Higgins overcomes punctures to take podium 2004 British Rally Champion David Higgins made a successful return to the SG Petch Motorsport team by bringing his TQ.com, Scalextric, AVit tools and Virgin Money supported Mitsubishi Evo IX home in 3rd...
Higgins overcomes punctures to take podium
2004 British Rally Champion David Higgins made a successful return to the SG Petch Motorsport team by bringing his TQ.com, Scalextric, AVit tools and Virgin Money supported Mitsubishi Evo IX home in 3rd overall amongst the Tesco 99 Octane MSA British Rally Championship contenders on the recent Wales Rally GB.
Despite only limited testing with the Hankook shod car David was confident of a good run and despite a cautious start through the opening stage, a very foggy Port Talbot, the Manxman was still 7th quickest. Stage 2 saw him suffer a cruel hand of fate with not 1 but 2 punctures mid stage! I have no idea what happened but suddenly the tyres just exploded and we had to stop and change them!
Despite dropping all this time David, co-driven by Ieuan Thomas, carried on undeterred and despite having no more spare tyres still went 2nd quickest through the final stage of the morning run.
A wrong tyre choice for the afternoon loop did not slow him down as David set a string of top 5 times but was ruing the lost time from Resolfen 1. We dropped nearly 7 minutes this morning so now it's just a case of playing catch up. This event is always a tricky one so it's not over for us just yet!
Minor under steer problems on Saturday morning did little to slow the multiple Group N Champion down but a 'moment' in Stage 9, Halfway, caused him to loose his rhythm for a while. We had a big crash here a few years ago, and nearly did it again in the very same place!
Despite the roads cutting up really badly David was able to avoid the worst of the ruts and he even overcame a sticking throttle to continue his climb up the leader board, ending Day 2 fourth in the BRC.
Day 3 only consisted of 4 stages but they were some of the longest of the entire rally and David set out with his sights on those ahead of him. 2nd quickest on Trawscoed gave an indication of the fight left and also moved him up to within sight of the podium. 3rd quickest on the penultimate stage was then followed up by 2nd fastest on the last stage of the entire rally and David was ecstatic to finish 3rd overall, especially considering the huge time loss on Friday.
What a rally. Loosing all that time on Friday was not part of the plan, but SG Petch Motorsport gave me a brilliant car and I've loved every moment of it. It is ironical that I managed to complete the entire rally without using 'super rally' but if I had I probably would have won this weekend!
-credit: geoff mayes