s e k a r b d Han s n i p r i a H & he world your insight into t
er 2009 b m e v o N 8 10 e u Iss
Meeke crowned King in Scotland
inside this week:
Action aplenty in Cape rally
M-Sport Ford Fiesta S2000
Contents / Issue 108 Welcome to H&H! News • • • •
Xevi Pons to return to WRC in 2010 Meeke and Wilks praise IRC Cuoq wins again in France Tom Cave impresses in Scotland
Welcome to issue 108 of HANDBRAKES & HAIRPINS, your FREE weekly insight into the world of rallying! As always, I hope you enjoy this week’s exciting edition! Yours in Rallying, Evan Rothman
Features • Essentials: Stuff • M-Sport Ford Fiesta S2000
Event Reports • IRC Rally of Scotland • WPRRC Dayco All Tar Rally • CARS Tall Pines Rally
Contact To receive your FREE weekly HANDBRAKES & HAIRPINS e-magazine, or if you’d like to share this with a friend please send me your e-mail address to firstname.lastname@example.org. HANDBRAKES & HAIRPINS is not a SPAM e-mail: email addresses are added to the mailing list voluntarily. All content copyrighted property of HANDBRAKES & HAIRPINS, 2007-9.
Neworsldâ€™s latest rally news the w
The world’s latest rally news SEND YOUR TEAM’S NEWS, PRESS RELEASES OR UPDATES TO EVAN.HHMAG@GMAIL.COM!
Guy Wilks and Kris Meeke give IRC series a ringing endorsement The two top British drivers in the IRC gave a ringing endorsement for the series as a ´fantastic platform´ for competitors and fans at the end of their hard-fought Rally of Scotland performance. “When you win a rally outright there is nothing that can compete with the press you get from that,” said Kris Meeke, the 2009 series winner. “It’s a fantastic platform plus the Super 2000 formula is such that no matter how much budget you throw at the category, one car will never be light years ahead of the other. “You’ve seen throughout the year the battles have been so close. Plus the customers can see that the cars look very similar to the ones in the garage.” Meeke’s rival Guy Wilks, who has represented both Proton and Skoda in the series, echoed his support. “I just think the atmosphere on the IRC events - from the spectators, the drivers and the teams - there is no divide or animosity. “It’s been an awesome atmosphere this weekend and it’s been great to see people turning out and cheering us all on,” added Wilks. - Credit: www.rally-irc.com
Barker, Jagger and Paddon win Rally NZ’s Rising Stars Awards Three of New Zealand’s most promising young rally drivers have the opportunity to take a big step forward in their competitive careers as the recently-selected recipients of this year’s Rally New Zealand Rising Stars awards. Stephen Barker (21, Hamilton), Ben Jagger (20, Whangarei) and Hayden Paddon (22, Geraldine) have won their respective divisions of the Rising Stars driver development programme with each driver receiving professional mentoring and funding worth over $50,000 to invest in their 2010 rally season. “We are very proud to announce Stephen Barker, Ben Jagger and Hayden Paddon as this year’s winners of the three Rising Stars awards,” says Rally New Zealand chairman Chris Carr. “The judges had some tough decisions to select these three as the top competitors in each category, as some of New Zealand’s finest young rally drivers were involved in this year’s Rising Stars shootout.” The three-tier Rising Stars programme comprises the Scholarship for drivers who have not previously contested the full New Zealand Rally Championship (NZRC) in a Group
N car, the Development Award for drivers competing in the production car two-wheel-drive (also called Group N N3) NZRC class and the International Award for drivers competing in the production car four-wheel-drive (or Group N N4) class. During an intense two-day shootout held at Rally Drive New Zealand’s Maramarua Forest headquarters, the three categories of drivers – 15 in total – were assessed on their physical fitness, their ability to interact with media professionally and to attract sponsors, and the likelihood of achieving their longterm career aspirations. The nine Scholarship contestants were also tested on their abilities behind the wheel on a closed gravel road. Hamilton’s Stephen Barker fought off tough competition from his eight fellow finalists to qualify for the top four along with Philip Campbell (23, Tauranga), Jordan Burley (21, Hamilton) and Kevin Laird (Gore, 24). The top four were then put through further interviews and driving assessment before Barker was selected as the second-ever recipient of the Rising Stars Scholarship. Barker now has the opportunity to contest the Group N 2WD category of the 2010 New Zealand Rally Championship in a professionally-prepared Ford Fiesta rally car. Also included in the Scholarship prize package is professional mentoring. “I’m speechless; I really don’t know what to say,” says a jubilant Barker. “I’m really excited about next season now and just can’t wait to get into it as the Rising Stars Scholarship recipient.” The inaugural Development Award went to Ben Jagger edging ahead of the other two high calibre contestants, Patrick Malley (25, South Auckland) and Ben Hunt (21, Nelson). Jagger receives a professional mentoring and funding package worth more than $50,000 to step up to the Group N 4WD category in next year’s NZRC. Reflecting on his success, Jagger says: “This is great, I have never won anything this big before and the Rising Stars Development Award really helps finalise our plans for next year. Absolutely ecstatic.” This season, Jagger has also won the 2WD rally championship title. Hayden Paddon, from Geraldine, took out the inaugural International Award ahead of fellow contenders Kieran Hall (26, Nelson) and Josh Marston (24, Christchurch) to gain the $50,000 prize package he can use to contest an international rally outside New Zealand in 2010. “This is fantastic; it really helps the team for our international campaign in 2010,” says Paddon, who also won the New Zealand rally championship title for the second time this year, and the Asia Pacific Pirelli Star Driver title which provides a Group N car and funding to compete in selected rounds of the 2010 FIA Production World Rally Championship.
