Christmas Blast for 23

Not having been in the Mantis for a few weeks, the fantastic clear blue skies of Boxing Day 2023 were too good an opportunity to miss, so after press-ganging my daughter into coming along for the ride, it was off out into the Cheshire lanes for a very pleasant drive out.

A good few things still needing to be done on the car, with future funding sources unclear, but for the time being it was just nice to get out. Given how infrequently I am now driving the car, with negligible commuting & other demands on the old bank balance, I really must try & get a dash cam sorted for 2024 so I can get some driving footage. An aide memoire for the car when the grey cells start failing might be rather handy!

What else for next year then? Well the chatter at the Marcos Christmas Dinner was that we might go to the Youngtimers event at Gawsworth Hall on the second May bank holiday as a group, rather than a independent owners. Other than last year, this was not something I have been previously available for as I am normally at the Hay (Book) Festival with my son, however sadly he has grown up & looks to be elsewhere from now on. We will probably continue to gather on the Sunday of the Oulton Park Gold Cup as our NW race-based meet. The big news perhaps is that we may consider going back to Tatton Park, which we attended for over 25 years before falling out with the new owners, Morton Events, over their ill-informed & ill-advised insistence that we attend on two days across the show weekends. Hopefully after five years running the Tatton Parks shows they now understand that owners clubs of low volume, rare sportscars can’t necessarily get the vehicle numbers to cover more than one day. We will see….

End of the road for showing at Tatton Park

Moreton’s, the company who bought the Tatton Park car shows from the original owners, have reneged on their ‘guarantee’ of a stand at the August ‘Passion for Power’ show. Again, allegedly due to a lack of space (see previous post for the completely empty stand they had in June) & that Marcos only wanted a stand for one of the two days. This was never a problem for the original organisers in over 25 years. It seems Moreton’s aren’t interested in low volume sports cars like Marcos who cannot put out row after row of vehicles. The general consensus amongst the very loyal group of owners who have attended Tatton Park over the years is that we should look elsewhere for a new venue in the Northwest. I also need to be able to trust the show organisers when they make a commitment, which I don’t feel able to do. Unfortunately that looks like the end of the road for Marcos showing at Tatton Park as a club, which we have done almost since it started in the mid 90s.

Space at Tatton Park show… again

Not impressed to receive an email from Moreton’s Media Group, who took over the twice-yearly Tatton Park car shows from local owner Stuart (fantastic chap & a real, unbiased car enthusiast), saying that they do not have the space for a Marcos stand on Sunday 2nd June. Given the application form went in in January this is both surprising & disappointing. Having spent many years building up some loyalty to the Tatton Show amongst the Macros owner community, with some people travelling all the way up from the South coast (yes Collin, you!), this loyalty does not seem to be reciprocated. The event organiser did come back to me to say they would review the situation, but subsequently reconfirmed no space. Pretty miffed TBH but we are at least guaranteed a stand on August. In the meantime we are trying to enter the show via individual private entries & then will arrive en masse so at least we are together. No gazebo if it rains though, or guarantee we will be accepted, or co-located. We will see what happens, but may need to start thinking about alternative May shows in the North West such as Capesthorne Hall or the Gawsworth Classic …

Summer must be here… off to Tatton Park

Another 10+ turnout for the first of this year’s car shows at Tatton Park in Cheshire, my local show & one I’m always happy to support. It didn’t rain but no-one needed the Factor 50 either. The stand was next to the Triumph Stags, and away from the treeline in a more central spot this year which was welcome as more people come past. The Mantis scrubbed up well but as in previous years it was very hard to compete with some of the older cars that have been restored & polished to a lovely sheen. With the Mantis in regular use it’s never going to be a concours winner but it still draws the eye. In my entirely objective opinion. Oh yes. Er… right let’s move on to some pictures.


Tatton Park

It’s… time for Tatton! Yes yes, August is here & that means getting the band back together to create a Marcos Stand at The 24th Classic, Vintage & Sports Car Show at the ever lovely (but let’s be honest, sometimes rather moist) Tatton Park. As it was, the weather was pretty decent, as was the turnout with a nice range of different models (that is, the cars not owners). The usual suspects were present & the reward for having given the car a quick wipe down was plenty of footfall past the stand. Chris Message’s purple Mantis always gets a lot of attention as does Howard Plant’s lovely Mini-Marcos (conveniently parked next to each other, no less!).

The trees provided some welcome shade in the end.

Chris & Angie discuss how much better the green car is than the purple one. Probably.

Our next door neighbours were an excellent rock ‘n roll band!

Pre-Tatton… again

Tatton Park tomorrow. Of the ten cars who had requested exhibitor passes, four have dropped out in the last 24 hours. Gaaaaargh! Some hasty ringing around & some emails may have mitigated this so we’ll have to see how many cars make it for 0830 hours tomorrow morning at the Swan meet point. I am expecting nine cars, but no longer sure of owners or models! In the meantime some more work with Mequiars detaling gubbins means the car is still looking pretty good, so fingers crossed there’s no rain. It would be nice to pick up a trophy from the Tatton Park judges on the 50th year…

Tatton Park show with no car (again)

It was the second show of the year at Tatton Park today, and my second show there without the Marcos. It was nice to see the other Marcos cars & owners, as always. Guru Chivers had kindly agreed to attend Tatton with the purple Mantis Coupe & was staying at the house, which was nice as it gave me the opportunity to repay their hospitality from previous occasions. Predictably the main topic of conversation was the dire straights I found myself in with the corroded Mantis chassis. The weather held for the show itself, but Dave & Mandy had a rather moist journey either side of that.

Tatton frenzy

A triumphant return from the Tatton Park Classic Car Show for yours truely, and indeed everyone who turned up for the Marcos stand! Having rashly decided to clean my car when it stopped raining yesterday (it didn’t!), I had to stir my bones at 0600 hours this morning & make some kind of last ditch effort. Fortunately it wasn’t raining & a ninety minute stint left the car looking clean (no time for polish) – clean enough to get 2nd place for “Best two seater of Show”… I am quite chuffed about that! There were seven Marcos in total at the show (two Mantis Spyders, two LMs, three GTs), and we were awarded first place in the “Highly Commended Club Stand” category (ninety club stands in all, three “Best Club Stand” trophies so that means fourth out of ninety – not bad eh?).


It really was that grey…