Drivers had to contend with a wet and wild Tour of Epynt. Pic: Roger Gale

Huw James Stars On A Wet And Wild Tour of Epynt

By Roger Gale

Huw James (Tregaron Motor Club) and Dafydd Evans (Lampeter & District Motor Club) were the stars of an incredibly wet Legend Fires Tour of Epynt, finishing second overall in their rear-wheel driver Ford Escort Mk2.

Despite the driving rain and deep puddles of standing water, they finished just 35 seconds behind Neil Roskell– who was co-driven by Ammanford MC’s Mark Crisp in his four-wheel drive Ford Fiesta R5+.

The Port Talbot Motor Club event had been postponed from earlier in the year and the weekend storms proved an added challenge for the event organisers, marshals and competitors up on the Mynydd Epynt range.

Event sponsor John Stone, co-driven by PTMC’s Rhys Stoneman, were challenging for the lead early on before a 130mph spin on SS3 took them backwards into the mire coming downhill to the Llandeilo’r Fan junction.

To highlight how treacherous the conditions were, they were soon joined off the road by the Darrian T9V6 of Andy Fraser/Alan Jones who hurtled off the road to land alongside the Volkswagen Polo GTI R5.

Bob Fowden had to withdraw his Comline Subaru Impreza WRC after a covid test result and another Epynt ace HOVAC driver Damian Cole unusually finished fifth, a very wet Epynt perhaps not the best place to get used to the new Ford Fiesta R5+, though a class third some consolation.

Other dramas included a big roll on SS1 for the Peugeot 106 of Tim Taylor/Dylan Fowler Bishop of Pembroke MC and Maesteg & District MC respectively, going off heavily on the fast right on Burma Road.

Brecon’s Craig Jones took a Class 5 second in his new Ford Fiesta, Rob Tout a class 5 win in the Touts Mitsubishi Lancer Evo, Richard Merriman and Kath Curzon a Class 3 second with their Darrian T90 for Forresters MC.

PTMC’s Phil Turner was unlucky to collect a five-minutepenalty for a chicane mistake, effectively ending his rally, so he withdrew. The Swansea driver didn’t dispute his error.

“I realised and immediately slowed so as not to gain an unfair advantage, but the Regs decreed the five minutes so that was that,” said Turner.

The Fabia was handling much better thanks to Paul Fowden’s help, and the penalty was disappointing for myself and Paul Williams (Kidwelly MC) co-driving, but nothing to be done.”

Turner’s grandson Thomas Cooper and Simon Anthony, both of PTMC, were also out of luck as their Mitsubishi Evo 9 retired with fuelling trouble.

Marcus Padgett and Ellie Williams also retired, their Nissan Micra Kit Car losing the clutch en route to SS3.

Brecon’s Mike Williams in his MG Rover ZR showed that the car and driver still had some pace by taking a class three third for him and co-driver Tom Bishop.

Forresters CC duo Ian Sutton / Karen Phelps finished just outside the top twenty in their Darrian T90, fellow Darrian pair Eurwyn ‘Wiggy’ Davies and Gareth Davies finishing third in class two.

The battle for the final Class 4 place was between Terry Brown and daughter Angharad Williams and Brad Cole/Jamie Vaughn, who took that third spot for PTMC and Forresters clubs.

Brecon’s Sara Williams had Carmarthen MC’s Dai Roberts co-driving and they finished 14th, despite their Renault Clio losing a side window and making life uncomfortable.

Barry and Seyyan John had an unlucky second stage, the Amman & District MC Subaru Impreza crew reportedly off road and hitting a lurking rock.

Ammanford MC pair Phil Evans/Vince Mosley further down in the Mitsubishi Evo 9 in 28th place. Neil Jones/Alan Thomas – both Forresters men got their two-litre Vauxhall Astra into 19th, Jon Davies/Wyn Tar Jones 12th in the Lampeter & District MC Peugeot 206, Brecon’s Josh Jones 23rd in his Peugeot 205.

Teify Valley MC pairing Gareth Bevan/Steffan Evans were class victors with their Ford Escort RS, also taking an eighth overall.

James Evans/Ffion Davies got their Ford Fiesta R2 to the runners-up spot in class two, the Teify Valley MC pair also 22nd overall.

The Legend Fires Tour was also something of the green grass of home for Epynt MC’s Tom Jones, his Subaru Impreza 20th overall and third in class five, Bob Gibbons and Jon Harris showing there was life left in a Ford Lotus Cortina too, their red flyer finishing 13th as many younger machines fell by the wayside.

Dewi Price/Kevin Jones were next, their Ford Escort also making the finish for the Pembrokeshire and Ammanford duo.

Swansea pair and Amman & District MC members Peter Jones/Graham Joseph retired their Triumph TR7 V8 after SS1, as did HOVAC members Tim and Jack Waters in their Renault Clio V6.

Thirty-one crews finished the event.

Overall:

1. Neil Roskell / Mark Crisp (Ford Fiesta R5)….51mins 19secs

2. Huw James / Dafydd Evans (Ford Escort Mk.2)….51mins 54secs

3. Roger Moran / Den Golding (Skoda Fabia R5)….51mins 54secs

4. Steve Wood / Dale Bowen (Ford Fiesta WRC)….52mins 04secs

5. Damian Cole / Andrew Roughead (Ford Fiesta)….52mins 11secs

Class Winners :

Class 1: Stephen Pritchard / Daniel Petrie (Vauxhall Nova)

Class 2: Andrew Turner / Richard Winstanley (Honda Civic)

Class 3: Gareth Bevan / Steffan Evans (Ford Escort RS)

Class 4: Huw James / Dafydd Evans (Ford Escort Mk2)

Class 5: Rob Tout / Mark Broadbent (Mitsubishi Lancer)

Class 6: Roger Moran / Den Golding (Skoda Fabia R5)

 

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