Monday, 16 July 2018

Nicky Grist Stages 14th July 2018 by Paul Willetts

Husband and wife duo Nigel and Karen Jenkins continued in there quest for 1400 BTRDA championship points with 41st overall and 5th in class in the NJ Autos Vauxhall Nova on last weekends Nicky Grist Stages.

The event a round of both BTRDA and various Welsh championships attracted 113 crews to the Royal Welsh Showground at Builth Wells for what was a blazing hot and dusty day for all competitors who tackled the 8 stages that were on offer, consisting of two loops of 4 tests totaling some 45 miles, including a brand new gravel stage in the Drovers Arms area of the Epynt ranges. 
For Nigel/Karen it was a trouble free day despite the heat and being slowed by dust, they were well pleased to reach the finish with a good haul of points.

Drybrook's  James Dunkley with Colin Jenkins on the notes, were another crew to have a trouble free day in the Dunkley Autos 1400 Vauxhall Corsa, the duo finished 63rd overall and 2nd in class, despite James admitting he didn't get going till the afternoon stages.

Richard Cole / Abi Haycock had another good run in the Cole Contracting Escort RS finishing 53rd and 7th in class to collect more BTRDA points.  

Amongst the retirements were local crews Bob Morgan/ Ade Williams in the Winner Garage Skoda a leaking fuel tank ended there rally at service while lying inside the top 20.Ross Motor Club,s Paul Morris co-drove for Steve Black in the Suzuki Swift, Paul's first event for many months after having a bad cycling accident in Belguim, but a broken engine on stage 6 ended the event for them Sacha Kakad/James Aldridge ended there event when they rolled their Fiesta R5 in stage 4 Another Ross on Wye resident Tim Phelps with Elwyn Manuel alongside went OTL in there Escort RS. Graham Waite/Gill Cotton retired the Toyota Corolla with brake issues on stage 6. 

Matt Edwards / Darren Garrod continued there domination of British rallying with yet another victory in the Swift Group/ M-Sport Fiesta R5 by taking victory by 58 seconds.

Paul Willetts Motorsport Media 

Monday, 25 June 2018

Red Kite Historic & Red Kite Stages 24th June by Paul Willetts

Irishman Paul Barrett with Ross Motor Club's  Will Rogers on the notes scored a superb 2nd overall in there Escort RS1800 after a terrific drive on last Sundays Red Kite Historic Stages the latest round of both Fuchs MSA British Historic and Pirelli Welsh series.

The event has been based in Llandovery for the past 20 years, but this year the rally was moved to its new base in Resolven and used the superb forests of Rheola, Margam and Resolven for the first time.

For Barrett and Rogers the first time pairing were embroiled in a four way ding dong battle for 2nd place from the off but they held on to 2nd by just 9 seconds after 45 miles in dry dusty conditions, and it was Ross garage owner Steve Bennett who with regular co driver Osian Owen in the Bennett Tyres Escort RS1800 who emerged with third place on the final stage taking 4 seconds from Simon Webster to pinch 3rd place by 1 second, in fact just 11 seconds covered 2nd to 5th.

In 7th was regular pairing of Ben Friend/Cliff Simmons in the Allglass Escort RS who yet again thrilled the spectators with yet another thrilling class battle with Stuart Egglestone in his Escort RS, but it was Penrith driver who took the class win by just 7 seconds.

Jason Gardner/Graham Cox in the Brecon View Plumbing Escort RS were after Welsh Historic series points and they took 24th overall & 7th in class maximum Welsh historic points in the class although somewhat fortunate to finish having broken a tooth on the crown wheel, and had to be very careful on the final 9 mile test.

In the National B event it was the pairing of John Collins/John Smart who were in honours with 13th overall & 1st in class in the Opel Manta 2 litre Charles Hopkinson/Gavin Haycock finished 19th & 3rd in class in the Dave Jenkins Motorsport run Escort RS.

