Club member Tom Wood took the win on the opening round of the MRF Tyres ST Trophy at this year’s Cambrian Rally. Wood was back alongside Welshpool driver Zak Hughes. The pair started the event 2nd on the road behind championship newcomers Bobby Mitchell and Shannon Turnbull. The opening stages of the event saw the crews contest the Clocaenog, Alwen and Elsi tests. Taking a measured approach Hughes/Wood didn’t attack the first test, keeping the car on the road in the slippy Clocaenog forest. Next up was the Alwen stage and being confident after competing on this stage last year, Hughes and Wood decide to push and won the stage. The final stage before service was Elsi and the crew were confident being a repeated stage from last year’s event. The stage however was one of the roughest they had ever competed on so the decision was made to reduce the pace and not risk damaging the car. Hughes/Wood came out of Elsi 7 seconds down on rivals Mitchell/Turnbull.
Service saw the crews return to Llandudno before heading back out for 4 more stages in the form of Crafnant, Gwydir and then repeats of the Alwen and Clocaenog stages.
Crafnant saw Hughes/Wood close the gap to 0.7 of a second. On to Gwydir and disaster for Mitchell/Turnbull. A puncture at the start of the stage saw the crew drop time and after picking upanother puncture during the stage, Hughes/Wood capitalised on that to take a 53 second lead. Alwen was the penultimate stage and Hughes/Wood took another stage win beating Mitchell by a further 5 seconds. Clocaenog was the final stage of the rally and the crew took a no attack approach so as to not to risk the event win and only dropped 3 seconds to Mitchell thus taking the event win by 55.5 seconds. This meant the pair took another championship win on the Cambrian rally, following up on the previous year’s rally.
The crew now look to the Malcolm Wilson Rally in March to continue the championship fight.
Photo Credit: Rally Sport Media