JRM continues British Rally Championship campaign in Ulster The JRM Rally team will be back in action this weekend, when it heads to Northern Ireland for the fifth round of the Dulux Trade MSA British Rally Championship, the Antrim-based Rally...
JRM continues British Rally Championship campaign in Ulster
The JRM Rally team will be back in action this weekend, when it heads to Northern Ireland for the fifth round of the Dulux Trade MSA British Rally Championship, the Antrim-based Rally NI - the event previously known as the Ulster Rally.
Leading the JRM charge will be Gwyndaf Evans in one of the team's Group N Mitsubishi Evolution Xs. Currently second in the drivers' standings, Evans will be looking to move a step closer to the title with a good result this weekend.
His main competition will come from 2009 British Champion Keith Cronin, the Subaru driver just two points behind and also having no-scored on one round so far - a significant factor as competitors have to drop one result from the season's six events to calculate their final total. Current series leader Jonny Greer is four points ahead, but having scored on all four rounds so far means that he is likely to be overhauled before the end of the year unless problems befall his rivals.
This weekend will see Evans out to put the record straight. After holding a comfortable lead in the previous round on the Isle of Man, an excursion into a ditch in the slippery conditions meant that he had to fight back to finish second to Cronin, although stage times showed that the JRM driver's pace was enough to win if all had gone well.
Evans will be joined for this event by Phil Pugh. A highly experienced co-driver, Pugh is usually seen alongside twice British Champion Guy Wilks and was previously a team-mate to Evans when they contested the BRC with Mitsubishi in 2007 and 2008.
Bolstering its chances in the team's championship, which it currently leads, Daniel Sigurdarson has entered under the JRM banner once again and will be looking to put his Manx memories behind him when an electrical problem caused his first retirement of the year.
Sigurdarson, with his sister Asta Sigurdardottir, will be returning to the UK having contested the biggest rally of the year in their native Iceland last weekend and, if it had not been for a series of mechanical problems that forced them into second place, they would have easily won the event.
The Rally NI starts from Antrim town centre at 13.15 on Friday and features six timed special stages on closed public roads before the overnight halt. The event restarts at 06.30 on Saturday morning and comprises a further eight stages, with the finish at the busy Junction One Shopping Centre scheduled at 15.35.
"With only two rounds left and the championship so close, it's very important we come away from this event with a good result. To be honest we will be disappointed with anything else, although - as I've always said - that's not an easy task in the British Championship. I enjoy this event and I've had some good results in Northern Ireland in the past, so with the car going as well as it is, I'm sure we can do the job that's need if we don't get any problems."
John Barnes - Team Manager
"This was our first event with Gwyndaf last year and we finished second. We've made some major advances with the development of the car since then and, if the pace on the Isle of Man is anything to go by, I'm confident we'll be back up there challenging for the top positions."
James Rumsey, Team Principal
"Our target is to win this year's British Team's and Driver's titles. Therefore, we need to come away from this event with a good haul of points to put ourselves in a good position for the final round. I'm pleased with the speed of our car, so I'm looking forward to a good event."