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Andrew Turner and Ross Green’s Ford Escort Mk2 made it two wins out of two, as they took the Heart of England Championship victory spoils, on round four of this years championship.

Terry Brown/Angharad Wiliams’ Escort set a cracking pace on stage one over the challenging Epynt ranges, as they tied for the HOE lead with Tony Davies/Ellie Williams’ Darrian.

Turner was third 12 seconds down, with Stefan Morris/Jack Bowen’s a further 19 seconds back in fourth.

But Davies had broken a driveshaft and missed SS2, so it became a duel between Brown and Turner for the lead. After the second stage Brown’s advantage was down to seven seconds, with Morris consolidating third over Connor/Gary Powell’s Citroen Saxo.

Turner’s pursuit continued and after the next run he was just one second off the lead. “I had a cautious start, trying to be fast but consistent and it was Ross’s first time on the notes,” said Turner.

Having started the stage a second down, Turner emerged at the end of SS4 two seconds clear. “I had started losing a few seconds with a clutch problem,” Brown added.

Morris was still a solid third, but had lost some time too on SS3. “We had a rear tyre going down but it was near the end of the stage fortunately,” he explained.

Although Powell was still in fourth, he had Jason/Ceri Evans’ Peugeot 205 Gti closing in, after they had edged out Ryan/Lucy Wilding’s Nova.

But the second stage had claimed both Scott/Yvonne Walton’s Mk1 Escort and Andrew Madeley/Izzie Holman’s Chevette, after they had been sixth and seventh on the opener. Walton had survived a big overshoot, only to suffer alternator failure, while Madeley succumbed to mechanical woes.

Despite Brown’s increasing problems, Turner’s lead didn’t become decisive until stage six, when his rival lost 18 seconds. “We had a slipping axle, it was like having a free diff not working the two wheels together,” he explained.

Morris pulled back five seconds on Brown too, but was still over a minute down in third, while Powell’s problems worsened, as his erstwhile fourth became sixth. “It started on stage two when we broke a pipe as I pulled the handbrake for the Hairpin. Then from SS4 we were on three cylinders and couldn’t fix it,” Powell explained.

Wilding had retaken Evans, but they were split by just two seconds. “We had problems before the rally even started, oil hoses were coming off, I think it was a pressure problem. It wasn’t pulling well in second gear either and I was crunching gears,” said Evans.

Turner continued to push on through the final four stages to take a 39 second victory, “we didn’t back-off, just kept pushing with good pace and no mistakes, plus Ross was tremendous,” said Turner.

“We did well to finish,” Brown added, as he took the points for Class D as the only starter.

Morris was third overall and second in Class C to Turner, “a faultless rally really with a comfortable pace. Jack was so good on the notes that gave me confidence too,” he said.

Despite his ongoing problems, Evans finally shook off Wilding for fourth too. “We are going get the gearbox sorted for the next one,” said the Club Classic winner.

In fifth Wilding topped Class A, while Harry Pinchin/Colin Jenkins’ Class B winning Citroen C2, kept the ailing Powell at bay, both overall and in Class.

“It was one of my first pacenote events and really enjoyed it. On stages seven and eight I was driving blind though, as the intercom failed and I just managed to save it at one corner, after some earlier moments,” said Pinchin.

Seventh and second in Class B was a final send off for Powell, as this was his last rally before an indefinite stay in Australia.

Second in Class A went down the wire, as Thomas/Paul Alderton’s MG ZR managed to draw level with Glyn/Owain Thomas’ Peugeot 106 Rallye with a stage to go.

Alderton finally clinched it with five seconds to spare, while Kay Thompson/Reece Brookes’ Micra came home third in Class and 10th overall, after getting a one minute penalty for early arrival. Without the penalty they would have beaten the Thomas’ on a tie break.

Finally Arjun/Raj Kainth’s Peugeot 205 Rallye joined the retirements after seven stages, while Davies persevered to the end, despite a stage maximum and 15 minute penalty to complete the finishers.
The next round of the Championship is the CARnival Stages at Abingdon on June 9th.


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