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2020 Nicky Grist (Quinton) Stages - CANCELLED

Posted: July 20, 2020 6:41 PM - 681 Hits

WAS - (Sat) 11 Jul 20, WAS 28 Nov 20
Round 5 - 2020 BTRDA Rally Series
Round 5 - 2020 Welsh Rally Championship

2020 Event Cancelled

Posted: July 20, 2020 6:41 PM

The Nicky Grist Stages is set to return to the classic mid-Wales forestry stages on Saturday 10 July 2021, following the cancellation of this year’s event.

Quinton Motor Club had originally planned to run the event – which is a five time winner of the BTRDA ‘Rally of the Year’ award – on Saturday 11 July, but owing to Covid-19 lockdown restrictions, the event was postponed until Saturday 28 November.

However, with continued uncertainty and restrictions still in place at a time when event planning for November needed to move into its next phase, it was felt that the current available information and guidelines did not make organising and running the Nicky Grist Stages in 2020 a realistic option.

With the continued support from Powys County Council and Builth Wells Town Council, the event will instead return to the centre of Builth Wells next summer – with rally headquarters at the magnificent Strand Hall, the start and finish in Groe Park, the service area on the Builth Wells rugby club pitch and North Road Garage providing a superb scrutineering venue.

All this merely heightens the anticipation of a challenging new route next year, with stages run over the famous smooth gravel roads of Natural Resources Wales and Landmarc Military Of Defence land in and around the Epynt ranges.

This year’s event was to have hosted a round of the MRF Tyres BTRDA Rally Series, Pirelli Motorsport UK Welsh Forest Rally Championship, MRF Tyres BTRDA Mixed Surface Championship, ANWCC Forest Rally Championship, MRF Tyres Fiesta ST Trophy and the IPS Paint Rally Challenge – and the Nicky Grist Stages looks forward to welcoming all these competitors back in 2021.

Neil Cross, Nicky Grist Stages Clerk of the Course, said:
“We are bitterly disappointed to have to cancel this year’s Nicky Grist Stages, but the reality is that there are still too many variables to allow us to move on to the next phase of our event planning. With many Covid-related restrictions still in place, and so much uncertainty about what the situation could be like in the winter, we feel that trying to run our event in these unprecedented times could do more harm than good. The event enjoys tremendous support from the rally community, Powys County Council, Builth Wells Town Council and many other companies and individuals – not least from Nicky Grist himself, who has been the event’s title sponsor, mentor and advisor for over ten years – and we look forward to working with everything to bring a top class Nicky Grist Stages back in 2021.”

Nicky Grist said: “We did everything possible to put on this year’s Nicky Grist Stages, but with so much uncertainty, and the fear of the event being cancelled at short notice because of a change in Covid guidelines in the autumn or winter, we felt that it was impossible to proceed any further with our plans for 2020. As time goes by there are less and less opportunities for rallies in the UK this year, which is a shame for everyone involved in this great sport. But that just makes us more determined to get back out next year, when we’ll plan for another first class Nicky Grist Stages in July 2021.”

Proposed new Date: 28 Nov 20

Posted: July 19, 2020 2:40 AM

The Nicky Grist Stages hopes to run this year's event on Saturday 28 November - See Event Website.

2020 Nicky Grist Stages postponed

Posted: April 30, 2020 9:15 AM

This summer’s Nicky Grist Stages, which was scheduled to take place on Saturday 11 July, has been postponed – owing to a number of key logistical issues directly caused by the coronavirus outbreak. The event organiser, Quinton Motor Club, is hoping to run the 2020 event later in the year, and is working on an alternative date in late November.

This year’s Nicky Grist Stages celebrates the 40th anniversary of the first running of the event as a forestry rally, having been held for the first time in 1980. It is also the 33rd consecutive year that the rally has been a round of a prestigious BTRDA Series – winning the ‘Rally of the Year’ award five times, including last year. It is also the 11th consecutive year of support and title sponsorship from Nicky Grist Motorsports.

Plans for July’s event were at an advanced stage, with a 43 mile route on smooth gravel roads on both Natural Resources Wales and Landmarc Military Of Defence land in and around the Epynt ranges, on the picturesque Carmarthenshire and Powys border region.

With the invaluable support of Builth Wells Town Council and Powys County Council, the event – which hosts a round of the MRF Tyres BTRDA Rally Series, Pirelli Motorsport UK Welsh Forest Rally Championship, MRF Tyres BTRDA Mixed Surface Championship, ANWCC Forest Rally Championship, MRF Tyres Fiesta ST Trophy and the IPS Paint Rally Challenge – would continue to be based in the centre of Builth Wells, with rally headquarters at the stunning Strand Hall.

However, with both central and devolved government COVID-19 guidelines still in place – including the Welsh Government’s Health Protection (Coronavirus Restrictions) regulation keeping hotels, B&Bs, holiday and camping sites closed (until 26 September, although this is reviewed every 21 days) – plus restrictions on non-essential travel and land use, Quinton Motor Club has decided to make this announcement before the event regulations are published and competitors incur unnecessary costs.

Neil Cross, Nicky Grist Stages Clerk of the Course, said: “Like everyone else, we have been monitoring the coronavirus situation very closely and had obviously hoped that the situation would have improved and restrictions lifted to enable us to continue to organise and then run a safe Nicky Grist Stages as planned in July. Given the current circumstances, it is completely understandable that both central and devolved government restrictions remain in place, and that landowners continue to reassess the risks involved with non-essential use. It is disappointing to have to postpone the event, but on today’s assessment, and before event regulations are published and entries open, it is the right thing to do. We have a window of opportunity to run the event in November, and we will be discussing our alternative plans with all the people and organisations involved.”

Nicky Grist said: “Given all the current restrictions, uncertainties and heartache that coronavirus is causing, postponing July’s Nicky Grist Stages is the responsible and correct thing to do. Fingers crossed that motorsport, and indeed life as we used to know it, returns to normality fairly soon and we will be able to run the event later in the year.”

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