Peter Linden scored two fine second places at the first round of the 2019 International Classic GP series held at Valencia, 2nd-3rd March. The team had prepared a pair of Bill Simpson TZ350s for a taster year in the series, just to see how far Peter could get. The Valencia reward was above expectation, in part due to Anthony Hart’s unfortunate gearbox failure and crash towards the end of race one, whilst leading, and the absence of Mike Edwards and Ian Simpson from the meeting.
Despite this, nothing should be taken from Peter’s determined performance. The meeting started well, with plenty of laps being covered in the early unofficial sessions and with steady progress being made against the opposition, which came mainly from Anthony Hart and Jean Paul Lecointe, both predictably Yamaha mounted. Peter’s progress was halted in the final qualifying session with an engine seizure and fast crash. He was bruised but not seriously hurt. Notwithstanding this, his final qualifying time was just one tenth of a second off Anthony’s pole, 1.51.67 vs 1.51.78 which was a great performance.
After a lengthy rebuild, race one set the scene for the weekend; which ended after two processional races, both of which Jean Paul Lecointe won, inheriting the race one win after Ant Hart’s retirement, and on merit in race two. In the second uneventful race, Peter Linden was second in both and Richard Peers-Jones third.
Peter and the team were very pleased with the finishing positions, which were all the more impressive knowing the level of pain that Peter was enduring during each race and the good judgement shown through not pushing on this occasion. Seconds were a great reward.
Round two of the ICGP series is at Paul Ricard on 12th May.