Tragic end to close first Cup encounter Andy Gwynne and Holly Robinson got their 2004 Motorsport Direct Cup campaign to a flying start by taking the win on a tragically shortened Kall Kwik National Rally, the opening round of the Kumho Clubman...
Tragic end to close first Cup encounter
Andy Gwynne and Holly Robinson got their 2004 Motorsport Direct Cup campaign to a flying start by taking the win on a tragically shortened Kall Kwik National Rally, the opening round of the Kumho Clubman Rally Championship held last weekend.
The 2003 Kumho National Super 1600 Champions were hassled all the way by rising young star James Wozencroft who finished just four seconds behind the Corsa mounted pair in his Nova 1400.
The all new series was making its debut within the Kumho Clubman Championship, and had attracted 10 Vauxhall Novas and Corsas to the Yorkshire forests to battle it out for a number of prizes and incentives put together by Motorsport Direct proprietor Iain Shirlaw. The new series has already attracted support from leading motorsport suppliers Safety Devices, Martin Bowyer Developments, Compomotive Wheels, and Kumho Tyres.
Once the action had commenced, it was Andy Gwynne who set the pace on the opening stage as the formbook predicted. On the second stage however, luck deserted the Gloucester man when the connector lead off the ECU worked loose, causing the engine to shut down. Over a minute was lost as Gwynne frantically searched to cure the problem before continuing.
Rapid 18 year old Wozencroft seized the opportunity to take over the lead of the Cup and increased the lead to over twenty seconds from the chasing pack by stage four. The Herefordshire youngster admitting that he was struggling to find the right braking points and also struggling to find much grip in the snowy and muddy conditions. Despite that, it was an impressive performance from the youngster.
Scottish invader Colin Main was also performing well in his Nova 1400. Main was finding the stages to be very fast and admitted to suffering from two stalls on hairpins that were being cut up from the cars in front. A small suspension problem was also giving Main cause for concern as he looked to have a clean run for the remainder of the days stages.
Corsa Maxi man Dave Beesley was another driver performing well on the day. Beesley finding plenty of grip on the stages and also finding that the organiser supplied route notes for the stages were working extremely well. His Corsa was performing well on the long fast straights as he held down a solid third overall in the Cup through the day.
John Brooks was another Corsa driver who was doing well on the leaderboard. Brooks surviving a major scare on the second stage when the car slid sideways, but after that scare John kept the Corsa going until the end and finished in a fine fourth overall.
Irishman Brian McGuinness was struggling in his Vauxhall Nova. Despite finding the stages to his liking, the Suffolk based driver was suffering from a serious oil leak and intercom problems. A cure for the oil leak was found at service and Brian was happy to have made it to the end.
Manxmen Richard and Paul Curphey found their tyres to be completely useless in the stages. A brand new gearbox had been fitted to their Nova just days before the event, but the new 'box was working well as they suffered a relatively trouble free day. Colin Hope was having an eventful day, somehow managing without a service crew and more worryingly -- a lack of front brakes. The handbrake was working though according to Colin! Finally Bob Marshall recovered from a cautious start early on to have a trouble free run to the finish.
At the front end of the leaderboard, it was a close run thing between both Gwynne and Wozencroft. James had an overshoot and a major sideways moment on the last stage of the day, as Gwynne sneaked past to win by just four seconds on the day. Both Gwynne and Wozencroft took maximum points and class wins in the 1400 and 1600 classes respectively at a subdued finish in Pickering.
The next round of the Motorsport Direct Cup takes place on the Astra Stages Clubman Rally on April 3rd. <pre> Final Results -- Motorsport Direct Cup on the Kall Kwik National Rally.
1. Andy Gwynne/Holly Robinson Vauxhall Corsa 41:24 2. James Wozencroft/Andrew Constantine Vauxhall Nova 41:28 3. David Beesley/Derrick Ramsdall Vauxhall Corsa Maxi 42:07 4. John Brooks/Phil Harvey Vauxhall Corsa 42:48 5. Colin Main/George Myatt Vauxhall Nova 43:05 6. Brian McGuiness/Mark Garner Vauxhall Nova 44:00 7. Richard Curphey/Paul Curphey Vauxhall Nova Sport 44:31 8. Colin Hope/Nick Patrick Vauxhall Nova 44:53 9. Bob Marshall/Richard Hage Vauxhall Corsa Gsi 46:48