News




Winners from home and abroad celebrate Nicky Grist Stages success in Builth Wells

11 July 2017

This year’s Nicky Grist Stages (8-9 July) proved to be a huge success, with spectators enjoying great weather and spectacular high-speed action, competitors rising magnificently to the challenge of a two-day mixed surface event, the event organisers Quinton MC running an incident-free rally and Builth Wells hosting fantastic town centre start and finish ceremonies.


With three rallies in one and competitors battling for points in 10 different championships, the mid-Wales event attracted 147 starters – all of which were flagged away from outside the magnificent Strand Hall in the heart of Builth Wells on Saturday morning.


Swapping his Wales and Scarlets Rugby shirts for Stilo helmet and P1 Advanced Racewear suit was Scott Williams – who unveiled his new and immaculate Scott Williams Motorsport built Escort, which he drove as course opening car on the Sunday’s asphalt stages. It was a stunning sight and sound enjoyed by all – including fellow Welsh Rugby Union star George North and double Olympic medal winning cyclist Becky James, who were on Epynt to support their good friend.


The importance of the Nicky Grist Stages internationally was highlighted when Sweden’s Fredrik Åhlin and his Norwegian co-driver Torstein Eriksen claimed overall victory in their Škoda Fabia R5. Welsh favourite Osian Pryce had made the most of running first on the road to lead after day one by 19.3 seconds, but a fuel pump problem with his Ford Fiesta R5 side-lined him and co-driver Dale Furniss early on day two. Åhlin took the lead and held onto it superbly, winning the event by 47.5 seconds and retaking the lead in the Prestone MSA British Rally Championship.


Llandudno’s Matt Edwards finished an excellent second on his Ford Fiesta R5. Co-driven by Darren Garrod, the result moves him into third in the BRC standings, behind Åhlin and Pryce, with two rallies remaining. Rhys Yates/Carl Williamson (Ford Fiesta R5) took third place – with the Nicky Grist Stages finish ceremony held in the beautiful Groe Park, on the banks of the River Wye.


Callum Devine/Keith Moriarty (Opel Adam R2) won an exciting Junior BRC battle, after the lead changed hands six times. Meirion Evans/Jonathan Jackson (Peugeot 208 R2) led initially, before a puncture saw them tumble down the order. Norway’s Oscar Solberg/Patrik Barth (Ford Fiesta R2T) seized the advantage before turbo problems intervened. Cameron Davies/Michael Gilbey (Peugeot 208 R2) led overnight, but retired on day two with engine problems. Irish driver Devine was unstoppable once the event moved onto Tarmac, eventually winning Junior BRC by 18.6 seconds. William Creighton and Liam Regan (Peugeot 208 R2) came home second, with west Wales pair James Williams/Dai Roberts (Fiesta R2T) claiming third.


In the battle for Ravenol BTRDA Rally Series points, which was played out over Saturday’s eight gravel stages, it was Stephen Petch/Michael Wilkinson who took the Nicky Grist Stages victory after a well-judged run in their Ford Fiesta WRC. Peter Taylor/Andrew Roughead set six fastest stage times, but lost time when their Ford Fiesta WRC’s rear spoiler came off and then they suffered a puncture. They couldn’t quite make up all the time lost and finished second, just 8.1 seconds behind. Callum Black/Elliott Edmondson also lost time when they overshot a hairpin early on, yet still finished a strong third in their less powerful Ford Fiesta R5+.


Sasha Kakad/James Aldridge won the BTRDA Production Cup category in their Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 10 and finished an impressive fifth overall. A misfiring Fiesta R5 led to the retirement of Hugh Hunter/Rob Fagg, while another top BTRDA crew to retire was Dylan Davies/Llion Williams with power steering problems in their Subaru Impreza.


Black/Edmondson also scored maximum points in the Pirelli MSA Welsh Forest Rally Championship, with husband and wife pairing Martyn and Dawn England (Fiesta R5) finishing second and Peter Stephenson/Will Rogers (Fiesta WRC) third. Wug Utting/Bob Stokoe have taken the lead in the Welsh series, after a fantastic Group N victory in their Subaru Impreza.


Damian Cole/Den Golding won the Spencer Sport Acropolis Rally, which was played out over the 12 Tarmac stages on Sunday. They showed their class by winning the stand-alone event by a comfortable 1min 48.5secs in their Ford Escort WRC. Black/Edmondson completed a magnificent weekend by scoring maximum points MAXXIS MSA English Rally Championship on their first Tarmac event in the R5 car.


Nicky Grist said: “Quinton MC has really upped the standard on this year’s event and as an organising team they are getting better and better – and that’s been reflected in the success of the 2017 rally. We were blessed with beautiful weather, which keeps the marshals, spectators and everyone happy, but it also throws up other challenges for the competitors, especially on the dusty gravel stages on day one. The dry Tarmac roads of Epynt on day two certainly offered a great challenge, and we’ve had a fantastic event. I’m delighted. We’ve learnt a little bit more, so there are more improvements to be made, but as an event we are moving, most definitely, in the right direction.”


Neil Cross, Nicky Grist Stages Clerk of the Course, said: “We were very pleased by the big entry we received and the quality of the field – the three events certainly made for great competition and produced very worthy overall and class winners in all ten of the championships that we hosted. We’re always looking to make improvements, and everyone at Quinton MC is delighted with the way this very complex two-day mixed surface event is developing. We’d like extend our enormous thanks to all the marshals and officials who worked tirelessly to ensure the safe running of the event, and also to all the competitors, teams and spectators who were a credit to our sport last weekend.”


All those who attended this year’s Nicky Grist Stages – officials, spectators, marshals, competitors, support teams, everyone! – are kindly reminded to fill out the Welsh Association of Motor Clubs economic benefits survey, which can be done on-line at: http://rallydata.co.uk/484245


Nicky Grist Stages – top 10 overall
1. Fredrik Åhlin/Torstein Eriksen (Škoda Fabia R5)….1hr 45mins 50.2secs
2. Matt Edwards/Darren Garrod (Ford Fiesta R5)….+47.5secs
3. Rhys Yates/Carl Williamson (Ford Fiesta R5)….+2mins 08.0secs
4. Martin McCormack/David Moynihan (Ford Fiesta R5)….+2mins 11.7secs
5. Jamie Anderson/Ross Whittock (Ford Fiesta R5)….+3mins 16.7secs
6. Barry McKenna/Leon Jordan (Ford Fiesta R2)….+5mins 04.9secs
7. Callum Devine/Keith Moriarty (Opel Adam R2)….+8mins 48.0secs
8. William Creighton/Liam Regan (Peugeot 208 R2)….+9mins 06.6secs
9. James Williams/Dai Roberts (Ford Fiesta R2)….+9mins 13.8secs
10. Marty Gallagher/Dean O’Sullivan (Peugeot 208 R2)….+9mins 45.7secs

© 2017



Welsh rugby star Scott Williams to debut new home-built Escort on this weekend’s Nicky Grist Stages

05 July 2017

Fresh from touring the South Pacific Islands, Welsh rugby international Scott Williams will debut a brand new Escort Mk2 on day two of the Nicky Grist Stages – when he drives the course opening zero car on the combined Prestone MSA British Rally Championship qualifying round and the stand-alone Spencer Sport Acropolis Rally (Sunday 9 July).


The new car has been built by his own Lampeter-based Scott Williams Motorsport team and will be seen for the very first time on the event. Established in April 2016, SWM has already enjoying great success – with another one of Scott’s Mk2 Escorts currently leading the highly competitive Irish Historic Tarmac Championship.


For the Guinness Pro12 winning Scarlets Rugby centre, the Quinton Motor Club organised Nicky Grist Stages will be his first visit to the famous asphalt roads of the Epynt military range. Not only will Scott’s appearance be a huge draw to the many Welsh sports fans who will travel to Epynt to watch the rally, he’ll also play a vital role in the safe running of the event.


Scott Williams said: “I’ve never driven as part of the Safety Car Team on Epynt before, so I’m really looking forward to it. Epynt is well known in rallying as a very tough and challenging venue – very fast and narrow, with blind crests and no margin for error. I’ll be driving the Zero Car on the Sunday, so whilst we’re not competing, we travel at around eighty per cent competitive speed, so we won’t be going slowly either! My business, Scott Williams Motorsport, is building a brand new car, and the Nicky Grist Stages will be its first reveal. We want as many people to see the new car as possible, so running in front of the competitors on a round of the British Rally Championship is a fantastic opportunity to do just that. It’s going to be a lot of fun but we have a serious job to do ensuring the safety of both the competitors and spectators. I haven’t managed to talk Nicky [Grist] into co-driving for me yet – he said that he wants to see me drive first!”


Nicky Grist said: “We are delighted to have a sporting celebrity from the rugby world on our event, and with Scott Williams so engaged and fanatical about rallying we are delighted that he can come and do a safety car job for us. All eyes will be on him, and I’m sure that his nerves will jangle a fair bit more on this event than they do on a Six Nations match for Wales!”


Neil Cross, Nicky Grist Stages Clerk of the Course, said: “Having reliable Safety Cars running ahead of the field is a vital part of the event planning and having Scott out on the asphalt stages is an important part of that planning. Scott will be in close contact with me in Rally HQ and the MSA Safety Delegate out on the stages advising us on certain aspects of the stage set up.”


Scott will also be watching the opening day of the Nicky Grist Stages from the VIP Hospitality marquee, when crews contest the gravel section of the event, which is a round of the Prestone MSA British Rally Championship, Ravenol BTRDA Rally Series, Pirelli MSA Welsh Forest Rally Championship, MAXXIS MSA English Rally Championship, BTRDA 1400 Championship, BTRDA Rally First, Fiesta ST Trophy, MG ZR Rally Challenge, FMP Rally Challenge and ANWCC Forest Rally Championship. You can join him in the VIP area too, with exclusive car parking, stage-side viewing area, breakfast, lunch, unlimited refreshments and guest speakers. More information on the great VIP rally day out is available from Sarah Williams on 01559 371534.

© 2017



158 cars, 10 championships and 3 rallies in 1 head to Builth Wells for the Nicky Grist Stages this weekend!

03 July 2017

This weekend’s Nicky Grist Stages – which begins with a brand new Builth Wells town centre start on Saturday morning – has attracted a massive 158 car entry, with 10 championships and three rallies in one completing on the nearby gravel forest and asphalt closed roads of Epynt on Saturday and Sunday (8-9 July).


As leader of the Prestone MSA British Rally Championship, Welshman Osian Pryce will lead the field away as number one seed in his Ford Fiesta R5, and will be flagged away from the ceremonial start in Strand Street at 08.30 on Saturday. He will be aiming to maintain his championship advantage, and will contest the full two-days and 20 stages, which have been organised by Quinton Motor Club.


Stephen Petch (Fiesta WRC) is the top seeded Ravenol BTRDA Rally Series runner, and will resume his close title battle with his high-speed rivals, including championship leader Callum Black (Fiesta R5+). The eight forest stages on Saturday will count towards their championship points tally – and like many, they will stay on to contest the following day’s separate Spencer Sport Acropolis Rally, which has 12 asphalt stages and is part of the MAXXIS MSA English Championship ‘double header’ weekend.


Andy Davies (Subaru Impreza) arrives in Builth Wells aiming to extend his lead in the Pirelli MSA Welsh Forest Rally Championship. Indeed, there will be fierce battles raging throughout the 158 car field, as crews compete for points and pride in the BTRDA 1400 Championship, BTRDA Rally First, Fiesta ST Trophy, MG ZR Rally Challenge, FMP Rally Challenge and ANWCC Forest Rally Championship.


Spectators are in for a real treat, as along with the very best British rally driving talent there is an extraordinary variety of cars – with no less than 20 different car manufacturers represented on the entry list. In addition to the more familiar rallying Ford Escorts and Fiestas, Subaru Imprezas and Mitsubishi Lancers is a Porsche 911, Toyota GT86, BMW 325i, Volvo Amazon and a Lotus Elise!


The top seeded cars and drivers will line up in Strand Street from 08.00 this Saturday before being flagged away from outside Strand Hall from 08.30. There are dedicated, well signposted, spectators areas where fans can watch the action on both Saturday and Sunday, with cars returning to service inside the Royal Welsh Showground in Llanelwedd throughout the event. The champagne-spraying finish will take place in Groe Park on Sunday – with local DJ Mark Weller making it a real family-friendly party atmosphere from approximately 16.00 onwards. Full spectator information is available at nickygriststages.co.uk.


Keep your cameras and mobile devices fully charged and be ready to enter a fantastic SPOT THE RALLY CAR competition – with some great rally prizes up for grabs! You can enter by posting your pictures on Facebook at fb.me/nickygriststages or on Twitter using the hash tag #ngstages17.


In association with Spencer Sport, Nicky Grist Stages VIP Hospitality packages are available for both the Saturday and Sunday – with exclusive car parking, stage-side viewing area, marquee, breakfast, lunch, unlimited refreshments and guest speakers. For information on availability and cost, please contact Sarah Williams on 01559 371534.


Neil Cross, Nicky Grist Stages Clerk of the Course, said: “We are amazed at the depth and quality of the entry across all three events. Bringing ten championships has been a challenge and we hope we've risen to it. The stages I'm told are in fantastic condition and our thanks go to Landmarc and Rally4Wales for the preparation and to NRW and DTE Wales for allowing us access to their land. A huge thanks to RWS for making us welcome and to Builth Town Council and Powys County Council for all their work with the town centre start. We look forward to welcoming all competitors to Builth Wells for a cracking weekend’s rallying. Good luck to everyone and stay safe. My final thanks go to all the marshals, timekeepers, radio, rescue, recovery and medical crews for making the event happen.”


Ian Butcher, Nicky Grist Stages Rally Manager, said: “We are delighted to bring such a quality entry to Builth Wells for this year’s Nicky Grist Stages. A small and dedicated team has put together what looks like a great weekend’s motorsport. However, without the support of the local community this would not be possible. So our sincere thanks go out to all the local motor clubs, their members and marshals, as well as all the other event officials, medical and recovery teams, that are travelling from as far as Yorkshire to make the event possible, because without this help we would not have a rally. We look forward to welcoming you all to Builth Wells and the Nicky Grist Stages; you have our eternal gratitude.”


In line with MSA requirements, competitors have been seeded together in their order of expected performance. The top 10 seeded crews (with their start numbers) on each event are:


Nicky Grist 100 Stages (Gravel/Tarmac, 8-9 July)
1 Osian Pryce/Dale Furniss (Ford Fiesta R5)
2 Fredrik Åhlin/Torstein Eriksen (Škoda Fabia R5)
3 Martin McCormack/David Moynihan (Škoda Fabia R5)
4 Keith Cronin/Mikie Galvin (Ford Fiesta R5)
7 Matt Edwards/Darren Garrod  (Ford Fiesta R5)
10 Rhys Yates/Carl Williamson (Ford Fiesta R5)
11 Jamie Anderson/Ross Whittock (Ford Fiesta R5)
22 Thomas Preston/Stuart Loudon (Škoda Fabia R5)
25 Alex Laffey/Patrick Walsh (Ford Fiesta)
28 James Slaughter/Niall Burns (Ford Fiesta R5)


Nicky Grist Stages (Gravel, Saturday 8 July)
5 Stephen Petch/Michael Wilkinson (Ford Fiesta WRC)
8 Callum Black/Elliott Edmondson (Ford Fiesta R5+)
9 Peter Taylor/Andrew Roughead (Ford Fiesta WRC)
12 Hugh Hunter/Rob Fagg (Ford Fiesta R5)
14 Martyn England/Dawn England (Ford FiestaR5+)
15 Dylan Davies/Llion Williams (Subaru Impreza)
16 Andy Davies/Max Freeman (Subaru Impreza)
17 Pat Naylor/Ian Lawrence (Mitsubishi Evo 9)
18 Russ Thompson/Andy Murphy (Mitsubishi Evo 9)
19 Richard Hill/Steffan Evans (Mitsubishi Evo IV)


Spencer Sport Acropolis Rally (Tarmac, Sunday 9 July)
201 Stephen Petch/Michael Wilkinson (Ford Fiesta WRC)
203 Peter Taylor/Andrew Roughead (Ford Fiesta WRC)
204 Damian Cole/Den Golding (Ford Escort)
205 Peter Stephenson/Will Rogers (Subaru P2000 WRC)
207 Pat Naylor/Ian Lawrence (Mitsubishi Evo 9)
208 Mark Worley/Hamish Campbell (Škoda Fabia S2000)
209 Mark Gamble/Stephen Link (Subaru Impreza)
210 Richard Sykes/Simon Taylor (Citroën DS3 R3T)
212 Tim Phelps/Elwyn Manuel (Ford Escort MK2)
213 Andy Woodward/Tom Bowen (Renault Clio)

© 2017



Nicky Grist Stages selected for independent economic benefits survey – and all are encouraged to contribute

30 June 2017

Next weekend’s Nicky Grist Stages (8-9 July) – which is a round of 10 major championships, including the Prestone MSA British Rally Championship and Ravenol BTRDA Rally Series – will be used to gather information from event officials, spectators, marshals, competitors and their support teams to help establish their input into the local mid-Wales economy.


The Quinton Motor Club organised event takes place in and around the area of Builth Wells and will see well over 100 crews from around the United Kingdom and beyond contest the event in the nearby world renowned forest stages of the Carmarthenshire/Powys border region and over the famous Tarmac roads of the Epynt military range.


Conducted by The Welsh Association of Motor Clubs, the study will be used to gain a valuable insight into the economic value a motor rally brings to the area during an event. Thankfully many villages, towns and cities recognise the many economic opportunities this brings as they welcome motorsport into their villages halls, hotels and businesses.


The importance of the value of the motorsport pound spent locally during events was brought to the attention of many following the successful Rally4Wales campaign in 2016.


Jamie Edwards, Rally4Wales Managing Director, said: “Rallying remains under the spotlight in Wales. Therefore, it’s vital that everyone attending rallies in Wales contributes by feeding back what they bring to the economy. It doesn't matter if you are spectating on your local event and spending £20 on fuel to attend or you are a major rally team running three cars on a rally. Every penny makes a difference to the rural Welsh economy and the impact of motorsport in Wales was brought to the attention of everyone during the Rally4Wales campaign last year. It's no secret that the sport brings tourism revenue of around £15 Million per annum into Wales – but I urge everyone to play their part in helping showcase the financial and economic benefits that rallying brings to Wales. Whilst we cannot imagine a Wales without rallying, there are many businesses in Wales who would struggle without the added financial benefits a rally brings to the town.”


Neil Cross, Nicky Grist Stages Clerk of the Course, said: “Engaging in this economic survey is very important for us to understand the benefits that the event brings to the local community and I would encourage everyone involved in the event to participate in this survey. We are fortunate to have the support of the local authorities, and the data from these surveys helps them understand the importance of our events to their area.”


The Welsh Association of Motor Clubs would like to thank the Nicky Grist Stages organisers for helping to promote the questionnaire. The event is one of the several chosen during the year to gather the information that is so important when it comes to selling our sport to the wider community.


