Heavens open at Harry Flatters Historic Rally in Wales

| 12 Aug 2013

Rikki Proffitt took his third pre-’68 Category One win last month to lead the British Historic Rally Championship.

Heavy rain overnight made for slippery conditions at the tough event with Proffitt and co-driver Phill Harrison’s Porsche 911 locked in battle with the 911 of Dessie Nutt and Geraldine McBride.

Just two seconds separated the cars but, when Proffitt’s machine developed a misfire, it looked like Nutt would gain the upper hand as he took a 15-second lead, it wasn’t to be though.

A jammed throttle soon put the pressure on Nutt before a broken gear linkage, and being caught behind a slower car, meant it was all over for the Irishman.

Peter Lewis and Alan Jones’ Ford Anglia, meanwhile, took third.

In Category Two (1968-’75 cars) the Mk1 Escort RS1800 of David Stokes and Guy Weaver had an easier time of it to take the class, with a 2 mins 56 secs lead over Roger Matthews and Paul Morris’ Escort.

Stokes arch-rival, Richard Hill, suffered gearbox woes that meant even missing a turn and reversing up the stage couldn’t hold Stokes back. Hill’s mechanical gremlins would later force him to retire.

A heavy downpour meant visibility dropped to near zero sending third-placed man Steve Loveridge sliding off the course and ending a cracking drive in his 1380cc Mini Clubman.

Matthews, meanwhile, took a steady approach that paid dividends letting him take the penultimate place on the podium ahead of Wayne Bonser and Richard Aston's Mk1 Escort RS2000.

A biblical rainstorm put all but the top three competitors – who had a clear run – out of contention in category three for 1975-’81 cars.

Gareth James, who had a four-second lead at the end of the first three stages, took the win in his Mk2 RS1800, 7 secs ahead of the BDG-powered Mk2 of Kevin Davies, while Tomas Davies’ Mk2 finished two minutes behind in third.

Round Seven – the Ulster Historic Rally – will be on 23-24 August.