Press release: 14 November 2021
Garry Pearson is the 2021 Motorsport UK Pirelli Welsh National Rally champion after a stunning fightback on the final two stages of the Rallynuts Stages Rally (Saturday 13 November) saw him clinch the title by the smallest of margins and winning on a tiebreak.
Co-driven by Niall Burns, Garry lost 17 seconds on the opening stage through Myherin when the power steering failed on his Pirelli-shod Asset Alliance Škoda Fabia R5. A nut on the top of the reserve reservoir had come loose which had also caused the windscreen to mist up.
Down in fifth overall and fourth Pirelli Welsh contender, Garry set the fastest time in Sweet Lamb and Hafren to take the Pirelli Welsh lead by the time crews reached mid-day service at the Royal Welsh Showground in Llanelwedd, two seconds ahead of Callum Black and 18 seconds ahead of Ian Bainbridge.
The title looked his, until a right rear puncture halfway through the repeat of Myherin cost Garry almost a minute.
Now 45 seconds behind Callum and 27 seconds behind Ian, Garry needed to finish second to win the Welsh title and with just 13.47 stage miles remaining he launched an incredible fightback.
Garry set the fastest time on SS5 (Sweet Lamb 2) taking 17 seconds out of Ian to set up a thrilling final run through Hafren 2.
In a title or nothing final stage charge, Garry was then 12 seconds faster than Ian to overtake him on the event leaderboard and take second place Pirelli Welsh Championship points by just two seconds – which with Callum taking a maximum score was what Garry needed to be crowned 2021 champion.
It was also cause for celebration for the 2018 Pirelli Welsh driver champion Dylan Davies, who owns, prepares and runs Garry’s 2021 title winning Fabia R5.
“It’s been one of my most challenging days of my rallying career, from the power steering problem in the morning, driving half of stage four on a puncture and then a fightback on the last two stages in the afternoon,” said Garry.
“I took it one event at a time and it’s the best year I’ve ever had in rallying. I’m speechless.
“Credit to Dylan Davies Rallying because they’ve prepared a good car for us all season. And thanks to Asset Alliance, Pirelli, George Anderson Builders and all the people in the team for pulling together and getting us here.”
Callum, pictured, needed to score maximum points on the Rallynuts to have a chance of winning the Pirelli Welsh drivers’ title for a second time, and 2017 champion did that in spectacular style and also finished second overall on the event.
Co-driven by Tom Woodford, a wrong tyre choice in the morning cost Callum time, particularly on SS2 when the Pallas Connections Ford Fiesta R5 understeered badly through Sweet Lamb. It may have cost Callum the overall rally win, but with Garry picking up the Pirelli Welsh points he needed the rally result didn’t cost Callum the Welsh title.
Ian, pictured, drove very well, although the work commitments that restricted his pre-rally preparations ultimately prevented him from setting the stage times that he knew he could. Co-driven by Will Atkins, Ian still finished on the Pirelli Welsh podium in his right-hand drive Gypsum Group Škoda Fabia R5, which was just reward for his gritty performance, particularly through Myherin and Sweet Lamb which he thoroughly enjoyed. The result also sees him finish third in the overall drivers’ standings.
Perry Gardener/Jack Bowen finished fourth Pirelli Welsh crew on the Eventsigns Woodpecker Rally, which is where they also finished this time on only their second event in a Ford Fiesta R5.
Russ Thompson (co-driven by Tom Murphy) left his best until the last round and finally enjoyed a trouble-free event (save for an issue with a fuel pump on a road section) in his Dunnow Plant Mitsubishi Evo IX to come home fifth.
He was followed home by Matthew Hirst, pictured below, who also finished a difficult season on a high when he and co-driver Declan Dear enjoyed a clean run, albeit surviving a near roll on the penultimate stage, to the finish in their Delta Salvage Mitsubishi Evo IX.
Matthew finishes fifth in the overall drivers’ standings, just behind Welsh Junior George Lepley who didn’t start the Rallynuts.
Dylan Davies just missed out on a top 10 Rallynuts finish in a Subaru Impreza he’d only bought the day before the event. In an extraordinary performance, he and Mark Glennerster finished 11th overall in a car that he’d not even had the time to put the characteristic Dylan Davies Rallying team yellow and black coloured decals on!