The survey can be completed on-line and is available for completion on any device. Note it can be started and finished later if not all the information is to hand. Don't worry if you don't have time in the build up to the event although the survey is live now it will remain live for a minimum of two weeks post event.  If you are asked to participate again, please do so as it helps us build a bigger picture locally and nationally.


To participate, simply use the QR Code or visit: http://rallydata.co.uk/484245

© 2017



BTRDA crews revved up for busy weekend in Builth Wells!

29 June 2017

Over the weekend of 8-9 July the mid-Wales town of Builth Wells will play host to a feast of motorsport action as contenders for both the RAVENOL BTRDA Rally Series® and the MAXXIS MSA English Rally Championship make the most of the latest opportunity to further their 2017 campaigns. On Saturday both series will be contesting the all-forestry Nicky Grist Stages and then, the following day, those with an eye on English Championship glory complete a unique ‘double-header’ with a run out over the asphalt roads of the Epynt Military Ranges on the Spencer Sport Acropolis Rally.


So, first things first and Stephen Petch/Michael Wilkinson will lead the RAVENOL BTRDA Series & MAXXIS MSA English Rally Championship contenders away from the town centre start in their Ford Fiesta WRC. Right behind them, in their similar R5+, will be BTRDA Gold Star® Championship leaders Callum Black/Elliott Edmondson – for the past three events these two crews have been virtually inseparable, arriving at the various finish lines just a handful of seconds apart. On the one hand, Petch has come out on top on each occasion – including two outright victories – but, on the other, Black’s 100% finishing record gives him the upper hand in the points table. However, once dropped scores come into play later in the season, that situation may change!….


2016 Nicky Grist Stages winners Luke Francis/John H Roberts are not having the season they would have wished for. A 3rd place finish on the Plains Rally in April flattered to deceive as their Mitsubishi Lancer EVO9 had retired from the previous round and would do so again on the next one. Nevertheless, given a clean run – not to mention a slice of luck! – they are proven winners at this level and cannot be discounted. Hugh Hunter/Rob Fagg (Fiesta) are another crew to have seen the finish line on all four occasions so far but, even so, they could do with a good haul of points to counter a disappointing run last time out.


Occasional BTRDA Series visitors Martyn & Dawn England (Fiesta R5+), who were 6th overall on the Nicky Grist Stages last year in what was then a virtually new car to them, return and, whilst obviously not in line for any Championship honours, are still perfectly capable of mixing it with those who are. Then we have two crews approaching the event from different perspectives – Dylan Davies/Llion Williams (Impreza) will be looking for their first finish of the season while Peter Stephenson (Focus WRC) arrives in Builth fresh from his best BTRDA Series result to date on the Carlisle Stages.


The Impreza of Andy Davies/Max Freeman leads the BTRDA Production Cup® runners away from the start, pursued by the Lancer EVOs of Pat Naylor/Ian Lawrence, series leaders Russ Thompson/Andy Murphy and Richard Hill/Steffan Evans. Having already registered a couple of DNFs, the pressure is now on Daniel Moss/Sam Allen to bring their own EVO9 to the finish in one piece.


Then, of course, there are the Fiesta STs and, once again, we ask the question ‘is this the event that’ll bring an end to Sam Bilham/Cameron Fair’s monopoly of the series?’ Four starts and four maximum scores leave them in the ‘nearly, but not quite’ situation in Championship terms. However, should their dominance continue in mid Wales, it’ll put the matter beyond doubt and leave the others to squabble over the remaining podium places.


Ashley Davies (Escort MkII) and Richard Sykes (Citroen DS3 R3) finished the recent Carlisle Stages Rally on identical penalties, with the tie-break going in Davies’ favour. Points in the RAVENOL BTRDA Silver Star® Championship were awarded in a similar fashion and now, a month later, the two drivers start the latest encounter together. Leaders after the first round of the season, Jody Bowcott/David Millard (Escort MkII), rejoin the fray but a couple of retirements in the intervening period have not helped their cause!


Twelve months ago Chris Powell/Jim Lewis were tasting champagne (well, whatever it was, it was fizzy!) in the Thomas Panels BTRDA 1400 Championship® as, in spite of a failing clutch, their Talbot Sunbeam took them to victory on the Nicky Grist Stages. Having risen to similar heights on the Plains Rally a couple of months ago, it then let them down on the Carlisle Stages. Even so, with renewed hope, they start behind the Nova of Dave & Toby Brick which has also experienced mixed fortunes in the Championship so far.


They are joined by Ed Fossey/Chris Sharpe-Simkiss (Toyota Yaris) who, in spite of their absence from Carlisle, still maintain their series lead and Tommi Meadows/Ian Oakey whose hastily-repaired Ford Ka, following its topsy-turvy moment on the Plains Rally, succumbed to an electrical fault in Carlisle.


With two 1st and one 2nd places to their credit already, Bart Lang/Sinclair Young (Micra) have carved out a significant advantage in the BTRDA Rally First Championship®. But – and it’s a big ‘but’! – with three rounds still to go, nobody can yet describe themselves as safe. Whatever happens in Builth Wells, Lang/Young will maintain their lead but, as the season winds towards its finale, things could still change significantly. Ask Chris Hickman/Alex Stanbury – their MG ZR has only done two events so far, but a 1st and a 2nd have set them up nicely for the remaining rounds.


And so to Sunday morning and the MAXXIS MSA English Rally Championship contenders who have survived the rigours of the previous day (no doubt some service crews will be in for a long night as they refettle their charges!) reconvene to do it all again on Epynt. The Fiestas of Petch/Wilkinson and Black/Edmondson will be leading the charge but, bearing in mind that it’s a class-based Championship, the likes of Ed Fossey (Toyota Yaris) and Bart Lang (Nissan Micra) stand just as much chance of coming away with maximum points!


 

© 2017



Builth Wells town centre to host Nicky Grist Stages start and finish parties – and everyone’s invited!

24 June 2017

Builth Wells will, for the first time, host both the start and finish ceremonies of the Quinton Motor Club organised Nicky Grist Stages, with a big motorsport celebration on the morning of Saturday 8 July and the afternoon of Sunday 9 July – to which everyone is invited. And what’s more, both events are completely free for spectators!


Strand Street will be the place to be for the new rally start on the Saturday– where the top seeded cars will be on display from 08.00 and where fans will be able to meet their rally heroes. All the competitors from 10 different championships – including the Prestone MSA British Rally Championship, Ravenol BTRDA Rally Series, Pirelli MSA Welsh Forest Rally Championship and MAXXIS MSA English Rally Championship – will then be flagged away at one minute intervals from outside Strand Hall by local dignitaries and rally celebrities from 08.30 onwards.


Spectator areas, giving the best and safest vantage points to view the high-speed action, will be set up and well signposted as crews tackle first the gravel sections on Saturday and then the Tarmac stages over Epynt on the Sunday – with all proceeds raised from car parking charges and programme sales going to local charities. Spectators will also be able to see the rally cars close up when they come into the Royal Welsh Showground in Llanelwedd for service – and Saturday evening is the best time to come, as teams have two hours to transform their gravel spec cars into Tarmac trim. Full spectator information is available at nickygriststages.co.uk.


After all 20 special stages have been completed the most successful crews will attend the champagne-spraying finish ceremony on Sunday afternoon. Following the success of 2016, this will once again take place in Groe Park, on the banks of the River Wye, with the landmark 18th Century bridge in the background. The party atmosphere will be enhanced with local DJ Mark Weller on the decks, together with VIP guests and well-known faces. The finish ceremony will take place from approximately 16.00 onwards.


Keep an eye out on social media for a fantastic SPOT THE RALLY CAR competition – with some great rally prizes!


Councillor Meryl Prynne, Mayor Builth Wells Town Council, said: “We give a warm welcome to all who are connected with the Nicky Grist Stages as once again we see the rally being brought into Builth Wells but this time we are actually having the start of the rally in the middle of town. Staging the start of the rally in Strand Street and then ending the rally on the Groe will increase the profile of Builth Wells locally and nationally. The increased number of visitors it will bring into the town will give a much needed boost to the economy and we hope that this event might become an annual feature in our town.”


Neil Cross, Nicky Grist Stages Clerk of the Course, said: “We are particularly pleased to be bringing the start of this year’s Nicky Grist Stages into the heart of Builth Wells, giving residents and visitors the opportunity to get close to the cars and drivers before they head off to the stages.”


Ian Butcher, Nicky Grist Stages Rally Manager, said: “We would especially like to thank Jeremy Patterson and all at Powys CC for their support in this venture. It is down to Mr Patterson’s personal intervention that we have been able to proceed with closing Strand Street. We hope he can join us at the Ceremonial Start to flag the cars away.”


Spectators can also enjoy Nicky Grist Stages VIP Hospitality packages, as these are not reserved for only corporate guests and sponsors! It will be a sell-out experience this year and only a few places are still available for Saturday and/or Sunday – with exclusive car parking, stage-side viewing area, marquee, breakfast, lunch, unlimited refreshments and guest speakers. For information on availability and cost, please contact Sarah Williams from Spencer Sport on 01559 371534.

© 2017



BTRDA Rally Series leader Callum Black targets Nicky Grist Stages wins – before staying on Epynt for Tarmac practice!

15 June 2017

Ravenol BTRDA Rally Series leader Callum Black is aiming for victory on the Nicky Grist Stages – and after contesting the all-gravel qualifying round on Saturday 8 July, the 586 Sports-prepared Ford Fiesta R5+ driver will remain in mid-Wales for the following day’s Spencer Sport Acropolis Rally (Sunday 9 July); giving him invaluable Tarmac rally practice and a chance of more points over the MAXXIS MSA English Rally Championship ‘double-header’ weekend event.


The talented 25-year old DMACK Tyres and PFC Brakes supported driver from Brackley in Northamptonshire is enjoying a great first full season in a four-wheel drive car, with a fourth, third and two second place finishes in the BTRDA Rally Series. After four rallies, he holds a 10 point lead at the top the Gold Star drivers’ standings heading into the Builth Wells-based event, with Ruthin’s Hugh Hunter (Fiesta R5) second and Bishop Auckland’s Stephen Petch (Fiesta WRC) a further seven points behind in third. The closeness of the battle for the overall title is echoed in all the classes, with a total of 124 drivers having scored points in this year’s BTRDA Rally Series.


Black knows the forest sections of the Nicky Grist Stages quite well, having contested the event before in a Citroën DS3 R3T Max (finishing first in class in 2015) and in a MG ZR 1400S. With the all-gravel BTRDA Rally Series qualifying round on Saturday 8 July, Black and co-driver Elliott Edmondson will stay on to contest the asphalt Spencer Sport Acropolis Rally the following day. Black has rallied over the famous Epynt military range Tarmac stages just once before, finishing a very impressive 12th overall on the 2011 Harry Flatters Rally in a Suzuki Swift S1600.


Both days will offer Black a unique opportunity to compare his pace against the Prestone MSA British Rally Championship regulars – as well as scoring points in the MAXXIS MSA English Rally Championship. He is currently fifth in the English series after two rounds, and the two Quinton Motor Club organised events count as a ‘double-header’, with full championship points awarded at the end of each day.


Black said: “We’ve had some very good results in this year’s BTRDA Rally Series, but we’d like to get a few wins in to help with our end-of-season score when dropped scores come into play, so we’ll be pushing for the top step of the podium on the Nicky Grist Stages. I’ve done the event before, but this is the first time we’re going to tackle the stages in a four-wheel drive car. All-wheel drive suits my driving style better than two-wheel drive, so I’m looking forward to returning to the classic Monument, Route 60, Halfway and Crychan stages in the Fiesta R5. Whilst scoring BTRDA points is our main objective, it will also be a great opportunity to compare my pace with the British Rally Championship crews, as that’s the series we’ll like to move up and contest next year.


“It’s brilliant that there is a Tarmac rally the following day, and we’re going to stay on and contest the Acropolis Rally on the Sunday. I’ve only ever rallied a four-wheel drive car on Tarmac for six miles, and that was on the asphalt section of this year’s Somerset Stages, so it will be very good practice. Once again, we’ll be able to match our times directly with the cream of the BRC crop, as well as trying to strengthen our position in the English Rally Championship. The Nicky Grist Stages should be a fantastic couple of days of competition, and I’m really looking forward to it.”


Neil Cross, Nicky Grist Stages Clerk of the Course, said: “It’s fantastic to see the enthusiasm from Callum for the Spencer Sport Acropolis Rally, and we hope that more of the BTRDA competitors join him and take on the challenge of the infamous Epynt asphalt roads. This year’s event is shaping up to be an epic, and with the likes of Damian Cole entered in his stunning Escort it will be interesting to see how they’ll fare against the BRC runners. Could we be in for a few surprises?”

© 2017



A rally within a rally: tremendous Epynt Tarmac test awaits Spencer Sport Acropolis Rally crews on the Nicky Grist Stages

08 June 2017

The Spencer Sport Acropolis Rally (Sunday 9 July), a stand-alone rally within the Nicky Grist Stages, will be a fantastic Tarmac test for competitors as the event offers 12 fantastic stages totalling just over 72 stage miles over the Epynt military range – and as it’s open to a huge variety of cars, it’s going to be a real rally treat for both crews and spectators alike. Competitor information and entry forms are now available at www.nickygriststages.co.uk.


The Quinton Motor Club organised all-asphalt event is open to competitors with MSA National B Stage Rally licences and above. Not only will crews in the prestigious Prestone MSA British Rally Championship be competing, the Spencer Sport Acropolis Rally will also be a round of the MAXXIS MSA English Championship. The event is likely to attract Tarmac experts, Epynt specialists, those eager for a new challenge and others wanting to practice for forthcoming events, like the MSA British Historic Rally Championship crews who plan to contest the Stephens & George Printing Harry Flatters Rally over the same roads three weeks later (30 July).


Competitors will also benefit from a recce of Epynt’s asphalt stages and subjective route notes will be available from Patterson Pacenotes.


Llandysul-based rally team Spencer Sport will sponsor the special one-day Sunday rally, and the Acropolis Rally name harks back to one of Quinton MC’s earliest and most popular events. Soon after the club was formed in 1959 it ran (amongst others) the Acropolis Rally from the mid-1960s onwards, becoming a hugely popular Welsh Championship night road rally. It has not taken place in that format since 1986, and the club last used the name for a single venue stage event at Wheaton Aston in the late 1980s. And so, after an absence of over 25 years, the Acropolis Rally name returns to Quinton MC’s events calendar.


Early entries for the 2017 Spencer Sport Acropolis Rally include Tarmac expert Damian Cole/Den Golding (Ford Escort), Ravenol BTRDA Rally Series leader Callum Black/Elliott Edmondson (Ford Fiesta R5+) and experienced Pat Naylor/Ian Lawrence (Mitsubishi Lancer Evo9).


And don’t forget, the day before (Saturday 8 July) will see a 45 stage mile all-gravel rally in the forests of Monument, Halfway, Crychan and Route 60 for competitors in the BRC, Ravenol BTRDA Rally Series, Pirelli MSA Welsh Forest Rally Championship, MAXXIS MSA English Rally Championship, BTRDA 1400 Championship, BTRDA Rally First, Fiesta ST Trophy, MG ZR Rally Challenge, FMP Rally Challenge and ANWCC Forest Rally Championship.


Also in association with Spencer Sport, Nicky Grist Stages VIP Hospitality packages are available for both the Saturday and Sunday – with exclusive car parking, stage-side viewing area, marquee, breakfast, lunch, unlimited refreshments and guest speakers. For information on availability and cost, please contact Sarah Williams on 01559 371534.


Neil Cross, Nicky Grist Stages Clerk of the Course, said: “We at Quinton Motor Club are delighted to be able to offer the clubman competitor the opportunity to compete on the asphalt element of the Nicky Grist Stages through the Spencer Sport Acropolis Stages, a specific event for all those clubman that enjoy the challenges of the Epynt ranges and those fighting to be crowned the MAXXIS MSA English Champion. We also welcome Spencer Sport as an event sponsor and we thank Charlie Jukes for his support for our event.”


Ian Butcher, Nicky Grist Stages Rally Manager, said: “It personally gives me great pleasure to see the Acropolis name being revived as I was Clerk of the Course for several years when was it was a night event, in the heyday of Welsh road rallying. It will be great to see some of our local crews mixing with the hotshots of the BRC over the legendary Epynt asphalt. We look forward to welcoming everyone to our Sunday event.”


Nicky Grist said: “I hope competitors takes advantage of the Spencer Sport Acropolis Rally, as it’s a wonderful opportunity for crews to do a proper recce of Epynt’s famous Tarmac roads, including from Four Ways Bridge all the way up the New Road. Crews will be pushing hard for points in the MSA British and English Championships, so it’s a unique opportunity to compare yourself with some of the best rally drivers in the UK – and it’s also perfect timing for those who want to go out and practice for the Harry Flatters. All-in-all, the Spencer Sport Acropolis Rally should be a fantastic event for crews and spectators.”


Charlie Jukes, MD of Spencer Sport, said: “As a South Wales-based operation, we are keen to see rallying thrive in our area and therefore, Spencer Sport is delighted to be involved with the revival of this historic Quinton Motor Club event. Our support for the Nicky Grist Stages includes an exclusive spectator and hospitality area located on the Epynt military ranges. To help boost corporate involvement and showcase the sport to a wider audience, we are offering companies and guests a chance to take a table in our marquee for lunch and to watch the cars in action from a specially reserved vantage point.”

© 2017



Brettex Site Services generously helps the Nicky Grist Stages raise funds for Tirabad and Brecon charities

01 June 2017

Brettex Site Services – the title sponsor of up-and-coming British rally star Rhys Yates – is helping this year’s Nicky Grist Stages (8-9 July) raise funds for two local charities by generously agreeing to pay for the print cost of the event programme.


Money raised by selling the event programmes is split evenly each year between the Tirabad Village Hall and the Brecon Rotary Group – with charity representatives manning the entry to the spectator car parking areas. Last year 750 programmes were printed, raising much-appreciated funds.


Not only will Brettex Site Services’ kind contribution be warmly welcome behind the scenes, on the stages it hopes that Chesterfield-based Rhys and co-driver Carl Williamson will pick up some valuable Prestone MSA British Rally Championship points, as they aim for a top finish in their Ford Fiesta R5.


In addition, the annual collection at competitors’ signing on, together with a donation from the event-organising Quinton Motor Club, will be given to the Welsh Air Ambulance.


John Yates, MD of Brettex Site Services, said: “Brettex Site Services has long been a supporter of various charities and events across the motorsport fraternity so we are very proud to be able to help the local community on the Nicky Grist Stages. The team really enjoyed the event last year and it was a great test of everyone’s abilities with the mixed surface format. We are certainly looking forward to coming back again this July.”


Rhys Yates said: “We had one of our better BRC results on the Nicky Grist Stages in 2016 with seventh overall, so it would be nice to think that we can better that this time around. We had a great start to the season and were fourth in the championship after the opening two rounds, so the aim will undoubtedly be to see if we can start knocking on the door of the podium positions on the Nicky Grist.”


