Woodpecker Stages Preview
The Woodpecker Stages (Saturday September 9th) is a firm favourite of many contesting the West Wales Rally Spares HRCR Stage Masters Challenge and a nice collection of historic rally cars and crews can look forward to some classic stages. New for this year is the inclusion of Cwmysgawen and the Ceri which has not been used for a number of years. The event is based again at Ludlow racecourse, a superb facility with ample space.
This weekend sees the reappearance of Gareth James and Steffan Evans in their D5 class Escort RS1800, this pairing are likely to go very well but a lack of seat time might just see them a little rusty to begin with. Peter Jones and Gareth Davies are the other crew in the class but are unlikely to trouble James, they are however generally consistent and are set to bag good Challenge points.
In class D3 Hywel Davies is the lone contender and with co-driver Ian Jones could well clean up with maximum points. Hywel is doing his fourth event in as many weekends so is well tuned in and goes on after this to contest the Three Shires Stages!
Class C3 is where all the action will be but it’s hard to see anyone bothering Jonathan Brace and Paul Spooner in the Brace’s Bread Mk1 Escort RS1600. Andrew Stokes and Johnny Tad Evans will be there if anything goes pear shaped for Brace as will Bob Gibbons and Jon Harris who will be determined to get the new car running sweetly before an attempt on the RAC Rally. All are in Mk1 Escort RS1600s as is Challenge stalwart Jeremy Wells who always seems to enjoy his outings.