THE LATEST NEWS FROM THE WORLD OF RALLYING Featuring European rally championships, British rally championships, Rally America events, international rally results and videos, as well as S2000 and WRC news.
your business HERE.
Reach your audience with advertisements that directly target rally drivers, co-drivers, mechanics and rally enthusiasts. HANDBRAKES & HAIRPINS has proven that not only motorsport-related product advertisements are responded to. For more information or to receive our advertising motivation, please contact Evan at email@example.com and at +2783 452 6892.
“The Rising Stars International Award means we can contest the full Production World Rally Championship, plus look at getting some extra experience in Super 2000 cars,” says Paddon. Carr adds: “We have no doubt that Stephen and Ben will justify the faith of the judges as our Rising Stars Scholarship and Development Award winners. We’re sure that the programme will aid their development as professional young rally drivers and we look forward to seeing their continuing successes on the national stage. With Hayden’s success as our International Award winner, we look forward to seeing him have the opportunity to make a significant impact internationally, just as he has nationally in recent years.” - Credit: www.RallyBuzz.com
Jean-Marie Cuoq wins 2009 Rallye Terre du Vaucluse in France Jean-Marie Cuoq fought from a time penalty he received at the end of Leg 1, to set fastest time on all of the second day stages in his Peugeot 206 WRC and win the 2009 Rallye Terre du Vaucluse. But it was Dominique Bruyneel, in his Subaru Impreza S5 WRC, who had the most to celebrate as his fifth place overall was enough to secure him the French gravel championship title. Newly crowned gravel champion Bruyneel said at the finish: “It was the longest rally of my life. Fortunately there were only 120km of special stages. “We stayed focused throughout so it’s good, I’m happy.” FINAL Rallye Terre du Vaucluse CLASSIFICATION: 01) J-M. Cuoq/P. Duffour (Peugeot 206 WRC) 01hr 24m 46,2s 02) L. Carbonaro/M-E. Choudey (Ford Focus RS WRC 07) + 22s 03) P. Chieusse/P. Guellerin (Peugeot 206 WRC) + 30,5s 04) J. Jacquot/M. Mouvion (Peugeot 207 S2000) + 56,5s 05) D. Bruyneel/J-C. Descamps (Subaru Impreza WRC S5) + 02m 05,3s 06) S. Rode/J. Reichenecker (Mitsubishi Lancer Evo IX) + 02m 41,1s 07) L. Baud/C. Tissot (Mitsubishi Lancer Evo VII) + 03m 26,7s 08) H. Poli/P. Roissac (Mitsubishi Lancer Evo V) + 04m 39,6s 09) G. Bonnefis/O. Fournier (Peugeot 207 RC) + 06m 24s 10) C. Roulet/D. Roulet-Crop (Subaru Impreza WRX STI N11) + 06m 27,7s
- Credit: www.RallyBuzz.com
Romanian team plan to compete in New York Winter Rally 2010 A notable Romanian team of Claudiu David and Mihaela Beldie (www.claudiudavid.ro) in a Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution IX announced their plans to enter the New York Winter Rally 2010 and the subsequent Rally New York events of the 2010 season. The team is the 2004 and 2005 Romanian Champion in N1.6 Trophy. David and Beldie were the surprise of the Production car World Rally Championship at the 2007 Rally Japan. They were fifth in Group N before the last stage of the rally and in the end finished 12th because of technical problems. They started their Production World Rally Championship career at Rally Argentina where they finished 32nd overall, 11th in
Group N. The same year they retired from Rally Wales Great Brittain. David’s and Beldie’s most recent successes are winning Group N and placing 4th overall at 42 Alliantz Rally and a string of first and second places overall and in Group N. They hail from Sinaia, Prahova in Romania. - Credit: Rally New York Media
Pierre Campana aims to end season on high note on Rally du Var Corsican rally driver Pierre Campana is aiming to repeat his category victory at the Sanremo Rally in September on the 55th Rallye du Var this weekend: the eighth and final round of the French Rally Championship. The 24-year-old will once again drive the latest-specification Renault Clio R3 on the event, which gets underway on Friday 27 November and finishes in the evening of Sunday 29 November. His car will be run by the experienced Italian Munaretto team, which took him to victory in Sanremo two months ago. Even though Pierre will be competing in the series for only the second time, he still stands a chance of claiming a final podium place in the West European Clio Trophy. The all-asphalt Rallye du Var, based in the south of France, is one of the iconic events of the French Rally Championship, using similar stages to those of the legendary Monte Carlo Rally. The rally is based in the coastal resort of Sainte Maxime, close to Saint Tropez. Pierre is competing on the fast and technical Var stages for the first time, co-driven as always by Sabrina de Castelli and backed by Yacco, with tyres from BFGoodrich. He will face an extremely strong Renault Clio R3 field on the event, including Renault’s new Formula 1 signing Robert Kubica and former World Rally Championship star Freddy Loix: who finished third overall on the Intercontinental Rally Challenge this year. Leading away the field will be six-time World Rally Champion Sebastien Loeb in a factory Citroen C4 WRC. Pierre hopes to bring his season to an excellent conclusion on the Rallye du Var, having already won in Sanremo and claimed three victories on the French Suzuki Cup this year. The first 23-kilometre stage gets underway on Friday at 14:43. The crews then complete two more stages before returning to parc ferme at 1840. Saturday’s action contains four further stages, while the rally concludes on Sunday at 11:35 after a total of 11 stages. - Credit: Quadra Sports
Peugeot UK has agreed to sign Kris Meeke for IRC series 2010 Peugeot UK has confirmed that it has re-signed Kris Meeke to drive its Peugeot 207 S2000 in next year’s Intercontinental Rally Challenge, accompanied by co-driver Paul Nagle. It was on 15th December 2008 that Peugeot UK first
