breakfast, the weather was incredible! Nice and cool and overcast… Hope it’s a sign of things to come this fall.

On a side note the ‘unofficial BMCNO-BR board of directors’ (the usual breakfast crowd) disqualified me from getting the “Loo Lid Award” just because my alternator light came on. Bummer. 🙂

But that sparked a conversation about jump boxes and LBC charging system problems. Rick said he replaced the battery in his Lotus, and the alternator checks at 30 amps on the bench, but when everything is in the car there is only 12v across the battery terminals?! Might be the ‘exciter’ wire going to the alternator…

Cruise Safe,

Roving Reporter

Bobby Spann

September 9, 2020, Café American, Baton Rouge

We had 10 members attend our September meeting last night at Cafe’ American in the big room, so we were able to spread out some.  

We talked about the upcoming Natchez British Car Show, Cruisin’ the Coast, The Euro Fest in MS, and Fairhope.

The Saturday morning cruise breakfasts at Cracker Barrel have been well attended by the ‘British’ segment, although we do sit kinda close to each other.  Most Saturday at 7:00am at the Cracker Barrel on Airline at I-12 in Baton Rouge (by Celebration Station).  Rick will plan a drive from there one morning when the weather looks nice.  Probably leave around 8:30 and travel roads North, but he will let everyone know.

Talked about projects – Bobby’s rattle, Rick’s Lotus’ wiring and tires, and Jaguar carburetor problems…  And starter problems.

Randy Fleming was presented a wall plaque with his “MGM garage alternator adjustment tool” from the Natchez car show a year or two ago.  It was a stick on a string, designed (in theory) that if your belt loosened on the road just pull the string and the stick would wedge the alternator tighter.  Didn’t work in practical application, but it was a good reminder that we got him going that weekend and he was able to limp home in the Mini.

The “Loo Lid” Award – lovely Union Jack toilet seat – was created to “honor” those club members who drive their LBC to club events.  If you break down and can’t fix your car with parts you have with you… you get to take the seat and carry it until the next person breaks down!  Fun! 

This month Reg Dunbar gave up the seat to Bobby Spann, for having alternator/battery problems that turned him around from driving to breakfast a couple of weeks ago.   *note: Rick and I were holding our breaths and then washed our hands.

Then we drew numbers to see who got to pick first from the AWESOME face masks Cathy Greenfelder made!!!  Everyone loved them!

Cruise Safe,

Roving Reporter

Bobby Spann

For the second month in a row, the General Meeting in New Orleans, scheduled for August 25, 2020, was cancelled due to weather. With Hurricanes Laura and Marco bearing down on the Louisiana coast (and New Orleans in both cones of uncertainty) the board voted to cancel the meeting.   

As it turned out, Marco degraded to a minimal tropical storm for New Orleans.  However, Laura continued to strengthen, eventually making landfall as a category 4 storm near Lake Charles on Thursday August 27.

Cathy Greensfelder, Secretary

  

Friends and relatives:

It is with a heavy heart that I have to inform you that my MGB’s faithful battery, “Freddy” Duralast has passed away.  Freddy was born in October 2012, and passed away in August of 2020 just short of his 8th birthday.  (That is about 125 in battery years)  He was very reliable, except for the times my brake light switch stuck on, and again when I forgot to unplug my Garmin from the power plug.

I’d like to thank my Viking 4-amp digital charger for caring for Freddy in his later years.  Due to COVID-19 and core charges, there will not be a funeral service.  In lieu of flowers, the family requests that you just check the water in your own battery…

Cruise Safe,

Roving Reporter  ;(

Bobby Span

It was a pretty nice trip to Cracker Barrel on Saturday, August 22, 2020.  We finally got 2 attentive waitresses.  Between us and the Hot Rod guys, we had 19 total at 3 long tables.  There were 7 of us at the British table and Rick Huber’s Lotus was getting a lot of attention out in the parking lot – because he was running it without a hood.  Real hot rod stuff!  Nice to be able to kinda see the cars from where we sit.  

Today’s crew included Jerry, Randy, Danny, Rob, John Pearson, Rick and myself.

Danny tried to get a taste of Randy’s blueberry pancakes with a Harbor Freight telescoping fork…  and Tiffany got my order wrong.  (second time this happened)  I wanted the country ham & biscuit like last week, which I think is around $4.  Plus fried apples and tea…  She brought me 2 huge slices of ham, and when I said I wanted the ham & biscuit she said “Oh, biscuits are on the table!”  AHHH!  

The ham alone was over $7.00!  Danny (aka Colonel Mustard) says you have to open the menu and Point at what you want.  Lesson learned. 

Cruise Safe and good luck with the hurricanes,

Roving Reporter

Bobby Spann





Dear Roving Reporter,

The vintage telescoping fork demonstrated at the Cracker Barrel is definitely NOT a Harbor Freight item.  It happens to be a slightly modified Triumph Fork, similar to the one that recently sold for $320.00 USD at Sotheby’s Auction House…

 Best Regards, 

Colonel Mustard

And if you believe that one, there is this bridge for sale!!!

Call to Arms! Brits on the Bluff is Sept 18-19, 2020

Hey guys and gals – hope everyone is safe and virus free.  We don’t know what the future holds, just that it will be much different from what any of us have ever known.  That being said, I’d like to do a tentative “Call to Arms” over the remaining British car shows in 2020, Fairhope AL in October, and Natchez, Mississippi on September 18th & 19th.

A group of us from BR have been going to Natchez for years, meeting the N.O. guys in Gloster, LA on the way up then lunching at a restaurant in Natchez.  Folks, I can tell you from experience this is a GREAT weekend!  The Grand hotel is right on the bluff overlooking the Mississippi river and man what a view!  Friday night you just walk across the street from the Grand to the Bowie Tavern for a nice reception.  Other hotels are a short drive away… 

Saturday the car show is next to Rosalie Plantation, again on the bluffs – walking distance from the Grand and downtown.  Shade trees, a breeze and plenty of little British cars.  It is one of the best locations for a car show I have ever seen!  They usually have food on the grounds, but some women go downtown to “Cotton’s” for the “Queens Lunch,” and a few of us guys head over to the “Pig Out In” for a “Kings” Lunch.  LOL 

Portable Pub at Natchez

We really need to support this club as their show has fallen off in numbers in recent years – and we can’t understand why!  Here is a website link to the Mississippi English Motoring Club.  If you have any questions or need more details on past trips just let me know.  Hope to see you there!

For more info click here

Roving Reporter, Bobby Spann

On Saturday, August 8, 2020, six of us tried out the Cracker Barrel restaurant on Airline Hwy @ I-12 in Baton Rouge along with a half dozen hot rod guys. We got there a little before 7:00 am to visit in the parking lot before they opened. Then immediately both groups got a table.
The Manager forgot we were coming so it took almost an hour to get our food, but that was no problem because we had plenty of hot coffee, cold drinks and warm biscuits… and great conversation. Free coffee starts next week.
Added bonus: The location is highly visible! We had several people stop by when they saw the British cars – one had a relative with an MGB in a barn..!
Roving Reporter,
Bobby Spann