Bob Morgan is still getting used to his new Winner Garage Škoda Fabia R5 – so much so that when the windscreen wipers came on in Sweet Lamb he couldn’t find the switch to turn them off. Despite the distraction, he and co-driver Adrian Williams had a great run and finished 18th overall.
Nik Elsmore finished one place behind in his CDS Taxis Mitsubishi Evo IX. It’s been many years since he’d rallied on such slippery stages and the part worn tyres that he was using didn’t help him find the required grip. Nevertheless, he and co-driver Rob Flagg enjoyed a good run and a top 20 finish.
Maxx Bradshaw/Liam Whiteley were pleased with their pace and admitted they couldn’t have gone any faster over the afternoon stages to record a good finish in their Renvo8/DB Autos & Sons Mitsubishi Evo III.
Martyn and Dawn England lost time with a puncture in the morning but recovered well to score a good result in only their second rally in their SW Motorsport Mitsubishi Evo X,
Wug Utting/Bob Stokoe lost a considerable amount of time on the morning loop with a puncture in Sweet Lamb and another in Hafren, but brought their Subaru Impreza STi N12b home for a strong finish
Despite retiring after multiple punctures on SS2, Owen McMackin, pictured, clinched the RAVENOL UK Welsh Challenge title, thanks to Ashley Davies (co-driven by Sam Fordham) retiring his G&B Finch/Burton Power Escort Mk2 after the penultimate stage.
David Crossen’s chances of winning the title took a dive when he hit a rock, punctured a tyre and bent the steering on his Crossen Engineering Escort Mk2 on SS1. Co-driven by Aileen Kelly, his title hopes finally came to an end when a throttle cable problem saw him take a stage maximum on SS4 and he skipped the last two stages.
Owen also wins the Restruct-sponsored Two-Wheel Drive title, which gives his navigator Lee Taylor the co-drivers’ class trophy.
Paul Street/Ian Jones are confirmed as Pirelli Welsh Historic Cup champions after a great season in their Escort RS1800 Mk2.
Nick Elliott/Dave Price won the category on the day in their Escort Mk2, beating Ben Friend/Cliff Simmons, pictured, who had put gravel suspension on their asphalt Allglass Escort for the event – hence appearing in a white Mk2, rather than their more familiar red Ford.
Michael McDaid enjoyed a good run on his first appearance in the classic mid-Wales forests, with he and co-driver Declan Casey taking a Pirelli Welsh Historic Cup podium in their McDaid Pharmacy Escort RS1800 Mk2 to finish third in the class at the end of the season.
Jonathan Brace/Paul Spooner also ended the season on a high in their Brace’s Bakery Escort Mk2, while Charles Hopkinson/Alan Jones (Black Antler Design Escort RS1800 Mk2), Neal James/Kevin Jones (Mosley Rolling Road/Cwm Engineering Escort Mk2) and Ron Morgan/Marc Clatworthy (Restruct Escort Mk2) all survived the tricky and often changeable road conditions to score good results.
Ricky Crone/Daniel James (Escort Mk2) are the Pirelli Welsh Road Rally class champions after taking maximum points on the Rallynuts Stages. They had understeer problems on the first loop in their Escort Mk2 but survived to finish the season with a perfect score of 90 points.
Robi Wood/Osian Davies retired their NIBS/SWG Escort Mk2 mid-way through the afternoon, thus ending their title aspirations.
Mark Lennox/Rhodri Evens had a gear linkage problem on the opening stage in their Tec-Nic Motorsport/Lennox Engineering Escort Mk2, but fortunately the problem cured itself. They weren’t quite out of the woods, as a problem with the limited slip differential in the afternoon was cause for concern, although they battled on to finish second in class and secure third in the final Pirelli Welsh Road Rally standings.
Graham Thatcher/Tim Samuel hit a compression on SS1 which caused gear selection problems thereafter and despite starting the afternoon loop they retired their Pembridge Vehicle Management Peugeot 206GTi.
Ioan Lloyd/Sion Williams, pictured, focused on getting a finish and in doing so clinched the W4 title in their West Wales Rally Spares Peugeot 208 R2. In a truly wonderful season the talented teenager also finished fifth in the Welsh Challenge drivers’ standings and fourth in the Two-Wheel Drive points table.