announced its intention to enter a Peugeot 207 S2000 into the 2009 IRC. Now almost twelve months later, Peugeot has secured its third consecutive IRC Manufacturers’ title and Peugeot UK driver Kris Meeke is the 2009 IRC Drivers’ champion. This year, Peugeot UK’s Peugeot 207 S2000 driven by Kris and co-driver Paul Nagle has covered 2197.73 special stage kms and set fastest times on 42 of the 127 stages it completed. On the way to the title, Kris and Paul have won five rallies out of the nine contested. The continued dominance of the Peugeot 207 S2000 in the IRC is a fitting tribute to the work of its designers, Peugeot Sport and the strengths of the Peugeot 207 road car upon which it is based. Now all attention switches to next year and regaining the titles. Kris and Paul will be together again in their Peugeot UK entered Peugeot 207 S2000 prepared and supported by Kronos and will contest ten of the proposed twelve 2010 IRC rounds. - Credit: Peugeot UK
Tom Cave rounds out 2009 season with impressive result in Scotland Teenage rally driver Tom Cave rounded out his 2009 season with a fantastic result, finishing this weekend’s RAC MSA Rally of Scotland in ninth place overall, second 2WD car and first Ford Fiesta. The 18 year-old drive another considered and mature event amid appalling conditions to bring his Group N Fiesta home through some of the most challenging conditions he has faced. Approaching the event, Tom was somewhat apprehensive of the stages, since he had no experience of gravel roads in Scotland. However, co-driver Craig Parry had competed on the event previously and Tom hoped that Craig’s experience would help. The run-up to the event and most of the two days of action were swamped with heavy rain, which meant that the first day’s stages were completely waterlogged prior to the start of the event. However, despite this, Tom adopted his trademark conservative start, feeling his way into the conditions and the nature of the stages. It proved to be absolutely the right approach. It wasn’t long before the competition, both in the N3 class and the two Fiesta R2s, of Kris Hall and Craig Breen began to suffer. On the first day, Hall suffered a puncture and Breen went off the road and retired from the day, leaving Tom as the front-running Fiesta and third 2WD car. The second day offered the crews slightly better road conditions, as the stages on leg two ran through forestry land that had not seen a rally car for years. While this meant that the base was much more solid, it was still extremely slippery and required lots of care. Tom was aware that with the problems faced by the competition on day one, he was perfectly placed to take the best result of his career if he could stay out of trouble. The first loop of stages in the morning went well for him, with the 33.52Km Loch Ard stage the best he had ever contested.
The final loop of stages was a repeat of the morning’s and went without hitch. However, soon after the start of the final stage, Tom came across the cars ahead of him parked in the middle of the stage, as an earlier runner had gone off and blocked the road. It was subsequently annulled and the following cars were given a notional time which effectively formed the conclusion of the event. Speaking after the finish of the event, Tom said: “Before the event, I would happily have taken 20th place if it was offered to me, so to finish inside the top ten, in ninth overall, is a fantastic way to end the season. I think it demonstrates the progress we have made this year in all areas and I am over the moon. “It has been a very tricky rally, that’s for sure. The conditions have been really bad - among the worst I have seen and we really had to be careful in places, to make sure we didn’t go off or pick up any punctures, like so many others did. But we kept our heads, the car was perfect and we took the best result of our career so far. “It would have been good to finish the second run through Loch Ard - the first time was amazing and I didn’t want it to end but I’m just glad that everyone is OK. “I have to say a huge thank you to the guys from Davies Motorsport Services for all their hard work, both in the run-up to the event and this weekend as well, making sure that the car was spot-on as usual. Also a big thank you to Yokohama for their support this year, with tyres and technical assistance. Once again, they proved excellent this weekend and helped us to get this result.” - Credit: www.RallyBuzz.com
Xevi Pons is signed up to makes a return to WRC in 2010 in a Ford Former Citroen and Subaru factory team driver Xavier ‘Xevi’ Pons will return to the World Rally Championship in 2010, driving a Ford Fiesta S2000 in the new WRC Cup. The Spaniard, 29, is the second big name driver to announce a WRC comeback this month, and will go head to head with former Skoda team driver Janne Tuohino, who will tackle the series in a similar car. Pons will drive for a new team headed by Luis Moya, the former championship winning co-driver who won 24 WRC rallies alongside Carlos Sainz. The team, backed by the Nupel pharmaceutical company, will also run Fiesta S2000s and Fiesta R2s in the Spanish championship. Moya also confirmed that Pons will be co-driven in 2010 by Alex Haro - the man who accompanied him in this year’s Spanish series. - Credit: www.wrc.com
Featnsuigrhteinsto the world of rallying your i
ESSENTIALS: STUFF Stuff you never knew you needed
ORIGINAL Designed and manufactured to take on the toughest tasks you can throw at it, the Original Glove from Mechanix provides a winning combination of versatility and performance. The Clarino Synthetic Leather palm and fingertips extends the life of the glove while the Thermal Plastic Rubber hook and loop cuff closure and two-way stretch Spandex top provides a perfect fit. Available at: ATS-MOTORSPORT.CO.ZA
TEAM ISSUE - LEVEL 1 The Team Issue Carbon-X Level 1 Glove is constructed with a sturdy Carbon-X-lined genuine leather palm. It is backed with a comfortable top layer of fire retardant Carbon-X stretch-knit, shielding your entire hand. The gloveâ€™s wide leather cuff with a hook and loop closure system allows for easy entry and a fit you can trust. Meets or exceeds SFI 3.3/1specifications. Imported Available at: ATS-MOTORSPORT.CO.ZA
