Flying Fortress Rally Report
With this rally being round 5 of a 14 round championship and the Laser Tools Rally Team only scoring in one previous round we were hoping for a change in luck and to kick start our championship from now. We had no problems at scrutineering on the Saturday night and we set up our service area with two other crews from the club and we were all looking forward to the rally the next day.
The weather was very warm as we arrived at the venue on the Sunday morning so dust could be an issue especially in the section that was round the back of the circuit. With this in mind the organisers set the crews off at minute intervals for the stage in a bid to clear the dust for the rest of the day.
We arrived at the start of stage 1 with it in our mind to have a steady run and just to see how the suspension was set up after the rebuild from the previous rally. We set a reasonable pace and what we thought was conservative lines with no big risks and the car felt well with plenty of grip and no issues with the dust just a slight bit on one corner. With no issues at the finish it was just a quick check over by the service crew and all was good. When we had a look at our times we were pleased to find out we had set the 11th quickest time and we were at this point 2nd in class not bad from 55 starters we thought.
The second stage would now have the cars starting at 30 second intervals and as we set off into the stage we were caught behind another car which then created an issue as we went into the wooded section as the dust from the previous cars was hung in the trees and we overshot a 90 left and had to reverse out loosing us around 25 seconds and this dropped us down to 18th and 4th in class but other than that the car was running really well.
Stages 3 & 4 were good and we were now starting to feel more comfortable in the car again and our pace was picking up nicely and we were starting to gain back some of the places we had lost with the overshoot in the morning and at the lunch break we were positioned in 15th and 3rd in class.
We fitted new rear tyres during the lunch break ready for the afternoon stages and it really paid off as we were setting consistently quick times and moving up the leader board nicely and with no problems in the afternoon other than the engine running very hot in the warm weather but not causing any overheating issues we finished the rally in a very pleasing 11th overall and 1st in class due to the fact that the car that won the rally who was also in our class not being able to win two awards as per the regulations.
This result gave us the maximum points (28) for the championship and this is just what we needed so we now have a break until the next round at Fulbeck in Lincolnshire on the 6th August.