Downhill Racer Trophy

This trophy is officially called the `Austria Trophy’. The reason for this is because it came from the town of Klagenfurt in Austria. It was originally a trophy won by a man called Stefan Modrisch for downhill skiing. So what’s the story behind it? Well in 1945 a young lady called Judit Brigitte Modrisch left Austria to make a new life for herself in England and, to cut a long story short, was taken in by my Mother-in-Law and given a home. Eventually, Brigitte (as she preferred to be known) changed her name by deed-poll to Angwin (my mother-in-law’s name). Stefan, Brigitte’s brother, died in the mid 90’s and Brigitte asked me if we had any use for a trophy. I thought it might not be a bad idea to present it to the winner of the Downhill Competition. I had the very great pleasure of meeting Stefan once in the mid 60’s when he was visiting Brigitte. He was a football referee and worked as a sports reporter for the Klagenfurt newspaper. He couldn’t speak a word of English and I couldn’t speak a word of either Austrian or German, but I remember we had a wonderful evening. Soccer and alcohol are great levellers.

The Downhill Competition was introduced in 1980. Ethel Broadbent and Ron `Nodder’ Johnson held the record with 4 victories apiece. This record has been eclipsed by Phil Fern who has won the trophy 9 times – an achievement he’s not too proud of! The current Trophy wasn’t introduced until 1993 when Dave Lay became the first holder.

Pete Levene.

  • 2020 Hill Climb – Cancelled

    The Hill Climb Championships which should have been held on Sunday 4th October on Long Hill has been cancelled due to the road being completely closed to traffic for around 2 weeks from Monday 28th September.