Motor Sport News - - Rally Reports - By Peter Scherer

Or­gan­iser: Bor­der MC When: April 10 Where: Cad­well Park, Lincs Cham­pi­onships: Motorsport News Cir­cuit Rally Cham­pi­onship, ANCC Stages: 8 Starters: 81

David and Alice Tinn spent the first five stages chas­ing Ash­ley Field/jan­ice Moore’s Dar­rian, but a bro­ken drive­shaft put Field on the side­lines and handed vic­tory to the Tinns’ Pro­ton.

Field had started the day at a ter­rific pace, look­ing for a sec­ond con­sec­u­tive win in the Motorsport NEWS/MSVR Cir­cuit Rally Cham­pi­onship to con­sol­i­date his lead in the se­ries.

“I was just on it from the start,” he said af­ter tak­ing nine sec­onds out of Tinn on the open­ing stage.

Graeme Bell/russ Rad­ford’s Pro­ton had started well too and en­tered into a duel for third with Andy Fen­wick/chris Lawrence’s sim­i­lar car. Fen­wick had the edge af­ter stage two, but Bell re­tal­i­ated and claimed it back on the next run. But af­ter Bell touched a bank, spun and stalled on stage five, he lost 30 sec­onds and left Fen­wick clear in third.

The fan­cied Ford Es­cort of Paul Swift/ Carl Wil­liamson was an early re­tire­ment, af­ter they hit the first chi­cane on stage one and broke a balljoint.

Field had built his lead up to 22 sec­onds af­ter three stages, but Tinn held the gap on stage four af­ter the lead­ing Dar­rian broke a rose­joint at the end of the stage. He more than made up for any de­lay by in­creas­ing his ad­van­tage on the fifth stage to 50s. “It had all been go­ing so well then we came down a nar­row track, I changed down and we lost drive, a shaft had bro­ken,” Field ex­plained af­ter the is­sue on SS6.

Tinn was into the lead but it was James Shar­rock/stu­art Faulds’ Es­cort that moved into sec­ond place, 35 sec­onds off the lead but now two sec­onds up on third-placed Fen­wick.

“Ash­ley had been in a class of his own and the dry weather and tight stages didn’t suit our car re­ally,” said Tinn. “But it ran per­fectly and, apart from tyres and fuel, we never touched it all day,” he added af­ter cruis­ing through to win by 40 sec­onds.

Fol­low­ing Field’s re­tire­ment Shar­rock was able to con­sol­i­date sec­ond and took the Class D spoils and now heads the cham­pi­onship with one round re­main­ing. Bell con­tin­ued to chip away at Fen­wick’s ad­van­tage but still they held sta­tion in third and fourth.

11 Mike Bayliss/ Craig Sharpe-simkiss (BMW Com­pact); 12 Nigel Mum­mery/ Fiona Scar­rett (Ford Fo­cus WRC05); 13 John Grif­fiths/ Nigel Wet­ton (Im­preza); 14 Andy Bird/ Plug Pul­leyn (Vaux­hall Chevette); 15 Dave Roberts/ Dave Owen (Es­cort Mk2); 16 Matt Tar­butt/joff Haigh (Im­preza); 17 Mike Tay­lor/ Martin Haggett (Sun­beam Lo­tus); 18 Alex Can­non/ Ray Keith (Im­preza); 19 John Mcdowall/ Robert Pat­ti­son (Es­cort Mk2); 20 Justin Lawson/ Paul Har­g­reaves (Vaux­hall Nova). Class win­ners Lawson/ Har­g­reaves; Paul Sheard/ Steve Hall­mark (Mazda MX-5); Gilks/ Boyns; Shar­rock/ Faulds.

On their first visit to Cad­well Park, John In­dri/ian Jones’ Fi­esta R5 fin­ished strongly. They climbed from 10th on stage two to com­plete the top five, only four sec­onds down on Bell. “I just lost too much time on the open­ing stages, but got quicker af­ter Dave Tinn gave us ad­vice on lines etc, which helped us a lot. We started as one of the slow­est and fin­ished one of the quick­est,” he said af­ter top­ping the con­clud­ing stage.

Peter Stephen­son/patrick Walsh’s Subaru had been fifth early on, but lost time on the tight stage five and dropped to eighth, with Steve Quigley/tom Hitch­ings’ Re­nault Clio suf­fer­ing sim­i­larly. Craig Pen­ning­ton/wayne Pri­est’s Mit­subishi E4 there­fore held sixth over the last three stages.

Stu­art Gilks/michael Boyns’ Sun­beam, Stephen­son, Quigley and Mike English/andy Robin­son’s Es­cort rounded off the top 10.

Justin Lawson/paul Har­g­reaves took a sec­ond Class A win in a row in their Vaux­hall Nova af­ter tak­ing the lead from Joe Cun­ning­ham and Marc Fowler on stage three. He also won a set of Miche­lins. Alex Mill/ryan Watkins’ Nis­san Mi­cra was third af­ter Ken Sturdy/richard Wood’s Nova broke an en­gine mount on stage four.

Paul Sheard/steve Hall­mark’s Mazda MX-5 was never headed in Class B, with John Marshall/kari Bates’ MG ZR and Matt Wood/pete Ket­tle’s Vaux­hall Corsa sec­ond and third all day.

Class C re­mained Steve Quigley/ Tom Hutch­ings’ do­main un­til their Clio was over­come by Gilks/boyns’ Sun­beam from stage five, with English/ Robin­son’s Es­cort third.

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