M-PACT A tough-as-nails specialty glove for tyre mounting professionals, the M-Pact T/M gives you the whole package and then some. Reinforced at all the critical places including internal foam knuckle padding for protection; double-layer genuine leather on figertips and palm for durability; and an oversized Airprene cuff for easy entry. It doesnâ€™t get any better than this. Available at: ATS-MOTORSPORT.CO.ZA
HOT METAL: M-SPORT FORD FIESTA S2000 Western Priovince Junior Rally Champion 2009
FORD’S NEXT WRC WEAPON
M-Sport and Ford last week officially unveiled their latest project, the Ford Fiesta S2000 rally machine. M-Sport has enjoyed tremendous success with their record-breaking Ford Focus RS WRC car and have applied their expertise and experience to this new specification rally car. With the new World Rally Championship’s sporting regulations stipulating S2000-specification rally machines for 2011 as the official WRC cars, M-Sport and Ford have selected the Fiesta as being the best road car base model for their future rally projects. Those sporting regulations, which place the emphasis on making the competition vehicle as cost effective as possible, have presented new challenges for Christian Loriaux (Technical Director at M-Sport) and his team at M-Sport, all of which have had to be overcome in an extremely short space of time. The experience gained from the development of the recording-breaking Ford Focus RS WRC has been put to good use throughout the project while also adapting certain aspects of the car to fit the new rules. One of the biggest challenges was the size of the Fiesta’s cockpit. Despite rules which allow the maximum width of the car to be 1820mm, 20mm wider than the previous regulations, the passenger compartment of the car is still small. With driver safety paramount, the crew have to be kept as far away from the outside of the car as possible so finding room for the competition seats whilst taking this into account was a real test for the designers.
An advantage of the extra width is that it allows more lateral grip and the Fiesta S2000, the first car to be designed within these new rules, really benefits from that. Stricter definitions of the roll cage geometry have been laid out by the FIA and more basic requirements, like an increase in the size of the tube used to construct the roll cage from 38mm to 50mm, have been included in the compulsory guidelines. M-Sport technical director Christian Loriaux and his team studied 50 different roll cage options, taking into account safety considerations alongside weight distribution and the stiffness of the roll cage to maximise the Fiesta S2000’s handling abilities. The cockpit itself has been designed to maintain the best possible visibility for the crew, who have to sit quite far back in the car. The Fiesta S2000 has been designed in line with the latest FIA safety regulations and will be able to accept the new FIA safety seat design. The car came through its FIA crash test with flying colours; a maximum deflection of 100mm is allowed and the Fiesta passed with just 10mm of deflection. The new car’s suspension is based on the MacPherson strut system, a simpler system than that currently in use on the
BODYSHELL: Unitary construction. Unique composite side panels. Welded T45 steel safety roll cage. Aerodynamic rear wing. Unique front ‘bumper’ treatment.
DIMENSIONS: Length: 3958mm; width: 1820mm; wheelbase: 2489mm; weight: 1200kg minimum.
ENGINE AND TRANSMISSION: Ford 1998cc Pipo built I4 Duratec S2000 engine with 4 cylinders and 16 valves. Bore and stroke are 87mm and 83mm, respectively. Electronics are controlled via a Cosworth engine management system. Engine features a catalytic converter. 280bhp @ 8 000rpm. 260Nm @ 6 500rpm. Permanent four-wheel drive. M-Sport/Xtrac six speed sequential gearbox with AP clutch.
SUSPENSION: Front and rear: MacPherson struts with Reiger external reservoir dampers, three-way adjustable. Fully adjustable fabricated steel links. Front and rear anti-roll bars. Machined aluminium uprights.
WHEELS AND BRAKES: For gravel: 7in x 15in (aluminium) wheels with 650mm tyres. 300mm (front and rear) Brembo ventilated discs. Asphalt: 8in x 18in (magnesium) wheels with 650mm tyres. 335mm (front) Brembo ventilated discs and 300mm rear ventilated discs. Hydraulic handbrake.
Ford Focus RS WRC, but as on the WRC car, the Fiesta uses Reiger shock absorbers. However, new FIA rules which ban ball bearings in the dampers meant that significant research was needed into reducing the friction losses. M-Sport selected Xtrac to supply the transmission system for the car based on their previous experience of S2000 technology with other manufacturers. Engine development has again been restricted by the new regulations but M-Sport have continued to work with French company Pipo on the project. The normally aspirated engine in the Fiesta S2000 uses the same basic two-litre block and cylinder head that was used in the Focus RS WRC. The advantage of an atmospherically aspirated engine is that it fits comfortably under the bonnet of the smaller car. After initial tests in the UK, the car underwent kinematic testing to measure suspension movement and stiffness, at Ford’s proving ground in Lommel, Belgium before a rigorous week of tarmac and gravel testing in France with both Markko Märtin and Matthew Wilson sharing the driving duties. The car has now completed nearly 3,000 km of testing. M-Sport Managing Director Malcolm Wilson said: “Today is a very exciting day for us. This is the first global rally car for Ford and M-Sport, I really believe that we have produced a fantastic rally car and this launch is a big step to seeing it out competing in rallies. It’s the first time in five years that we have been able to offer a Ford rally car that can
STEERING: Power-assisted highratio (12:1) rack and pinion. One and a half turns lock to lock.