Conor Tolson/Dylan Thomas finished runners-up in class W4 after a strong season and a good first visit to Myherin, Sweet Lamb and Hafren forests in their Powerhouse Turbo Garage Ford Fiesta R2.
A perfect score of 90 points also secured Adrian and Matthew Walk the class W2 title in their PartBOX Ford Ka.
It also wasn’t the easiest condition for a Corsa, but James Dunkley/Dan Sayce did extremely well to finish second in class in their JD Auto Services Vauxhall, despite having to ease off on the final stage when the sumpguard came loose.
Steve Black put his sensible head on and was also driving for a finish. Co-driven by Paul Morris, the 586 Sports team driver’s tactics were rewarded with the class W3 title in his Suzuki Swift 1400.
Elsewhere Simon Dalton/Ryan Griffiths had a good run in their Blendline Subaru Impreza STi N12b, having hit a rock on the inside of a corner on SS3 and narrowly avoided being flung off the road.
Andrew Fox/Jaime-Lee Fox had a worrying noise coming from underneath their Fitzgerald Plant Services BMW 325 as they suspected a dislodged propshaft guard, but they survived to reach the finish.
In only his second event after coming out of a six year rally retirement Chris Gittins reached the finish in his 2.8-litre BMW Compact, ably guided by Daniel Jones.
Paul Walker/Geraint Thomas were happy to finish after they hit a hole a mile from the end of the final stage which bent a wheel in their Green Power Subaru Impreza.
Meanwhile Keith Jones/Jonny ‘Tad’ Evans (Grooms Garage Subaru Impreza), Harry Hunt/Steve McPhee (Ford Escort) and Rob Wilson/Martin Haggett (Ravenol Ford Fiesta R2) were equally delighted to cross the finish line of what had been a very demanding event.
David Tomlin/Ian Beamond broke a wheel on the opening stage and then a tyre came off the rim on SS2. Their afternoon wasn’t much better either and they were forced to retire when the power steering on their Axon Ford Fiesta R5 failed on SS4.
Paul Lomas/Mark Leader (Plant Speed Ford Escort) and Alan Desbois/Peter Littlefield (Peugeot 306 RWD) both retired on the morning loop, while despite hitting a rock on SS2 and stopping to change a puncture David Jones/Gwyn Price retired their Tanners Arms BMW E30 in the afternoon.
Further details on the Motorsport UK Pirelli Welsh National Rally Championship can be found online at: wnrc.wamc.org.uk.
2021 Motorsport UK Pirelli Welsh National Rally Championship
Provisional points after Round 4:
Pirelli Welsh Junior
Driver: George Lepley
Co-driver: Will Atkins
RAVENOL UK Welsh Challenge
Driver: Owen McMackin
Co-driver: Jack Bowen
Restruct Two-Wheel Drive
Driver: Owen McMackin
Co-driver: Lee Taylor
Pirelli Welsh Historic Cup
Driver: Paul Street
Co-driver: Ian Jones
W2 (2WD, 1001cc to 1400cc 8v naturally aspirated)
Driver: Adrian Walk
Co-driver: Matt Walk
W3 (2WD, 1001cc to 1400cc 16v naturally aspirated)
Driver: Steve Black
Co-driver: Caron Tomlinson
W4 (2WD, all R2 homologated cars / FIA 1000cc turbo and 1600cc)
Driver: Ioan Lloyd
Co-driver: Sion Williams
W5 (2WD, Road Rally cars)
Driver: Ricky Crone
Co-driver: Daniel James
W6 (2WD, Historic Cat including up to 1600cc category 2, 3 and 4a)
Driver: Julian Birley and Chris Hellings (tied)
W7 (2WD, Historic 1601cc and over 8v single cam (category 2, 3 and 4a)
Driver: Neal James
Co-driver: Kevin Jones
W8 (2WD, Historic 1601cc and over 16v multi valve (category 2, 3, 4a and 4b up to 1600cc)
Driver: Paul Street
Co-driver: Ian Jones
W9 (4WD, Historic category 4b over 1600cc)
Driver: Tom Coughtrie
W10 (2WD, 1401cc to 1600cc naturally aspirated)
Driver: Dan Jones
Co-driver: Cyril Jones
W11 (2WD, 1601cc to 2000cc naturally aspirated)
Driver: Robert Wilson
Co-driver: Martin Haggett
W12 (2WD, 2001cc and over)
Driver: Owen McMackin
Co-driver: Lee Taylor
W13 (4WD, all four-wheel drive cars, excluding class W14 and W9)
Driver: George Lepley
Co-driver: Declan Dear
W14 (4WD, WRC/R5/S2000/RCC cars)
Driver: Callum Black
Co-driver: Niall Burns
Pirelli Welsh Over 50
Driver: Paul Street
Co-driver: Ian Jones
Many of the world’s greatest gravel forest stages will come together to form the 2022 Motorsport UK Pirelli Welsh National Rally Championship with an exciting eight round calendar planned for next year.
