Malcolm Wilson Rally 2016
The weather on Saturday 12th March at Dovenby Hall, the residence of the event sponsor Malcom Wilson, where scruitineering and documentation took place for the 41st running of the event, was bright, dry, and very chilly.
First car left at 7am.
Highest placed finisher was Thirsk based Peter Stephenson who ended the day 5th overall, 5th in class 5, with his WRC Spec Ford Focus. The experienced John Millington was reading the notes and Peter is now leading the championship.
Steve Bannister had Kim Gray in the passenger seat as his usual co-driver, Louise Rae, was busy with baby-sitting duties. Congratulations are in order to Louise and Kevin upon the recent birth of their first child, a boy. First in class 3 gives Steve a good start towards another championship campaign.
Stuart Egglestone, with fellow Cumbrian Brian Hodgson, returns again this year in his trusty Vauxhall Astra. Third in class 3 also gives these two a good start for their championship.
New recruits Matthew Robinson from Ripon, and Sam Collis from York, had a steady day learning how to drive their Fiat Marifiori. 5th in class 3 is a great beginning. Watch out for these two later in the year…
Another regular ANECCC crew are Ian Watson from Kelso and Mick Dickson from Galashields. Ian is now running a Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 9 in class 5. With their usual cheerful, laid-back, and steady-away style they were back home 17th in class. Hopefully they’ll have some better luck as this year progresses…
Mat Smith from Thirsk had his Father-in-Law, Derek Cornforth, giving him directions from the passenger seat of the proton Satria… After starting on wrong tyres and finding “the car’s all over the place” they would eventually finish a very creditable 15th overall and predictably win class 1. Mat is now 3rd overall in the championship.
Penrith’s James Hall and Caroline Lodge from Brampton, have improved their status since James acquired the Proton. James now feels more at ease with the car and would finish 3rd in class 3. James is currently 4th overall and
Caroline leads the co-driver’s table.
Current driver champion, Barry Lindsay from Spadeadam, had his father Michael, a past champion co-driver reading the notes. Unfortunately they didn’t have things all their own way because changing a broken front suspension arm on the Peugeot 206 used up all of their service time. Although they were enjoying their day 5th in class 2 was a worthy reward for their efforts. Barry is now 2nd overall in the drivers’ category and Michael has dropped to 4th overall co-driver.
Ian Baumgart from Hawick, a new recruit for 2016, had the unregistered Mark Fisher collecting times in his Subaru Impreza. Ian had a load of issues with the car and would eventually finish well down the order, but credit to Ian and Mark for sticking it out and getting the car back to the finish.
Timo Hennish had another disastrous day with his Vauxhall Chevette when he and his unregistered co-driver Dianne Stephenson received massive time penalties for being early/late at various controls throughout the day. However 4th in the big engine class was some consolation for their day.
Returning to the championship are past champions Richard and Edwin Cook from Wigton with their trusty Subaru Impreza. Unfortunately the “stopped” statement on the retirements list doesn’t quite reflect their dramatic crash on SS4. Thankfully both Richard and Edwin are both okay…
Other unseated jockeys were Cumbria’s Marcus and Helen Noble. Marcus decided to try three wheels on his Ford Escort during SS6 only to find very little improvement. Great shame as they were going very well earlier in the event.
Trevor Gamble form Lanchester, also tried the three wheel approach when he and Phil Kenny gave a rock in SS1 a very hard clout. I’m sure Trevor’s luck will change soon…
After three rounds the current points standings for 2016 are:-
- Peter Stephenson 241 pts
- Barry Lindsay 230 pts
- Mat Smith 177 pts
- James Hall 156 pts
- Mark Talbot 104 pts
- Caroline Lodge 173 pts
- Richard Wardle 142 pts
- Kev Wilson 139 pts
- Michael Lindsay 137 pts
- Amanda Talbot 104 pts
Round 4, The Border Counties Rally is on the 19th March. Full details and regulations are available on the rally website http://www.bordercountiesrally.co.uk/
Round 5, The Pirelli Carlisle Rally is on the 30th April/1st May. Full details and regulations are available on the rally website http://www.pirellicarlislerally.co.uk/
Round 6, The Jim Clark Reivers Forest Rally is on the 5th June. Full details and regulations are available from this website http://www.scottishrallychampionship.co.uk/events/jim-clark-reivers-rally/