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Mel Harries Memorial Rally 2003

Sponsored by Marc's Motors & Sons

Ammanford Motor Club

28th/29th June 2003

Clerk of the Course: Huw Mathias

Route: 125 Miles

Maps: 146 159 & 160

Starters: 75

Winners: Martyn O’Connor/Peter Collins (Vauxhall Astra)

Martyn O’Connor/Peter Collins took victory by the narrowest of margins on Ammanford MC’s Mel Harries Memorial Rally. They finished the event with just twenty-five seconds penalty, this was equalled by John ‘Mk1’ Thomas/Patrick Walsh – the two crews having to be seperated by the furthest clean principal.

Mel Harries Memorial Rally 2003

Both crews dropped twenty-two seconds at ITC5, but Thomas/Walsh were one second slower than O’Connor/Collins at the next control. Thomas/Walsh achieved this result despite damaging the steering after hitting a rock on an early section, and then struggling with clutch problems in the second half.

The rally had a 125 route which used the lanes to the west and north of the organising clubs home town. Despite being a non-championship event there was a capacity seventy-five car entry.

The organisers had planned that the deciding sections would be at the very end of the event, in lanes and tracks to the east of Llandybie. Unfortunately the two vital time controls had been cancelled. Firstly, ITC15 was lost after Car 1, Ceri Richards/Aled Jones, drowned out in a ford and made the correct route impassible. Then a PR objector blocked the track to ITC16.

Gary Jones/Andy Oakes had a clear run to third, while Gordon Thomas/Carl Williamson were delayed by a puncture on a vital section, but recovered to take fourth. Nigel Nelson, navigated by Iestyn ap Daffydd, made a rare outing in the driver’s seat and was rewarded with fifth overall.

Top seeds Ceri Richards/Aled Richards had a miserable rally, losing four minutes in the first half due to a puncture and then getting stuck in the ford in the second. They finished in 16th place.

Dan Holley/Steve Herbert dominated the Semi-Expert class coming home in seventh place overall, well ahead of their nearest rivals. Chris Williams/Brian Thomas were even clearer winners of the Novice class, finishing ten minutes ahead of second in class.

Elgan Jones/Byron Jones (Vauxhall Astra) lost over a minute with a wrong slot and, in such a tight contest, this meant that they finished in 12th place.

There was a big 'moment' for Mike James/Richard Evans (Vauxhall Astra) when they landed heavily after an unespected yump. They lost a wheel and the back window.


Pos Driver Navigator Car Penalty
1 Martyn O'Connor Peter Collins Vauxhall Astra GTE 0m 25s
2 John 'Mk1' Thomas Patrick Walsh Ford Escort 0m 25s
3 Gary Jones Andy Oakes Toyota Corolla 0m 44s
4 Gordon Thomas Carl Williamson Ford Escort 0m 54s
5 Nigel Nelson Iestyn ap Dafydd Vauxhall Astra 1m 13s
6 Robert Wilson Dylan Jenkins Peugeot 205 GTi 1m 15s
7 Dan Holley Steve Herbert Ford Escort RS 1m 16s
8 Alyson Acreman Matthew Maidment Honda Civic 1m 46s
9 Gareth Harries Dalis Ifans Honda Civic 2m 01s
10 Richard James Eurig Davies Vauxhall Astra 2m 03s
11 Mark James Rob Duke Ford Sierra 4x4 2m 08s
12 Elgan Jones Byron Jones Vauxhall Astra GTE 2m 21s
13 John Davies Neil Bevan Vauxhall Nova 2m 28s
14 Roy Thomas Michelle Thomas Peugeot 205 GTi 4m 07s
15 Neal James Eurig Evans Vauxhall Astra GTE 4m 07s
16 Ceri Richards Aled Jones Ford Escort 4m 10s
17 Andrew Thomas Paul Morris Peugeot 205 GTi 4m 20s
18 Darrell George Arwel Thomas Vauxhall Nova 4m 29s
19 Chris Williams Brian Thomas Peugeot 106 5m 45s
20 David Wilmer Mark Powell Ford Escort 6m 33s
21 Alan James Edwin Venville Peugeot 205 GTi 6m 58s
22 Dafydd Walters Ian Nicholls Ford Escort Van 8m 30s
23 Bruce Charles Stephen Jancziak Ford Escort 8m 37s
24 Ceri Jones Edrian Monk Ford Escort 9m 43s
25 Mike James Richard Evans Vauxhall Astra GTE 9m 52s
26 Clive Davies Trevor Davies Toyota Corolla FWD 10m 37s
27 Mark Coleman Christian Male Ford Escort 13m 20s
28 Mark Reardon Fiona Reardon Vauxhall Corsa SRi 13m 57s
29 Aled Evans Martin Richards Vauxhall Nova 15m 34s
30 Peter Smith Paul Seabourne Ford Escort 15m 56s
31 Max Jones Anthony Powell Ford Capri 18m 06s
32 Barry John Seyyan John Ford Escort 23m 38s
33 Paul Davies Steven Hicks Vauxhall Nova GTE 24m 38s
34 Alun Cole Euros Lloyd Ford Escort Mexico 28m 29s
35 Robert Price Lionel Plant Vauxhall Astra GTE 32m 14s
36 Paul Roberts Anthony Lemon Vauxhall Astra 33m 42s
37 Simon Griffiths Paul Jennings Vauxhall Nova GTE 46m 47s
38 Sterling Jenkins Wayne Owen Vauxhall Nova 49m 04s
39 Ian Evans Christopher Saunders Vauxhall Astra SRi 50m 40s
40 Scot Gregory Ben Murray VW Golf 61m 51s
41 Alan Hands Melanie Hands Vauxhall Chevette 1F 1m 23s
42 Dyfrig Evans Noel John Peugeot 205 GTi 1F 26m 06s
43 Gareth Davies Thomas Blair Vauxhall Nova 1F 38m 42s
44 Paul Davies Martin Curzon Daihatsu Applause 1F 67m 19s
45 Jonathan Oliver D Morris Peugeot 309 GTi 2F 16m 58s
46 Robert Brown Alexander Reilly Peugeot 309 GTi 2F 47m 19s
47 Steven Price Alan Roberts Ford Escort 3F 31m 51s
48 Chris Lewis Chris Williams Vauxhall Astra GTE 5F 33m 41s
49 Jayson Francis Roger Davies Toyota Celica GT 6F 33m 08s
50 Howell Wyn Christie Sandra Powell Ford Escort 33F 58m 11s