Author Archives: Howard Wilcock

MAKING A POINT – OR TWO!…

Preview of the Wyedean Stages Rally (15th October)

As the 2022 Motorsport UK English Rally Championship, in association with Seacon UK, takes contenders into the Forest of Dean on Saturday 15th October for its penultimate round, the Wyedean Stages Rally, Nick Dobson (Escort Mk2) is just one point behind Richard Hill’s Lancer EVO9 in the race for the title. Having scored maximum points on the first two events in the calendar, Dobson (featured photo from the recent Trackrod Forest Rally) held pride of place at the top of the table throughout the summer, but a lacklustre run – by his standards – on the Woodpecker Stages in early September allowed Hill to overhaul him, albeit by the narrowest of margins. However, the Ilkley driver now has an opportunity to redress the balance….

Richard Hill / Patrick Cooper on the Trackrod Forest Rally >>>>

The class-based series sees competitors pitting their skills against those with vehicles of a similar engine capacity to their own in the battle for points, not only in their particular class but also for overall supremacy. In this way, it’s not necessarily the most powerful cars that come out on top – exemplified by the fact that, although the past couple of years have been blighted by Covid, the last English Rally Champion (2019) was Steve Black at the wheel of his 1400cc Suzuki Swift…

Having retired from the Woodpecker Stages, the hard charging Matthew Hirst and Declan Dear (Fiesta R5) will be looking to regain some lost ground, while local knowledge should be of assistance to Forest of Dean residents Bob Morgan / Ade Williams (Fabia R5).

<<<<  Matthew Hirst / Declan Dear (Fiesta R5)

Four-wheel drive machinery also appears in the hands of Ledbury’s Rob Wilson (Mitsubishi Lancer EVO7), co-driven by Martin Haggett, while James Giddings / Aled Davies opt for an EVO9. Meanwhile, Colin Minton is pinning his hopes of success on a Subaru Impreza.

Aiming to give Nick Dobson a run for his money in their own Escorts, Irishmen Michael McDaid / Declan Casey and ‘The Flying Kiwi’ Boyd Kershaw, co-driven by Keegan Rees, have already scored one maximum apiece and are eminently capable of repeating the feat this time out, while Tim Jones / Liam Whiteley will be doing their best to join them….

Hoping that the English Rally Championship title remains in the hands of a 1400cc car in 2022, Lydney’s Nigel & Kaz Jenkins’ rapid Nova came out on top of its class last time out on the Trackrod Forest Stages which utilised the super-fast stages on the North York Moors. Although they were absent from the first couple of events, the husband-and-wife crew have since made their presence felt and, once again, ‘home’ advantage and a proven turn of speed – not to mention a slice of good luck! – could pay dividends.

                                                                                                              Nigel & Kaz Jenkins – 1400cc Vauxhall Nova  >>>>

Also relying on a 1400cc car, although a less highly-tuned version than the Jenkins’ Nova, Adrian & Matt Walk’s Ford Ka has proved on a number of occasions in the past that reliability is the key to success. However, while retirement on the Trackrod Forest Stages wasn’t part of the plan, good performances on the final two rounds of the series would put them in the running for a class win.

SPECTATORS : The first car leaves the start in Coleford at 8.30am on Saturday 15th October and full details will be available via the website: https://www.wyedeanstages.co.uk/spectators
All photos © Kevin Money / Malcom Almond.

The 2022 Motorsport UK English Rally Championship

After the two year hiatus associated with the Covid-19 pandemic BTRDA Ltd are very pleased to confirm that they will organise and promote the Motorsport UK 2022 English Rally Championship in association with Seacon UK.

Following on from the issue of regulations for the 2022 MRF Tyres BTRDA Rally Series, (available at www.btrdarally.co.uk/competitors)  those for the Motorsport UK 2022 English Rally Championship, in association with Seacon UK, are now available in the competitor section of this website. Championship Permit No 2022/008 has been issued by Motorsport UK.

It’s all part of the 2022 BTRDA Rally Series registration and BTRDA membership package and, thus, all BTRDA Rally Series contenders are automatically eligible for the English Rally Championship (and vice versa) with no extra fees required.

Maintaining the format of previous years, the English Rally Championship is class-based, such that the eventual winner may emerge from any one of the seven competition classes (see below) and as outlined in the regulations. In this way, it isn’t necessarily the most powerful car that will triumph – a fact amply illustrated by Steve Black who claimed the 2019 title in his 1400cc Suzuki Swift!

English Rally Champions in previous years include: – 2018 Ian Joel (Escort Cosworth), 2017 Stephen Petch (Fiesta WRC) 2016 Sam Bilham (Fiesta R2), 2015 Rhys Yates (Fiesta R2), 2014 Matthew Robinson (Escort Mk2), 2013 Julian Wilkes (1400cc Vauxhall Nova).

Covid restrictions permitting, a six-round calendar of selected popular forest stage rallies is planned from which competitors will count their five best scores.

The Events:

  • Malcolm Wilson Rally  12th March   Cockermouth / Lake District
  • Kielder Forest Rally    18th June    Hexham / Kielder Forest
  • Woodpecker Stages    3rd September    Ludlow / Shropshire
  • Trackrod Forest Rally    24th September    Filey / North Yorkshire
  • Wyedean Stages Rally    15th October    Mitcheldean / Forest of Dean
  • Grizedale Stages Rally    2nd / 3rd December    Ambleside / Lake District

The Championship is open to all vehicles that comply with the 2022 Motorsport UK Safety and Technical Regulations for Special Stage Rallies.

The Competition Classes: 

  • Class E7     Current and former World Rally cars with a sequential gearbox, current and former R5 specification cars, FIA Rally2 and S2000 cars and any derivatives therefrom
  • Class E6     Over 2000cc 4WD cars not eligible for class E7
  • Class E5     Over 2000cc 2WD cars including all FIA R3T cars
  • Class E4     Cars over 1600cc up to 2000cc, plus Historic category 3 cars with multi cam engines over 1600cc, category 4a cars over 1600cc and 4b cars up to 1600cc and FIA Rally4 specification cars.
  • Class E3     Cars over 1400cc up to 1600cc plus current & former FIA Group N3 cars and FIA R2 cars.
  • Class E2     Cars up to 1400cc not eligible for Class E1, plus Historic category 1 & 2, category 3 with single cam engines and category 4a up to 1600cc
  • Class E1     All BTRDA Rally First cars.

 

BTRDA Rally Series registration and BTRDA membership are free to new members under 25 years of age on the 1st January 2022, for their first year of registration.

Covid restrictions dictate that on some events the traditional pre-event Signing-On sessions will not take place and, hence, the opportunity to actually register for the BTRDA Series on events may be severely compromised. Nevertheless, we want you to join in some ‘Serious Fun’ and, hence, we would ask all prospective contenders to use the online registration system prior to their first appearance of the season.  Alternatively, there is a Membership / Registration form which can be downloaded.