Stourbridge rally driver Richard Sykes is aiming to put the misfortune he experienced on his last event behind him when he contests the Trackrod Challenge rally in Yorkshire next weekend, the latest round of the BRC Challenge championship.
Sykes and co-driver Simon Taylor crashed out of the Ulster Challenge rally in dramatic style last month in their Bathams Brewery, Boroughbridge Marina, Silverstone Tyres and G I Sykes Ltd-supported Citroën C2 R2 Max. Injuries sustained in the crash have meant that Taylor is unable to compete with Sykes on the Trackrod.
“Unfortunately Simon received a back injury in the crash so he has been advised not to compete,” said Sykes. “I have drafted in Emma Morrison who co-drove for my championship rival Simon Moore last year. We have competed together before and she is very organised and motivated and no doubt looking forward to a competitive run.”
“It is still mathematically possible for us to retain our BRC Challenge title but we’re relying on other drivers retiring which is unlikely to happen. We’ll be trying our best to win both in Yorkshire and in the final round in Bournemouth though.”
“Our team of Simon Hawthorne and Martin Billings have worked tirelessly repairing the car after Ulster and, with help from Charles Hurst, they’ve done a fantastic job and it looks as good as new.”
“The Yorkshire stages have a lot of long straights which will be a disadvantage for us but I’ll be trying as hard as I can to get the win. We do two night stages on Friday which will be a real challenge and 100% concentration will be needed to get a good result. I won the event in 2007 and 2008 but since then it’s been cruel to us so we need to break that run of bad luck.”
As well as the Friday night stages the BRC Challenge crews will contest three stages in the classic rallying territory of North Yorkshire on Saturday morning.