Also in the National B event Bob Morgan/Adrian Williams in the Winner Garage Skoda were using the event to test suspension and anti roll bar settings, they caught a car on the opening test but were still 6th fastest, and then sadly the turbo blew on stage two and retirement.

The overall winners of the historic event were Osian Pryce/Dale Furniss in G&M Pryce backed Escort RS1800,they totally dominated with fastest on every stage and took victory by 1 minute 25 seconds in only his second event in a rwd car.
Dylan Davies / Llion Williams took a comfortable victory on the National B rally in their Subaru Impreza.

Paul Willetts Motorsport Media

Thursday, 31 May 2018



Notice of the 49th Annual General Meeting

of the Forest of Dean Motor Club Ltd

To be held on Wednesday 27th June 2018 at 8.00pm, Cinderford Rugby Club


  1. Apologies for absence.
  1. Minutes of the 48th AGM of the Forest of Dean Motor Club Ltd – Held at Cinderford RFC on the 28th June 2017.
  1. Correspondence received.
  1. To receive the report from the Chairman of the Council of the Forest of Dean Motor Club Ltd.
  1. To receive a report from the Membership Secretary. 
  1. To receive and consider the financial statement of the Forest of Dean Motor Club Ltd, for the period November 1st 2016 – October 31st 2017 - Given by the Treasurer
  1. Election of directors of the council.
  1. If in acceptance with the members, re-appoint auditors – ‘Griffiths Marshall’ Chartered Accountants of Lydney Gloucestershire and empower the directors to fix the remuneration with the auditors for this financial year November 1st 2016 to October 31st 2018
  1. Any other business.
  1. Date of next meeting – Provisionally 26th June 2019.

Registration Number: 969557

Tuesday, 29 May 2018

Red Dragon IT Stages by Paul Willetts

Rally debutant 16 year old Luke Watts enjoyed an excellent debut co-driving for his step father Nigel Jenkins in the NJ Autos & Calico Interiors backed Vauxhall Nova on last weekends Red Dragon IT Stages, held on the former WW2 airfield at Down Ampney near Cirencester, but the final result didn't do justice to a superb drive.

The Emcos organised event attracted 60 entries and offered 10 special stages.

The new duo got off to fantastic start lying 17th overall and 1st in class after stage 3,including 10th fastest time in stage 3, but disaster struck on stage 4 a very heavy impact with some straw bales, causing them to take a stage maximum and plummet down the leaderboard to last place overall.

With the damage repaired they rejoined from stage 5,and set 9 fastest times in there class out of the 10 tests and pulled back to 33rd overall & 6th in class.

Luke's mum Karen who spent the day biting her fingers in the service area said." It was a case of what might have been, the impact with the bales was very hard, and took a while to repair, so they had to take a 30 minute stage maximum, but Luke really enjoyed himself and I am proud of him, he did a great job of guiding Nigel around the stages on his first event."

"Its been a fantastic experience to sit with Nige, a real shame we had a stage maximum, but it didn't  spoil a great day, I would like to thank Pauline & Brian Nash of Calico Interiors for the support they gave me it was a lovely gesture" said Luke.
Also out on the event for extra match practice were Andy Stokes/Adrian McNally in the historic spec Escort RS1600 these two using the event for tyre testing finished 14th overall & 6th in class, there next event will be the Carlisle Stages on June 9th in Kielder Forest.

Maureen Lane with Helena Mayall finished 38th & 11th in class in her Escort Mexico.

Paul Willetts Motorsport Media

Thursday, 17 May 2018

Plains Rally by Paul Willetts

Last weekends Plains National Rally saw some local crews walk away with silverware, while others were not quite so successful.

The long standing BTRDA and Welsh championship encounter had experienced serious problems obtaining enough mileage to make the event viable due to poor state of forestry roads, with Dyfi forest totally unusable.
However Knutsford & and District Motor Club had been able to use two stages in the now little used Dyfnant forest with two stages in Gartheniog repeated in the afternoon, interspersed with a midday service halt Dolgellau cattle mart.
117 crews left the picturesque market town of Welshpool for the 40 miles of competitive action on some of the UK's best stages.

