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2017/05 - Warcop Ranges Rally (0 images) - created by Adge on 01/06/2017 at 13:52:55
After finishing 2nd O/A on the Dixies Historic Rally on Epynt at the end of May, the Adgespeed team of Adrian Spencer and Mark Hewitt in the Adgespeed, RED Industries, ABR Engineering backed Subaru Impreza WRC S11 decided to try some where new and the North Humberside Warcop stages rally looked ideal as neither of the crew had been there before and with the event being based on the military ranges at Warcop on the A66 near Brough the roads would be of a similar nature to Epynt and Otterburn at which the team always go well.

With no recce and only a DVD to watch it would take a bit of time to get to grips with the stages, but if you don't go, you'll never learn and so the challenged was on. The day dawned dry which was better than the previous days thunder storms and meant at least the tyre choice would be easy with Adrian going for soft slicks. The team had also changed the suspension from the previous rally for a new set of Reigers, so that was another change which would take some learning.

Seeded at car 3 behind last winners and 2nd placed crews and with the car ready Adrian and Mark set off for the 1st loop of 2 stages. This was going to be interesting as the stages basically consisted of 2 loops of track and with the cars starting on 30 secs meant that on your second lap cars would be joining from lower down the field, in Adrian and Marks case the back end of the top 10 which as their were a lot of very quick cars out wasn't really going to be a problem, but when you had completed the 1st stage you then went straight back in for stage 2 but you were joining cars in the 30 - 60's which could be a big problem due to the speed differential between the cars, but at least it was the same for everybody.

A good steady run getting used to route and roads and only passing 1 car, saw Adrian Mark 9th quickest, with a much quicker time on stage 2 including a 10 second loss due to a spin and catching several cars Adrian and Mark remained in 9th place. For stage 3 and getting more confidant Adrian started to push and with a clean run 5th quickest time was the result moving them up to 7th O/A. Stage 4, the repeat of stage 3 and Adrian was on the pace only 3 seconds behind last years winners Greg Mcknight setting 3rd quickest time which included passing 4 cars on stage, although to be fair most did get out of the way as quickly as possible. This the moved the boys up to 5th O/A.

Stages 5 and 6 were run in the opposite direction and with some suspension set up changes and changing to a harder compound tyre as the weather was warming up and becoming a very sunny day. Again the pace was good with Adrian and Mark setting 3rd quickest times although not as quick as the front runners, but getting baulked by car 41 didn't help and having a close battle with Martin Hodsgon in his Mk2 Escort, 3rd overall was the result.

Going into the final loop of 2 stages which were shortened due to time issues and it all started to go wrong when at the stage 7 start the car stalled on launch loosing vital seconds and fearing an issue with the car Adrian's mind wasn't quite focussed and then a spin loosing another 20 seconds, the boys were caught by Martin Hodgson who had started 30 seconds behind who then had a great view following Adrian and Mark to the finish. The second run of the stage, stage 8 was OK but having lost a bit of confidence, only 6th quickest time was attained. The result then dropped Adrian and Mark down to 4th O/A, still a good result considering they had no experience of the venue and there were a lot of quick cars out.

So its back to Adgespeed to prepare the car for the next rally, the Enville Stages at the Anglesey Race circuit on the 2nd July and hopefully they will get further than they did last time in March.