By Paul Evans
Richard Merriman continues to lead the JD Tyres Welsh Tarmacadam Rally Championship in his 1998cc Vauxhall-engined Darrian T90, despite hitting a bridge parapet and non-scoring on Sunday’s Midsummer Caerwent Rally.
The Pontypridd driver was fifth after overshooting a junction and losing time on the opening stage, but set the fastest time on the next stage. However, his rally comeback came to an end on stage three, when a heavy front impact broke the car’s radiator.
It is a minor dent in an otherwise fantastic season for the double Welsh Tarmac Champion, as Merriman is also leading his class and is second overall on the King of Epynt series and is joint leader in the asphalt section of the FMP Challenge. He and co-driver Kath Curzon also won the Harlech Stages in North Wales outright in The Roof Hub, Touchline and Gareth Swan Roofing backed T90.
“We had an overshoot on the fourth corner of the opening stage at Caerwent, but we were still fifth fastest,” said Merriman. “We just set the fastest time on stage two when we hit a bridge parapet right in the centre of the front of the car, which snapped the radiator in two and damaged a bit of bodywork, including the floor. We’ll get the car fixed in time for the next round of the Welsh Tarmacadam Championship, the Harry Flatter on Epynt, in seven weeks time.”
Jim Munden/Jon Leigh Tavern won the Midsummer Caerwent Rally in their Subaru Impreza.
The 2018 SGC Printing Harry Flatters Rally takes place on Sunday 29 July.