challenge for overall victory in national championships across the world. “It is also the culmination of a huge amount of hard work not only by Christian Loriaux and his team, but by everyone who works at M-Sport. We have worked closely with Ford on this project, their best-selling road car, the new Ford Fiesta, has been a perfect base car and its award-winning styling and kinematics together with M-Sport’s expertise will surely make the Fiesta S2000 a huge global success.” M-Sport Technical Director Christian Loriaux said: “It’s a fantastic feeling today to see the car actually launched to the world after all the hard work and testing behind closed doors. Everyone at M-Sport has had to pull together in order to get the Fiesta S2000 finished in such a short period of time and it has been a great team effort to get to this point so quickly. “The design team, led by Anthony Brinkman and Chris Gray, has worked incredibly hard and the fact that we have been able to deliver the car to schedule is down in no small part to the commitment of the entire M-Sport team to the success of the project. We have made a very promising start in testing and I am more than pleased with the performance of the car so far; it will be interesting to see how the real pace of the car compares to the competition.” - Information supplied by M-Sport.
Evenll etvsent previews and reviews the fu
IRC: RACMSA RALLY OF SCOTLAND 19 - 21 November 2009
MEEKE CROWNED KING OF SCOTLAND
The 2009 IRC season reached a rousing finale this weekend on the inaugural RACMSA Rally of Scotland, producing a fitting victory for series champion Kris Meeke in his home event. Starting out from Perth’s historic Scone Palace on Thursday under the most severe rainstorm to have hit Britain in 1000 years and passing through the rugged Scottish landscape to end with a fanfare at Stirling Castle on Saturday, the 1000km event lived up to its billing as the ‘battle of Britain’. This fifth victory of the season for 30-year-old Peugeot UK star Meeke was undoubtedly the sweetest, coming on the majestic Scottish stages in front of a huge home crowd. Showing the speed and flair that had already earned him winner’s laurels in Brazil, the Azores, Ypres and Sanremo; Meeke fought a titanic battle with career-long rival Guy Wilks with the result on a knife-edge before the abandonment of the final stage following
an accident for Scottish national champion David Bogie. With tears in his eyes an emotional Meeke, from Dungannon in Northern Ireland, celebrated the win. The former protégé of Scotland’s late 1995 world rally champion Colin McRae, said: “It’s awesome, absolutely awesome. I’m going to take my time to savour it because I don’t think we’ll ever have another year like this; five victories and two second places in seven IRC rallies. “I have to thank the Kronos team and Peugeot for giving me this opportunity. I’d also like to dedicate this victory to Colin McRae. We’ve worked long and hard for this and it’s an
emotional victory.” Meeke’s co-driver Paul Nagle was also charged with emotion at the end of their champion year. This has been fantastic, not just for Kris and I, but for everyone involved with the Peugeot team,” he said. “We’ve had a fantastic battle with Guy all week, but Kris was brilliant. He was always in the right gear at the right time. This has been the year of our lives and it’s been a credit to everyone at Peugeot ... and the car never missed a beat.” Flagged away from the ceremonial start by Scotland’s first minister Alex Salmond and three-time Formula One world champion Sir Jackie Stewart; Meeke started out by winning the two opening spectator stages around Scone Palace on Thursday night as the epic storm lashed down. On Friday the sun shone as the field headed out into the hills, valleys and forests of Perthshire and the Trossachs and Guy Wilks, marking the first appearance of Skoda UK on the IRC, launched his bid for victory at the wheel of his Fabia S2000. Meeke and Wilks, career-long rivals, put on a swashbuckling display across the dramatic countryside in their patrioticallypainted machines. With two wins apiece on the day’s opening four stages, just five seconds separated them as night fell and the 17km Craigvinean stage beckoned, where Meeke raised his game to a new level to win by 15 seconds despite being hampered by malfunctioning headlights. From that moment on the momentum swung behind the champion. Nevertheless Wilks put in a hugely impressive, crowd-pleasing performance to record Skoda UK’s best-ever international rally result since Stig Blomqvist’s third place on the 1996 RAC Rally. The potent little Fabia, which took three wins on the IRC this year in the hands of works team drivers Jan Kopecky and Juho Hanninen, closed up to within 20 seconds of Meeke at the start of the final 33km stage before Bogie’s crash. “I was under strict orders from the two senior guys from Skoda who came over for the rally to get the car to the finish and not make any mistakes,” said Wilks. “I was happy to follow their instructions and that’s exactly what we did, and we were still able to put Kris under pressure. We didn’t take any risks and we got the car to the finish... and we still finished on the podium.” Third place belonged to local legend Alister McRae at the wheel of his Proton Satria Neo S2000. The youngest member of the McRae rallying dynasty, and former British and Asia-Pacific rally champion, made a 24 hour dash from the Rally China to make the start of Scotland’s first international event for 14 years and used all his experience to keep the promising new Proton in touch with the lead battle. Behind the potent Super 2000 machines came a torrid battle for honours among the turbocharged Group N cars of Ralliart and Subaru which raged throughout the event. Belfast star Jonathan Greer held out to take fourth place despite withering pressure from Scottish national rally champion David Bogie in all-Ralliart battle, while the spectacular Jock Armstrong kept the crowds entertained with his drive to sixth place in his Subaru. Seventh place was taken by one of the real discoveries of the 2009 IRC, Estonian youngster Kaspar Koitla. Driving a Honda Civic with front-wheel drive only, Koitla repeated his overall points-winning performance on this summer’s Rally Russia as well as delivering victory in the 2WD class, ensuring that Honda takes second place in the IRC 2WD manufacturers’ points and taking third in the drivers’ standings. Despite the wild and woolly weather conditions, retirements were few among the fancied runners – although no less disappointing to those who fell out of the battle. Ireland’s Keith Cronin made his first outing in a Super 2000 car with an Abarth Grande Punto and the 2009 British champion had high hopes of