It was rallying veterans Bob Morgan & and Ade Williams who came away with top local honour's further developing the new Winner Garage Skoda Fabia finishing 20th overall & and 5th in class, there only issue was loosing the clutch for a few stages, meaning stage starts were difficult.

"More useful mileage today, still bit of work to do on diffs and dampers, and we still need bit more top end speed but its coming together". Said Williams     
For Ben Friend and Cliffy Simmons it was a change of car from the usual Escort to a Fiesta R2,the drive kindly donated by Swift Group MD and well known competitor Peter Smith.
But they didn't get off to a good start, with a bottom arm coming loose on the way to stage one, but from then on the duo had great fun to finish 44th & and 3rd in class
"The suspension on this car is awesome it rides the rough stuff so well, and we had a great time, thanks to Pete Smith for the opportunity" said Simmons   
A new combination of youngsters James Watkins and Dan Sayce in the Rally Marketing Escort, hired from Geoff Jones Motorsport, the new duo had a great day to finish 56th & and 3rd in class.
There was a great battle for local pride and silverware between husband & wife of Nigel & and Karen Jenkins in the NJ Autos Vauxhall Nova, and Richard Cole & and Matt Nicolas in the Cole Contracting 1400 Escort just one second separated them at the finish, the former finishing 64th & and 3rd in class with Cole 65th & and 4th, Jenkins fighting back after a slow start with no 5th gear and selection issues most of the day, admitting to one or two moments to keep Mrs Jenkins on her toes, and being somewhat rusty on the gravel, not having done anything in the forests since November last year, but the afternoon saw him push harder to climb the leader board to finish in the silverware.
Scott Partridge and Bev Mace in the Bullit Polish Subaru Impreza  finished 74th & and 12 in class.
Graham Waite with Gill Cotton calling the notes finished 76th & and 7th in the Toyota Corolla, with the new 2wd regulations coming in from July 1st, we will hopefully see Waite back in a category one historic car,has he was a huge spectators favourite in his old Volvo Amazon which he threw at impossible angles.
Sadly for Group N front runners Tom Naughton & and Will Rogers they had made a good start in the Lancer Evo 9 but sadly a big accident in stage 5 brought there rally to a sudden and dramatic end, sadly Tom broke 2 ribs and Will was left rather sore and car in a bit of a mess.
Matt Edwards & and Darron Garrod continued there recent domination of British rallying with a third victory on the spin in the Swift Group Fiesta R5.
Despite some long delays due to some unforeseen incidents most competitors enjoyed the day.  