The Welsh Association of Motor Clubs organised series will contain three events in mid-Wales, three in the north and two in the south, giving the 2022 series an excellent geographical spread.
With the first round taking place at the end of March, the final round at the end of October and a summer break in between, the calendar is nicely spread out over eight months.
Most events will feature an ultra-compact one-day format, with around 45 stage miles and minimal road mileage.
Thanks to the outstanding road regrading work of Rally4Wales, the Welsh forest stages are always in excellent condition. This has enabled event organisers to run double use rallies with little or no deterioration in road condition, especially in the mid-Wales forests and the events ran in the summer months.
These world class road conditions have also contributed to a record number of crews registering for the Pirelli Welsh National Rally Championship in recent years, with both quality and quantity competing for overall and class honours in categories such as the hugely popular Welsh Junior Championship, Restruct Two-Wheel Drive category, Ravenol Welsh Challenge, Historic Cup and new Road Rally class – plus the smaller capacity classes which attract a wide variety of cars and crews of differing experience and ability.
The 2022 Pirelli Welsh National Rally Championship will start with Rally North Wales on Saturday 26 March. Organised by Wolverhampton & South Staffs Car Club, the event is based in Dolgellau and contains challenging stages in the nearby Dyfi and Gartheiniog forests.
Round 2 will be the Rallynuts Stages Rally on Saturday 9 April. Organised by Midland Manor Motor Club, the event is based at the Royal Welsh Showground in Llanelwedd with stages in the famous Myherin, Sweet Lamb and Hafren forests.
Round 3 will be the Plains Rally which is planning a move into the forests of North Wales for 2022. The Knutsford & District Motor Club organised event takes place on Saturday 21 May.
The Vale of Neath plays host to Round 4, with the Amman & District Motor Club organised Red Kite Stages offering challenging stages in Rheola, Resolven and Margam Park on Sunday 12 June. These stages have always proven very popular with competitors and a new event organising team has some exciting plans for the 2022 edition.
Round 5 will be the Nicky Grist Stages on Saturday 9 July. Based in Builth Wells, with the start, finish and service area all located in the town centre, the Quinton Motor Club event will contain super-smooth stages in the classic mid-Wales forests in and around the Epynt military range, including Crychan and Halfway.
The Eventsigns Woodpecker Stages Rally is another hugely popular event, with some fantastic stages in Radnor forest. The Sixty and Worcestershire Motor Club organised event was praised this year for reformatting its event and running with incredibly few road miles and it will be back in 2022 to host Round 6 on its traditional date of Saturday 3 September and with a route including a return to Haye Park.
The seventh and penultimate round will be the Winner Garage Škoda Wyedean Rally. Organised by the Forest of Dean Motor Club, a compact route within the stunning Forest of Dean forestry complex will take place on Saturday 15 October.
The eighth and final round will be the Visit Conwy Cambrian Rally, which will take place on Saturday 29 October. The North Wales Car Club organised event will be based in Llandudno with stages including the legendary Penmachno forest venue. This year the event also used Gwydir and Alwen forests and a new Twin Lakes asphalt stage which had only previously been used on road rallies.
“It is fantastic to be able to put together a 2022 Pirelli Welsh National Rally Championship calendar with eight high quality events included, and I'd like to thank the rally event organisers and their teams for their enthusiastic approach to the new year,” says the Pirelli Welsh National Rally Championship Secretary, Dave Evison.
