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Tour of Epynt - 14 Mar 10

Posted: March 26, 2010 11:53 AM - 6311 Hits

Round 1 - 2010 MSA Asphalt Rally Championship & BTRDA Asphalt Rally Challenge
Round 1 - 2010 Epynt Challenge

  • Peter Lloyd/Graham Handley win.


Posted: March 26, 2010 11:53 AM

Having registered for the Richard Egger Insurance MSA Asphalt Rally Championship for the first time for over 15 years, Peter Lloyd and co-driver Graham Handley opened their account with an outright win on the opening round of the series, the Fix Auto Swansea Tour of Epynt, at the weekend. Their Subaru Impreza S12 set fastest time on the first of the six long stages on the Epynt Ranges to establish a lead which, following FTDs on each of the next three stages, they maintained throughout the day.

At Prizegiving that evening, Graham Handley said that, while he and Peter were obviously delighted to win the event, it was also the last ‘big’ Epynt rally that had, hitherto, eluded them – so, they have now won them all!

2007 MSA Asphalt Rally Champions Steve Simpson/Mark Booth put in a similarly polished performance to take the runners-up spot in their Impreza WRC, while Simon Mauger/Chris Butcher brought their recently-completed 2.5 litre Ford Escort MkII into an excellent 3rd place. Replacing a broken front shock-absorber caused a late departure from the first service halt, but the consequent 30-second road penalty made no difference to the final result.

Andy Fenwick/Lee Tindall are planning a full season of ARC events and, in another Impreza WRC, their campaign has started well with a 4th place finish on Epynt. John Stone/Lee Carter will be particularly pleased with 6th overall in their Skoda Fabia WRC – as they continue the acclimatisation process with their new car, fourth-fastest time on the final stage will be very encouraging.

While their Hyundai Accent WRC is awaiting completion, Stone’s Legend Motorsport team-mates Mark Jasper/Don Whyatt wheeled out their MG Metro 6R4 to good effect – 7th overall, a handful of seconds behind the Skoda, giving them a strong showing in the points table.

Another Championship returnee, George Mackey, brought his Mitsubishi Lancer EVO6 into 8th place and, with three events in his native north-east to come in the revamped calendar (Jim Clark, Tyneside & Cheviot), he is looking forward to some further good scores.

The John Horton Motorsport Management ‘Star Performance’ salver was awarded to 29-year old James Martin, from Aberystwyth, who is just starting out on his first season of Asphalt Championship events. Without wishing to sound rude, James’ Astra is not in its first flush of youth but nevertheless, with co-driver Dylan James reading the notes, he finished 13th overall and won the very competitive B11 class. Well done!

On the other side of the coin, those who didn’t fare too well on the opening encounter included 2006/2008 MSA Asphalt Champions David Kynaston/Andy Russell who put their Audi A3 Quattro off the road. It was ten minutes before they were mobile again and, by this time, the car’s gearbox was starting to play up. To avoid risking any further damage, they retired from 4th place, while Damian Cole/Craig Drew’s event came to halt at about the same time when their Focus WRC’s power steering pump failed. They had been 5th at the time…

With 35 Championship-registered crews taking the start of the Tour of Epynt, other finishers included :

* Chris Marshall/Simon Hunter Mitsubishi Lancer EVO5 12th
* David Hardie/John McCulloch Subaru impreza 13th
* Mike Perkin/Martin Bristow Ford Puma 17th
* Michael Glendinning/Andrew Roughead Ford Escort MkII 18th
* Steve Cressey/Sam Collis Subaru Impreza STI 20th
* Steve Leonard/Sion Humphreys Ford Escort MkII 21st
* Geoff Glover/Keith Barker Vauxhall Astra RWD 27th
* Graham Muter/Steve Hallmark Ford Escort 29th
* Richard Clews/Barry James Ford Fiesta ST 33rd
* Martin Murray/Peter Weall Peugeot 205 GTI 37th
* Phillip Merrills/William Kelly Honda Civic Type R 38th
* Stephen Webb/Steve Tott Ford Fiesta ST 39th
* Martin Newson/Peter Morris MG ZR 42nd
* Dave Price/Mark Mason Ford Escort Mk6 RWD 47th
* Alison Lock/Abi Summerfield BL Mini 49th

Meanwhile, in addition to Kynaston/Russell and Cole/Drew, the list of those for whom Epynt was not the happiest of events includes :

* Chris Jones/Ashley Trimble Ford Focus STI Retired SS5
* Chris Rice/Nick Chapman Subaru Impreza Clutch – SS1
* Jim Sharp/Amy Mackinnon Mitsubishi Lancer EVO9 Retired SS2
* Tim Daltry/Paul Ohren-Bird Peugeot 205 GTI Clutch – SS1
* George Cooke/Geoff Nash Citroen Saxo VTS OTL
* Craig Jose/Nigel Hewett Peugeot 205 G’box Mount – SS3
* Richard Egger/Pat Egger Vauxhall Nova Core Plug – SS1
* Neil Arden/Giles Corbett Ford Escort MkII Gearbox – SS1
* Tracey Louise Muir/Garry Muir Peugeot 106 Driveshaft – SS1

The Richard Egger Insurance MSA Asphalt Rally Championship moves to the Isle of Man for the second round, the Manx Telecom Rally (7/8th May) and, with five events to count from a possible nine, every competitor has a great deal to play for.