Ian Butcher, Nicky Grist Stages Rally Manager, said: “We’d very much like to thank Brettex Site Services for its support of this year’s Nicky Grist Stages and the wonderful contribution it is making to the Tirabad Village Hall and the Brecon Rotary Group. Brettex really wanted its sponsorship of the event to mean something, and its generosity will be very much appreciated by the two local charities the Nicky Grist Stages annually supports.”


Rhys Yates’s 2017 BRC programme is also backed by Michelin, Protyre, Kick Motorsport, Simpson, Zenith Racing, Prestone, Draper Tools, Jordan Road Surfacing, PIAA and NGK Spark Plugs.

© 2017



Welsh rugby international Scott Williams helps launch the 2017 Nicky Grist Stages and GoSafe alliance

29 May 2017

Welsh rugby international Scott Williams helped launch this year’s alliance between the Nicky Grist Stages (8-9 July) and Go Safe – Wales Road Casualty Reduction Partnership, which is aimed at making sure all those who attend this year’s event drive sensibly and safely on the public highway.


Scott, who won the Guinness Pro12 Final with the Scarlets Rugby last weekend and goes on the summer tour of the South Pacific Islands with the Welsh Rugby Union, is not just a keen motorsport fan, he owns Scott Williams Motorsport, a Lampeter-based team that builds and runs rally cars. It’s a highly successful team too – one of Scott’s Escort Mk2s, driven by his brother-in-law Barry Jones, currently leads the highly competitive Irish Historic Tarmac Championship.


This is the fourth year that the Nicky Grist Stages (a round of 10 rally championships, including the Prestone MSA British Rally Championship, Ravenol BTRDA Rally Series and Pirelli MSA Welsh Forest Rally Championship) and GoSafe have teamed up together, in what has proven to be a very successful partnership. GoSafe will once again have a highly visible roadside presence around the rally’s host town of Builth Wells and routes around the Epynt military ranges. GoSafe’s aim is educating motorists, preventing motoring offences and making people safer on Welsh roads by reducing casualties and saving lives. It isn’t just about speed camera enforcement either – its officers will be encouraging people to drive responsibly and sensibly, wear seatbelts and not overtake on solid white lines. This year’s Nicky Grist Stages takes place just before a two-week campaign to raise awareness of the dangers of using hand-held mobile ‘phones – and GoSafe will be on the event giving out CELLslip pouches which you can put your mobile ‘phone into whilst in your car, which disconnects the signal without you having to adjust any of the ‘phone settings.


Sergeant Ian Price from Dyfed-Powys Police said: “Working with Nick Grist and other motorsports organisations within GoSafe, it’s important that we can interact with their supporters and try to encourage safer driving on the roads. If fans want to drive like rally drivers, there are many motorsport clubs they can join and we appeal to them to not drive like rally drivers on the highway. If they do, they’ll inevitably either become a victim themselves or cause another person to become a victim – and when it comes to death by dangerous driving, you’re looking at fourteen years in prison if you’re convicted. I’ve seen too many lives ruined because of erratic, irresponsible driving. You do get people, especially the young, influenced by motorsport and what they see in films, and they don’t see the consequences of what those risks can present later.


“The GoSafe Partnership, as with any camera partnership, has traditionally been speed enforcement and trying to encourage people to drive slower, but road casualties are not just caused by speeding. It can be inappropriate driving, dangerous driving, overtaking on solid white lines and driving whilst operating a hand held mobile ‘phone. They might even be driving safely and not wearing a seatbelt and we know that if everyone wore seatbelts, we could halve the number of fatalities we see on our roads. Motorists need to consider the range of offences the GoSafe camera vans can pick up. We work closely with the national campaigns, like the mobile ‘phone and seatbelt campaigns, and we will have a highly visible presence on this year’s Nicky Grist Stages. We don’t want to catch anyone committing an offence, we’d rather everyone drives safely and lawfully.”


Scott Williams said: “I jumped at the opportunity to show my support to the Nicky Grist Stages and the GoSafe Partnership. It’s important that people drive safely to and from motorsport events, because we want everyone to enjoy themselves and have a great day out – and leave driving flat-out to the competitors on the stages. When you compete on a stage rally it’s on a closed road, you know that nothing will be driving towards you and you’re in an extremely strong car that’s been built with all the motorsport safety equipment. Living in west Wales I do a lot of miles on the road each year, driving to rugby matches and training camps and driving to motorsport events with my own Scott Williams Motorsport team. It’s important that you drive sensibly on the public road and not only keep yourself safe, but other road users safe as well.”


Nicky Grist said: “Stage rallying gives competitors the opportunity to drive at speed in a controlled manner, but the long-term benefits of rallying in general are not just about what happens on the stages. You need those same competitors, their service crews, all the event officials and all the spectators to drive safely and responsibly on the public road. That’s what gives the local residence, who are perhaps not interested in motorsport and who are going about their normal weekend business, the perception of what’s going on. The partnership between GoSafe and the Nicky Grist Stages is about creating a very positive perception and to help keep road users, both involved in the event and those who are not, safe. And if anyone is inspired by the speed and skill of the drivers competing on the Nicky Grist Stages, getting involved in motorsport is a great way to test your driving ability in a safe and controlled environment. Never do it on the public road.”


Neil Cross, Nicky Grist Stages Clerk of the Course, said: “Our relationship with GoSafe has gone from strength to strength and Quinton Motor Club are thrilled this has carried over to a fourth year. We are keen to show the local communities we travel through that we take their safety as importantly as those of the competitors out on the stages, and this partnership helps us with this. Every year we ask GoSafe for feedback and I am delighted to say that they are always very complimentary about the behaviour of our competitors, officials and spectators.”

© 2017



Nicky Grist Stages entries open, as fine-tuned route provides magnificent gravel and Tarmac challenge

18 May 2017

Entries are now open for the Nicky Grist Stages (8-9 July) – with the official event Regulations and Entry forms published on-line at nickygriststages.co.uk.


2017 celebrates the 37th running of Quinton Motor Club’s forest stage rally, the 30th consecutive year of it hosting a round of the BTRDA Rally Series and the seventh year of title sponsorship from Nicky Grist Motorsports. Following its maiden success last year, the Nicky Grist Stages remains the only mixed-surface round of the Prestone MSA British Rally Championship, with a fine-tuned route for 2017 giving competitors a magnificent gravel and Tarmac challenge and spectators a weekend-long festival of top class rally action.


Competitors have a choice of three events to enter – a gravel National B stage rally on the Saturday (8 July), a Tarmac National B stage rally on the Sunday (9 July) and a two-day (8-9 July) mixed-surface National A stage rally. All of which is fantastic news for spectators, who’ll have 10 different championships and up to 180 cars to watch competing on some of the best forest and Tarmac stages in the UK.


Both the gravel route on the Saturday and the Tarmac course the following day have been revised – with Saturday containing eight gravel stages (a loop of four run twice), separated by a midday service at the Royal Welsh Showground. The Monument, Halfway and a longer Crychan stage will be run in the opposite direction to last year, leaving Route 60 as the only unaltered test. In total there will be 45 stage miles of gravel for competitors in the BRC, Ravenol BTRDA Rally Series, Pirelli MSA Welsh Forest Rally Championship, MAXXIS MSA English Rally Championship, BTRDA 1400 Championship, BTRDA Rally First, Fiesta ST Trophy, MG ZR Rally Challenge, FMP Rally Challenge and ANWCC Forest Rally Championship.


Sunday will see a revised Tarmac route, with a further 12 stages totalling 72 miles over the famous roads of the Epynt military ranges. In a change to 2016, this year will see two loops of three stages in the morning and two loops of three different stages in the afternoon, separated by a lunchtime service at the Royal Welsh Showground. In addition to Sunday being the second Nicky Grist Stages day of the BRC, there will also be a separate event called the Spencer Sport Acropolis Rally, which is part of the MAXXIS MSA English Championship double-header weekend and open to all other National B stage rally competitors.


In line with MSA requirements, competitors on these rallies will be seeded together in their order of expected performance on both the Saturday and Sunday. 



Not only will rally fans be able to see the BRC cars in high-speed action on two surfaces, 20 stages and over 117 miles, there will also be a two hour service halt at the Royal Welsh Showground on the Saturday night, when teams change car set-up from gravel to Tarmac – a sight to behold for those mechanically minded and a great opportunity for driver autograph hunters. The finish ceremony will take place in Builth Wells shortly after 16.00 on the Sunday.


Neil Cross, Nicky Grist Stages Clerk of the Course, said: “We’ve acted upon all the feedback we received from competitors following last year’s event, and we hope that the changes that we have made to this year’s route will be to everyone’s liking. The Nicky Grist Stages really is blessed with some fantastic roads, and we’ve tried hard to make best use of the available gravel and Tarmac stages. We’ve once again created a 45 stage mile route on the Saturday for the BTRDA, Welsh and other championships, which is a great challenge on some fabulous forest roads. Following on from lessons learnt last year, Sunday’s Tarmac event will start later to allow the Army to clear the ranges, should any of its overnight exercises overrun. Crews will then do two loops of three stages before a service halt at the Royal Welsh Showground, and another three stages done twice in the afternoon. This format will make Sunday’s stages run a lot more efficiently, yet provide competitors with the very best challenge Epynt can throw at them and make it a truly tremendous day out for the spectators.”


Nicky Grist said: “This year’s route is going to be absolutely fantastic for each and every competitor, with some great viewing points for spectators. We’re very lucky to have some of the best forestry stages on our doorstep, and the gravel part of the event will feel similar to last year – albeit with three of the four stages run in the opposite direction. The next day on Tarmac has been designed to flow and breathe a lot better. Cars will still run at thirty-second intervals, but the stage layouts and timetable will make it much better for crews and spectators. As the only mixed-surface round of the British Rally Championship, this year’s event will be a true rally challenge.”


In association with Spencer Sport, Nicky Grist Stages VIP Hospitality packages are available for both Saturday and Sunday – with exclusive car parking, stage-side viewing area, marquee, breakfast, lunch, unlimited refreshments and guest speakers. For information on availability and cost, please contact Sarah Williams on 01559 371534.

© 2017



10 rally championships come to Builth Wells this summer for the economy-boosting Nicky Grist Stages

13 March 2017

This summer’s Nicky Grist Stages (8-9 July) will play host to no less than 10 different rally championships – highlighting not only what a major sporting attraction the event now is, but also a major boost for the economy of Builth Wells, Llanelwedd and the nearby Powys and Carmarthenshire towns and villages.


Organised by Quinton Motor Club, this year’s Nicky Grist Stages is, for the second year running, the only event to host a round of both the Prestone MSA British Rally Championship and Ravenol BTRDA Rally Series – meaning that Britain’s best rally drivers will be coming to the region. It is also a round of eight other championships too, including the Pirelli MSA Welsh Forest Rally Championship, MAXXIS MSA English Championship, BTRDA Rally First, Fiesta ST Trophy and FMP Rally Challenge – attracting the best regional and young up-and-coming drivers to mid-Wales.


The event will be based at the Royal Welsh Showground, with around 45 loose-surface stage miles planned for Saturday (8 July) in the forests of Crychan, Halfway, Route 60 and Monument. Only around a quarter of the forest stage miles will be held on Natural Resources Wales land, helping to keep the cost of running and participating on the event down. Sunday (9 July) will see a further 75 asphalt stage miles over the famous fast, undulating and spectacular Epynt military ranges.


To accommodate all 10 rally championships over the two day rally festival, there will be effectively three rallies in one. The split is as follows:


Nicky Grist Stages BRC (two day Saturday and Sunday event)
Prestone MSA British Rally Championship
FMP Rally Challenge


Nicky Grist Stages (one day Saturday event)
Ravenol BTRDA Rally Series
Pirelli MSA Welsh Forest Rally Championship
MAXXIS MSA English Rally Championship
BTRDA 1400 Championship
BTRDA Rally First
Fiesta ST Trophy
MG ZR Rally Challenge
FMP Rally Challenge
ANWCC Forest Rally Championship


Spencer Sport Acropolis Rally (one day Sunday event)
MAXXIS MSA English Rally Championship
FMP Rally Challenge


The Sunday rally will be sponsored by Llandysul-based rally team Spencer Sport, and will be known as the Spencer Sport Acropolis Rally – which pays homage to one of the very earliest events ever organised by Quinton MC. Soon after the club was formed in 1959, Quinton MC ran (amongst others) the Acropolis Rally from the mid-1960s onwards. It became a hugely popular Welsh Championship night road rally, however it has not taken place in this format since 1986. The club last used the name for a single venue stage event at Wheaton Aston for three years in the late 1980s. So, after an absence of over 25 years, the Acropolis Rally name returns to Quinton MC’s events calendar for 2017.


For the Prestone MSA British Rally Championship crews, this year’s Nicky Grist Stages will be a challenging two-day mixed surface event. For the MAXXIS MSA English Championship competitors, the event will be a double-header, with points awarded after day one and day two.


Neil Cross, Nicky Grist Stages Clerk of the Course, said: “Having so many of the top championships wanting the Nicky Grist Stages to be included in their calendar is a great honour for the event and a testament of the challenge the event will pose. We learnt a great deal from last year’s event and we are planning a truly fantastic experience for all our competitors, regardless of championship. On a personal note it is pleasing that we can bring back an iconic name in Quinton MC’s rallying history. As an organiser I started with both the D’Isis and Acropolis Rallies, and to bring back the Acropolis Rally name evokes many wonderful memories.”


Nicky Grist said: “When I started sponsoring the Nicky Grist Stages, I did not imagine that we would become a qualifying event for ten different championships. This is testimony to the hard work of all the main officials and Quinton Motor Club, who work really hard to make it, what it is fair to say, the biggest rally in the UK behind Wales Rally GB. The Sunday format has change to accommodate the Acropolis Rally, and twelve stages in a day will offer a real challenge.”

© 2017



Nicky Grist Stages wins prestigious 2016 BTRDA ‘Rally of the Year’ award

11 January 2017

The Nicky Grist Stages has won the prestigious Bill Turner Trophy for the Best Event in the 2016 Ravenol BTRDA Rally Series.


It’s the fourth time that the Quinton Motor Club-organised rally has won the award, having lifted the trophy in 2005, 2010 and 2012. It has also been nominated as one of the top three best organised BTRDA Rally Series events for the last six years in succession.


Luke Francis/John Roberts (Mitsubishi Lancer Evo IX) scored BTRDA Rally Series victory on the Nicky Grist Stages last year, finishing over a minute ahead of Stephen Petch/Michael Wilkinson (Ford Fiesta R5+), with Paul Benn/Richard Cooke (Ford Focus WRC02) coming home in third. Charlie Payne/Carl Williamson (Ford Fiesta) led until electrical problems put them out, although that didn’t stop them becoming 2016 BTRDA Rally Series champions at season end.


In addition to the BTRDA ‘Rally of the Year’ award, which was presented to Quinton MC at the recent BTRDA awards evening at the Ramada Hotel in Sutton Coldfield, the 2016 Nicky Grist Stages also won the Pirelli MSA Welsh Forest Rally Championship Event of the Year award.


Quinton MC is currently busy finalising route details for this year’s Nicky Grist Stages – which will run over the weekend of 8-9 July. 2017 celebrates the 37th running of Quinton MC’s forest stage rally, the 30th consecutive year of it hosting a round of the BTRDA Rally Series, the seventh year of title sponsorship from Nicky Grist Motorsports and its second appearance as a round of the MSA British Rally Championship. Based at the Royal Welsh Showground near Builth Wells, this year’s event will retain its popular 2016 two-day mixed surface format, with gravel stages in the forests on the Saturday (8 July), and BRC crews continuing over the Tarmac stage of Epynt on the Sunday (9 July).


Neil Cross, Nicky Grist Stages Clerk of the Course, said: “Organising and running an event as big as the Nicky Grist Stages is a team effort and this award is a testimony to the hard work put in by everybody. Last year was the biggest challenge the event has ever faced; bringing three major championships together was tough but maintaining the quality the BTRDA has come to expect was one of our highest priorities and the fact we achieved that and were recognised by the BTRDA with the Bill Turner award for Best Event is something we are all extremely proud of.”

© 2017



Nicky Grist Stages on 8-9 July 2017 adds new national rally to its two-day mixed surface BRC spectacular

07 December 2016

Next year’s Nicky Grist Stages (8-9 July) will host round five of the 2017 MSA British Rally Championship (BRC) – and whilst that will be a two-day mixed surface event, there will also be one-day rounds of other major championships, including the Ravenol BTRDA Rally Series, run on both the Saturday and Sunday next summer.


Organised by Quinton Motor Club, the date of the 2017 Nicky Grist Stages had been published as 15-16 July, but owing to MOD activities on the Epynt military range, the event will take place one week earlier on 8-9 July – the corresponding weekend to 2016, which saw 162 cars start from the Royal Welsh Showground.


Next year’s event will follow a similar format to 2016, with a mixed-surface two-day rally for the BRC crews. Saturday’s forestry gravel stages, run in the spectacular Carmarthenshire and Powys border region, will also host a round of the BTRDA Rally Series and include the MSA Welsh Rally Championship and the FMP Rally Challenge. Sunday’s stages will be held over the challenging asphalts road of Epynt for the BRC crews, plus at least one other National B event.


Builth Wells will play host to the ceremonial start and finish, the main service area will be in the nearby Royal Welsh Showground and there will be a new remote service area on Epynt on the Sunday.


Neil Cross, Nicky Grist Stages Clerk of the Course, said: “Whilst the popular two-day gravel on Saturday and Tarmac on Sunday format of next year’s Nicky Grist Stages will be similar to 2016, the event has acted on the excellent and positive feedback received from competitors and will have a slightly different feel to it. We’ve worked closely with Natural Resources Wales and Rally4Wales to introduce some fresh gravel stages, whilst we’re looking at extending the Tarmac stage mileage on day two and also run a National B event on the Sunday as well.”


Nicky Grist said: “The gravel route of next year’s Nicky Grist Stages is pretty much all confirmed, and we are truly blessed to have some of the very best forestry stages in Wales right on our doorstep. We’ll have a different route layout for the Sunday’s asphalt stages, which will allow the event to breathe. We’ll have a later start and a later finish, and we hope to run as much as seventy stage miles on the Sunday. Cars will still start at thirty-second intervals on the Tarmac – this makes it action-packed for the spectators, and has proven to keep the roaming sheep off the road, which is an important safety consideration.”


Iain Campbell, BRC Championship Manager, said: “The Nicky Grist Stages proves once and for all that rallying is a team sport. The driver and co-driver may be the stars out on the stages, but the mixed-surface challenge from this rally means that the mechanics are the stars on Saturday night when they only have 180 minutes to change the complete suspension parts, brakes and roll bars on the cars. This year there were a lot of anxious faces around the service park as the end of day service began that were exchanged for high-fives and applause all around each competitor’s area as they all completed the set up change in time. A unique challenge on an event that offers stages with the unique terrain of Eypnt – the Nicky Grist Stages is somewhere the BRC is looking forward to going back to in 2017.”