“Despite the challenges the sport has faced during the pandemic, there are many new ideas around that will ensure that the events continue to offer competitors top quality competition and as championship organisers it is down to us to retain the increased interest from 2021 and reward their endeavours.
“With a regular road repair programme by Rally4Wales in place and a renewed interest in rallying, thanks to the variety of cars that are welcomed into the Welsh Championship and increased awareness of this exciting sport through live online broadcasting, we can’t wait to get the 2022 season started in March with Rally North Wales.
“It’s a very exciting time to be part of the Welsh National Rally Championship and if any individual or company would like to join us as a partner or supporter then please do get in touch.”
Further details on the Motorsport UK Pirelli Welsh National Rally Championship can be found online at: wnrc.wamc.org.uk.
2022 Motorsport UK Pirelli Welsh National Rally Championship calendar
26 March….Rally North Wales
9 April….Rallynuts Stages Rally
21 May….Plains Rally
12 June….Red Kite Stages
9 July….Nicky Grist Stages
3 September…. Eventsigns Woodpecker Stages Rally
15 October…. Winner Garage Škoda Wyedean Rally
29 October….Visit Conwy Cambrian Rally
For more information please contact:
Picture captions - from top
Olly Hunt/Andy Falconer (Subaru Impreza)
Nik Elsmore/Craig Drew (Mitsubishi Evo IX)
Jonathan Brace/Paul Spooner (Ford Escort Mk2)
Paul Barrett/Gordon Noble (Ford Escort Mk2)
Ben Friend/Cliff Simmons (Ford Escort Mk2)
Ioan Lloyd/Sion Williams (Peugeot 208 R2)
Alan Desbois/Peter Littlefield (Peugeot 306 RWD)
David Crossen/Aileen Kelly (Ford Escort Mk2)
Matthew Hirst/Declan Dear (Mitsubishi Evo IX)
Owen McMackin/Lee Taylor (Ford Escort Mk2)
Please credit ‘Chris Huish, RallySport Media’ if reproduced.
Press release: 5 November 2021
Garry Pearson, pictured, and Callum Black will go head-to-head in the battle for the Motorsport UK Pirelli Welsh National Rally Championship title as the 2021 series reaches an exciting climax on the Rallynuts Stages Rally (Saturday 13 November).
Having scored maximum points on the previous two rounds, the Eventsigns Woodpecker Rally and Visit Conwy Cambrian Rally, Garry takes a six-point lead into the final round.
With a score to drop towards the final points tally, if Garry and co-driver Niall Burns win again it will give the Asset Alliance Škoda Fabia R5 crew a perfect three maximum score result and their first Welsh title.
If Callum wins and Garry finishes second, they would be tied on points – with Garry winning the tiebreak.
Whilst Callum is currently third in the overall drivers’ standings, the 2017 Pirelli Welsh champion could win the title again – but he must finish first or second.
Co-driven by Jack Morton, Callum was the early leader of the Pirelli Welsh Rally Championship after taking victory on the opening Nicky Grist Stages. He kept his title hopes alive with a second-place finish in his Pallas Connections-backed Ford Fiesta R5 on the Visit Conwy Cambrian Rally, but his retirement on the Woodpecker could come back to haunt him, especially in a tiebreak situation.
Neither driver has rallied in Myherin, Sweet Lamb and Hafren forests for several years. Callum was last there on the 2017 Wales Rally GB, while Garry hasn’t seen them since the 2014 WRGB.
George Lepley, pictured, arrives at the Rallynuts Stages lying second in the overall drivers’ standings. But with a second and two thirds the WD-40 Mitsubishi Evo X driver can only add five points to his current total (when taking the lowest score to drop into account) and is therefore unable to win the overall title. Together with Tom Woodburn, George is more than capable of winning the event, especially as the fast and flowing mid-Wales stages will suit his car, and he has already claimed the Pirelli Welsh Junior title and the magnificent prize of a test in a PCRS Rallysport-prepared Hyundai i20 R5, courtesy of OnThePaceNote.co.uk
Work commitments prevented Ian Bainbridge, pictured, from contested the last round, but he and co-driver Will Atkins are looking forward to returning to the Welsh forests in their Gypsum Group Škoda Fabia R5. The 2018 Rallynuts Stages was Ian’s first forest rally, where he was seeded at number 90 in a Subaru Impreza. His rapid rise through the rallying ranks, particularly since he acquired the Fabia, means that another good result could secure him the Pirelli Welsh runners-up spot.