Posted: March 26, 2010 10:09 AM

Full Results

Posted: March 26, 2010 10:07 AM


Posted: March 4, 2010 5:02 PM

The battle for the 2010 Richard Egger Insurance MSA Asphalt Rally Championship commences on Sunday 14th March with the traditional season-opener, the Fix Auto Swansea Tour of Epynt. The organisers, Port Talbot Motor Club Ltd, have amassed an impressive entry of almost 90 cars and the list contains a number of former champions.

This year’s MSA Asphalt Rally Championship features a revised format which, by keeping costs and time away from home to a minimum, is aimed at encouraging the maximum number of competitors to take part. Early signs are good with 40% of the Epynt entry indicating that they are with us for the season.

In the absence of 2009 winner, Melvyn Evans, Peter Lloyd/Graham Handley will be first on the road in their Subaru Impreza WRC. They were forced to retire from last year’s event, but their experience over the Epynt roads is second to none and, having come back to win the Mewla Rally outright last August, must start as one of the favourites this time.

In the provisional Top Ten, 2008 Epynt winners, and runners-up last year, John Dalton/Gwynfor Jones (Darrian T90 GTR) start behind Lloyd, with 2006 & 2008 MSA Asphalt Rally Champions, David Kynaston/Andy Russell next in their Audi A3 Quattro.

Multiple Welsh Tarmac Champion Damian Cole and co-driver Craig Drew (Ford Focus WRC) take the No.4 slot, ahead of Simon Mauger/Chris Butcher in their 2.5 litre Ford Escort MkII. Winners of the 2007 MSA Asphalt Rally Championship, Steve Simpson/Mark Booth retired their Hyundai Accent in favour of an Impreza mid-season but a win on the Cheviot National Rally at the end of the year indicates that the transition has been successful.

John Stone/Lee Carter are starting their first full season in the former’s recently-acquired Skoda Fabia WRC, while Epynt veteran Bob Fowden, accompanied by Paul Wakely in his Subaru Impreza, will also be chasing Championship points this season.

Mark Jasper/Don Whyatt begin their assault on the MSA Asphalt Championship in their ex John Stone Hyundai Accent WRC, while Andy Fenwick/Lee Tindall also have a different car for 2010 – an Impreza WRC.

George Mackey/Nigel Gardner and Chris Marshall/Simon Hunter, both in Mitsubishi Lancers, have considerable experience of the Epynt Ranges while 2008 BTRDA Asphalt Rally Series winner Chris Jones, with co-driver Ashley Trimble, is back in his Ford Focus STI. Jones began the 2009 season as he finished the previous one – with a maximum score on the Tour of Epynt - but, then, the car suffered a dip in reliability, causing retirement from a couple of events. Coming back strongly towards the end of last year, he was narrowly prevented from taking back-to-back titles, but the car has a proven pedigree which should stand him in good stead.

Something of an unknown quantity on several of the events in the Richard Egger Insurance-sponsored MSA Asphalt Championship, young Jersey hot-shoe Steve Leonard has proven speed in his Ford Escort MkII and, following victory in 2009, will start the Patriot Stages at the end of September with No.1 on his doors.

The route will contain six 12.5-mile stages, but Dixies Corner, the usual spectator area, is not being used competitively on this year’s Fix Auto Swansea Tour of Epynt. However, Port Talbot Motor Club has agreed with the MoD that spectators can park and watch in different locations. Full details will be contained in the ‘Spectator Programme’ which will be available on the day. There will be a charge of £10 per car will and all proceeds will go to the Welsh Air Ambulance and a charity to be nominated by the Sennybridge Camp Commandant.

The first car leaves the start at 9.00am on Sunday 14th March and arrives back at the finish in Llandovery at 4.30pm that afternoon.

List of Entries to Date:

Posted: February 17, 2010 9:27 AM


Posted: January 22, 2010 2:49 PM

Port Talbot Motor Club Ltd would like to thank Mr Huw Williams of Stadium Accident Repair Centre for his continued support & sponsorship of the Tour Of Epynt through his ‘Fix Auto Swansea’ franchise.

The rally will be the opening round of the 2010 Richard Egger Insurance MSA Asphalt Championship incorporating the BTRDA Asphalt Rally Series.

This year’s rally will also form part of the 2010 Steve Harkness Competition Tyres Welsh National Tarmacadam Championship, 2010 Legend Fires Get- Connected Epynt Challenge and it is also a qualifier for the ANWCC Championship.

The event will be of a similar format to previous years, based at the Castle Hotel, Llandovery. The route will consist of approximately 80 special stage miles over 6 stages, with one central Service Area, The event will Start on the Epynt Ranges & finish at the Castle Hotel, Llandovery where the awards ceremony will take place.

Regulations / Details

Posted: January 1, 2010 12:01 AM

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