The quintessential Yorkshire market square of Malton was MTC 1 for the third running of the White Rose Classic, the 6th round of the MSN Historic Road Rally Championship.
46 cars got started under grey but dry skies to compete in a packed day both on and off road that would include hill climbs, forest tracks, farmyards and radar sites to name just a few. Only two regularities had been given out the night before so Reg 1 was a descriptive Jogularity that gave the Navs just the short transit to the start a chance to get their heads round. Then it was onto the first test of the day at Wilton Farm where well over half the field managed to hit the bogey time of 36 seconds! However test finish was the start of Reg 2 so you had to be quick with the clocks. Tulips and all roads were the order of the day here with 9 speed changes to contend with. Car 1 Matt Warren and Andy Pullan in a Ford escort started to show why they had that number with just 10 seconds of penalties across the Reg.
Car 1 Matt Warren and Andy Pullan. Photo By kind permission of LL-Photography
Reg 3 was a mix of forest tracks and tarmac in Wykeham Forest with one code board snuck in around a tight left hand uphill bend. That caught out 14 cars and ruined their chances of a top ten position. Then it was on to coffee for a time card collection and some glum faces when reality struck home.
Then it was straight into test 2,3 and 4 at Wykham Farms. Loose gravel, stop astrides, codeboards and reversing were the order of the day but the fast tracks meant that some very impressive times were achieved. As usual John Haygarth and Rob Hargreaves in a Opel Kadett Rallye won two out of three with Warren and Pullan winning the third. Reg 4 managed to get the grey matter going again as the speed changes required some interesting calculations to identify their locations. A 4 second error saw Rob and Amy Henchoz win that Reg in a Volvo PV544 but car 1 wasn’t far behind. Just 1 more test on the Sledmere estate then we could break for food. John Ruddock with Roger Burkhill alongside proved the fastest on this occasion in a Ford Escort Mexico .
A very exclusive car park awaited outside Sledmere House and lunch was served in the orangery with views overlooking the deer park. Results at this stage were a little slow coming in so know real hint of who was leading but there was the usual mix of glum and cheerful dispositions at lunch. Test 6 back out around the deer park then beckoned with a mixture of mud and loose stones providing a rather slippery surface to contend with. Also cone E hidden in the woods provided an extra challenge as the 360 that was required was very tight indeed. However it didn’t seem to cause too many problems for Matt Warren and Andy Pullan who did it a whopping 29 seconds ahead of John Haygarth and Rob Hargreaves in second. Test 7 was more of the same with a nasty stop astride going downhill and a reversing section. Still 9 cars made the bogey of 2minutes and 48 seconds. Reg 5, issued at coffee in, was a 22 minute event with just 2 IRTCs and then onto a tuliped hillclimb Reg on rough tracks with a passage check thrown in to the mix. Just two cars managed to achieve nil penalties on that one.
Rob and Amy Henchoz Achieved an Excellent 4th Overall. Photo by kind permission of LL Photography
Onwards then to RAF Staxton Wold, an early warning remote radar head. Three tight tests around the car parks and tracks gave those with the more manoeuvrable cars a chance to shine. Three winners at this location with John Ruddock/Roger Burkhill, John Haygarth/Rob Hargreaves and Matt Warren/Andy Pullan taking one apiece.
Reg 7 was curiously called The Big One! 6 Irtcs and 12 speed changes combined with a 5 part plot and bash that had to be done on route to the first turn explained why. Again more impressive times but a missed control by Haygarth/Hargreaves put them out of contention.
The penultimate Reg saw Championship contender Richard Isherwood with Henry Carr as Nav pick up just a 1 second penalty. A transport section followed to secret test 11. I still don’t know why it was secret but the bogey of 2.48 minutes wasn’t troubled however the missed control hadn’t put the Opel Kadett Rallye team of Haygarth/Hargreaves off as they posted the fastest time of 3.05.
One more Reg and it would all be over. Reg 9 was issued after the hillclimb so more plotting on the move for the navs. No respite from the speed changes either with a further 9 to contend with before retiring to the indoor bowls club at Malton for liquid and solid refreshment.
To the results: In first place with a penalty of just 1minute and 23 seconds over 9 regularities was Matt Warren and Andy Pullan. Second and Championship contender Richard Isherwood with Henry Carr and third, it’s that Volvo again, Harvey Steele and Martin Pitt who were also first Experts. Second Expert and 8th overall was Roger Fildes/Seren Whyte and first Championship Novice were Martin Oglesby and John Parker in the white and yellow Opel Kadett Rallye.
A tough rally with only the very best getting away without a codeboard, stop astride or control error. However very enjoyable and with plenty of variety it was well worth the trip up from “down South”. Let’s hope its back for a fourth time next year.
|1||1||Matt Warren and Andy Pullan||Ford Escort RS 2000|
|2||6||Richard Isherwood and Henry Carr||VW Golf GTI|
|3||10||Harvey Steele and Martin Pitt||Volvo 144|
|4||7||Rob and Amy Henchoz||Volvo PV544|
|5||16||Andre Scruton and John Youd||Porsche 911|
|6||14||Andrew Johnson and David Taylor||Lancia Fulvia|
|7||12||Pete Dalton and Paul Bosdet||Ford Lotus Cortina Mk2|
|8||17||Roger Fildes and Seren Whyte||MGB|
|9||3||Thomas and Roger Bricknell||VW Golf GTI Mk1|
|10||20||Hugh Garnish and David Bell||Peugeot 205 GT|
A full list of results can be found on the Tyneside Computer Services Website