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Round 1 – the Tour of Cheshire

Mike and Lorna Harrison together with the Team from the Knutsford + District MC put on an excellent event around the lanes of Cheshire. This event now in its 16th year facilitated two other milestones, for HRCR the start of the 25th season of their Championship and for MotorSport News a chance to re-engage with road rallying after a 32 year absence

Crews were welcomed on Friday evening with a new venue for Scrutineering, Reaseheath College in Nantwich and this superb facility was clean, well organised and much appreciated

Saturday morning saw all the usual banter and map checking going on outside the Bickerton Arms before 2018 Champions Ian Crammond and Matt Vokes led the 80 strong-field away to the 1st Regularity a simple visit and avoid London Map. However, a “cunning plan” in the guise of a black spot handout caught 16 crews within spitting distance of the Start (so we did – spit feathers that is)

There followed 5 Tests at Chowley and the fabulous Bolesworth Estate, Matt Warren/Ryan Pickering clearly deciding to put their Secret Check disappointment behind them taking 10secs out of the field on these tests, during the day they extended their dominance on the Tests to 39secs which when you consider the times for the next 12 cars could be fitted into the next 38secs shows just how much commitment they were putting in

Regularity B (pass the Farms) and Reg C (herringbone) were split by our 1st visit to Oulton Park for 2 tests Matt Warren taking the first but Richard Isherwood and Ian Canavan in their new mount a Golf GTi taking the 2nd by a second from the Vokes’ in their pretty Orange Ginetta G15 sadly during one of the later tests at Oulton, Philip nudged a gate post and knocked a front corner off the car

Lunch followed, I only mention it because as always Knutsford + DMC had gathered the usual legends from Ecurie Cod Fillet and we had the pleasure of being signed out by Mike Wood

Three more Regularities followed D (a jogularity) E (pass thro’ the grid sq as marked) and F (shortest route avoiding Black Spots but passing given grid lines). 4 cars cleaned Reg D, I only point it out because Fred and I were one of them, I’ve never cleaned a Reg before ! Two more Tests at Oulton brought us to the final Regs G (map features) and the “sting in the tail” H (8 pages of tulips rounds Cholmondeley) Ian Crammond and Matt Vokes were the class of the field here losing just 4seconds, how did he do that

At the Finish back at the Bickerton Poacher top honours went to the ever popular Thomas and Roger Bricknell ahead of Ian Crammond/Matt Vokes and Howard Warren/Iain Tullie the top 3 cars being split by 5seconds

The Championship Class battles for Experts went to Clive and Anji Martin and the Novices Drivers to Roy Fildes on his return to rallying and therefore on his 1st Regularity Rally whilst leading Novice Navigator was Norden Lester in the nicely repainted BMW


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The top ten were

1, Thomas Bricknell and Roger Bricknell, E1, VW Golf GTi, 1061

2, Ian Crammond and Matthew Vokes, B1, Mercedes-Benz 280SL, 1063

3, Howard Warren and Iain Tullie, Porsche 911, 1066

4, Darell Staniforth and Nicky Staniforth, B1, Morris Mini Cooper S, 1118

5, Richard Isherwood and Ian Canavan, E1, VW Golf GTi, 1123

6, Martyn Taylor and Amy Henchoz, E1, Vauxhall Astra, 1132

7, Andrew Buzzard and Robb Lyne, C1, Ford Escort, 1205

8, Mark Turner and Gary Evans, D2, Talbot Sunbeam, 1224

9, Clive Martin and Anji Martin, C2, Ford Escort 1600 Sport, 1225

10, Brian Whyte and Elise Whyte, E1, Datsun Stanza, 1239