Bulletin 19 - 15th October 2017

Rob Snowden and Andy Brown, Ford Escort MkII
Rob Snowden and Andy Brown, Ford Escort MkII
Stevie Irwin / Ian Middleton, Vauxhall Nova © Pro-Rally.co.uk

Stevie Irwin / Ian Middleton, Vauxhall Nova © Pro-Rally.co.uk

Time to Walk the Walk.  This coming weekend sees the final qualifying round as our 2017 campaign draws to a close when the Cheviot Stages Rally, run in memory of Keith Knox, takes place.

 

For most of this year, there has been a lot of good natured competition between a couple of drivers in particular that have been near the top of the driver’s table looking for their first title.  Yes the friendly rivalry started on the special stages and slowly moved into the service areas as Rob Snowden and Stevie Irwin battled it out over the opening four events.  Since the end of May when they were the two leaders of the pack, the banter moved onto social media and the whole thing became a source of public interest. And since our last round at the Pendragon, the mind games have gone into overdrive as they wind each other up even more.  However, come 8:30 on Sunday 22nd October and all the talking will stop as the action kicks off on the special stages.

 

Stevie will start the rally seeded at number 31 with the most slender of advantages, a mere one point ahead of Rob.  Both drivers have contested every possible rally so far and our best six scores from nine rounds rule is already in operation.  Rob’s Ford Escort MkII is quicker than Stevie’s 1600cc Vauxhall Nova as indicated by his start number of 15 and the results shown from the recent Tyneside Stages run over the same venue a couple of months ago.  But as the old disclaimer of “past performance is no guarantee of future performance’ goes, it would be a brave man who would place a bet on the orange car coming out ahead of the yellow one again.

 

Across in the co-driver’s table, it’s still all to play for as the maths tell us that any one from six people could take this title.  Firstly and with a ten points gap to his nearest rival, Durham’s Andy Brown looks to be in a good position.  But then there’s five co-drivers covered by just four points so we can expect some changes in the top placings come the end of the Cheviot.

 

The rally is organised jointly by Whickham and Hadrian Motor Clubs and takes place over the challenging Otterburn Military Ranges.  This year competitors will tackle 14 stages covering up to 60 competitive miles and this time the service area be the derelict Redesdale Camp.  For full information about the event, go to official website of http://www.cheviotstages.org.uk/