It’s certainly not been the season Matthew Hirst (Delta Salvage Mitsubishi Evo IX) and Russ Thompson (Dunnow Plant Mitsubishi Evo IX) had been hoping for, so the respective 2019 Pirelli Welsh driver champion and runner-up will be aiming to end 2021 on a high. Matthew has been co-driven by Declan Dear all season, while Russ will have Tom Murphy alongside him this time, his third co-driver of the season.
The 2018 Pirelli Welsh driver champion Dylan Davies hit a rock and lost a wheel on the Cambrian Rally and, together with Mark Glennerster on the route notes, will be hoping for better luck this time in his Subaru Impreza.
Perry Gardener/Jack Bowen, who had a fantastic run to fourth on the Woodpecker, return in their Ford Fiesta R5, as do Wug Utting/Bob Stokoe (Subaru Impreza STi N12b), Nik Elsmore/Craig Drew (CDS Taxis Mitsubishi Evo IX) and Martyn and Dawn England (SW Motorsport Mitsubishi Evo X).
Richard Hill/Patrick Cooper (RH Motors Mitsubishi), Saleh Hijazi/Stephen Landen (The Pallet Company Subaru Impreza STi), Keith Jones/Jonny ‘Tad’ Evans (Grooms Garage Subaru Impreza), Martyn Andrews/Steve Greenhill (Opie Oils Subaru Impreza) and Fraser Martin/Dylan Bargate (Slideways Motorsport Mitsubishi Evo 6) will all be aiming to finish the season in style, whilst after a good debut in their new car Bob Morgan/Adrian Williams will be another crew to watch in their Winner Garage Škoda Fabia R5.
David Tomlin, who retired his Axon Ford Fiesta R5 with clutch problems on the Cambrian, will be co-driven by Ian Beamond as his regular navigator Keith Ashley is otherwise engaged as Rallynuts Stages Clerk of the Course and Chief Safety Officer.
There is a good battle for the RAVENOL UK Welsh Challenge, with several drivers still in contention for the title.
Owen McMackin, pictured, (co-driven by Lee Taylor) currently leads the points standings in his McMackin Plant Hire Escort Mk2, although Ashley Davies (co-driven by Sam Fordham) in his G&B Finch/Burton Power Escort Mk2 and David Crossen (co-driven by Aileen Kelly) in his Crossen Engineering Escort Mk2 could still win the title.
Maxx Bradshaw/Liam Whiteley have travelled from the Isle of Man for every round of this year’s Pirelli Welsh Rally Championship and after finishing fourth in the Challenge category on the Cambrian the Manx men will be hoping to end the season with a podium finish in their Renvo8/DB Autos & Sons Mitsubishi Evo III.
There is also a close fight for the Restruct-sponsored Two-Wheel Drive title.
Owen McMackin leads that category as well, with Ashley Davies,pictured, and David Crossen, pictured below, also able to win. In fact, the latter could win the title with a perfect score of 90 points, having won the class on the Nicky Grist and the Woodpecker.
Having given his immaculate Wales Motorsport-built Restruct Escort Mk2 its debut on the Woodpecker, Two-Wheel Drive class sponsor Ron Morgan will contest the Rallynuts with Marc Clatworthy once again in the co-driver’s seat.
Retirement on the Cambrian Rally means that Ioan Lloyd is unable to win the Two-Wheel Drive title, although the fact that he’s been challenging for that trophy in his West Wales Rally Spares Peugeot 208 R2 highlights what a talented youngster he is. Co-driven by Sion Williams, the teenager’s priority was always the class W3 title, although he is in a race against time to repair his car after hitting a rocky outcrop and breaking a strut last time out.
Paul Street/Ian Jones,pictured, lead the highly competitive Pirelli Welsh Historic Cup after a win, a second and a fourth-place finish in their Escort RS1800 Mk2. They can only be beaten to the title by Paul Barrett (Escort Mk2).
