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Rali Bro Ddyfi 2003

Dovey Valley Motor Club

1st/2nd February 2003

Clerk of the Course: Peter Zjalic & Kevin Price

Route: 145 Miles

Maps: 124 125 135 & 136

Starters: 74

Winners: Garry Preston/Mike Sones (Mini 1275 GT)

The Rali Bro Dyfi threw up a surprise result as the Mini l275GT of Garry Preston/Mike Sones took victory ahead of many leading Championship contenders. All bar two crews picked at least one fail during the night, one code board in particular proved difficult to locate.

Rali Bro Ddyfi 2003
Winners: Garry Preston/Mike Sones (Mini 1275 GT)

The Dovey Valley MC organised event was the first round of the North Western, Welsh and West Midlands Road Rally Championship and attracted an entry of 74 crews, including all major title contenders. The rally used a 140 mile route, starting and finishing in Machynlleth.

Garry Preston and Mike Sones were a late entry for the Bro Dyfi but a consistent and accurate pace saw them emerge as the rally leaders on the last section. Their Mini vanquishing more exotic machinery.

The only other crew to finish clear of any fails were another last minute partnership, they were Russell Carson-Brown/Andy Oakes. They had put their Escort RS2000 into a five minute lead at the halfway point, but then dropped nine minutes after an off on the section through Geoff Jones' farm and ended up a minute behind the winners.

Ian Lloyd/Adrian Smart led the field going into the final section but a missed code board cost them dearly, the resultant fail dropped them to twelfth at the Finish.

The fastest crew of the night were Gerwyn Jones/Ceri Davies, they finished the rally with eleven minutes fewer time penalties than the winners, but critically they were one of the crews that missed RCl3. They were classified in third place.

The Code Board Controversy

The Rali Bro Ddyfi ended in controversy as all bar two of the finishers picked up at least one fail. At the centre of the row was the code board at RC13.

Only seven crews found the code board, which was sited on the fast B-road on the north shore of Lake Vrynwy.

Many crews who missed the board claimed that it was sited in a lay-by more than half a mile off plot and that the board was facing into the ditch. This meant that it breached two Blue Book regulations. They therefore pushed for all penalties for that control to be scrubbed.

The organisers however refused to remove the relevant fails. They pointed out that the board was present throughout the passage of competitors, as it was correctly noted by Car 4 and Car 64. In addition, it was collected intact and up right by the closing car.

Although this decision was vigorously queried, no formal protest was made and the results were declared final.

Richie Lewis made a return to road rallying at the wheel of a hired Subaru Impreza, partnered by the experienced Phil Clarke, he finished fourth. They suffered from their low seeding, being delayed after catching slower cars and then queuing at controls.

Huw Evans/Patrick Walsh were looking for their fourth straight win on the rally, however they suffered gearbox problems and also missed two code boards to finish well down the order.

Two former Welsh Champions, Dennis Quinn and Pat Gadsby, paired up together for the first time, but they had a disappointing event. Slowed initally by a HT lead problem, they actually got the code board at RC13, but then got a wrong approach at the tricky PC14 that followed.

Gareth 'Gog' Jones/Carl Williamson were the fastest crew over the first short section through the rhododendron bushes at Dinas Maddwy, but then had the throttle stick open on the run down to Lake Vyrnwy. As a result, they hit a bridge and broke a wheel. They attempted to continue but decided it was too dangerous with the engine stuck at 5000 rpm.

Carl Hawkins/Iain Tullie retired their Nova on the lanes near Dyfriant Forest after a knuckle joint broke. Their problems delayed a number of other crews, these included Grant Parker/Owen Dodd, who were already struggling with wiper failure and throttle response problems.

The Semi-Expert class was won by the Suzuki Swift of Wayne Edwards/Sharon Jarvis, who came home in seventeenth place overall. There were just five starters in the Novice class and Steve Coates/Jon Richardson in their Rover 214 were the only finishers.

Nick Bloxham/Martyn Allen (Peugeot 205 GTi) were caught out by a patch of snow on the run down to Lake Vyrnwy. They hit a wall, the damage putting them out of the event. Dave Watts/Peter Watts, in another 205, were also victims of the same trickey spot. Paul Davies/Phil Ralphs (Ford Escort) got slightly further before hitting a wall on the side of Lake Vyrnwy.

