Furze­lands net an­other rally win in Ox­ford­shire

Motor Sport News - - Erc: Azores Rallye - By Ian Har­den

Or­gan­iser: Sut­ton and Cheam MC/ Farnborough DMC/ Craven MC When: June 5 Where: Dal­ton Bar­racks, Abing­don, Ox­ford­shire Cham­pi­onships: ASWMC, ACSMC, ASEMC/AEMC, Cotswold MSG, Heart of Eng­land Stages: eight Starters: 100

Steve and Yvonne Furze­land took their Subaru Im­preza WRC to a third con­sec­u­tive Abing­don Car-ni­val Rally vic­tory, over­com­ing a first-stage turbo pipe prob­lem to chase down early lead­ers Paul King/ali­cia Miles (Ford Es­cort Mk2). They then set four con­sec­u­tive fastest stage times to pull away, beat­ing King by 1m11s. Graeme Bell/ Russ Rad­ford (Pro­ton Sa­tria) fin­ished third, 17s down.

In sunny, hot con­di­tions that cre­ated me­chan­i­cal prob­lems for many crews, King set the early pace, chased by Paul Di­a­mond/ Steve Cox (Es­cort). Third place was closely dis­puted by Paul Kirt­ley/david Jones (Im­preza) and the Es­corts of Alis­tair Tough/ Dee Ad­di­son and Stu­art Hodg­son/ Tony Jones.

Furze­land lay 13th af­ter SS1 but with the loose turbo pipe fixed he in­creased pace, tak­ing the lead on stage four and never los­ing it there­after. His good for­tune con­trasted with Kirt­ley, whose clutch broke on SS2, and Di­a­mond who picked up a stage max­i­mum and dropped out of the top 20.

The bat­tle for sec­ond and third stayed tight all day: King and Bell’s con­sis­tent ap­proach to the con­di­tions paid div­i­dends as they held all­com­ers at bay, ben­e­fit­ting from the re­tire­ments of Hodg­son and Tough whose en­gines blew on stages five and seven re­spec­tively. This el­e­vated Chris Rooney/sam Du­croq to fourth. The Pro­ton Com­pact crew sur­vived a fi­nal stage spin and stall to stay ahead of Steve Retch­less/sasha He­riot, with Ron Allen/derek Le Bailly sixth. Both crews drove Es­corts.

Furze­lands are in good form

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