"Wozencroft leads the Mutiny parade!" The recent Llandrindod Wells based Mutiny Rally played host to the third round of the 2004 Motorsport Direct Cup. Dry and dusty conditions greeted the crews as they embarked on forty-five miles of special...
"Wozencroft leads the Mutiny parade!"
The recent Llandrindod Wells based Mutiny Rally played host to the third round of the 2004 Motorsport Direct Cup. Dry and dusty conditions greeted the crews as they embarked on forty-five miles of special stages in the forests of Mid Wales.
The first stage of the day, a daunting fourteen miles through Radnor forest, meant they had little chance to ease themselves in. Andy Gwynne, partnered by Holly Robinson, was quickest out of the blocks, stopping the clocks to record a time that placed him eighth overall. Unfortunately, Gwynne would not be eligible for points on this round of the Jemsport PR backed Motorsport Direct Cup. Having suffered engine and gearbox maladies during a pre-event test in his usual Vauxhall Corsa, he was forced to use a virtually standard Peugeot 306 to contest the Mutiny.
David Beesley suffered from a misted windscreen on the first test of the day (Radnor), it didn't appear to hinder his progress and he spent the day locked in a heated battle for 1600cc class honours with Motorsport Direct proprietor, Iain Shirlaw.
The classic Radnor stage is a firm favourite with many drivers. The dauntingly fast section of forest certainly made an impression on Bob Marshall, the Vauxhall Corsa driver arrived at the first service halt asking if he could do the stage again!
Young James Wozencroft had a troubled day in his 1400 16v Vauxhall Nova but still claimed to enjoy the stages on the event. He borrowed a new engine for the rally from series sponsor Martin Bowyer Developments and despite it being a tarmac engine, with characteristics that were not well suited to the Welsh forests, he still claimed maximum championship points with a gritty and determined drive. It was made all the more impressive considering the engine ran for the first time on the Friday before the rally, and he suffered a two punctures on one stage.
After his roll on the Astra Stages rally, Colin Hope had rebuilt his Nova for this event. The new car, using a body shell supplied by Motorsport Direct, was completed in the early hours of Friday morning. Teething problems robbed Hope, co-driven by Nick Patrick, of a clean run on the rally. The final stage of the day proved to be their bogey stage as the car became stuck in third gear, and then developed a miss-fire. They battled on to finish the event 18th overall and fourth in class.
The Cup, also supported by Compomotive Wheels and Safety Devices, remains a closely fought affair, the top four crews are now separated by just seventeen points. David Beesley is the overall leader of the championship with sixty-four points. John Brooks is just five points back in second place and Andy Gwynne is a further nine points back in third. Having missed out on scoring championship points on the Mutiny, he will be keen to get back in his Vauxhall Corsa for the next round. With just three rounds remaining, the 2004 Motorsport Direct Cup looks like going right down to the wire.
Colin Main was unable to contest the event after being injured whilst testing his car. The organisers of the Motorsport Direct Cup, as well as his fellow competitors, wish him a speedy recovery.
The Swansea Bay Rally plays host to round four of the series on July 17th. The South Wales forests, many of which are used on Britain's World Rally Championship round, will provide the Motorsport Direct Cup competitors with a tough test.
The current 2004 Motorsport Direct Cup Championship Positions are as follows:
Overall top 5:
David Beesley 64
John Brooks 59
Andy Gwynne 50
James Wozencroft 47
Colin Hope 34
Class 1 top 3:
John Brooks 39
James Wozencroft 30
Colin Hope 17
Class 2 Top 3:
David Beesley 39
Andy Gwynne 30