Gary Jones/Dave Pitchford (Toyota Corolla), despite missing RC13, were in eighth place at the fuel halt, but then withdrew after they realised that they booked out of Petrol ten minutes early.

Daniel Sharpe/Allen Hart and Ian Jones/Peter Tomlinson were excluded after the marshal that they had supplied failed to attend their designated controls.


Pos Driver Navigator Car Penalty
1 Garry Preston Mike Sones Mini 1275 GT 14m 31s
2 Russell carson-Brown Andy Oakes Ford Escort RS2000 15m 35s
3 Gerwyn Jones Ceri Davies Ford Escort 1F 3m 02s
4 Richie Lewis Phil Clarke Subaru Impreza 1F 5m 42s
5 Dewi John Michael Evans Peugeot 205 GTi 1F 7m 01s
6 Dylan Parry Dylan Evans Ford Escort 1F 7m 14s
7 John Davies Neil Bevan Vauxhall Nova 1F 9m 04s
8 Elfyn Richards Darren Garrod VW Golf GTi 1F 9m 16s
9 Andy Sheppard Justin Brooks Vauxhall Astra GTE 1F 11m 10s
10 Jason Hardy Alan Jones VW Golf 1F 11m 55s
11 Ian 'Dude' Roberts Ian Furniss VW Golf GTi 1F 12m 10s
12 Ian Lloyd Adrian Smart Toyota Corolla 1F 12m 36s
13 Wayne Morris Paul Middleton Ford Escort 1F 13m 17s
14 Marc James Anthony Davies Ford Sierra 4x4 1F 14m 10s
15 Hefin George Dilwyn John VW Golf GTi 1F 14m 15s
16 Jim Paterson Paul Edwards Subaru Turbo Coupe 1F 14m 39s
17 Wayne Edwards Sharon Jarvis Suzuki Swift 1F 15m 39s
18 Richard Tuckey Steve Herbert Peugeot 106 1F 16m 45s
19 Lee Heywood Mark Hamilton Peugeot 205 GTi 1F 16m 59s
20 Steve Wynn Chris Wynn Ford Escort 1F 17m 30s
21 Alyson Acreman Byron Jones Honda Civic 1F 17m 57s
22 Dave Jones Baz Green Vauxhall Astra GTE 1F 17m 57s
23 Delwyn Price Steve Price Ford EScort 1F 18m 27s
24 Ian Orford Peter Barnard Mazda 323 1F 18m 45s
25 Iwan Williams Gwion Pryderi Fordc Escort 1F 23m 01s
26 Dennis Quinn Pat Gadsby Ford Escort 1F 23m 59s
27 Grant Parker Owen Dodd Toyota Corolla 1F 24m 50s
28 Andrew Matthews Colin Jones Ford Fiesta XR2 1F 35m 17s
29 Huw Evans Patrick Walsh Ford Escort 2F 5m 34s
30 Huw Myfyr Jones Carwyn Evans VW Golf 2F 6m 50s
31 Glyn Price Huw Jones Ford Escort 2F 9m 47s
32 Andrew Davies Shaun O'Gorman Peugeot 205 2F 12m 11s
33 Mal Acott Nigel Roberts Ford Escort 2F 19m 05s
34 Gareth Jones Iwan Jones Vauxhall Astra GTE 2F 20m 25s
35 Stephen Wood Iestyn Leyshon Vauxhall Astra GTE 2F 23m 39s
36 Gwyndaf Evans Paul Roberts Subaru Impreza 2F 26m 43s
37 Islwyn Watkins Alun Probert Vauxhall Astra GTE 2F 30m 38s
38 Gethin Lewis Gwawr Hughes Ford Escort 3F 26m 56s
39 Garry Jenkins Eric Tong Peugeot 205 GTi 3F 32m 05s
40 Steve Coates Jon Richardson Rover 214 3F 35m 29s
41 Peter Cave Glenn Latham Nissan Micra 3F 40m 54s
42 Roger Powley Jon Smith Toyota Corolla 4F 18m 04s
43 Andy Groom Carl Darby Toyota Corolla 5F 34m 53s
44 Merfyn Williams Derwyn Roberts Vauxhall Astra 6F 20m 29s
45 Tony Watkin Medwyn Evans Vauxhall Nova 21F 44m 34s
46 Douglas Bowkett Raymond Davies Peugeot 309 GTi 32F 1h 41m 01s
47 Brian Thomas Huw Mathias Ford Fiesta 33F 30m 28s