The organisers of the West Wales Rally Spares R.A.C. Rally Championship have re-affirmed their long-term commitment to cars in the pre ’68 Category One, the oldest cars currently active in stage rallying.
In line with tradition for these cars on gravel rallies, Category One cars contesting the WWRS R.A.C. Championship will run first on the road to ensure they get the best road conditions. This situation has already been confirmed for five of the seven rounds: the Mid Wales, Tour of Hamsterley, Carlisle Stages, Red Kite Stages and Neath Valley Stages. Discussions about the event format for the remaining two rounds, the Rally North Wales and the Trackrod Rally are under way.
Category One cars will continue to be very welcome within the R.A.C. Championship in 2014 and beyond and the category will be sponsored in 2013 by Walker Castings. Although company boss Alan Walker is an Escort Mk2 fan, he is also very keen to see the older cars in action. “Everybody enjoys watching the Category One cars in the forests and they provide tremendous variety,” said Walker. “We want to see them in the R.A.C. Championship for the foreseeable future.”
Two landmark rally cars from Category One celebrate 50th anniversaries in 2013 and both are represented on the R.A.C. Championship for the opening round, the Rally Marketing Mid Wales Stages on Sunday 3 March.
The Lotus Cortina was introduced in 1963 and entered for the opening round is the example of Pete Gunson and Jonny Haynes. This car used to be driven by Pete’s father ‘Pop’ and now, after an extensive rebuild, Pete will swop seats to take over the driving. He’s kept his hand in recently with some more co-driving, including sharing the Porsche 911 of Stephen Radcliffe on Mini Britannia.
Meanwhile, husband and wife crew Chris and Jo Tooze fly the flag for the Hillman Imp range of cars with an entry in their 1967 Singer Chamois. The Monmouthshire crew have been rallying for 20 years and more recently rallied a Mitsubishi Evo 9 with great success. Chris now lists restoring Hillman Imps as one of his hobbies, so rallying one in this 50th anniversary year of the model seems entirely appropriate.
Adding wonderful variety to the Category 1 R.A.C. field is the beautiful Alfa Romeo Junior GT of John Everard and Mark Sharpley, which scored such a good result on last November’s Roger Albert Clark Rally.Classic Rallying, Historic Rally, Rallying