2017 MSA British Rally Championship calendar
17-18 March…..Border Counties (Jedburgh)
29-30 April…..Pirelli Carlisle Rally (Carlisle)
19-20 May…..RSAC Scottish Rally (Dumfries)

23-24 June…..Ypres Rally (Ypres, Belgium)
8-9 July…..Nicky Grist Stages (Builth Wells)

18-19 August…..Ulster Rally (Derry/Londonderry)

14-16 September…..Rally Isle of Man (Douglas)


2017 Ravenol BTRDA Rally Series calendar
11 February…..Cambrian Rally (Llandudno)
11 March…..Malcolm Wilson Rally (Cockermouth)
8 April…..Somerset Stages (Minehead)
13 May…..Plains Rally (Welshpool)
10 June…..Carlisle Stages Rally (Carlisle)
8 July…..Nicky Grist Stages (Builth Wells)
2 September…..Woodpecker Stages (Ludlow)
30 September…..Trackrod Forest Stages (Pickering)

© 2016



Nicky Grist Stages confirmed on 2017 BRC calendar

12 August 2016

The Nicky Grist Stages has been confirmed as a round of the 2017 MSA British Rally Championship (BRC) and will take place over the weekend of 15-16 July next year.


The Quinton Motor Club organised event hosted a round of the BRC for the first time this year, running as a two-day rally for the first time. Based at the Royal Welsh Showground, it was the only mixed-surface round of the 2016 BRC, with 45 stage miles run on gravel roads on the Carmarthenshire and Powys border on day one, followed by 60 stage miles on Tarmac over the Epynt military ranges on day two. After the challenging format received high praise from BRC competitors, next year’s event will follow a similar layout, with improvements and adjustments introduced following feedback and data collected this year.


Neil Cross, Nicky Grist Stages Clerk of the Course, said: “Having stepped up to the challenge in 2016 and gaining valuable experience of running a round of the MSA British Rally Championship, we are delighted to be included in the 2017 calendar. The event in 2016 was very well received, and we will take on the feedback we’ve acquired and will strive to improve the event for 2017.”


Nicky Grist said: “I am delighted that the BRC has incorporated the Nicky Grist Stages into its 2017 calendar. We learnt a lot after running a two-day event for the first time in 2016, and we are much better equipped and excited about running a better event in 2017.”


Iain Campbell, BRC Championship Manager, said: “The feedback we had from competitors about the event’s two-day mixed-surface format, together with the brilliant support we received from event organisers and from Nicky as the sponsor, made putting the Nicky Grist Stages on the 2017 BRC calendar a very easy decision to make. It’s a very appealing event, and we’re looking forward to returning to Builth Wells next July.”


2017 MSA British Rally Championship calendar
4-5 March                     Mid-Wales Stages (Newtown)
29-30 April                   Pirelli Carlisle Rally (Carlisle)
19-20 May                   RSAC Scottish Rally (Dumfries)

23-24 June                   Ypres Rally (Ypres, Belgium)
15-16 July                    Nicky Grist Stages (Builth Wells)

18-19 August               Ulster Rally (Derry/Londonderry)

14-16 September          Rally Isle of Man (Douglas)

© 2016



Elfyn Evans leads the champagne celebrations in Builth Wells after a superb Nicky Grist Stages

11 July 2016

Elfyn Evans, co-driven by fellow Welshman Craig Parry, won the 2016 Nicky Grist Stages (9-10 July) in their DMACK British Rally Team Ford Fiesta R5 – and celebrated in style by spraying the champagne in Groe Park, Builth Wells, at the end of a gruelling 100 mile event.


It was the first time that the Nicky Grist Stages had hosted a round of the MSA British Rally Championship, and to mark the occasion Quinton Motor Club had organised a 100 mile mixed-surfaced two-day event. With its headquarters at the Royal Welsh Showground, the event had attracted a 180 car capacity entry, with 45 stage miles run on gravel on Saturday and a further 60 miles run on Tarmac over the Epynt military ranges on Sunday.


Quinton Motor Club overcame a number of big challenges – not least the appallingly wet and windy weather conditions, which makes running such a vast outdoor event that much more difficult. Despite this, a large number of spectators braved the conditions – and 150 guests enjoyed a VIP day out at a stage-side hospitality marquee, where they enjoyed superb food, excellent viewing and a host of guest speakers.


The event also raised money for the Tirabad Village Hall, Brecon Rotary Club and the Welsh Air Ambulance, via collections and donations made during the event. Thanks to the generosity of those enjoying the entertainment in the Competitors’ Lounge in Rally HQ on Saturday night, a charity auction also raised over £1,600 for the Gareth Roberts Fund.


The event’s association with the GoSafe Safety Camera Partnership proved to be a big success, with no reported spike in road traffic offences over the weekend period for that region, despite the increase in traffic, and a fairly low number of motorist caught speeding – none of which are currently known to be associated in any way with the event.


In the battle for the BRC title, Evans took the lead of the Nicky Grist Stages on SS3 and never looked back – the Dolgellau driver going on to set a total of 12 fastest stage times to win the event by 1 minute 11.4 seconds and extend his lead at the top of the BRC points table. Aberdyfi’s Tom Cave and co-driver James Morgan made it a Welsh one-two by finishing second in their Spencer Sport Fiesta R5, while Desi Henry/Liam Moynihan (ŠKODA Fabia R5) finished third.


The top three finishers overall, together with the top three DMACK Junior BRC finishers – 1st Robert Duggan/Ger Conway, 2nd Mattias Adielsson/Andreas Johansson (both Vauxhall Adam R2s) and 3rd Sindre Furuseth/Jim Hjerpe (Renault Twingo R2) – plus all the class winners (including Matt Edwards/Will Rogers, who clinched the BRC2 title in their Mitsubishi Lancer Evo IX) attended a special finish ceremony in Groe Park. There, on the banks of the River Wye and with Builth Wells’ iconic 18th Century bridge in the background, they were presented with their trophies by the Mayor of Builth Wells, Councillor Meryl Prynne, and the Head of Planning and ICT from Powys County Council, Mrs. Avril York.


Chris Wheeler/Yan Griffiths crashed their Citroen DS3 R3T on SS14, which saw the rapid deployment of the emergency rescue and medical units, and so the results were declared final after 15 of the 18 scheduled stages. Quinton Motor Club wishes Chris and Yan a full and speedy recovery.


In the battle for points in the Ravenol BTRDA Rally Series, Pirelli MSA Welsh Forest Rally Championship, HRCR Stage Masters Challenge, ANWCC Forest Rally Championship, ANWCC Historic Stage Rally Championship and FMP Rally Challenge – which ran exclusively over the eight gravel stages on Saturday ­– it was Luke Francis/John Roberts who came out on top, winning by over a minute in their Mitsubishi Lancer Evo IX. Stephen Petch/Michael Wilkinson (Ford Fiesta R5+) and Paul Benn/Richard Cooke (Ford Focus WRC02) finished second and third, after strong trouble-free runs. Julian Reynolds/Patrick Walsh (Ford Focus WRC) led after SS1, only to lose time with steering issues on SS2 and retiring on SS4 with a holed radiator. BTRDA Gold Star leaders Charlie Payne/Carl Williamson (Ford Fiesta) led for a time too, until electrical problems put them out on SS6. 2013 Nicky Grist Stages winners Euan Thorburn/Paul Beaton (Peugeot 208 T16) retired with a cracked manifold.


Neil Cross, Nicky Grist Stages Clerk of the Course, said: “Quinton Motor Club has put on another high quality event, and we worked hard on a new mixed-surface two-day format, which was extremely well received by the competitors. The stage safety marshals and all the officials out in the field worked heroically in some pretty appalling weather conditions, and whilst circumstances didn’t allow us to complete the full route, we gave all the competitors a tough event that they certainly rose to the challenge of.”


Nicky Grist said: “Not only has it been a challenging event for the crews, the organisers have also had one of the toughest events we’ve had to organise in quite a number of years. The weather and army movements on the ranges were out of our control, but we overcame everything that was thrown at us and put on a fantastic fifteen-stage rally on two different surfaces that crews really enjoyed. We’ve learnt a lot. Next year we will do a few things differently, which will make it a much smoother and an even better event.”


Nicky Grist Stages – Top 10 finishers overall
1. Elfyn Evans /Craig Parry (Ford Fiesta R5)….1hr 18mins 48.4secs
2. Tom Cave/James Morgan (Ford Fiesta R5)….+1m11.4s
3. Desi Henry/Liam Moynihan (ŠKODA Fabia R5)….+2m01.8s
4. David Bogie/James O’Reilly (ŠKODA Fabia R5)….+2m48.5s
5. Josh Moffett/John Rowan (Ford Fiesta R5)…. +3m05.9s
6. Jonathan Greer/Kirsty Riddick (Citroën DS3 R5)…. +3m08.0s
7. Rhys Yates/Tom Woodburn (Ford Fiesta R5)….+3m30.0s
8. Jamie Anderson/Ross Whittock (Ford Fiesta R5)….+5m38.2s
9. Ollie Mellors/Ian Windress (Proton Satria Neo S2000)….+5m48.7s
10. Tom Preston/Jack Morton (ŠKODA Fabia R5)….+5m58.7s

© 2016



New picturesque podium finish location brings the Nicky Grist Stages to the heart of Builth Wells

05 July 2016

This year’s Nicky Grist Stages podium finish celebrations will be held on the banks of the River Wye, overlooking Builth Wells’ 18th Century bridge, at 14.00 on Sunday 10 July – as the event brings a new picturesque ending to Round 5 of the 2016 MSA British Rally Championship.


After all 100 stage miles have been completed, the top three overall finishers in the BRC, together with the three highest placed DMACK Junior BRC crews and the BRC class winners (together with their cars), will be invited to spray the champagne at Groe Park – a short distance from the rally headquarters and the event service area at the Royal Welsh Showground.


Local dignitaries, including the Mayor of Builth Wells, motorsport photographers and TV camera crews from Channel 4, BT Sport and S4C will all attend the finish ceremony. Entry is free and fans are very welcome to come and see the stars of the BRC celebrate conquering the only mixed-surface event in the BRC.


Neil Cross, Nicky Grist Stages Clerk of the Course, said: “Seeing the MSA British Rally Championship crews at the end of two tough days of competition celebrating in style in such picturesque surroundings is a new venture for us, and we hope many locals will come out and help with those celebrations.”


Nicky Grist said: “The new picturesque finish location for 2016 offers a pleasant end to what I am sure will be a very hard fought rally by the crews. With the Mayor of Builth Wells in attendance, we will be showing off the town’s best known landmark and have opened the event up to the general public.”

© 2016



BRC leader and local hero Elfyn Evans heads star-studded Nicky Grist Stages entry list

04 July 2016

Elfyn Evans and co-driver Craig Parry have been seeded at number one for this weekend’s Quinton Motor Club organised Nicky Grist Stages – which starts from the Royal Welsh Showground in Builth Wells this Saturday (9 July).


The DMACK British Rally Team crew lead the MSA British Rally Championship, and they’ll be the first away in their Ford Fiesta R5 when the two-day rally festival gets underway. BRC crews fill the top 10, with CA1 Sport stable-mates Fredrik Åhlin/Morten Abrahamsen (Ford Fiesta R5) and David Bogie/Kevin Rae (ŠKODA Fabia R5) seeded at two and three, Spencer Sport’s Tom Cave/James Morgan (Ford Fiesta R5) seeded at four and the 2013 Nicky Grist Stages winners Euan Thorburn/Paul Beaton (Peugeot 208T16) seeded at five.


A magnificent 11 car DMACK Junior BRC entry has been received, with Scottish Rally winners Sindre Furuseth/Jim Hjerpe (Renault Twingo R2) the top seeds.


Plains Rally winners Julian Reynolds/Patrick Walsh are the top seeded Ravenol BTRDA Rally Series crew at number 11 in their ex-Marcus Gronholm 2006 Wales Rally GB winning Focus WRC. Pirelli MSA Welsh Forest Rally Championship leaders Luke Francis/John H Roberts, who won the recent Severn Valley Stages, are seeded at 12 in their Mitsubishi Lancer Evo IX, while BTRDA Gold Star leaders Charlie Payne/Carl Williamson (Ford Fiesta) will start at number 14.


An amazing 20 different car manufacturers are represented on the entry list.


The closing date for entries is tomorrow (5 July), and the full seeded entry list can be found in the Competitors’ section of nickygriststages.co.uk.


Teams will arrive in Builth Wells on Friday (8 July) for technical scrutineering, before attending a route briefing and rally forum in Rally Headquarters – which is the Hafod A Hendre building inside the Royal Welsh Showground (adjacent to the Service Area). Crews will face 45 miles of competition on gravel on Saturday 9 July, while the BRC continues the next day with a further 60 miles over the famous Tarmac stages of the Epynt military range.


Neil Cross, Nicky Grist Stages Clerk of the Course, said: “With such a fantastic entry across all the championships, the action this weekend will be fast and furious. We are looking forward to welcoming everyone to the Royal Welsh Showground in Builth Wells on Friday, for the start of what promises to be a fantastic rally. We understand it may be possible for one or two of the championship titles to be settled this weekend as well, and we wish everyone a good safe rally.”


Nicky Grist said: “We are in for a real treat this weekend! With the mixture of the leading BRC and BTRDA crews, the pace will be fierce for the lead from the word go. While I am sure the crews will be looking forward to it, I think the spectators will be more so. The fabulous vantage points on the route will make the spectacle come alive.”


Nicky Grist Stages – Top 10 starters
1. Elfyn Evans /Craig Parry (Ford Fiesta R5)
2. Fredrik Åhlin/Morten Abrahamsen (Ford Fiesta R5)
3. David Bogie/Kevin Rae (ŠKODA Fabia R5)
4. Tom Cave/James Morgan (Ford Fiesta R5)
5. Euan Thorburn/Paul Beaton (Peugeot 208T16)
6. Josh Moffett/John Rowan (Ford Fiesta R5)
7. Desi Henry/Liam Moynihan (ŠKODA Fabia R5)
8. Jonathan Greer/Kirsty Riddick (Citroën DS3 R5)
9. Jamie Anderson/Ross Whittock (Ford Fiesta R5)
10. Matt Edwards/Will Rogers (Mitsubishi Lancer Evo IX)

© 2016



Q&A with Nicky Grist

01 July 2016

As a winner of 21 FIA World Rally Championship events (17, including the 1997 RAC Rally, co-driving for Colin McRae), the title sponsor of Round 5 of the MSA British Rally Championship, the Nicky Grist Stages (9-10 July), knows a thing or two about rallying! Still as actively involved in the sport as ever – he owns Nicky Grist Motorsports, the sole UK importer of Stilo helmets, and is an MSA Academy Co-driver Training Coach – this is the sixth year that Nicky has sponsored the award-winning event.


The Nicky Grist Stages hosts a round of the BRC for the first time in its 36-year history – and to celebrate this, Quinton Motor Club has organised a new two-day mixed-surface rally, with 45 stage miles on gravel on Saturday 9 July, followed by a further 60 stage miles on Tarmac over the Epynt military ranges on Sunday 10 July.


With the event fast approaching, we spoke to Nicky about this year’s route and what he believes will be the key to success, as an international field travels to Builth Wells for what promises to be a spectacular rally.


When did you decide on a new mixed-surface event for your first appearance in the BRC and what have been the main challenges in organising it?
“It’s an idea we’ve had for a couple of years now, to make the Nicky Grist Stages a mixture of gravel and Tarmac, and when we had the opportunity to become a round of the MSA British Rally Championship, that cemented the idea. It was the perfect opportunity to have a day dedicated to gravel and another day dedicated to Tarmac. It has been relatively straightforward to organise, because Quinton Motor Club and the Clerk of the Course, Neil Cross, are such a fantastic group of highly experienced rally organisers that organising a mixed-surface event was no issue at all for them. It’s brought some new elements into the planning of the event of course, like flexi-service and overnight parc ferme. The main challenge on the Tarmac sections was to make sure that every stage counts towards the overall results, and that there will be no problems with the average speeds of the top R5 cars, and I’m confident we’ve achieved that in our route planning.”


What different challenges will a mixed-surface event pose to drivers, co-drivers and teams?
“They’ll have to go from one day driving on gravel, straight into the next day driving on asphalt – which are two very different driving techniques – without any testing whatsoever. That’s going to be a challenge, because you can brake so much later on Tarmac and the corner speeds are so much higher, yet crews will have to be on it from the word go on day two, without any practice in between. Mechanics will only have two and a half hours to turn a rally car from gravel to full Tarmac spec in the service area at the Royal Welsh Showground, which normally takes a day or two in a fully-equipped workshop environment. That’s going to be a challenge and something that I know mechanics are going to relish – and it will give spectators something fantastic to watch in service on the Saturday evening.”


The four gravel stages are quite different – what are the characteristics of Crychan, Halfway, Route 60 and Monument?
“We’re very fortunate to have on our event some of the best gravel stages in Wales, and Crychan, Halfway, Route 60 and Monument are full of character. Crychan has a lot more junctions and a few tighter corners for the drivers to negotiate, and it really is a wonderful stage. Halfway is somewhat similar, and there is a lovely section where the road is nicely cambered, which you won’t find on any of the other stages. Route 60 is run entirely on MOD land. It’s very hard gravel run on open moorland, so it’s very fast in places and high-speed commitment is essential to win this stage. There is also a small section of Tarmac near the end of Route 60, to give the drivers an extra challenge. Monument is another MOD stage, full of character and a great stage to drive. I’m sure crews will enjoy the challenge of all the gravel stages this year, which are tackled twice.”


Can you offer any tips to drivers and co-drivers heading to these wonderful forest stages for the first time?
“The high-speed nature of the gravel stages will certainly benefit the people who have done them before. Anyone driving them for the first time will need to make sure their pace notes are right, enabling them to gain confidence in year one for a more concerted effort in year two. Saying that, a driver with great car control and commitment will extract the very best from these stages, owing to their outstanding driveability.”


After the gravel of day one it will be all change for day two, with 60 miles on Tarmac for the BRC crews. What can you say about the asphalt route chosen?
“The Nicky Grist Stages joined the 2016 British Rally Championship calendar quite late in the day, and by then there were certain sections that were unavailable owing to army training operations on the ranges. However, we have a fantastic relationship with the MOD and they have been extremely accommodating, so we are actually using around ninety per cent of the Tarmac roads that could be used. The Tarmac roads on the Epynt military range are exceptionally fast, and not for the faint-hearted! They’re so fast that we’ve had to introduce a necessary evil, chicanes, to slow the average speeds down. We want every stage to count towards the overall results, so we’ve positioned these chicanes mostly in very high-speed straight-line locations, where the rally will not be won or lost. There are still a lot of high commitment sections of road left open for drivers to prove their ability and bravery.”