success. After setting the third fastest time on SS1 however he had a sticking handbrake, two punctures and lost 40 minutes with a spin before crashing on Friday. English youngster Adam Gould was awarded the BFGoodrich Drivers’ Team entry in a Kronos-prepared Peugeot 207 S2000 alongside Kris Meeke, and also had a bright start in the deluge at Scone Palace. Once out in the wilds, however, a spin was followed by mechanical problems and retirement came on Friday with a water pump failure. With six registered manufacturers starting the Rally of Scotland and all of them vying for the points positions, the growing level of competitiveness in the IRC was underlined emphatically. As Meeke’s braveheart performance earned him the winner’s laurels in a ceremony in front of the Wallace Memorial, the organisers of the RACMSA Rally of Scotland could reflect on a job well done. “It didn’t end how we wanted but David Bogie and his co-driver Kevin Rae are unhurt at the end of a fantastic weekend for Scottish motor sport,” said Clerk of the Course, Iain Campbell. “The crowds have been huge, passionate and a credit to the sport. To have heard the response of the drivers – with Kris Meeke saying that Loch Ard is the best stage in the world and others comparing us with such a classic event as Finland – is inspiring. “I hope we’ve repaid the faith shown in us through the support of the authorities in Perth and Stirling, from the first minister and all the people of Scotland. But most important of all I think the event is a credit to the army of volunteers and marshals who have been out in all weathers to ensure that the pre-event test, the recce and the event itself has run faultlessly – and that they have all come back in smiling. We couldn’t ask for more.” Scotland’s first minister Alex Salmond, whose government has given its full backing to the RACMSA Rally of Scotland, said: “We think this event is a great investment over three years that we can build up. We’ve got a fantastic rally tradition and we know it well and have a tremendous record. We have fantastic scenery to display to the world, through the media and for all those reasons we are delighted to sponsor the rally.” So ends the 2009 series. In total 54 different drivers from 16 countries have taken points away from the 11 events in the main championship, with a further 33 drivers from nine countries taking points finishes in the IRC 2WD Cup. Kris Meeke follows Frenchman Nicolas Vouilloz, Spain’s Enrique García-Ojeda and Italy’s Giandomenico Basso as overall title winner, with Frenchman Denis Millet the 2009 IRC 2WD Cup winner. The 2010 Intercontinental Rally Challenge begins in just eight weeks time on the world’s most famous event: the Rallye Monte Carlo. Taking place on January 19-23 with 14 hours of live TV, the event will be a curtain-raiser for another thrilling IRC season in which the RACMSA Rally of Scotland is sure to be a focal point for competitors, fans and viewers around the world. - Credit: Rally-IRC.com FINAL IRC Rally of Scotland CLASSIFICATION: 01) K. Meeke/P. Nagle (Peugeot 207 S2000) – 01hr 51m 34,1s 02) G. Wilks/P. Pugh (Skoda Fabia S2000) + 20,7s 03) A. McRae/B. Hayes (Proton Satria Neo S2000) + 03m 8,0s 04) J. Greer/D. Roberts (Ralliart Evo IX) + 05m 42,5s 05) D. Bogie/K. Rae (Ralliart Evo IX) + 06m 24,2s 06) J. Armstrong/K. Riddick (Subaru Impreza) + 08m 21,1s 07) K. Koitla/A. Ots (Honda Civic Type R) + 14m 17,5s 08) E. Boland/M. Morrissey (Ralliart Evo IX) + 15m 9,5s
WPRRC: DAYCO ALL TAR RALLY 02 - 04 November 2009
FINAL THRILLER FOR CAPE RALLY SEASON
In near perfect summer weather, the Dayco All Tar Rally provided thrilling rally action from SS1. Set at Killarney Motorsport Complex in Cape Town, and playing host to the final round of the Western Province Regional Rally Championship, the regular rally crews were to compete against one another and the stopwatch over five stages on Day One and seven on Day Two WRITES PATRICK VERMAAK. IMAGES BY FRANK PEY and PATRICK VERMAAK. Day One: Ettiene du Toit/Patrick Vermaak (Bellfreeze Bavaria Toyota Corolla RXi 1600 S4) headed the leaderboard from as early as SS1. Thorsten Pey/Mark Palmer pushed their Winning Business Solutions/Forsdicks BMW 325i S2 through the five stages to an impressive second place overall at the end of the first day’s competition. The newly-crowned 2009 Junior Western Province Regional Rally Champions, Pey and Palmer were just 32sec adrift of the hard-charging leading pair in the Toyota. Abduraghman Amlay/Yusuf Ganief were strong in second place overall in their Amlay Motorsport Toyota RunX RSi 1800 S4 for much of Day One until a driving error dropped them 28sec behind the BMW entrants. In fourth place overall was the 450bhp Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution IX of Alexander Herbst/Maciej Fabisiewicz who started off the first hand of stages with some caution as they started dialing the right numbers into this sophisticated machine as the day progressed. They won three of the five stages on Day One, but were 24sec behind Amlay/Ganief and 01min 24sec behind the leaders. Derrick Benjamin/Jodie Eadie (Volkswagen Polo S4) proved as reliable as ever in fifth place and were comfortably ahead of Steven White/Garth Ritsch (Team React Mitsubishi Lancer GT1600 S3). Lying in seventh position at the end of Day One of the rally, after thirteen years as scrutineer, it was great to see Jerry Bailey and Brian Hoskins back in their Volkswagen Golf 1400 S1. Try as we might, they are still in the running as nobody could find anything with which they could be excluded from the event! Well done to the newcomers Divan de Goede/Henry Kohne (Toyota Corolla RXi 1600 S3) who kept their noses clean enroute to an impressive eighth overall. The youngsters showed maturity by driving within their limits. Gavin Grierson/Paul van Greunen were ninth in the six-cylinder Nissan Skyline 2.8 GTX S4.
