TRIBUTES FLOOD IN FOR STOKES

Out­pour­ing af­ter his­toric ral­ly­ing favourite dies

Motor Sport News - - Headline News - By Paul Lawrence

Tributes from across ral­ly­ing have flooded in fol­low­ing the death of David Stokes last week af­ter a year-long bat­tle with can­cer.

Stokes, 68, was the most suc­cess­ful driver in the MSA Bri­tish His­toric Rally Cham­pi­onship with four ti­tles in 2007, 2010, 2011 and 2014, all in Bda-pow­ered Ford Es­cort Mk1s.

When the news of his death was an­nounced on so­cial me­dia, it sparked an un­prece­dented level of sym­pa­thy from driv­ers, co-driv­ers, me­chan­ics, or­gan­is­ers, mar­shals and fans. The com­mon threads were his sense of hu­mour, pas­sion for the sport and de­ter­mi­na­tion to suc­ceed.

Stokes barely missed a round of the BHRC in 12 full sea­sons and was chal­leng­ing for a fifth ti­tle in 2015 when he had to with­draw from the Harry Flat­ters Rally in July with one stage to go. He was too ex­hausted to carry on that day and the full ex­tent of the can­cer was di­ag­nosed shortly af­ter­wards.

In an ex­clu­sive in­ter­view for MN in 2012, Stokes talked about the se­cond part of his ca­reer in his­torics. “Af­ter the ac­ci­dent in Pen­machno, I was 33 and de­cided that my ral­ly­ing was over. But in 2002 I de­cided to wind back from the busi­ness. I still took Mo­tor­ing News and Jimmy Mcrae was do­ing his­torics and I fan­cied a go at it. I en­joy it more this time around.”

MN ex­tends sin­cere sym­pa­thies to his wife Sue, ral­ly­ing brother Andy and the rest of the fam­ily, co-driver Guy Weaver and David’s count­less friends in ral­ly­ing.

Stokes and Weaver’s Mk1 in ’10 Stokes: a pop­u­lar man Stokes’ 1970 Ford Anglia

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