Day two starts and finishes with the two longest stages of the BRC event. Will these be the key asphalt stages, or are there more surprises in between?
“While all the stages will be important, anyone showing a good turn of speed will maximise their opportunities on the longest stages. The first Tarmac stage on day two is one of the longest of the event, and I think this is where the eventually winners will show their mettle. After the previous day competing on gravel, there will be no time to bed yourself into the Tarmac stages, as it will be flat-out from the word go – so the crew that can adapt quickest to driving fast on Tarmac will be able to gain valuable time.”


This year’s Nicky Grist Stages will have a new VIP hospitality marquee at Llandeilo’r Fan Triangle. What can guests look forward to?
“As a vantage point, I would say that the VIP hospitality marquee at Llandeilo’r Fan Triangle is the best place to watch a motorsport event from in the UK, because it’s right next to the action, you can see the cars for a long time and you can see them on gravel and Tarmac from the same location. There will be a five star marquee set up, great food and drink and excellent company – all on the top of the Epynt military ranges, with stunning views down to the Brecon Beacons. What more can you ask for?”


What would be your Nicky Grist Stages strategy, if you were contesting the event in the co-driver’s seat and out to win?
“Motivation of the driver is absolutely key, as the Nicky Grist Stages will be a rally of commitment, not endurance. Concise and clear pace note reading is vital to boost the driver’s confidence, and for them to perform at the very best of their abilities. There will be no let up. The winner of this year’s rally will have to perform well on every stage, and be willing to fight for every second on both the gravel and Tarmac stages.”

© 2016



Rally championships finely balanced as 180 crews look forward to the Nicky Grist Stages

27 June 2016

This year’s Nicky Grist Stages (9-10 July) is the only event to host a round of both the MSA British Rally Championship and Ravenol BTRDA Rally Series – together with the Pirelli MSA Welsh Forest Rally Championship and a host of other top class British championships.


Quinton Motor Club has organised 45 stage miles on gravel for Saturday 9 July, over the magnificent loose-surface roads of Crychan, Halfway, Route 60 and Monument. The only mixed-surface round of the BRC continues on Sunday 10 July, with a further 60 miles over the fantastic Tarmac stages of the Epynt military range.


With a capacity entry of 180 crews, along with team personnel, rally fans and officials now preparing to travel to the event’s host town of Builth Wells, we take a look how the various championships stand, and who are likely to be the key players at this year’s Nicky Grist Stages.


MSA British Rally Championship
Elfyn Evans has retaken the lead in the MSA British Rally Championship, after the DMACK British Rally Team Ford Fiesta R5 driver won round four of the series, the RSAC Scottish Rally, last weekend. The Welshman arrives in Builth Wells, just down the A470 from his home in Dolgellau, 20 points ahead of Fredrik Åhlin in the drivers’ standings. All the BRC events are new to the Swedish driver, who has been a revelation in his CA1 Sport-prepared Fiesta R5 and who led the series after taking victory on the Pirelli Carlisle Rally. However, a second retirement of the season in Scotland leaves Åhlin promising to “push like hell” on the Nicky Grist Stages, as he aims for nothing less than wins. Tom Cave is third in his Spencer Sport Fiesta R5 – the Welshman’s last appearance in the Epynt forests ended at the bottom of a ravine after a pre-BRC season accident on the Red Kite Rally, but he’s been on great form ever since and returns full of confidence. Monaghan’s Josh Moffett is Ireland’s top placed BRC driver in fourth, while the first non-Fiesta R5 is the Citroën DS3 R5 of Jonny Greer, who brings to Builth Wells a great deal of gravel and Tarmac rally experience. After retiring from his Joker-playing home round, Scotland’s David Bogie will be out to make amends in his ŠKODA Fabia R5 – a car that Desi Henry, Neil Simpson and Tom Preston will also be piloting. There is a great battle in the under 26-year old DMACK Junior BRC category, with the Vauxhall Motorsport Junior Rally Team Adam R2 pairing of Robert Duggan and Mattias Adielsson fighting with the Ford Fiesta R2s of Gus Greensmith, Josh Cornwell Meirion Evans, Adam Bustard and Blair Brown – although it was Sindre Furuseth who won last time out in his Renault Twingo R2. Matt Edwards leads the BRC2 production series in his Mitsubishi Evo 9.


Ravenol BTRDA Rally Series
Another good result on the Nicky Grist Stages would make it extremely difficult for anyone to stop Charlie Payne becoming 2016 Ravenol BTRDA Gold Star champion. Co-driven by Carl Williamson, the Fiesta driver has posted two wins, two seconds and one fourth, and with six scores from eight rallies to count, that run of success puts him in a very strong position. After five rounds Andy Davies is second in the overall drivers’ standings, and after an excellent season so far the Lampeter man is also leading the Production Cup category in his Group N Subaru Impreza. Steve Simpson (Fiesta S2000) is third, Paul Benn (Focus WRC02) is fourth and Luke Francis (Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 9) is fifth – although with two wins, one second and two DNFs, a good run on the Nicky Grist Stages could see the Rhuddlan driver launch a late challenge for the title. Likewise, with two DNFs to his name, Stephen Petch (Fiesta R5+) needs a strong run of points-scoring finishes from now on to keep his title hopes alive. The race for the BTRDA Silver Star title is wide open, with Caernarfon’s Gavin Edwards (Escort), leading Llandovery’s Cameron Davies (Fiesta ST), while defending champion Boyd Kershaw (Escort Mk2) is third. In the Thomas Panels BTRDA 1400 Championship, Neil Andrew leads Karl Davies (both Nissan Micra), while Dominique Hodge (Micra) leads the Rally First category, five points ahead of top lady driver Emily Retallick (Peugeot 205)


Pirelli MSA Welsh Forest Rally Championship
Luke Francis and co-driver John H Roberts lead the Pirelli MSA Welsh Forest Rally Championship, after recording their fourth maximum points score of the season on the Severn Valley Stages in their Mitsubishi Evo 9. Dylan Davies (Subaru Impreza) finished second on the most recent event to maintain second in the points standings, 30 points behind the leader. Andrew Jones arrives in Builth Wells third overall and leading both the Vital Equipment Junior Welsh Championship for drivers’ and the two-wheel drive category in his Ford Escort. Andy Davies slipped from second to fourth in the overall standings after retiring from the Severn Valley with fuel pump problems on his Subaru Impreza, although he continues to lead Group N. Brecon’s Sara Williams claimed Group N honours last time out, on her first rally in nearly seven months. Just three points separate fifth place defending Group N champion Paul Davy (Subaru) and Wug Utting (Subaru), while New Zealander Boyd Kershaw (Escort) is seventh. Luke Francis also leads the Ravenol Welsh Challenge from Andrew Jones, while four drivers are tied on points in third place.


HRCR Stage Masters Challenge
The Nicky Grist Stages marks the mid-way point of this new challenge for historic cars, which allows competitors to pick and choose their favourite gravel and Tarmac events and which has a points scoring system that gives everyone a chance of becoming overall champion. It’s proven to be a big success, with 20 registered crews and a fantastic mix of cars including Minis, Hillman Avengers, Datsuns, Opel Asconas, Porsches and of course Escort Mk1s and Mk2s. Northern Island’s Stanley Orr (Escort Mk1) currently leads the standings, having scored maximum points in all three previous rounds. Business commitments forces Orr to miss the Nicky Grist Stages, but his co-driver Guy Weaver hopes to maintain his lead in the navigators’ table as he partners Rudi Lancaster (Escort Mk1). Quinton MC members Peter Barlow/Mark Dillon will be aiming for Escort Mk2 honours, having recently finished repairing their car. Dessie Nutt/Geraldine McBride will be ones to watch in their Porsche 911, while Rikki Proffitt/Graham Wild will be aiming to end a run of bad luck on gravel with a good run in their Datsun 240Z.


ANWCC Forest Rally Championship
At the halfway point in the 2016 ANWCC Forest Rally Championship, Dolgellau driver Siôn Ellis holds a commanding lead in his Nissan Sunny – and regardless of the result on the Nicky Grist Stages, he will continue to be ahead of the closely grouped pack. Matthew Jackson is currently in the runners-up position, having led for a time in his Nissan Micra. 2015 champion Jayne Auden-Row is just one point behind Jackson, having forsaken her championship-winning MG for a Lancer for most of this year’s events. Small cars dominate with Paul Ellis fourth in his ŠKODA Favorit that has been returned to competition after a few years parked in his back yard! Scotsman Richard Crozier heads the co-drivers’ table, having contested all six qualifying rounds in a variety of cars, while North Walian Caron Tomlinson is second and Ian Jones third. Ladies take up the next two co-drivers places – fourth overall is currently Heather Merrison in her first season, whilst Jackson’s co-driver Claire Williams is close behind. The championship includes awards for best front- and rear-wheel drive competitors as well as novice, junior and senior awards.


FMP Rally Challenge
With three sealed surface and two forestry rallies having taken place, crews who just compete on gravel will be looking to redress the balance with 48 FMP Rally Challenge contenders already entered. Company Director Nev Jones brings his Vulcan Fasteners Subaru S7 WRC from Staffordshire and is aiming to take the FMP Gravel Cup from Cardiganshire’s Dylan Davies this year. Nev’s co-driver Chris Davies is in the running to win the FMP Junior title. BTRDA Production Cup leader Andy Davies with Max Freeman will be their closest rivals. A certain top 10 current position in the standings was thwarted when Chepstow’s Sacha Kakad retired on the Lawrence Landfill Stages in Dale in a hired Evo 10. He scored a class win on reserve round, the Severn Valley Stages, and he and Chesterfield driver Rhys Yates could still potentially become overall victors. Current junior and overall leader, 22-year old Siobahn Pugh from Newton, hangs on to the co-driver’s lead despite missing the last round, the Midsummer Stages at Caerwent. She has entered with fellow contender Siôn Ellis in a Nissan Sunny. Siobahn is hoping to emulate inaugural FMP Champion Claire Williams who took both titles in 2013 and who is competing with John Easson award winner Matthew Jackson. Claire is currently the leading BTRDA female co-driver. After an outing on the Red Kite Stages, current leading driver Wynne Watkins has vowed to stick to Tarmac and a 3rd in class on his optional nominated overseas round, the Manx Trophy Rally, gives him a four point lead. In a bid to help raise the profile of the championships chosen charity, the Wales Air Ambulance, Elfyn Evans and Osian Pryce have registered and will carry FMP colours on selected rounds which coincide with the BRC.


Neil Cross, Nicky Grist Stages Clerk of the Course, said: “We welcome each of the championships that the Nicky Grist Stages count towards to Builth Wells. With a capacity entry the battles that have developed so far this season will continue on the classic gravel and asphalt stages we have put together. It has become a tradition that class and sometimes overall championships will be decided on the Nicky Grist Stages, and we wait to see how things unfold this year. What ever happens Quinton Motor Club has worked hard to put the event on for you all.”

© 2016



Nicky Grist Stages route confirmed – all NRW gravel forest roads to be used as originally planned

22 June 2016

An agreement between Quinton Motor Club, the Motor Sports Association (MSA) and Natural Resources Wales (NRW) has been reached, whereby all the 45 gravel stage mile route of the Nicky Grist Stages (9-10 July) will run as originally planned.


The continuing negotiations between the MSA and NRW had given Quinton Motor Club, the event organisers, a number of route options – but the agreement sees the best possible route confirmation outcome for the event and for the 180 crews who have already entered.


This means that all the 5.92 mile Crychan forest stage will be used as originally intended, along with the opening 2.45 miles of the 6.05 mile Halfway stage. The other two gravel stages, Route 60 (4.92 miles) and Monument (5.46 miles) are run entirely on military land. All four gravel stages will be run twice on Saturday 9 July, meaning a fantastic 44.70 miles of competition for competitors in the MSA British Rally Championship, Ravenol BTRDA Rally Series, Pirelli MSA Welsh Forest Rally Championship, HRCR Stage Masters Challenge, ANWCC Forest Rally Championship, ANWCC Historic Stage Rally Championship and FMP Rally Challenge.


The BRC will continue onto day two (Sunday 10 July), where there will be a further 10 stages on Tarmac over the famous Epynt military ranges. Four stages – Quarry (4.39 miles), Cilieni (4.52 miles), Deers (4.42 miles) and Tank (4.36 miles) – will be tackled twice, together with New Road (11.77 miles) and ending with the longest stage of the event, Drovers Return (11.84 miles). Day two’s competitive distance totals 58.99 miles, giving BRC competitors an overall total stage distance of 103.43 miles.


On the Saturday, centralised servicing will be located at the Royal Welsh Showground in Builth Wells, while on the Sunday there will be a remote service on the Epynt ranges. All stages will be run in daylight.


Rob Jones, MSA Chief Executive, said: “Against the background of continuing detailed discussions between the MSA and NRW, and in the spirit of those discussions, an accommodation has been reached allowing the 2016 Nicky Grist Stages to run as planned.”


Neil Cross, Nicky Grist Stages Clerk of the Course, said: “Now we have agreement from NRW to run our original route we are pleased the uncertainty is over. It has been a testing few weeks but our plans can now be realised 100%. We are grateful to both the NRW and the MSA for facilitating this agreement.”


Nicky Grist said: “Now we have the green light for go! I am absolutely delighted. Quinton Motor Club has worked hard to get to this point and now it can focus more positively on running a great rally for everyone.”

© 2016



Local charities set for annual rally boost, as full 180 car entry gears up for the Nicky Grist Stages

20 June 2016

Local charities are set to benefit from a capacity 180 car field and increased spectators numbers watching Britain’s top rally drivers when the Nicky Grist Stages (9-10 July) takes place next month.


Each year the event raises money for three local charities. The revenue received from all the spectator car parking charges and rally programme sales are split evenly between the Tirabad Village Hall and the Brecon Lions Club, while a collection is made at competitors’ signing on which, together with an additional donation by the event-organising Quinton Motor Club, is given to the Welsh Air Ambulance. And this year the event will be raising money for the BRC’s official charity partner, the Gareth Roberts Fund (www.garethrobertsfund.com) – which was set up in the memory of the 24-year old Welsh rally co-driving star who was tragically killed in a freak accident on the Targa Florio Rally in Sicily in June 2012.


In recent years the Nicky Grist Stages has been a one-day event, hosting a round of several championships, including the Ravenol BTRDA Rally Series and the Pirelli MSA Welsh Forest Rally Championship. For the first time in the event’s 36 year forest rally history, it will be a two-day event this year – as it also hosts a round of the MSA British Rally Championship. It is hoped that the best British rally drivers, tackling many of the best UK gravel and Tarmac stages, will attracted a record number of spectators to the Epynt military ranges – and in turn generate a record-breaking amount of money for the chosen charities.


The Wales Air Ambulance is celebrating its 15th birthday this year, and from small beginnings with one helicopter operating from Swansea airport, the charity now operates three state-of-the-art EC135 helicopters from Dafen near Llanelli, Welshpool and Caernarfon. The cost of operating these helicopters, currently around £6M a year, is funded by charity donations.


Mark James, one of the Wales Air Ambulance Trustees, said: “The rallying community has always been hugely supportive of the Wales Air Ambulance, possibly because of the awareness of getting urgent medical help to an incident miles away from the nearest hospital or ambulance station. Since we launched in 2001, we have become one of the most successful air ambulance charities in the UK and it’s thanks to donations from individuals and events like the Nicky Grist Stages that we’ve been able to expand and improve our service. Our next targets are the introduction of new, larger H145 helicopters in 2017 and a move towards 24-hour operations, so every penny we receive is vital. Thank you to everyone involved in the event for their support.”


Neil Cross, Nicky Grist Stages Clerk of the Course, said: “Supporting local charities is very important to Quinton MC and the Nicky Grist Stages as it puts something back into the local community. We are pleased to work with both The Rotary Club and Tirabad Village and wish them every success with their fundraising this year. We support the Welsh Air Ambulance in the hope we never have to use its services, however it's good to know that they are there should we need them.”

© 2016



Nicky Grist Stages teams up with GoSafe to help ensure every road user has a safe and enjoyable rally

10 June 2016

The Nicky Grist Stages (9-10 July) has teamed up with the GoSafe Safety Camera Partnership for a third year, to help make sure that all spectators travelling to, from and around the event, plus competitors and officials using rally route road sections, adhere to the speed limits and enjoy a safe event.


Nicky Grist, international co-driver James Morgan, Welsh Rally Championship driver Dylan Davies, Sergeant David Edwards (Dyfed-Powys Police) and Chris Hume, the GoSafe Partnership Manager, met in Cross Hands to discuss this year’s joint awareness initiative – where they took the opportunity to pose for a photoshoot with a GoSafe mobile safety camera van, a GoSafe motorcycle and Tom Cave’s Ford Fiesta R5, courtesy of Llandysul-based Spencer Sport.


GoSafe will have a highly visible roadside presence around the rally’s host town of Builth Wells and routes around the Epynt military ranges, encouraging all road users to drive responsibly and within the speed limits. It will also be looking out for seatbelt and mobile phone offences. GoSafe will also have a stand at the event’s rally headquarters at the Royal Welsh Showground, where information on their work will be available.


Whilst GoSafe is responsible for red light and speed camera enforcement, its aim of reducing casualties on Welsh roads is not just about enforcing the law. The partnership encourages motorists to drive legally and safely through education, and by offering permanent engineering solutions to roads. GoSafe is made up of 22 local authorities in Wales, four Welsh Police Forces and the Welsh Government, and works closely with the National Public Health Service and Fire Services in Wales.


Sergeant David Edwards from Dyfed-Powys Police said: “GoSafe is delighted to once again be working in partnership with the Nicky Grist Stages. The aim of GoSafe  is to make people safer on Welsh roads by reducing casualties and saving lives. We’ll have a very visible presence at this year’s event, and we hope all competitors and spectators enjoy Wales and our Welsh roads, and that your time with us is an enjoyable one. Please drive safely and respect the speed limits.”


Neil Cross, Nicky Grist Stages Clerk of the Course, said: “Rallying in Wales is a huge sport and for a concentrated period of time may cause disruption to the local communities we pass through. I’m pleased that we are continuing our partnership with GoSafe to ensure the competitors, officials and spectators are aware of the high profile presence of this initiative on this year’s Nicky Grist Stages so there is no excuse for bad or anti-social driving. Safety of other road users is paramount to a good relationship between events and the local community.”


Nicky Grist said: “Motorsport takes place on closed and marshalled roads, and is a safe and controlled environment that allows competitors to show their skill and expertise behind the steering wheel. That’s not the same on the open public road, where there are immeasurably more hazards and variables to consider, like pedestrians and on-coming traffic. It’s very important to drive in a safe and responsible manner, and that’s why the Nicky Grist Stages has once again teamed up with the GoSafe campaign, to make sure everyone who attends this year’s event has a safe and enjoyable weekend in and around the Epynt military ranges.”

© 2016



Nicky Grist Stages to be broadcast on Channel 4, BT Sport, Motors TV and on an S4C Ralïo special

03 June 2016

Television cameras will be focused on this year’s Nicky Grist Stages (9-10 July), as the event will enjoy an unprecedented amount of broadcast time on Channel 4, BT Sport and Motors TV – plus a dedicated 30-minute special on S4C’s Ralïo programme.


