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Harry Flatters Rally (Epynt) - 1-2 Aug 09

Posted: August 5, 2009 3:26 PM - 8776 Hits

Round 6 - 2009 MSA British Historic Rally Championship

BHRC report, round six: Harry Flatters Historic Rally

Posted: August 5, 2009 3:26 PM

It was maximum points for Julian Reynolds and Ian Oakey on round six of the Dunlop/Gambia MSA British Historic Rally Championship, the Harry Flatters Historic Rally (1/2 August).
While Epynt ace Mark Solloway (non-BHRC registered) won the historic rally, title contender Gwyndaf Evans retired on the penultimate stage on his first rally over the ranges for 24 years.
In category two, David Stokes and Guy Weaver proved unbeatable in their Escort Mk1, while Dessie Nutt and Geraldine McBride (Porsche 911) performed a similar feat in category one.

Category 1
With only four starters in category one Nutt/McBride were expected to cruise to another win. “We had problems mainly with sheep, on the first stage we braked and then braked again as I was sure I was going to hit one. Then it moved to the right and we just missed it,” said Nutt. “We had three more near misses with them on stage five too,” he added.
The winning margin was almost two minutes, as Paul Mankin/Desmond Bell (Lotus Cortina) took a clear second as the only starter in class B4. “Apart from a near off on stage three on cold tyres, we didn’t have any problems,” said Mankin. Rikki Proffitt and Phil Harrison were still getting used to their Porsche 911, but also had a trouble free run to third overall and second place in B5. Mike Bartlett/David Leslie (Austin Mini Cooper S) made it home fourth, running solo in class B2.

Category 2
Stokes and Weaver started off in determined fashion, pulling out a 16-second lead over their rivals on the opening stage.
Non-BHRC registered Toby Adam and Neil Cook (Escort Mk1) were eight seconds up on Ernie Graham/Andy Morgan after the two Saturday evening stages, but on Sunday morning Graham immediately closed the gap again to four second. Graham was poised to ease ahead when the gap became one second on stage four, only for Adam to respond and consolidate his place once more. But Graham kept up his challenge and only lost out by three seconds in the end.
It wasn’t all plain sailing for Stokes however. “We were in fifth at the end of the New Road, started to brake but kept going as the throttle had stuck wide open. It had gone beyond the stop and I lost 17 seconds,” he explained. Peter Smith/Russ Langthorne (Porsche 911) ran a strong fourth for the first six stages, before Neal James and Kevin Jones came charging through to claim the place from stage eight, on their debut run in the ex-Jeff Churchill Escort Mk1 BDA. “We were struggling to get used to our new car and a ZF gearbox, so there were quite a few screams and crunches. It started to get better, so we were pleased as the first stage was really the shakedown for the car,” said James.
Smith eventually fell to seventh on the final stage, as Drew Wylie/Howard Pridmore (Escort Mk1) and Derek Boyd/Simon Hunter (Porsche 911) both moved ahead. “It was a very steep learning curve and far too many Welsh and English crews with local knowledge,” said class Wylie after taking maximum C3 points.

Graham and James followed Stokes in class C5, with Wylie having to keep pushing after a big challenge from Ken Forster/John Stanger-Leathes. Andrew Siddall/Captain Thompson had a plug lead come off on the first stage, but came back to fourth in class C3 in their Escort Mk1. Jeremy Wells/Martin Saunders also survived in their Escort Mk1, but Ian Drummond/Yvonne Coppin’s Escort expired on the final run with electrical gremlins.

In class C4 former BL and Ford works driver Boyd celebrated victory on his first visit to Epynt with his Porsche 911, showing a clean pair of heels to fellow Porsche crews Smith/Langthorne and Peter Lythell/Gill Cotton. Matt Fowle/Robert Cook (Escort Mk1) had a solo run to take top spot in class C2.

Category 3
Among the BHRC registered crews, it was Gwyndaf Evans and Huw Lewis, taking the lead overnight from Julian Reynolds and Ian Oakey, but it had taken a rapid gearbox change to keep the Viking Motorsport Escort of Evans running strongly.
Behind non-registered Mark Solloway/Den Golding, Evans/Lewis led the championship contenders until the penultimate stage when the alternator fan sheared and broke an oil pipe.
Eventually that cost them a finish and another maximum points' score.
Reynolds/Oakey therefore took maximum points but was a little disappointed with his pace. "We had a whining sound from the gearbox on Saturday night so changed it overnight.
On Sunday mornings first leg though it must have jumped out of gear 20 times though,” he said.
Darren Moon and Chris Parsons were next in their Escort Mk2, after being loaned a spare gearbox by Ernie Graham. “We were stuck in fifth on Saturday night and Ernie just came over and offered us his spare box, then Rikki Proffitt did the same,” said Moon. Will Onions and Tim Hobbs Escort has a good run in unfamiliar surroundings to take third in the points' scorers. “We were like the championship winners with the top guys in the Premiership,” said Onions.

Simon Tysoe/Cliff Simons were also in the wars but survived to take sixth place. “At the chicane at Fourways on stage five we got sideways and hit a big stone,” they explained.

Phil and Mick Squires were the final D5 finishers, “It took a while for us to remember what to do,” said Squires after a break from competing. Gareth Lloyd/Ryland James retired when they got stuck in second gear at the start of stage six, Rob Smith/Shaun O’Gorman broke their Vauxhall Chevette and both Conor Corkill/Howard Allison and James Potter/Arwel Jenkins had offs in their Escorts.

