The EuroRallye Cup that ran successfully for Novas and Corsas in 2004 will be opened up to all makes of front wheel drive cars for 2005. The Cup will continue to run within the 2005 ANCRO Clubman's Rally Championship, which consists of six forestry rallies in England, Scotland and Wales. Promoted by Vauxhall and Proton specialist EuroRallye, the Cup will continue to receive support from leading Vauxhall engine builders Martin Bowyer Developments and Compomotive Motorsport Wheels.
As in 2004 the regulations are very straightforward. The Cup will be open to all makes of front wheel drive cars -- rear wheel drive derivatives are not permitted. Sequential gearboxes and electronics in the gearbox or differentials are not permitted. Eligible cars must retain the original floor pan as supplied by the manufacturer. Full regulations will be available from ANCRO very early in the New Year.
Many of the competitors from 2004 are set to return for 2005. Inaugural EuroRallye Cup winner David Beesley had contemplated retiring at the end of the season but said 'Winning has renewed by enthusiasm for competing. The Cup attracted a great mix of drivers in 2004 and the competition was very strong'.
Suffolk based Irishman Brian McGuinness, who won the Safety Devices Hard Chargers Award in 2004, is also looking forward to returning in 2005. 'I was surprised but delighted to win the Safety Devices Award. Andy (Gwynne) and James (Wozencroft) were the obvious choices but I guess that the judges took in account some of the times we did in the latter part of the season with our 8V engine compared to their 16V versions. I am building a new car for next season.'
ANCRO Chairman John Trevethick welcomed the return of the EuroRallye Cup to the ANCRO series:
'The EuroRallye Cup brought several new faces to the ANCRO Clubman's Championship in 2004. The competition was very strong and Cup competitors dominated the 1400 and 1600 Championship classes. I am sure that Iain will attract more crews in 2005 and they will relish the chance to compete on the Championship's classic gravel stages. The Clubman's Championship continues to go from strength to strength.'
EuroRallye proprietor, Iain Shirlaw, was delighted with the success of the Cup in its first year:
'I did not expect the standard of competition to be so high. For me one of the highlights was Andy Gwynne setting fastest overall clubman stage times on 3 of the 5 stages on the Park Systems Rally. James Wozencroft showed the way to many competitors in more powerful cars in 2004 -- myself included! The initiative to expand the Cup to all makes of front wheel drive car came from the competitors -- it is to their credit that they all wanted greater depth of competition. If we have the same camaraderie between the competitors in 2005 as we had this year we will have another very successful year.'
As in 2004 the prizes will be class based. Compomotive Motorsport Wheels will provide a set of competition alloys for each class winner. Martin Bowyer Developments will provide £250 and a trophy for the first GM car in each class. A panel of judges, who will take car specification into account, will award the EuroRallye Giant Killing Award of £250 and trophy in each class. The EuroRallye Cup will go to the overall winner with trophies for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd in class for driver and co-driver. There will be an award for first Cup driver in class on each event.
The best FIVE scores will count, and competitors will be required to register for the ANCRO Clubman's Rally Championship, where they will be able to score overall and class points. There is no additional registration fee for the EuroRallye Cup.
<pre> The provisional calendar for the 2005 season is: Kall Kwik Rally 20th February 2005 Pickering, Yorkshire Barretts Rally of Kent 20th March 2005 Ashford, Kent Mutiny.com Rally 4th June 2005 Llandrindod Wells, Mid Wales Swansea Bay Clubman Rally 23rd July 2004 Swansea, South Wales Park Systems Rally 10th September 2004 Newton Stewart, South West Scotland Bulldog Clubman Rally 22nd October 2004 Shrewsbury/Welshpool -- Welsh borders