Hayfisher Productions will send a team of nine people to film the event for the MSA British Rally Championship. It has already completed a full route recce to determine the most suitable filming locations. Come the event, up to seven Panasonic 3100 cameras will take up these positions, ready to capture the on-stage action, while six cars will also carry two on-board cameras each. All the footage, including the pieces to camera by presenter Colin Clark and driver interviews, will be captured on solid-state cards (large data cards, about the size of a credit card). These will be taken back for post-production at Hayfisher’s studios in Droitwich, where Jon Desborough will do a voice over and the footage will be collalated in four editing suites – all overseen by Chief Editor, Martin Rowe and Producer Mark James.


Three days after the event, a 48-minute programme for BT Sport and a 23-minute programme for Channel 4 (standard industry programme times for a 1 hour and a 30-minute programme, with room for ad breaks) will be transmitted by high-speed data connection to the two stations, for broadcast that coming weekend.


Ian Carver, who worked for Hayfisher Productions for 25 years on motorsport projects and who is now employed as a freelance rally co-ordinator, is responsible for all the logistics.


“Filming a rally has its challenges,” says Ian. “It’s vital to do a full recce, because a map doesn’t show you any obstructions like trees that will ruin a shot. On a multiple stage event like the Nicky Grist Stages, it’s also important to work out how you’re going to get cameramen into locations on time, how and if they can move between stages and all the time never compromising on safety. You also have to think differently about gravel and Tarmac stages – with gravel there is often dust, and you never know what the wind direction is going to be until the day of the event, and on Tarmac the cars don’t slide as much, so you have to pick a camera position where there is a jump or something spectacular. And unlike racing, where cars pass you multiple times, you only get one chance in rallying!”


It’s not just Hayfisher Productions who’ll be filming on the Nicky Grist Stages this year. Special Stage will also have its own dedicated camera crew filming the event, following competitors in the Ravenol BTRDA Rally Series and Pirelli MSA Welsh Forest Rally Championship. Produced by Wayne Goldring, the programmes are broadcast on Motors TV and presented by Paul Woodford.


Meanwhile, the new series of Ralïo, now in its 13th year on S4C, is currently on air and broadcasting reports from the FIA World Rally Championship. Produced by Llanelli-based Tinopolis Wales and presented by Emyr Penlan and Lowri Morgan, a 30-minute Nicky Grist Stages special will be broadcast at 21.30 on Thursday 1 September. A Christmas special, following Elfyn Evans’ 2016 season, is planned, which is likely to include the Nicky Grist Stages as well.


Neil Cross, Nicky Grist Stages Clerk of the Course, said: “TV exposure for the event, Nicky and the various championships is very important to the organising team and we are extremely pleased with the coverage this year’s event will receive. Following our TV planning recce, during which we drove through all the gravel and Tarmac stages with Hayfisher Productions and experienced rally photographer Mark Writtle, I’m confident we have identified the very best and safest camera positions along the one hundred mile route. We’re looking forward to welcoming the film crews and all media to the event next month, and continuing to help them capture fantastic images of the Nicky Grist Stages.”


Nicky Grist said: “I’m really looking forward to this year’s Nicky Grist Stages, because the combination of hosting a round of both the BRC and BTRDA, and running gravel and Tarmac stages, has created even more interest and excitement than we’d ever imagined. Quinton Motor Club is making a tremendous effort to make sure this is the best Nicky Grist Stages ever, and testament to that is the amazing response the organisers have received from competitors, film crews and broadcasters. I’m personally looking forward to welcoming everyone to the event in July, and enjoying what is guaranteed to be a fantastic rally festival up on Epynt.”


The use of drones, by accredited media or spectators, is strictly forbidden on the Epynt military ranges, and no filming by drones will be allowed on any of the gravel or Tarmac stages.

© 2016



Mikkelsen honoured by Nicky Grist Stages ‘Stars of the Day’ trophy, 10 years after his record-breaking win

27 May 2016

Andreas Mikkelsen says that he is “honoured” to still have a trophy on the Nicky Grist Stages (9-10 July) named after him, 10 years after he won the Quinton Motor Club-organised event.


The Norwegian driver – who is now an established star in the Volkswagen Motorsport World Rally Championship team – won the Quinton Stages (as it was called then) in 2006. Victory came just 16 days after his 17th birthday, making Mikkelsen the youngest ever winner of a British national rally.


The Rally First ‘Stars of the Day’ Andreas Mikkelsen Award was introduced in 2008, the year the Rally First category within the BTRDA rally series was introduced. The class is aimed at providing young drivers with an affordable route into rallying, with no major modifications allowed (other than safety equipment) and engines no bigger than 1400cc.


The first winners of the award were Quinton MC members James and Simon McLean in 2008. They have been followed by David Bennett/Alistair McNeil (2009), Ashley Slights/Thomas Hughes (2010), Harry Morgan/James Ford (2011), Joe Evett/Calvin Houldsworth (2012), Nick Carr/Joe Sturdy (2013), Sam Bilham/Graham Wild (2014) and last year John and Duncan Freeman won the award.


As in all previous occasions, this year’s winners of the Rally First ‘Stars of the Day’ Andreas Mikkelsen Award will be judged by Nicky Grist and the organising team – and it won’t necessarily be the winner of the Rally First category, as sportsmanship, determination, overcoming problems and driving flair are all taken into account.


This summer’s Nicky Grist Stages is the only event to host a round of both the MSA British Rally Championship and BTRDA rally series – and with other major championships like the MSA Welsh Rally Championship and the Stage Masters Historic Stage Rally Challenge taking place too, a near capacity 180 car entry is expected.


Andreas Mikkelsen said: “I have some really good memories from my win in 2006, in the very beginning of my life as a rally driver. I will never ever forget that event! It was a fantastic event and the stages were great – some of them I get to have fun on when the WRC visits. Even when starting Wales Rally GB, it still boosts me that I have this valuable experience on these roads. I’m very honoured that, even after all these years, there is an award named after me. Naming it the ‘Stars of the Day Award’ certainly puts a bit of pressure on! Best of luck to all the competitors, I can promise you a great time when you drive these stages, and maybe you will be awarded as the star this year! Again, wishing you a great rally!”


Neil Cross, Nicky Grist Stages Clerk of the Course, said: “Over the years we've had many famous names enter and win the event now known as the Nicky Grist Stages. Andreas was the youngest ever winner and so it is right that we award the Andreas Mikkelsen Trophy to the Star Driver in the Rally First category. The award isn't just about pace on the stages it encompasses teamwork, comradeship and determination to succeed, traits Andreas shows in his WRC campaign. Along with the Spirit of the Rally award it is one of the hardest awards to win. Good luck to all those eligible!”


Nicky Grist said: “To have a WRC star like Andreas Mikkelsen on the winner’s trophy is a tremendous honour for the event. To win at such a young age was a fantastic achievement, and it’s entirely appropriate to mark such an historic British national rally victory with an award named after Andreas. We’ve had some very worthy winners of the Rally First ‘Stars of the Day’ Andreas Mikkelsen Award over the last eight years, and I’d like to wish all those who are eligible the very best of luck for this year.”

© 2016



Nicky Grist Stages receives 100 entries in just five days

20 May 2016

Quinton Motor Club has received a record-breaking 100 entries in just five days for the Nicky Grist Stages (9-10 July). The event Regulations and Entry forms were only published on-line at www.nickygriststages.co.uk on Monday, which sparked an unprecedented response from competitors.


Already entered is the current leader of the MSA British Rally Championship Fredrik Åhlin (Fiesta R5) – along with this CA1 Sport stable-mates David Bogie, Tom Preston (both ŠKODA Fabia R5) and Alex Laffey (Fiesta R5). Spencer Sport has entered a Fiesta R5 for Tom Cave and its Mitsubishi Mirage for Jamie Jukes, while Ollie Mellors (Proton Satria Neo S2000) and Desi Henry (Fabia R5) also have confirmed entries. Ravenol BTRDA Rally Series drivers Stephen Petch (Fiesta R5+), Karl Simmons (Subaru S11 WRC), Gavin Edwards (Escort Mk2) and Luke Francis and Wayne Sissons (both Mitsubishi Evo) are also already on the list, while Dessie Nutt has entered his historic Porsche 911. Other interesting early entries include Julian Reyonlds in his ex-Marcus Gronholm 2006 Wales Rally GB winning Focus WRC and Richard Burns’ godson, Tom Williams, in a Fiesta R1.


This year’s Buith Wells-based Nicky Girst Stages runs over two days, with a 45 mile planned route on gravel for competitors in the Pirelli MSA Welsh Forest Rally Championship, HRCR Stage Masters Challenge, ANWCC Forest Rally Championship, ANWCC Historic Stage Rally Championship and FMP Rally Challenge on Saturday 9 July. The MSA British Rally Championship crews will continue the following day (Sunday 10 July), with another 60 miles on Tarmac.


The closing date for entries is 5 July and the maximum number of entries is 180.


Neil Cross, Nicky Grist Stages Clerk of the Course, said: “I'm delighted and overwhelmed at the level of response to the entries received to date. We received our one hundredth entry today, which is unbelievable. We are working hard with the MSA and Natural Resources Wales to ensure our original route is available.”

© 2016



Entries now open for the 2016 Nicky Grist Stages

18 May 2016

Entries are now open for the Nicky Grist Stages (9-10 July) – with the official event Regulations and Entry forms published in the Competitors’ section at www.nickygriststages.co.uk.


2016 celebrates the 36th running of Quinton Motor Club’s forest stage rally, the 29th consecutive year of it hosting a round of the BTRDA Rally Series, the sixth year of title sponsorship from Nicky Grist Motorsports and its maiden appearance as a round of the MSA British Rally Championship.


The big change for 2016 is that the event is actually two rallies – a one day gravel event in the forests on the Carmarthenshire and Powys border on Saturday 9 July for competitors in the Ravenol BTRDA Rally Series, Pirelli MSA Welsh Forest Rally Championship, HRCR Stage Masters Challenge, ANWCC Forest Rally Championship, ANWCC Historic Stage Rally Championship and FMP Rally Challenge, and a two day mixed-surface event for crews contesting the MSA British Rally Championship – with the second day on Sunday 10 July run exclusively on Tarmac over the fantastic Epynt military ranges.


Crews registered for the aforementioned championships are able to enter the Nicky Grist Stages now, thus confirming their place on the starting list. Non-championship registered crews will be able to enter from 13 June. The closing date for entries is 5 July and the maximum number of entries is 180.


Neil Cross, Nicky Grist Stages Clerk of the Course, said: “A lot of hard work and planning has gone into this year’s event. Accommodating the needs of the various championships was never going to be easy, but I believe we will be putting on a feast of rallying across the two days that will be enjoyed by the competitors, volunteer officials and spectators alike.”


Nicky Grist said: “The Nicky Grist Stages has become a highlight of the year for all rally enthusiasts, both competitors and supporters alike. I am now into my sixth year of sponsorship of the event. This year I am delighted that the event has been chosen to be a round of the revamped MSA British Rally Championship in its return to the sport we all love. The inclusion of our rally in this championship is just reward for all the hard work and dedication that the successful organising team from Quinton Motor Club have put in over many years. This success was acknowledged last year when the event was voted the best round of the Pirelli MSA Welsh National Championship and shortlisted for the best event award in the BTRDA Series.”


 

© 2016



Nicky Grist Stages to give fans a BRC, BTRDA, Welsh and historic championship super rally weekend

15 April 2016

This summer’s Nicky Grist Stages (9-10 July) is the only event to host a round of both the MSA British Rally Championship and BTRDA rally series – and with other major championships like the MSA Welsh Rally Championship and the Stage Masters Historic Stage Rally Challenge taking place too, it promises to be a truly super rally weekend for fans.


While Formula 1 supporters will be at Silverstone for the British Grand Prix the same weekend, British rally fans will be heading to the famous Epynt military ranges, bordering Carmarthenshire and Powys, for two days of outstanding rally action, organised by Quinton Motor Club.


The first day (Saturday 9 July) will be run over 45 miles of challenging gravel roads, while the second day (Sunday 10 July) will take place over 55 miles of fast and undulating Tarmac. The MSA British Rally Championship crews will contest the full two days – with drivers such as Elfyn Evans (Ford Fiesta R5), David Bogie (ŠKODA Fabia R5) and Keith Cronin (Citroën DS3 R5) competing on gravel and Tarmac. On the Saturday, centralised servicing will be located at the Royal Welsh Showground in Builth Wells, while on the Sunday there will be a remote service on the Epynt ranges. All stages will be run in daylight. All other championships, including the BTRDA rally series, will run on the Saturday (9 July) only, with four gravel stages run twice.


The Nicky Grist Stages has been consistent in the top three BTRDA events for the last five years, winning the BTRDA ‘Rally of the Year’ award twice, and last year it was nominated as the best Pirelli Welsh National event. Quinton Motor Club is committed to giving the BTRDA competitors the same level of excellence that they have become accustomed to, and therefore it is retaining its 2015 stage mileage and increasing the entry fee by only £10.


Entries will open on 16 May – the Monday after the Plains Rally – when registered championship crews will be able to confirm their place on the starting list. Non-championship registered crews will be able to enter from 13 June. The closing date for entries is 5 July and the maximum number of entries is 180.


Neil Cross, Nicky Grist Stages Clerk of the Course, said: “Value for money, we believe we are offering the BTRDA competitors something really good in keeping the entry fee to within £10 of its 2015 level and maintaining a stage mileage of as near to 45 stage miles as we can get it. We are very proud to be a round of the British Rally Championship, but we remain fully focused on giving the BTRDA competitors a fantastic event too. The Nicky Grist Stages is the only event to be a round of both the BRC and BTRDA, and with other top championship contenders taking part, it should also be a wonderful event for spectators too.”


Nicky Grist said: “This year’s rally will be an exciting challenge for all crews, but more so for the BRC competitors. The split of two different surfaces over the two days could possibly give us a different outcome to the overall results, but will also be a challenge for the service crews, as they will have a full suspension change after Saturday’s gravel stages. This event format is certainly a break from the norm, and is a throwback to events in the early eighties.”

© 2016



2015 Final Results

13 July 2015


On the day of the rally 169 cars took their place on MC0 and began what proved to be a rally filled with exciting action throughout all of the great stages. By the end of the day we had 37 retirements but there were many happy faces crowded into HQ to watch the awards and share their corner to corner experiences of the day’s action.


For those in the VIP hospitality on Route 60, provided by our own sponsor, Nicky Grist and Charlie Jukes of Spencer ECA, those brother Jamie was competing, the 106 guests were treated to the cars travelling right past their viewing area, down and across the valley to the commentary box on the other side, where Howard Davies was giving the spectators his own unique comments on the rally. It proved to be a very successful addition to the rally experience.


Many thanks to everyone who worked so hard to ensure it was a fantastic day’s rallying. Put the 9th July into your diaries for 2016 and we look forward to seeing you there.


Below is a report of the day –


Paul Bird took victory on the Nicky Grist Stages with a huge field ensuring that there were close battles not only for the overall win but also throughout the field for the various class honours.


With the stages both in Crychan and Halfway forests and on the gravel roads of the adjacent military ranges in outstanding conditions, it was Steve Petch and Charlie Payne who shared the fastest time on the opening test of the event.


The Ford Fiesta drivers were one second quicker through the Monument stage than the Subaru Impreza of David Weston and the Ford Focus of Peter Stephenson. Paul Bird and Dave Wright, also Ford Focus mounted, were a further second back.


While the Mitsubishi Evo 5 of Jamie Anderson took fastest time on the following stage, Route 60, to move into 5th place, Charlie Payne moved into a clear lead on aggregate, one second ahead of Petch with Bird up to third and Weston slipping to fourth.


When the competitors moved into Halfway Forest for the third stage of the day, Paul Bird upped his pace to take the stage win and the overall lead. Another man on the move was Euan Thorburn, the Scotsman second quickest on the stage, moving his Ford Focus up to second place overall. Erstwhile leader Payne dropped to third place ahead of Anderson and Weston.


Crychan was the final stage before lunchtime service as well as being the longest stage of the day. It saw Paul Bird extend his lead over Thorburn from seven to 19 seconds while David Weston moved ahead of Charlie Payne and Stephen Petch demoted Jamie Anderson from the top five.


It also spelt the end of the rally for Wayne Sisson and Neil Shanks who rolled their Mitsubishi Evo X out of the event while Karl and Guy Simmons suffered a rally ending fire in their Subaru Impreza WRC.


At lunchtime service Paul Bird reported no significant problems on the Focus while Euan Thorburn was hoping that afternoon rain might be to his advantage. The afternoon would see a re-run of the four morning stages and the second run through Monument produced a first stage win of the day for Thorburn to move him to within 15 seconds of the leader.


The Scotsman could only manage joint ninth quickest through Route 60, however, dropping him to third place behind Weston. With Charlie Payne fourth, Jamie Anderson once again managed to edge ahead of Stephen Petch to complete the top five.


As Euan Thorburn prepared for the penultimate stage of the rally, in Halfway, he reported that he had no brakes on the Focus. That didn’t stop him taking the stage win, however, one second quicker than Bird and Weston and the gap between second and third overall was just seven seconds going into the final stage of the rally.


The Crychan stage however, saw David Weston and co-driver Kirsty Riddick set fastest time to secure their second place overall, 21 seconds behind victors Paul Bird and Aled Davies. Euan Thorburn and Richard Cooke claimed the last of the podium places ahead of Charlie Payne and Carl Williamson. A final stage charge by Jamie Anderson and Jon Scott, meanwhile, enabled them to snatch fifth place from Stephen Petch and Ian Windress.


Stage 7 saw the end of the rally for Group N front-runner Roland Llewellin as he put the Evo IX off the road. Co-driver Jamie Edwards reported that car and crew were fine but suggested ‘a long rope’ would be needed for the recovery operation. At the time they were just two seconds ahead of Tom Naughton and Andy Mort who went on to take the Group N honours.


The closest of the class battles saw Mike Harris and Steven Davey take class B10 in their Ford Fiesta R5 by just four seconds from the similar car of Rhys Yates and Tom Woodburn.




Two Rounds Remain but it’s Anyone’s Points Victory.


With two rounds of the Pirelli MSA Welsh Forest Rally Championship remaining the battle for honours is closer than ever following a thrilling Nicky Grist Stages.

For maximum points winner on the Royal Welsh Showground based event, Jamie Anderson, the excitement began even before the event started when he blew a centre diff on his Mitsubishi Evo 5 World Rally Car during Friday testing.

The crew worked around the clock to ready the car for the Saturday morning rally start and Jamie, from Ellistown, and co-driver Jon Scott, from Ludlow, rewarded them with sixth place overall and top championship contenders, taking two fastest stage times along the way on the eight stage event.