on their Burchmore’s Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution IX exploded off the start of SS3. Kesevan Naidoo/Daniel Blaser ran bearings on their Freightmore Toyota Conquest RSi 1600 S3 on SS1, and the BMW 325i S4 of Clinton and Keenan Sassman dropped a valve on SS1. Andre George/George du Toit lost the clutch on their Toyota Conquest RSi 1600 S3 after the second stage and then broke the gear linkage in SS4. Ashley HaighSmith/Hilton Auffray broke a sideshaft off the start of SS3 and nursed the Team React Toyota Yaris 1300 home only to learn that the team did not have the correct replacement shaft. Ian and Christopher Long annihilated the opposition on SS1 in the Tarmac Terrorist Volkswagen Polo 2.0 but then broke a sideshaft before breaking the gearbox on SS4. Graham Rowe/Nick Kennedy left SS4 with their Volkswagen Polo on a towrope; Dwayne Hepburn/Darren van Greunen lost an argument with the scrutineering bay in their Clubmans Midas Toyota Conquest on SS5; the Opel Astra of Brian and Keagan Hepburn also disappeared on SS5. The Toyota Conquest RSi of Jacques du Plessis/Gary Meyer retired with a blown head gasket after SS1. Day Two: Going into the second day of Dayco All Tar action just one second separated Ettiene du Toit/Patrick Vermaak from the Indy Oil Clubmans Class C Toyota Corolla 2.0 of Dirk Kruger Snr and Jnr. Thorsten Pey/Mark Palmer were on track for a full-house points haul, maintaining second place in the rally car category. Pey/Palmer did have the hard-charging Amlay/Ganief and the exciting Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution IX of Alexander Herbst and Marciej Fabisiewicz to contend with. With only five stages on the Saturday the event was not even halfway and the seven remaining stages on Sunday proved extremely demanding, as well as entertaining, for crews and spectators alike. Neels Rabe did a sterling job of keeping the small crowd informed of the action as commentator on Saturday, and on Sunday it was Justin Hoskins behind the microphone.
Shaun Jones/Craig Gray finished Day One tenth overall in their new Volkswagen Polo TDi 1.9 S4, with Llewellyn Jones/ Christopher Pichon eleventh placed in their SAC Volkswagen Golf IV TDi S4.
Mike Nathan/Derek Jacobs, who blew the gearbox on their Burchmore’s Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution IX on SS3, proved to be worthy 2009 Senior Western Province Regional Rally Champions by winning five stages on Day Two. Sadly, this might well have been the final appearance of the Nathan/ Jacobs Mitsubishi.
Unfortunately, the event had a high attrition rate claiming rally favourites, Mike Nathan and Derek Jacobs when the gearbox
Ettiene du Toit/Patrick Vermaak enjoyed a brilliant run in their Bellfreeze Bavaria Toyota Corolla RXi 1600 S3 to record their
first overall victory in the Western Province Regional Rally Championship. In fact, their victory impressed Bellfreeze Bavaria enough to secure their sponsorship for the fourround All Tar Challenge in 2010. Overall winners in the Gp N2 specification Toyota Corolla was particularly sweet. Thorsten Pey/Mark Palmer achieved a fantastic result by finishing second overall in the rally category, first Junior team home and the first crew in S4 to score a full house on points in the Western Province Rally Championship. Their achievement places them ahead of the Senior Champions in points! Derrick Benjamin/Jody Eadie surprised themselves by finishing fourth overall in their Volkswagen Polo 2.0 S4. Steven White/Garth Ritsch took a fine fifth place overall in the Team React Mitsubishi Lancer GT1600 after another consistent run. Llewellyn Jones/Christopher Pichon finally finished another event in the quick but somewhat fragile SAC Volkswagen Golf IV 2.0 TDi S4. This car must start 2010 as the favourites for the Junior Championship. Seventh overall went to 124 years of experience MSA technical delegate, Jerry Bailey, and WPMC veteran Clerk of the Course, Brian Hoskins, who joined forces (for the first time since 1996) in an A5/S1 Volkswagen Golf Mk1 1400 and managed to bring it home without much damage. Newcomers Divan de Goede/Henry Kohne impressed by finishing a fighting eighth place overall in their Gp N2-spec S3 Toyota Corolla RXi 1600, just a single second behind Bailey/ Hoskins. Shaun Jones and Craig Gray claimed ninth position in their debut rally with the Volkswagen Polo TDi 1.9 S4. Losing turbo bolts and lacking decent brakes had Shaun working hard all day but to finally finish another event must have felt like outright victory; watch this combination in 2010! Gavin Grierson and Paul van Greunen finished the event with both rear tyres worn down to the beading, but they clearly enjoyed their event in the tenth placed S4 Nissan Skyline 2.8GTX. Dirk Kruger Snr and Jnr did a sterling job of chasing after the Bellfreeze Toyota Corolla of Du Toit/Vermaak, and