In D3 Guy Woodcock/Hu Kent (Escort Mk2) the legs of Chris Shooter/Bev Le Good and with Wayne Bonser/Richard Aston retiring their Escort on the second stage, there were no other finishers in D4.

The BHRC action continues with round seven, the Historic Tour of Flanders, on 12/13 September.

Full Results

Posted: August 5, 2009 3:17 PM

Entry Lists

Posted: July 29, 2009 10:36 PM

Aidan Dunlea to use newly acquired Sierra

Posted: July 29, 2009 10:36 PM

Cork driver Aiden Dunlea, a regular visitor to Epynt, will use a newly acquired Cosworth Engined Ford Sierra XR4i on this year's event. Aidan and Co-Driver Mike Cleary will only take delivery of the car on Friday evening before the Rally!

Also competing on this year's Harry Flatters Rally will be Adrian O'Driscoll & Conor Hanlon

BHRC preview, round six: Harry Flatters Historic Rally

Posted: July 27, 2009 7:38 PM

The daunting Epynt ranges in Mid-Wales are the venue for round six of the Dunlop/Gambia MSA British Historic Rally Championship, the S&G Printing Harry Flatters Historic Rally on 1/2 August. For the second asphalt event on the schedule, crews will head to Brecon for the event that starts with two stages on Saturday evening and continues with a full day on the ranges through Sunday.  

Category 1
A slender field for category one will assemble for the challenge of around 80 miles on Epynt and it is Isle of Man winners Dessie Nutt and Geraldine McBride who will start as favourites in their Porsche 911. Nutt has a fine record on the Epynt stages and his neat and quick style will surely pay dividends as they continue their challenge for a second overall BHRC title. However, it will be very interesting to see the pace of Rikki Proffitt and Phill Harrison in their similar ex-Steve Perez 911. Proffitt took the car to the Isle of Man and loved the chance to start learning about it, despite being stopped early by gearbox problems. If all goes well, the North Wales crew will be aiming to chase the Nutt/McBride Porsche.

Another crew in search of a major points' haul after driveshaft disasters on the Isle of Man is the Lotus Cortina pair of Paul Mankin/Desmond Bell, while the Mini Cooper S of Mike Bartlett/David Leslie completes the category one field.  

Category 2
Absent from category two for the Harry Flatters are overall BHRC leaders Rupert Lomax and David Alcock, who have elected to make this one of their dropped scores while having a gearbox rebuild for their Escort Mk1. Instead, it is the Escort of David Stokes/Guy Weaver running at the head of the category two field and they will be tough to beat over a venue that Stokes knows well. Chasing Stokes will be Ernie Graham/Andy Morgan in their Escort, along with local experts Neal James/Kevin Jones, having their debut rally in the ex-Jeff Churchill Escort Mk1 'ONY 2L'. Although he will be getting used to BDA power for the first time, James should be very quick. In class C4, a gaggle of very quick Porsches will take the fight to the Escorts, with cars for Andrew Haddon/Nick Starkey, Derek Boyd/Simon Hunter, Peter Smith/Russ Langthorne and Peter Lythell/Gill Cotton.

As ever, the battle for class C3 will be fierce and it is class championship leaders Drew Wylie and Howard Pridmore at the head of the pack in their Pinto-engined Escort Mk1. Championship regulars Ken Forster/John Stanger-Leathes and Andrew Siddall/Captain Thompson will be pushing hard, but the ultimate C3 pace may well be set by Epynt aces Toby Adam and Neil Cook in their Escort Mk1.

Finally, in class C2 it will be a straight fight between the Escort Mk1s of Matt Fowle/Robert Cook and Richard Williams/Richard Ekin.  

Category 3
With eleven class D5 Ford Escort Mk2s in category three it is a fabulous line-up and the pace at the head of the pack will be sensational. The man in top form is Gwyndaf Evans, partnered by Huw Lewis, in the Viking Motorsport Escort Mk2. Evans heads to Epynt on the back of three straight BHRC victories, but will have a big fight on his hands with the Escort Mk2 of Mark Solloway/Den Golding. Although unlikely to be registered for points, Solloway is the current Epynt master and will set a searing pace. With his mind on championship points, Evans may need to make a call between battling Solloway for overall honours and driving with championship points in mind. However, this is not just a two-horse contest, as Julian Reynolds/Ian Oakey, Terry Brown/tba and Gareth Lloyd/Ryland James pack out the top five crews and all will be mightily quick. Then come Simon Tysoe/Cliff Simmons and Darren Moon/Chris Parsons, while outside the top 10 is another clutch of D5 Escorts including Conor Corkill/Howard Allison, Will Onions/Tim Hobbs, James Potter/Arwel Jenkins and Phil Squires/Mick Squires. Taking the fight to the Escorts, and overdue a strong finish, is the Vauxhall Chevette of Rob Smith/Shaun O'Gorman.

In D3, the Escort Mk2 of Guy Woodcock and Hu Kent really should set the pace and Epynt ace Woodcock will be aiming to beat as many of the more powerful D5 Escorts as he can in his Pinto-powered car. Lining up against Woodcock in D3 will be Chris Shooter/Bev LeGood and Wayne Bonser/Richard Aston in their Escort Mk2s.

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Posted: July 24, 2009 6:29 PM

Regulations / Details

Posted: January 1, 2009 12:01 AM

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