Malvern driver Bob Ceen and co-driver Andy Bull, from Birmingham, overcame spinning their Impreza World Rally Car on one of the narrower section of the route to take second place and move Bob within three points of championship leader Paul Davy. Once competitors begin dropping their worst scores as the championship regulations permit, Bob would look to be in the stronger position.

Dylan Davies from Llanon continues to leave his 18 month sabbatical from the sport behind him as he and co-driver Llion Williams of Caernarfon claimed another championship podium place to keep them in contention for end of season honours.

Unfortunately, another front-running crew, Luke Francis of Abergele and Colwyn Bay co-driver John H Roberts, were unable to ready their Mitsubishi in time for the event.

Worcester pairing Paul Davy and Roger Allan finished fourth among the championship contenders after battling for Group N honours for most of the event with Roland Llewellin from Haverfordwest, co-driven by Wrexham’s Jamie Edwards. The battle ended when Llewellin and Edwards left the road on the penultimate stage. Edwards reported afterwards that both crew and car were OK but it would take ‘a long rope’ to recover their Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 9.

Davy and Allan were still unable to relax, however, ultimately finishing just six second ahead of the Subaru Impreza of fellow championship contender, Wug Utting, from Surrey, co-driven by Bob Stokoe.

Roger Allan holds the lead in the overall co-driver standings with Llion Williams second and Andy Bull third.

With Llandysul’s Jamie Jukes and co-driver Dave Williams from Llanferres retiring their Suzuki Swift on stage three with low oil pressure, John Baker retains the two wheel driver category lead.

The see-saw battle for the Junior driver category, open to competitors under 25, continues. This time it was the turn of VW Polo driver Morgan Handford from Pontyclun to reclaim the lead from Llanwrda’s Meirion Evans.

Paul Davy retains the lead in the Ravenol Welsh Challenge ahead of John Baker and Dylan Davies.

The crews have a short break now before the penultimate round of the rally, the Eventsigns Woodpecker Rally which takes place on September 5th. With competitors able to drop their two lowest points scores of the season there remains everything to play for as far as both overall and class honours are concerned on the two remaining events.


Rally Sport MediaRally Sport Media


Check out all the latest images from our accredited media…



See the onboard action from our competitors. From the Nicky Grist Stages TV playlist!!!




 




 

© 2015



The REIS Ravenol BTRDA – Somerset Stages

29 April 2015

The Somerset Stages is always one to throw competitors a challenge and this year was no exception. With the highest level of entries the organisers’ had ever known, and many strong contenders sprinkled down the seeded entry the battle lines were laid. Many of our own organisers were out on the stages supporting from radio commanders to recovery crews and we know there will be the same level of support from the Burnham on Sea and Minehead motor clubs when July comes round. Despite a very light sprinkling of rain on the Friday the stages were rock hard and extremely dusty, making conditions challenging for all the entrants.

However Dave Weston and Kirsty Riddick proved to be the ones who would not be deterred, coming in ahead of Jamie Anderson and Jon Scott, after Paul Bird and Aled Davies retired due to a water pump failure. Hugh Hunter and Andy Marchbank were also unable to make it a hat-trick of wins in Somerset after they lost the clutch on SS2.  

For more information on the rally please go to www.btrda.com The next BTRDA round will be the Plains Rally, in Welshpool on the 16th May.


© 2015



The Pirelli MSA Welsh National Championship – The North Wales Rally Service and Weir Laundry Equipment Rally North Wales.

29 April 2015

The rally was won by unregistered David Bogie and Kevin Rae, coming in 1m 53secs ahead of Luke Francis and John Roberts. Luke and John were very nearly pipped to the post by Junior World Rally Champions star, Osian Pryce and Dale Furniss, with the gap between the cars ending up at only 2 secs. Second place in the championship contenders was Bob Ceen and Chris Brooks who came in 6th overall on the rally. This means Bob tops the championship leader board as the championship heads to The Plains for the next round of the championship.

For more news and details on the championship please go to www.wnrc.wamc.org.uk


© 2015 Stages Admin



Roland Rules the Roost

14 July 2014


While a number of frontrunners in the Pirelli MSA Welsh Forest Rally Championship fell victim to mechanical problems or accident damage on Saturday’s Nicky Grist Stages, Haverfordwest driver Roland Llewellin and co-driver Jamie Edwards from Wrexham kept their Mitsubishi Evo 9 on the road and in one piece to claim maximum points and take the lead in both the overall championship and Group N category for near showroom specification cars.


Rhuddlan’s Luke Francis and co-driver John H Roberts from Colwyn Bay topped the championship standings going in to the event but it was Northwich driver Alex Allingham who set fastest time on the first of the day’s eight stages in his Subaru Impreza. Francis, meanwhile was in third place behind the similar Mitsubishi Evo 9 of Bury duo Tom Naughton and Andy Mort.


The rally came to an abrupt conclusion for both the Mitsubishis on the very next stage however, when a heavy impact as they negotiated a bridge saw them both side-lined with suspension damage.


With Allingham, and co-driver Chris Williams of Daventry now holding a comfortable lead among the championship contenders, it was Llewellin and Edwards who moved up into second place while the Impreza of Worcester pairing Paul Davy and Roger Allen was promoted to third despite having stopped at the scene of their rivals’ demise to check that they were OK.
After the rally, Davy said that they had made the wrong tyre choice, opting for soft compound rubber and by the lunchtime service halt at the Royal Welsh Showground they had slipped behind the Impreza of Surrey father and son pairing Wug and Max Utting.


With the afternoon offering a repeat of the morning’s loop of four stages, the rally saved its final drama until the penultimate stage when Allingham and Williams suffered a ball joint failure on their Impreza, gifting the championship honours to Llewellin and Edwards. With the Uttings in second ahead of Davy and Allen, fourth place went to the Mark 2 Ford Escort of Yorkshiremen Matthew Robinson and Sam Collis ahead of Martyn and Dawn England, the Ilminster crew claiming maximum class points in their Mitsubishi Evo X on their first championship outing.


Chesterfield’s Toni Carranante moved up into sixth place on the final stage, ahead of another Escort, that of Carmarthen driver Terry Brown, co-driven by Den Golding, Clerk of the Course of the next round of the championship, the Zutec Neath Valley Stages. Eighth place went to Stone’s Nev Jones co-driven by Chris Davies of Port Talbot on only their second outing in their Subaru Impreza World Rally Car.


With Roland Llewellin and Jamie Edwards topping the championship table, Paul Davy and Roger Allen move up into second place. Wug Utting climbs into third place in the drivers’ standings. Former series leader Luke Francis slips into fourth place, just ahead of Alex Allingham and their respective co-drivers, John H Roberts and Chris Williams, drop to third and fourth places in their championship.


Robinson and Collis stay top of the two wheel drive competitors while MG ZR driver Rory Jones, from Penmaenmawr, retained his lead in the junior category for drivers under 25. Junior honours on the rally, however, went to James Watkins from Welshpool in his Nissan Micra, moving him to within a point of Jones in the championship standings.


If there was an award for perseverance, meanwhile, it would have to go to Sion Ellis of Dolgellau. He and his co-driver, Peredur Davies from Pwllheli suffered no fewer than three punctures on their Nissan Micra during the course of the day, eventually having to borrow a spare wheel from another competitor just to get to the finish of the rally.


The contenders in the Pirelli MSA Welsh Forest Rally Championship will resume battle on August 9th when they take on the classic but currently seldom used stages of the South Wales forests on the Rheola based Zutec Neath Valley Stages.




-          Ends     –



Issued 14th July 2014
Note to Editors: The attached photographs credited to www.rallysportmedia.com
Issued by Peter Hughes Media on behalf of the Pirelli MSA Welsh Forest Rally Championship
E-mail: peter@peterhughesmedia.com

© 2014



Bird seals a win

13 July 2014


Such is Paul Bird’s passion for all motorised sport that he was in a rush to win the Nicky Grist Stages just so that he could escape quickly to follow two wheeled motorbike racing action elsewhere. Co-driver Aled Davies was therefore left holding the winners trophies at the end of the rally and looking so adept at doing so. Not that the result was a forgone conclusion with fast charging David Weston junior and Kirsty Riddick being just three seconds behind at the finish.


In fact, the top four overall, B14 class runners, were only separated by 44 seconds which indicates the level of competitive action all day long. Steve Perez/Paul Spooner finishing 19 seconds behind in 3rd and Stephen Petch/Ian Windress on 44 seconds in 4th.


The first stage, Monument 1, saw Bird and Weston jnr post equal fastest times with Perez/Spooner and Bird/Davies and Allingham/Williams tied for third place just 6 seconds down.


Weston jnr/Riddick made the lead their own on stage 2, Route 60, after Perez/Spooner had a brush against a bridge which did not restrict them too much. Perez/Spooner were however to hold third place to the finish. It was Bird/Davies who were now the fastest crew out there and by the 2nd afternoon running of Route 60 they had taken the lead and held it to the finish line. Steve Perez was bemoaning the brush with the bridge and felt certain that without it he would have been in contention for top place. He also indicated missing his outings in the Stratos so watch this space.


Alex Allingham and Chris Williams were leading Group N4 by 9 seconds and mixing times with the WRC's in the 11 year old N10 with a scrapyard engine in 5th overall when on the penultimate stage the passenger ball joint failed. This left Jamie Anderson/Chris Brooks in 1st place in that N4 class, and 6th overall, a comfortable 49 seconds ahead of Roland Llewellin/Jamie Edwards 2nd in class position.


It was class B13 that provided the 5th overall spot with Desi Henry/Damien Duffin, 57 seconds ahead of Wayne Sissons/Neil Shanks, both crews piloting Evo 9’s.


The day overall was warm and mainly dry until the later part of the day and whilst plenty of dust was created the temperature was never going to reach the highs of the previous year. Nicky Grist had however again laid on huge quantities of bottled water in anticipation and to avoid any risk of discomfort. This consideration left all competitors and volunteers enthused about the planning and well thought out rally route which ran to schedule throughout.


The major beneficiary of the well thought out and organised rally plan was the Ravenol Challenge winner, Neil Matthews, who could not have been any more complimentary towards Nicky Grist and the organising club team at Quinton Motor Club. Matthews, together with co-driver Jez Rogers also won their B10 class and finished 29th overall in their 1600cc Vauxhall Nova.


What is the attraction of this event that makes entrants regularly appear from overseas. By far the most distant crew were Stewart Reid and Molly Taylor from Australia who finished 36th o/a and 7th in their H3 class Ford Escort Mk2. Robert said “Oh, we just popped over to do a rally”. Two Norwegian crews also made the entry list, Edvall Martin Stenberg and Siw Helen Stenberg who won their B11 class with a 25th overall placing and Kim Johansen with Morten Johansen in their Volvo 292. The Volvo unfortunately had its’ engine fail on SS1. The Norwegian crews however indicated their intention to return next year.


Notable crews to retire from the rally were Mat Smith/Giles Dykes (Clutch), Luke Francis/John H Roberts (damage after bridge), Thomas Naughton/Andrew Mort (Bridge Damage) and Russ Thompson/Andy Murphy (Bridge damage).
Of the 147 starters of the rally, 107 finished and 38 retired with 2 unexplained. Rob and Mike Evett after SS5 and said they had left their sump guard at home for their 1400 Nova. Malcolm Bayliss and Siobhan Pugh made half way after using a shoe lace to effect an emergency repair and still finished the rally 87th o/a and 9th in class with their Escort Mk1 1600cc.


It is a testament to the strengths and the crews resolve, right through the classes, that a mere 21 minutes and 18 seconds separated the last placed crew, Chris Stratton/John Stratton in a MG ZR, from the winner.

© 2014



The Best Prize in National Rallying

06 July 2014


Nicky Grist, in partnership with Ravenol, the high performance motorsport lubricants, is laying down the gauntlet to all rally drivers to see who is the Best National Rally Driver in the UK. In a one day shoot out to be held on the Nicky Grist Stages on the 12th July any entrant into the rally in any class will get the opportunity to prove their ability.


And how the Challenge works – The Clerk of the Course for the Nicky Grist Stages will work out the mean average time penalty for each class based on a number of previous year’s events. This average time penalty will be known as the ATP. The winner of the Ravenol Nicky Grist Challenge will be decided on the biggest percentage decrease in their class ATP. Should the ATP be slower the smallest percentage difference to their class ATP will be deemed the winner.


And the Prize – well that will be the best on offer at national level rallying. The overall winner will receive up to 8 paid rally entries in to the 2015 BTRDA Rally Series, with up to £3000 of Ravenol products to ensure their car is perfectly lubricated for each rally event.


Nicky “There is nothing else like this in Britain at the moment for rally drivers and will be an intensely exciting one day, all in, shoot out over some of the best stages on offer in Britain. And Ravenol coming forward as the prize givers has been immense giving all drivers a really fantastic prize to aim for. But most of all we will be able to name the Best National Rally Driver in the UK”


Brian Chase, Managing Director of Ravenol UK, is very enthusiastic. “We are delighted to be working together with Nicky on this project. The Challenge is all about supporting British Motorsport at club level, something we at Ravenol are very keen to be involved in.”


Neil, Clerk of the Course, Nicky Grist Stages “Every driver believes they are the best on gravel and now they have the chance to prove it – it is going to be really exciting to watch, and the Quinton Motor Club, as the organisers of the Nicky Grist Stages, are thrilled that Nicky, yet again, is bringing a first to national rallying on our event!”


The Nicky Grist Stages is being held on the 12th July with the HQ based at the Royal Welsh Showground, Builth Wells. Entry into the rally is through the Nicky Grist Stages website with free registration to the Ravenol Nicky Grist Challenge to occur no later than at event signing on. Spectators can also get all the information they need to see the Ravenol Nicky Grist Challenge in action on the stages website.


So – do you think you are the Best National Rally Driver in the UK? Then enter the Ravenol Nicky Grist Challenge and prove it.

© 2014 Press Office



Drivers Flock to Nicky Grist Stages

29 June 2014

Press Release Header June 2014 Drivers Flock


The Quinton Motor Club, organisers for the Nicky Grist Stage are delighted to announce that the number of seeded entries has come in at 144 drivers, with more still entering with less than 2 weeks to go until the rally. Across all the 10 championships entered the entry figures are looking almost full, and the excitement is mounting for the 2014 rally to give everyone an exciting weekend of rallying.


With recent reports on the decline of British rally it is very pleasing to see that with the right incentives rally teams are still out there and keen to compete. Each year the team of the Nicky Grist Stages has striven to deliver a superb rally not just on the standard of the stages themselves which are among the best and most challenging in the country, but also off rally with Nicky Grist holding a detailed Gravelnotes meeting on the Friday evening to all competitors to ensure they maximise the delivery of pacenotes. There is also a superb 2 course dinner on offer, provided by one of the chefs to the Royal Family. The aim to give every entrant a really great experience from the minute they arrive in Builth Wells.


This year, the addition of Nicky Grist’s latest venture, the Ravenol Nicky Grist Challenge, a one off shoot out open to all classes entered in the rally, to decide who is the best national rally driver in the UK has certainly attracted a number of drivers to compete. The calibre of entries is very high and to date there are 4 drivers who have entered from Europe all wanting to take the inaugural Challenge title and walk away with the largest prize at national level rallying – free entry into the BTRDA 2105 season, up to £3000 of Ravenol products to ensure minimum time spent off rally preparing the car, and a bespoke 3 layer P1 Racewear suit for both driver and co-driver to wear throughout their 2015 season.


All in all the 2014 Nicky Grist Stages is set to be one of the best rally experiences in Britain this year and certainly shows that rallying is alive and well in this country. The Nicky Grist Stages opens on the 11th July for registration and scrutineering at the headquarters at the Royal Showground in Builth Wells. The rally stages are due to start 8:31am sharp from the HQ on Saturday 12th July.


For editors


For all media we have


1.    Set up a dedicated media suite area. On the Friday, this will be a set area within the bar room of the HQ and on Saturday we are moving across to the central room, where registration occurs on the Friday. Both will be clearly sign posted.


2.    You have 2 media personnel to help you


a.    Michael Davies, is the Quinton Motor Clubs press officer and will be on hand throughout the rally


b.    Anouska McLernan-Cardis, PR officer to Nicky Grist


 i.    Both will be around the HQ, the service park or on The Ranges and again will offer you as much help as possible.


3.    Times sheets for the end of each stage will be posted for reference on the notice board in the media suite.


4.    Maps and information will also be posted on the notice board for you to find your way around


5.    The day’s itinerary.


6.    Tea/coffee making facilities for yourselves (there might even be a few biscuits going as well!!)


There is to be a Media Meeting to be held on Friday 11th July at 8pm in the HQ (the bar will be open as a further incentive!!) which will be chaired by Mike Board and Neil Cross (Clerk of the Course) where we will be giving up to date information on the rally and the entrants. This will be repeated on Saturday morning at 7am and will be held by Mike Board and Nicky Grist. Anyone wanting to attend please let us know as we will be providing bacon butties and drinks for all attendees.


For all media who has pre-registered-


1.     You will be given a dedicated desk area in the media suite with an inbox


2.     A media pack with a copy of,


a.     the spectator programme


b.     the media book


c.     maps and directions


d.     itinerary


If there is anything else you require please contact Anouska on +44(0) 1327 220004 or her mobile +44(0)7884 301822




 

© 2014 Press Office



Entries Now Open

20 May 2014

Regulations are now available for the 2014 Nicky Grist Stages Rally, and the On-Line Entry System is now live, and can be accessed by the 'Enter Here' button at the top of this page.




 

© 2014 Adrian Hardy Entries Secretary



Very Hot, Dusty & Slippy

15 July 2013

 



 “Hot, Slippery and Dusty” was the most common description of the Nicky Grist Stages to be heard coming from the lips of competitors as they were interviewed for the event’s rally radio service provided by the iRally team.


At the end of the Quinton Motor Club organised event it was Euan Thorburn and co-driver Paul Beaton who had used their experience to good effect to claim victory in their Ford Focus World Rally Car.


Competitors were greeted with conditions that would be more familiar to those competing on Greece’s Acropolis Rally than for a forest rally in Wales.  The organising team had thought about this and the event’s sponsor, Nicky Grist, had provided 2000 bottles of water that were given out to competitors at the end of each stage. Needless to say, there were none left at the end of the event! The consequence was slippery stages, difficult visibility conditions and high tyre wear. All that, however, contributed to a thrilling event that tested drivers to their very  limits.



The up to 1400cc competitors led the field off and early indications were that we would witness another dominant performance from Julian Wilkes in his Vauxhall Nova VXR190. Dave Bennett had other ideas, however.


Wilkes was 5 seconds quicker than the Corsa driver on the opening stage and was 17 seconds ahead by the end of the third stage. Bennett then began his fight back and albeit closed the deficit by just two seconds on the final stage before service. 


The afternoon, however, would see Bennett set the faster time on each of the three stages to claim victory by 14 seconds. Mat Smith did his best to make it a three way battle until a puncture on SS5 which forced him to stop and change a wheel mid-stage, dropping six minutes in the process. That allowed Darren Pinchin to claim the third podium place in his Proton Satria while James West clinched the RF1.4 class in his Volkswagen Lupo and 1400C honours went to the Nova of Freddy Brick.


