The Autumn Naviscat took place as Storm Alex swirled over the South East region but several plucky MG owners were joined by Inter Region Club members to tackle the challenge. Centre Chairman Chris Leigh and his wife Janice were amongst them and here is his write up of the event with the full results at the bottom.
Click here for an alternate report on the event from Philip Bayne-Powell:-
A ‟Naviscat” or “Navigational Scatter Rally” is really a type of Treasure Hunt in cars using good old-fashioned map reading skills and a measure of ingenuity. No modern electronics permitted here!
Our Autumn Naviscat was very ably organised by Alex Lemon and Mike Chittenden together with Alex’s wife Joanna. Luckily, at the eleventh hour we quickly changed our open roadster for our little MG ZR hatchback as the eponymous Storm Alex arrived across the Surrey countryside!
It was a very select group of MG and IRC members that met at the Surrey Oaks pub near Newdigate. This was our first Naviscat with full Covid-19 compliance, our cars were socially-spaced in the car park and we were welcomed inside car by car to collect our sealed, quarantined instructions. After socially-spaced coffee and bacon baps we opened our envelopes at 11.0am precisely. We carefully marked our maps and the rain eased a little as we began to look for the challenging clues in rough woodland car parks and laybys, searching for multi-coloured fences, dragons’ toes, cannon balls, brimstone butterflies and a variety of underwater numbers! An amazingly creative selection of 46 different types of object, all to be found with a map and steamed-up specs! Our hosts had even thoughtfully provided a spare answer sheet in case in case the original became too water-logged. The 2.30pm deadline arrived all too soon but we all made it back to the socially-spaced finish queue in time to avoid any penalty points!
We had already arranged what we would be eating and who we would be eating with so that our social ‟bubbles” and social-distancing could be maintained at all times. The pub waitresses were also very helpful with this. The food was excellent and as we relaxed over our coffees, our hosts returned with the scores. On this occasion there was a huge score difference between the champs and the rest of us with our wet feet and steamed-up goggles. Of the original field of 12 cars, two were non-starters due to weather and bad hips, while our Novices came all of the way from Cheshire for their very first attempt!
After this experience, I feel sure that none of us will ever want to use a sat-nav again! We are all keenly looking forward to the next Spring Naviscat in ‟Sunny Sussex” planned for 28th March 2021!
Thank you Alex, Mike and Jo for a lot of hard work and a great day for us all to remember!