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Suzanne Crowley Memorial Rally 1996

Sponsored by Williams & Sons (Haulage)

Barcud Motor Club

3rd/4th August 1996

Clerk of the Course: Dafydd Edwards & Roddy Daniels

Route: 142 Miles

Maps: 135 & 146

Starters: 73

Winners: Elgan Jones/Deian Rees (Vauxhall Astra)

Elgan Jones/Deian Rees took an impressive victory in their Astra on Barcud MC's Suzanne Crowley Memorial Rally; this was the second year in succession that Rees had taken first place after navigating Hefin Lewis to the winner's spot in 1995. The only real challenge came from the Welsh Border CC Sunbeam of Richard Roe/Chris Ware, who might have run the winner's close if they hadn't retraced their route at one point to try and find a non-existent code board.

Suzanne Crowley Memorial Rally 1996

The event, a round of the North Western Championship, attracted an entry of 73 cars. It was based in Tregaron and took in the familiar maze of lanes in central Ceredigion. The 140 mile route was split into ten sections.

The first five sections circled Llanafan Forest before heading back towards Tregaron and the first petrol halt. However the fifty competitive miles wasn't enough to catch out nine crews who managed to remain penalty free. However the pace was sufficient to cause Roe/Ware to have a minor off early on, which they survived with only superficial damage. Also in trouble were Clive Greves/John Hands, they also suffered a slight moment on a freshly tarmaced triangle which rearranged the lights on their Chevette, they were to eventually finish 8th overall.

The most striking feature of this segment was the fact that fifteen crews were excluded for giveway infringements on the very first section. These include three of the leading challengers in the North Western Championship, Nigel Thomas/Phil Stocking, Stephen Edwards/Paul Jones and Ian Lloyd/Chris Read. The main beneficiary of this was Paul Holmberg, seeded with Maurice Leech at No.3. They completed the event in sixth place, which substantially increased Holmberg's championship lead. However it had been a fraught rally as they struggled with a throttle cable that seemed stuck at full open for most of the night.

The second segment of the rally started with two comparatively straight forward tests, however these led crews to the tie breaker section, this was a 25 mile sector split by three intermediate time controls, the first of which was timed to the second. The route took in the complex series of lanes around Trefenter, and was defined not only by controls but by blackspots as well. This may have been enough to force all crews to drop time, however the organisers had repeated a device they had used last year, namely a route card which had a list of map references and then a separate list of controls.

Jones/Rees arrived at the first ITC having dropped only one minute, this was six minutes faster than any other crew. Roe/Ware would have been closer but dropped three minutes as they retraced their steps attempting to find a non-existent code board, the seven minutes dropped to the ITC were their only penalties of the night. Jones/Rees dropped a further three minutes later in the same section, but that was their final total, giving them an impressive victory margin.

Third was taken by David James/Sarah Preece, this was despite a problematic night. The throttle cable had broken on their 1300 Escort just prior to the second petrol halt and they had to complete the event using a emergency hand controlled throttle. In addition James did the whole rally unaware that he had a broken hand! He had hurt it in an incident on the previous week's Classic Lanes Rally and thought it was only sprained.

The rally proved a tough test for the Semi-Expert crews, the class was won by Gethin Lewis/Aled Jones with a total of three fails, however this was two fails less than their nearest rival. The novices were aided by a shorter route and a straight forward route card on the tie breaker section and their award went to Gwynfor and Rob Jones, the fastest of only three finishers.


Pos Driver Navigator Car Penalty
1 Elgan Jones Deian Rees Vauxhall Astra 4m 00s
2 Richard Row Chris Ware Talbot Sunbeam 7m 00s
3 Dave James Sarah Preece Ford Escort 15m 14s
4 Simon Stock Patrick Walsh Ford Sierra 15m 47s
5 Nigel Lloyd Iestyn Leyshon Ford Escort 19m 00s
6 Paul Holmberg Maurice Leach Ford Escort 22m 00s
7 Kevin Morgan Andy Bowen Ford Escort 26m 00s
8 Clive Greeves John Hands Vauxhall Chevette 34m 00s
9 Iain Scott Jez Harris Ford Escort 37m 00s
10 Pete Cotton Matt Berker Ford Escort 1F 16m 00s
11 Carwyn Jones Mike Roach Ford Escort 1F 20m 00s
12 Phil Stroud Steve Durbin Toyota Corolla 1F 28m 00s
13 Meredith Roberts Gareth Thomas Ford Escort 2F 19m 00s
14 Aled Evans J E Jones Ford Sierra 2F 26m 00s
15 Gethin Lewis Aled Jones Ford Escort 3F 24m 00s
16 Jon Ross Dave Stocking Ford Escort 3F 36m 00s
17 Colin Thomas Rob Richardson Vauxhall cavalier 4F 29m 00s
18 Neil Morgan Jason Dolman Ford Escort 5F 21m 00s
19 Dave Painter Peter Lewis Opel Manta 6F 30m 00s
20 Gareth Evans Dylan Evans Ford EScort 6F 33m 00s
21 Mike Cartwright Paul Griffin Ford Escort 7F 32m 00s
22 Wyn Owens Hefin Owens Ford Escort 8F 29m 00s
23 Will Whitehurst Phil Ralphs Ford Escort 9F 39m 00s
24 D Evans A Davies Audi 11F 40m 00s
25 Hefin George Dilwyn John Mazda 323 Turbo 11F 40m 00s
26 Mark Daniel Lorraine Thomas Ford Escort 12F 41m 00s
27 Dalis Evans Hywel Evans Ford Capri 12F 48m 00s
28 Kath Rumney Arfon Jones Ford Escort 14F 34m 00s
29 Nick Evans Allan Hands Ford Escort 14F 44m 00s
30 Llion Rhys Mark Lloyd Ford Escort 19F 31m 00s
31 Roger Harris Jane Harris Opel Manta 21F 44m 00s
32 Mark Skellern Steve Turner Ford Escort 24F 39m 00s
33 Alwyn Jones R W Roberts Ford Escort 26F 33m 00s
34 Gareth Morgan Carl Williamson Skoda 120RS 34F 17m 00s
35 Paul Jenkins Richard Owen Ford Escort 39F 37m 00s