Leading the over 1400cc field was the Fiesta R5 of Elfyn Evans and Daniel Barritt and, not surprisingly, they immediately set about recording stage times significantly faster that than the rest of the field as they gave their World Championship destined car a work over.


They were nine second quicker than nearest rival, Stephen Petch in his Ford Focus World Rally Car, on the opening four mile stage and outpaced the Impreza of Connor McCloskey by 22 seconds on stage 2. After heading the field by a further eight seconds on stage 3, a warning light in the Fiesta persuaded the rising Welsh star to park the car five miles into stage four. Although the M-Sport team endeavoured to get the Fiesta back out for the afternoon stages they eventually decided to save the car for the following day’s Greystoke Stages.



It was Euan Thorburn who inherited the lead in his Focus while Connor McCLoskey would have moved up to second but for an off that saw the Irish driver park the Impreza on its roof with significant damage to the car but thankfully not the crew.


It was another Impreza, that of Jim McNeil, which moved up to second with Sebastian Ling completing the top 3 in his Mitusbishi Evo 9 as the cars came into service. As with the 1400cc, cars, the afternoon would be notable for a fight back, in this case by Charlie Payne. The Focus driver had slipped to 12th place after three stages, but a storming drive through the final three stages moved him back up to second position, just over a minute adrift of Thorburn who had driven to a relatively untroubled victory.


A thrilling battle for third place saw Sebastian Ling take the final podium place along with Group N honours, two seconds ahead of another Group N Evo 9 driven by Alex Allingham. The top five was completed by Stephen Petch, the Co Durham driver claiming a brace of fastest stage times along the way.


Overall Historic honours went to the Mark 2 Escort of Matthew Robinson, half a minute ahead of Terry Brown, with a class win for Neal James in his Escort.


 


More updates and news very soon —- Stay tuned!




Get the results here: 





 

© 2013 Press Office



Spectator information

08 July 2013

 



The best amateur photograph taken of the Nicky Grist Stages 2013


There was some great pictures sent in, which made the final decision quite a challenge.

The Winning Picture was sent in by Lukas Pieronkiewicz:


 


The Winning Picture was sent in by Lukas Pieronkiewicz
http://flic.kr/p/fTthBN



But we also wanted to mention these-
1) This one just typified the day: by Lukas


This one just typified the day: by Lukas
http://flic.kr/p/fTu8i8



2) We just liked the post production from Chris Evans on this shot:



We just liked the post production from Chris Evans on this shot:


Images will be posted on the NG Stages website, Flicker and Pinterest sites 


Click here to read competition entry terms and conditions


 





The main access for spectators is from the A40 between Sennybridge and Llandovery.


Morning Stages. – First car due 09:45hrs.


Turn off the A40 at Llywel (opposite the derelict Motel site) and proceed onto the ranges via the dual carriageway. Access to the ranges is by purchase of a programme.  All proceeds are going to local charities.


The programme will give exact details of the spectator points.


Afternoon Stages – First car due 14:10hrs.


These are as per the morning stages. 


Afternoon access is also available to the Halfway stage by the purchase of a programme. All proceeds are going to local charities. Leave the A40 at Halfway Village (160/835328), follow the spectator arrows for about 1 mile to the spectator car park.


The local community is normally very quiet and traffic free, so we are encouraging you all to buy a programme so that they, also, benefit from having our rally each year and are happier with the increased congestion and people numbers. Your help in purchasing a programme means that we are also supporting rallying in the community.


Many Thanks




 



 

© 2013 Press Office



The Nicky Grist Stages & iRally Partner Up to take the Internet by Storm on 13th July

02 July 2013

 

The true home of rally. Broadcasting rally content for rally fans worldwide including the WRC and IRC, World Rally ...

Since giving his name to the Nicky Grist Stages, there have been a number of changes made by the former World Champion Co-driver to ensure the rally continues to challenge competitors and excite spectators. This year, there have been a number of stage amendments, aimed at keeping the entrants on their toes, with the service park this year being held at the Builth Wells Showground headquarters of the rally. For spectators and competitors alike there will be the added benefit of iRally’s World Rally Radio broadcasting the whole rally over the internet and onto iPhones and Androids via the iRally App.


“It was clear last year that the service park up on The Ranges was filled to capacity and rather than make a compromise on space we decided to expand the area of the service and return everyone to the rally HQ” commented Neil, Clerk of the Course for the Stages “In doing so Nicky grabbed the idea of making it more of a central zone and adding to the overall atmosphere of the rally and we have been able to partner with iRally and World Rally Radio to make a real atmosphere for everyone to enjoy”


 


© 2013 Press Office



NICKY GRIST STAGES SET TO BE THE TOPS AGAIN IN 2013

14 April 2013

Having yet again been judged by the BTRDA as ‘Best Rally of 2012’, the Quinton Organising Team are riding on the crest of a wave of success as plans for the 2013 Nicky Grist Stages are being finalised. Buoyed by the competitors’ widespread acclaim, the Team has a renewed enthusiasm to raise the stakes even higher and ensure the July 13th event is an absolute classic.


Using Grist’s vast experience and intimate knowledge of the legendary gravel roads on the Epynt Ranges and the surrounding forests, Nicky has been working with Clerk of the Course Neil Cross to put the final touches to the 2013 route that will contain a raft of fresh challenges for competitors. Cross explained, “As organisers of other top events recognise, we are so fortunate to be able to choose from what are widely accepted to be the best collection of gravel roads in the country. Whilst ensuring the classic sections made famous by WRGB are included, this year we will be using seven stages that are all different and will offer crews a real test – and a whole lot of fun! Given the time of year that we run, the added bonus for our event is that we get to use the roads before the World Championship visits and the stages should be in the best possible condition.”


Now awaiting final approvals to the planned route, Grist and Cross are bubbling with anticipation as to the competitors’ response to their plans. “Since last year’s event, there has been a lot of talk amongst rally crews who are not regular BTRDA competitors about them coming out just to see how good the event and the stages really are,” enthused Nicky. “What we have planned for them this year should really set them on fire! And the final sting in the tail that we are setting up will be a real challenge for everyone!” More details of all this will doubtless be released as final approvals to the plans are received.


Based once again at the Royal Welsh Showground in Builth Wells, competitors will return there for midday service and to revel in the buzz of the HQ that will have been fired up with the now-traditional Friday evening Route Note Discussion and Rally Forum with ‘Nicky and friends’. With Saturday containing nearly 45 miles of intense action on the stages, there will be time for crews to take a break over a bite of lunch and study the results thus far on live screens, whilst service crews have time to carry out work on the cars that cannot be completed at the auxiliary service points up on the Ranges.


With the 2013 Nicky Grist Stages also now being part of the Pirelli MSA Welsh National Rally and the Brian Dennis Motorsport Welsh Historic Rally championships, crews with a focus on these series will be joining regular BTRDA contenders and many others in keen anticipation of entries opening on May 22nd. Further regular updates will be posted on the event website: www.nickygriststages.co.uk

© 2013 Nick Jones Entries Secretary



Camping for Competitors and Officials

10 April 2013

There is increased space this year for tents, camper vans and caravans at the Royal Welsh Showground and it can be used for Friday & Saturday nights. The cost is £10 (which is charged by the Showground), and to avoid being evicted by the Showground Security Staff, you will need to display a Nicky Grist sticker, which will be available at signing on where the fee can be paid.


The areas to be used for camping will be marked on the map that goes out with the Finals. Enter through the Main Gate.


There are free toilet and shower blocks on site down by the HQ (Hafod a Hendre) and others on the hill should be open too.


The on-site caterers are able to serve breakfast to anyone who wants one  with cereals, full breakfast, toast, tea or coffee.


To ensure that we have an idea of the numbers looking to camp, please let Nick Jones, Entries Secretary, know by emailing him on: entries@nickygriststages.co.uk

© 2013 Nick Jones Entries Secretary



Best Event 2012

01 January 2013

At the recent REIS Get Connected BTRDA Rally Series Awards Evening the Nicky Grist Stages rally was awarded the prestigious Bill Turner Trophy for the best event of the 2012 Championship. This is a tribute to the hard work of the organising team who put in many hours of work to raise the standards and profile of the event.


Work is now underway on the 2013 Event and we are pleased to confirm the Nicky Grist Stages 2013 will be a qualifying round on the REIS Get Connected BTRDA Rally Series, welcome back after a long break the Pirelli MSA Welsh Stage Rally Championship and making a welcome debute the 2013 Brian Dennis Motorsport Welsh Historic Rally Championship

© 2013 Tony Brooks



MATCH REPORT - QUINTON'S NICKY GRIST STAGES - IN THE PREMIERSHIP!

15 July 2012

 


1After the horrific weather of the preceding days and weeks and floods elsewhere in Powys and the Marches overnight causing some late arrivals, the day dawned bright and more-or-less dry in Builth Wells as the first of the 124 competitors headed off on to the Epynt Ranges for the opening stage of the first running of the Nicky Grist Stages – the new name for the long-established Quinton MC’s forest rally.


Leading the Open class away from the start was the late – but much welcomed – entry of Craig Breen in a new-to-him Mitsubishi Evo9. This was the first event for the Irishman since his horrific accident on the Targa Florio in Sicily that took the life of his co-driver, Welshman Gareth Roberts – and it was good to see that Gareth’s brother Dai was sitting alongside the WRC Academy winner on his return to competition.


However, it was the Subaru Impreza WRC S9 of Hereford’s Roger Chilman and Bryan Thomas that took the honours on Stage 1 – Monument, taking an impressive 8 secs out of rival Gold Star title contenders Hugh Hunter and Andy Marchbank in their Ford Focus WRC 03 who, in turn, were just a second clear of Bob Ceen and Andy Bull in their Impreza WRC, with the current Gold Star Championship-leading Evo 5.9 of Shaun Gardener and Ben Innes a further 3 secs back. Then came the Impreza of Nigel Griffiths/Jon Scott a further second back and Brendan Cumiskey/Ronan O’Kane a further 9 secs ahead of Breen/Roberts.


The first run through Crychan saw Chilman continue his high-speed start, taking a further 9secs out of Ceen and Gardener, with Breen growing in confidence in his Evo a further 4 seconds back, whilst Hunter lost a further 16 secs to Chilman. However, Ceen’s promising start, which had seen him in second place only to the flying Chilman, all came to nought at the end of SS3 – Halfway – with an engine fire. It was Hunter who was to take his first stage win here, pipping Chilman by just a second, with Gardener a further 7 seconds back. This was to promote the Ruthin challenger ahead of the Ludlow driver into second place, albeit only by 5 seconds – and a whopping 23 secs behind Chilman.


On SS4 across the awesome Route 60, Chilman regained the momentum, stopping the clocks 4 seconds in front of Hunter, to increase his overall lead to 27 secs. Hunter was in turn a further 7 seconds clear of Matt Edwards and Sambo Collis, who had now powered up into 4th place overall only 4 seconds behind Gardener. Hunter took 2 seconds back from Chilman on the second run through Crychan with Griffiths a further 7 seconds back. Cave was recovering from his earlier problems on SS1 with an impressive 4th place ahead of the ever-steady Gardener and Edwards.


Craig Breen/Dai Roberts stopped in SS5, much to the disappointment of many. Hunter won the stage, taking 2 seconds out of Chilman, with Griffiths 7 secs further back and Cave still running well. Hunter pulled back another second from Chilman through Halfway 2, but nevertheless the latter’s lead was still 24 seconds and he might claim he was controlling the gap. Nigel Griffiths took third, a further 6 seconds back and was now only one second behind Gardener with Griffiths and Edwards holding station.


Chilman took 2 more seconds out of Hunter on SS7 across Route 60, with Griffiths 6 secs back in 3rd, just 1 ahead of Matt Edwards. It was close at the top! Going into the final stage through Monument, Hunter’s stage win by 7 secs over Griffiths and by 9 over Chilman was insufficient to affect the final result, where Chilman took victory by some 17 seconds from Hunter. However, what did affect the finishing positions was Griffiths/Scott checking in early at MC2, which dropped them behind Gardener/Innes and they stepped gratefully on to the bottom step of the podium.


Matt Edwards took a worthwhile 5th only 4 seconds back, whilst Patrick Naylor/Ian Lawrence took 6th and Group N honours in their Evo 9. Irishmen Brendan Cumiskey/Ronan O Kane took their Impreza to 7th overall, just ahead of Tristan Bailey/James How in their Evo WRC. John Lloyd/Adrian Cavenagh finished a close 9th and the new partnership of Wug Utting and John Connor rounded out the top ten in their Impreza N12, finishing as pleased runners-up in Group N.


Silver Star


Top-seeded two-wheel drive contenders Joe Price and Christopher Brooks confirmed their position on SS1, but it was made clear by the current Silver Star Championship leaders Matthew Robinson and Nigel Hutchinson that this was going to be a battle, the Yorkshire pair tying at the top for honours in Monument. In Crychan, Robinson took 7 seconds out of Price, the latter crossing the line 5 seconds in front of the ever-rapid Escort of Boyd Kershaw and Bryan Hull. After Stage 2, an unfixable-in-the-time oil leak brought about the demise of long-distance travellers and usual Silver Star front runners Allan McDowall and Gavin Heseltine.


Price took the initiative back in Halfway, leading home Robinson by 6 seconds to cut the gap to just one second. Kershaw was again third, but was some 24 seconds back. The same order prevailed on the first run through Route 60, with Price charging into the lead by dint of an 8 secs win, leaving him 7 seconds clear of Robinson, who was now 39 seconds ahead of the flying Kiwi. Price was quickest again across Route 60, but the car’s crown wheel and pinion cried enough at the stage finish, ending their crowd-pleasing run. So it was Matthew Robinson who took the lead of the Silver Star category, well clear (44 secs) of Boyd Kershaw, followed by the unregistered crews of David and James Young in their Escort and the Astra of Stuart Egglestone and Brian Hodgson. Of the registered Silver Star crews, this meant that Theo Bengry and Les Forbrook’s Historic class Escort Mk2 moved towards the bottom step of the podium. Positions were to remain the same as the battle continued into the afternoon, Robinson’s winning margin growing to an impressive 74 seconds over Kershaw by the finish. Bengry were nearly a minute further away in 3rd and he was just pipped to H3 victory by Peter Smith/Paul Williams.


1400s


A stunning start by the Vauxhall Nova VXR190 of Julian Wilkes and Will Rutherford-Child on SS1 – Monument 1 – taking 10 secs out of, realistically, their only competitors for the 1400cc category championship honours, Justin Lawson and Paul Hargreaves in their Nova, set the scene for another dominant day by the Taunton driver. Emphasising this, Wilkes and Rutherford-Child took another 14secs out of their rivals on SS2 – Crychan 1 – to lead by an impressive 30secs from Lawson/Hargreaves and Bennett/McNeil who were now tied in second place.


It was Wilkes again through Halfway, increasing his lead over Lawson and Bennett to 37 seconds, the pair tying to the second after 4.74 stage miles. Through Route 60, Wilkes took another 10 seconds out of Lawson and 17 out of Bennett, stretching his lead to an impressive 47 seconds and this increased to over a minute after the second run through Crychan, whilst Bennett’s demise due to clutch difficulties here allowed Kieran Darrington and Pamela Hilton to take over third place in their Corsa.


For a change, it was Lawson who took the stage win in Halfway 2, a couple of seconds clear of the steadily-improving Proton Satria of Roger Priestnall and Jamie Forrest, who led home Gardner/Graham ahead of the category leader, who resumed normal service on Route 60 by taking 10 seconds out of Lawson and 11 from Priestnall to increase his lead again to over a minute. With another stage win on the final stage in Monument 2, Wilkes/Rutherford-Child led the 1400 runners back to Builth Wells to take an outstanding victory by 76 seconds from Lawson/Hargreaves, who in turn were some 39 secs in front of Priestnall/Forrest. Darrington/Hilton hung on to take 4th, nearly a further minute back.


RF 1.4


It was Joe Evett and Calvin Houldsworth who finished SS1 – Monument 1 – with the biggest smiles on their faces, leading Cameron Davies/Alistair Dodd and Aaron McClure/Martyn Taylor through the 5.69 mile stage by some 10secs. It was the same order through Crychan, with Evett increasing his lead to 14 seconds ahead of Davies, who in turn led McClure by 5. In Halfway, Evett took another 3 seconds out of Davies with McClure a further 4 seconds back, whilst across Route 60 it was Evett again by 3 seconds to increase his lead over Davies, who had opened up a small lead over McClure. On the second run through Crychan, Davies pushed Evett into a dead-heat, with McClure 6 seconds back. Back in Halfway, Davies was a mere one second ahead of McClure, who was 4 clear of Evett, but Evett could afford it with a lead of 19 seconds over Davies, who was 11 clear of McClure. These three finished in that order on SS7 to simply widen the gaps further. However, Davis was not to get to the finish of the final stage through Monument, leaving Evett to take the class by 42 seconds from McClure who was over a minute ahead of Mick Smith’s Micra.


RF1.0


Neil Jonathan Andrew/Richard Smith hit the leader board on the first stage in Monument, taking 6 secs out of Thomas Jordan/Charlotte Banner who were a further 8secs clear of Harry Morgan/Andrew Jones. Another win on SS2 for the Loughborough pair increased their lead over Morgan. Continuing his winning streak in Halfway, Andrew now led Morgan by 26 secs with Jon and John Steer in an impressive third. On Route 60, Andrew increased his lead by another 13 seconds with Morgan taking second again to hold position and increase his lead over the Steers to some 49 seconds. Running through Crychan for the second time, Andrew/Smith took their fifth stage win, their lead growing slowly over Morgan/Jones with the Steers now a minute down. The positions remained steady through Halfway 2 and across Route 60 and even through SS8 to allow Andrew/Smith to take victory by over a minute ahead of Morgan/Jones who were another minute clear of the Steers.


At an increasingly sunny evening at the Builth Wells finish that had not seen the heavy showers experienced on the Ranges and surrounding forests, there was a warmth of feeling that matched that of the sunshine at the end of a challenging but enormously rewarding rally. Nicky Grist and the Organising Team have every right to be pleased with the product of their efforts.

© 2012 Tony Brooks



New Website

20 April 2012

Our new website is live. Thanks to the team at Indesign for the fast turnaround.

© 2012 Tony Brooks

Some Images from the Day

To All Accredited Media. Please send us copoes of your images to news@nickygrist.com.


If you wish copies of any pictures from the NG Stages Accredited Media. Please write to us at the above address or please contact the photographer direct through the links on the pictures.


Thank you for supporting our media








Gassmark Media


Accredited Media at The Nicky Grist Stages 2015 - Rally Sport Media


Accredited Media at The Nicky Grist Stages 2015 - Rally Sport Media


Gassmark Media


 


More images with credits and links will be posted to our Flickr and Pintrest accounts. Please visit for a full list of images from our accredited media from the day.


NG Stages FlickrNG Stages 2015 Pintrest


 




Press