Paul Willetts Motorsport Media        

Monday, 30 April 2018

Pirelli International Rally April 2018 by Paul Willetts

This weekend saw 80 crews line up in Carlisle, for round 2 of the FUCHS Lubricants  British Historic Rally championship with a further 46 crews doing the opening round of the Prestone MSA British Rally Championship.
The historic event were offered first usage of the narrow fast tracks of the notorious Kielder Forest, just 4 daunting tests offering 42 miles with the British   championship runners doing a second loop to give them 84 competitive miles.
Ross garage owner Steve Bennett in the Bennett Tyres RS1800 was hoping to put the disappointment of a last stage puncture on the opening round behind him, together with Osian Owen on the notes.
The duo got off to a rather slow start with only 11th fastest on the opening 8 mile test in Pundershaw, next up was 7 miles in Roughside a much better run in here, saw them 5th fastest and they were 8th overall going into the days only service.
Next up was the demanding 16 miles of the Forks stage, it was here that it all went wrong for Bennett when he slide off the road, thankfully a log pile prevented the car dropping down a bank, but 10 minutes were lost extracting the Escort and any hope of a result was gone.
The final stage was 10 miles in Whitesike and Bennett ended the day with 5th quickest time.
But sadly he arrived back at the Finish 36th overall & 16th overall. There was better news for Ben Friend and Cliffy Simmons in the Allglass backed Escort RS1800,the duo who had a ding dong battle with Stuart Egglestone/Brian Hodgson in a similar car on round one.
But after the former lost 20 seconds on the opening test with an altercation with a chicane, and more time with gearbox issues on stage 2 they trailed Egglestone by 14 seconds at service.
However the local crew upped the anti in the afternoon to finish 54 seconds ahead, and score a second class win on the bounce, for Friend and Simmons 7th overall & 2nd in class was still a good result given the persistent gearbox problems.
Andrew Stokes with Adrian McNally on the notes had a trouble free run to finish 20th overall & 4th in class in their Escort RS1600, putting behind them the disappointment of their first stage retirement on the championships opening round.
In the British Rally Championship event, Chepstow based Sacha Kakad moved up from two successful years in the BTRDA series in his Lancer Evo 10,to a new Westbase backed Ford Fiesta R5 Together with co-driver James Aldridge he set consistent top 10 times and held 8th overall going into the last stage where he lost time to rival Laurence Whyte in another Fiesta R5 dropping back to 9th, but a promising start to his campaign.
The Historic rally was won by Paul Barrett/Dai Roberts in an Escort RS1800 with International honours to Matt Edwards/Darron Garrod in the Swift Group/M- Sport backed Fiesta R5 after a three way battle that went to the wire with just 11 seconds covering the top 3 after 84 miles.

Paul Willetts Motorsport Media

Dixies Challenge Rally 29th April 2018 by Paul Willetts

The Forest of Dean Motor Club and Forresters Car Club co promoted last weekends Architexture Architects Dixies Challenge Rally on the daunting Epynt tarmac ranges last Sunday.
The event which was a round of both HRCR Stage Masters and Old Stager series, Welsh Historic and King of Epynt championships also a round of the Minisport Mini Cup, and attracted not only a full but also high quality entry.
80 cars lined up for what turned out to be 10 tests totaling some 43 miles in dry but cold conditions.
The undoubted modern day "King of Epynt" Damian Cole with Jamie Edwards alongside, the Abergavenny driver totally dominated the event with fastest on every stage in the Get Connected Fiesta WRC, and stormed to a convincing victory by 1 minute 20 seconds.
Mini veterans Eric Davis with Russ Joseph on the notes had a difficult day but still came away with 29th overall & 2nd in class in the Dennis Motorsport Mini, on stage 2 he thought his day was done, with no oil pressure, but it turned out to be a split oil cooler which was sorted in service, then issues with rear suspension problems, left the rear end a bit wild over the fast stages.
For Joseph it was a busy weekend co-driving Phil Skipp to 23rd on Saturdays Mira Stages in his Astra.
Alan Marriage/Colin Jenkins in the Dave Jenkins Motorsport run Escort RS, had a trouble free run to 31st overall & 6th in class Ross on Wye duo Jason / Elspeth Watkins finished 43rd & 7th in class in their Peugeot 106 Lisa Chappelle had Ross Motor clubs Mike Jode alongside for the first time, it's was also her first time on both the tarmac ranges, and pace notes, the Brecon youngster had a trouble free day and got quicker has the day went on to finish 50th overall & 5th class in her Citroen Saxo.
It was a somewhat fraught day for Mini Cup front runner Ryan Taylor, with co-driver Hollie Churchill, mechanical issues saw him take 2 stage maximums, but his perseverance paid off with 54th overall & 3rd in class.
Sadly for Cinderford plumber Jason Gardner who had young Dan Petrie on the notes, the Brecon View Plumbing Escort RS1800, engine failure on stage two brought his event to a premature end.
Of the 80 starters, 54 made to the end on what proved an extremely popular event.

Paul Willetts Motorsport Media

Photographs copyright - Chris Huish