So here we are about to embark on the final round of the 2017 HRCR Hagerty Insurance Clubmans Road Rally Championship, the Devils Own Rally, and it will be the decider for the Drivers. It’s been a totally different series this year with different event winners and championship leaders throughout. I could not have hoped for a better finale.
There are still plenty of overall and class positions to be decided, with at least 3 entries without a nominated navigator, so maybe the folks on the reserves listing will get a run, so don’t give up on the event yet if you are one of them.
Matt Warren can still win the championship as he is only 40 points behind current leader, Howard, and with only two points to drop, so it’s going to be very close, although at the time of writing Howard does not have a navigator!
A good result for James Griffiths could give him third overall and beat Simon Mellings who is not entered.
Ian Canavan is only one point ahead of Roger Bricknell for best Expert navigator, so this will definitely be the deciding event as both crews are entered.
Phil Wood is just three points ahead of Peter Williams in N1, and they are both very close, 15 and 18 points respectively, to current Novice leader, Les Andrew, so it’s all to play for here too.
So who will be the winners, can Matt and Andy dominate once again, and usurp the Woodcock Pickering “family affair” from the top step of the podium. Will Howard Warren find a navigator to make sure he gives Matt a run for his money? Can Paul Crosby pull off a hat trick? Other potential winners are Simon Harris and Matthew Vokes or Thomas and Roger Bricknell, both could upset the apple cart altogether while not forgetting some of the non-championship northern crews with their local knowledge. It will definitely be very interesting, so we’ll just have to wait and see.
The top eleven seeds are
1, Guy Woodcock and Ryan Pickering, M3, Ford Escort
2, Matt Warren and Andy Pullan, M2, Ford Escort
3, Geoff Hall and Paul Bosdet, M1, Mini Cooper S
4, Howard Warren and TBA, M1, Porsche 911
5, Paul Crosby and Matt Fowle, M1, Porsche 356B
6, Simon Harris and Matthew Vokes, M4, VW Golf GTi
7, Graeme Cornthwaite and Ali Procter, M1, Morris Mini
8, Roger Powley and Leigh Powley, M2, TBA
9, Paul Wignall and Mark Appleton, M1 Alfa Romeo Giulietta
10, Dave Leadbetter and Cath Woodman, M2, BMW 2002.
11, James Griffiths and James Howell, M2, Mini 1275GT
Gill will be on duty for the Championship formalities as I’m having a go in the “hard seat” with Andy Simpson. I’ve asked him to fit a Super Oscar reversing light so we can find the slots I miss! I was intending to go a day early and take Gill on a sightseeing tour of the southern lakes but I see from reading the Final Instructions that we will be restricted to our B&B for the day or I’ll risk being put on the naughty step before I start! Although I will be doing a local 12 car on Wednesday evening just to get my brain in gear, well I hope it will!
Finally thank you to Tony North for the selection of pictures from last year’s event.
See you there