nerver lost touch with the overall leaders. Dominant in the Indy Oil Clubmans category the father and son combination once again proved to be a class act in the Fix-a-Smash Toyota Corolla 2.0. Driving a Volkswagen Motorsport-built Volkswagen Polo tarmac rally car, Gerhard Cloete/Jacques Phyfer were taking things cautiously but as their confidence grew the obvious pace of this car started to show. Give them some time and third place on this event will be forgiven. FINAL WPRRC Dayco All Tar Rally CLASSIFICATION: 01) E. Du Toit/P. Vermaak (Toyota Corolla S3) - 01hr 01m 54s 02) T. Pey/M. Palmer (BMW 325i S4) + 02m 08s 03) A. Herbst/M. Fabisiewicz (Mitsubishi Lancer Evo IX S5) + 03m 27s 04) D. Benjamin/J. Eadie (Volkswagen Polo S4) + 06m 43s 05) S. White/G. Ritsch (Mitsubishi Lancer S3) + 06m 51s 06) L. Jones/C. Pichon (Volkswagen Golf TDi S4) + 08m 34s 07) J. Bailey/B. Hoskins (Volkswagen Golf S1) + 08m 47s 08) D. De Goede/H. Kohne (Toyota Corolla S3) + 08m 48s 09) S. Jones/C. Gray (Volkswagen Polo S4) + 08m 56s 10) G. Grierson/P. Van Greunen (Nissan Skyline S4) + 10m 19s
CARS: TALL PINES RALLY 19 - 21 November 2009
BRITISH SHOWDOWN SET FOR SCOTLAND
In a dramatic season finale, Pat Richard and Alan Ockwell won the Rally of the Tall Pines in Bancroft, Ontario to clinch the 2009 Canadian Rally Championship, presented by Subaru and supported by Yokohama. “It’s fantastic to repeat as champions,” said Richard, who in winning the event, took his fourth overall title. “Now I have to win two more titles and tie the record!” Transmission problems late in the day threatened to put the team out of the event, but the Subaru Impreza STI held up to get the pair into service where a new transmission was installed, allowing the two to continue. With this result, Richard and Ockwell also secured the manufacturer’s title for Subaru Canada. Antoine L’Estage and Nathalie Richard had a heartbreaking event. The two-time Canadian and North American Champions had been leading into the final four stages when clutch problems prevented them from starting the last stage on time. As the pair struggled to get going, competitors passed them on the stage and the team watched not just the event win, but the Canadian Rally Championship title and North American Rally Cup title fall apart in front of them. They eventually got the car going, finishing fifth. “It’s been said that the highs in the this sport are really high, but that it can also be cruel,” said L’Estage, “We definitely felt that today.” Andrew Comrie-Picard and Jeremy Wimpey finished a strong second place in their NOS Mitsubishi EVO X. “We’ve just drove as hard as we could,” said Comrie-Picard. “Our car isn’t as developed as we’d like, so we knew we’d have to make it up in the driving.” For Comrie-Picard, this result secures him the North American Rally Cup driver’s title. Frank and Dan Sprongl were driving the second Subaru Rally Team Canada Impreza STI, finishing third. “We got quicker through the day,” said Frank. “It’s been three years since we’ve
been in a car together, and two years since I have driven on gravel, so it’s been a good weekend.” Two wheel drive competition was well represented, with 16 entries spread over three classes. Michael Hordijk and Jessie Amend were the top two-wheel drive car in their VW TDI Golf, finishing 11th and winning the Group 5 class. Though the pair has rallied in the US, this marks their first event in Canada. Martin Walter and Ferdinand Trauttmansdorf were the second place two wheel drive car in their Nissan 240 SX. The team finished in 13th overall. Third two wheel drive was Peter Kocandrle and Jimmy Brandt in a Suzuki Swift GT. Kocandrle and Brandt finished 14th overall and won the Group 2 class. Matt Barnes and Andrew Wallbank finished 18th, winning the Production Sport class in a Toyota Paseo. The 2009 Two Wheel Drive Championship driver’s title went to Jan Zedril. The Group 2 title went to Jan and Jody Zedril, while Neil and Lorna Wright earned the Production Sport title. Production GT went to Hardy Schmidtke and Adam Vokes. Nathalie Richard won the Ladies Championship, and Nick Mathew was the top novice driver. “We had a record number of entries this year, with 51 cars at the start line,” said rally coordinator Mike Koch. “We had unusually warm conditions, making it great for spectators to watch one of the deepest fields of the year in action.” The Canadian Rally Championship is comprised of six events held nationwide in a season that extends from February to November. The series is presented by Subaru Canada, supported by Yokohama Tire Canada and features contingency programs from Subaru Canada and Mitsubishi Canada. The Canadian Association of Rallysport (CARS) is the official sanctioning body for rallying in Canada. - Credit: TEXT by Carsrally.ca, Tallpinesrally.com and RallyBuzz.com; IMAGES by http://blog.gravitybureau.com/