Ben Friend/Cliff Simmons finished second in class on the Woodpecker and will be looking to end the season with a Pirelli Welsh Historic Cup win in their Allglass Escort Mk2, although winning the title is beyond them.
Jonathan Brace/Paul Spooner (Brace’s Bakery Escort Mk2),pictured, Charles Hopkinson/Alan Jones (Black Antler Design Escort RS1800 Mk2), Neal James/Kevin Jones (Mosley Rolling Road/Cwm Engineering Escort Mk2) and Michael McDaid/Declan Casey (McDaid Pharmacy Escort RS1800 Mk2) will also be hoping to end their Pirelli Welsh Historic Cup season with a good result.
Robi Wood/Osian Davies must win the Pirelli Welsh Road Rally class in their NIBS/SWG Escort Mk2 to have any chance of winning the title. Leaders Ricky Crone/Daniel James (Escort Mk2),pictured, have one hand on the trophy, after two wins and a second this season and don’t even have to finish if Robi doesn’t win the class to be crowned champions.
Graham Thatcher/Tim Samuel (Pembridge Vehicle Management Peugeot 206GTi),pictured, and Mark Lennox/Rhodri Evens (Lennox Engineering Escort Mk2) have both enjoyed a good season and excelled in the Pirelli Welsh Rally Championship’s newest class.
Adrian and Matthew Walk will be aiming to secure the W2 title in their PartBOX Ford Ka, having already won the class twice this year.
Steve Black is already the class W3 champion and, co-driven by Paul Morris, the 586 Sports team driver will be out for a bit of giant-killing fun in his rapid Suzuki Swift 1400.
To highlight the vast array of cars that are welcomed into the Pirelli Welsh Rally Championship’s inclusive class structure, other registered competitors contesting the Rallynuts Stages include Paul Walker/Geraint Thomas (Subaru Impreza), James Dunkley/Dan Sayce (JD Auto Services Vauxhall Corsa), Richard Jordan/James Smith (MG ZR), Conor Tolson/Dylan Thomas (Powerhouse Turbo Garage Ford Fiesta R2), Kevin Metcalfe/Ian Jones (BMW E30), Rob Wilson/Martin Haggett (Ravenol Ford Fiesta R2), Harry Hunt/Steve McPhee (Ford Escort), Robert Bradley/Kevin Booth (Browns Furniture Ford Escort Mk2), Andrew Fox/Jaime-Lee Fox (Fitzgerald Plant Services BMW 325), Paul Lomas/Mark Leader (Plant Speed Ford Escort), Bob Morris/Dil John (Subaru Impreza), Simon Dalton/Jamie Vaughan (Subaru Impreza STi N12b), Steve Hollis/Tim Currie (Volkswagen Golf R), Tom Naylor/Tom Bishop (Ford Fiesta ST), Alan Desbois/Peter Littlefield (RWD Peugeot 306) and Simon and Alex Stanbury in their MG ZR.
Experienced motorsport broadcaster Sideways Media will be at the Rallynuts Stages to capture all the action for a multi-film edited highlights package, dedicated to registered Pirelli Welsh Rally Championship contenders in every class and broadcast on the Championship’s Facebook and YouTube channels in the week after the event. In addition, Howard Davies and Eifion Jones will position themselves at passage controls and at the finish where the two former esteemed co-drivers will broadcast live driver interviews and give expert analysis online.
Postponed from its original date in April, this year’s Rallynuts Stages Rally on Saturday 13 November will be the 47th running of the event. Voted the best Pirelli Welsh National Rally Championship round in 2018 and ’19, the Midland Manor Motor Club organised event will follow its now traditional format with six stages and 44 stage miles in Myherin, Sweet Lamb and Hafren forests. Rally HQ, the start, midday service and finish will be at the Royal Welsh Showground in Llanelwedd.
Spectators are welcome at specific stage locations (but not the service area) and more information can be found on the event’s website: rallynutsrally.co.uk.
Further details on the 2021 Motorsport UK Pirelli Welsh National Rally Championship can be found online at: wnrc.wamc.org.uk.
Words Paul Evans
Images Paul Mitchell & Chris Huish.
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