Sunday, 4 April 2010

Janey

This is Janey after completing the 2008 Club Triumph Round Britain Run. We only just got her finished in time to take part, and I foolishly did what I always tell everyone else not to do; I did not plan things properly and was left with too much to do in too little time as the date of the run approached. Without the help of friends such as Adrian, Alan, Bill and Phil we wouldn't have made it. And if I hadn't been so exhausted, we wouldn't have had the ignition troubles that plagued us during the run!

I am only the second owner of this car; it was built for Michael Hooper, who was Del Lines' rally navigator. He wanted a Stag but was too tall to fit into one - he hit his head on the roll-over bar, even when the seat was as low as it would go. So Del built him a "Stag Saloon". I bought the car in 1986 with about 80,000 miles on the clock and proceeded to do another 90,000 miles in the next three years! Then the dreaded rust caused an MoT failure, and she was taken off the road.

As Janey was, and still is, such a special car, scrapping her was not an option; she followed us around whenever we moved and even had the indignity of having to watch while we bought and restored a Del Lines Stag Estate, while she languished in the background getting even rustier. While it would have been fantastic to have kept both the saloon and the estate - what a classic pair that would have been - reality and limited finances meant that we had to choose one of the two and we chose Janey. So the estate was sold and the restoration began - very, very slowly at first.

Taking part in the run was the culmination of a restoration that took about 5 years to complete and cost a truly embarrassing amount of money. The car passed its first MoT for 19 years just two days before the run. Do as I say, not as I do - don't cut things this fine. It really isn't a good idea and I most certainly won't do it again. I can feel all the stress coming back just writing this! I think I'll go away and wash the car for a bit of relaxation. She might even get polished too - but perhaps that might be going too far.

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