Rix and Cooke hit by mechanical problems

While the event attracting the most attention - the British Grand Prix - was being played out at Silverstone, rally enthusiasts gathered in Wales for the Nicky Grist Stages, writes Arthur Debenham

This event was the only one of the season that counted towards the MSA British and BTRDA championships, so it was a large entry that gathered in Builth Wells last Saturday.

For the MSA competitors it would be a two-day event, with four special stages on gravel run twice on Saturday, and another four on tarmac the following day.

The BTRDA crews, however, would only tackle the Saturday section.

Amongst the BTRDA entry we found our local crew of Clare Rix/Rob Cooke in their Ford Ka. Their previous rally, the Plains, had run in dry conditions. This time it rained all day.

Rob told me: “As soon as we got into the first stage there were several cars off the road. We thought ‘this is going to be fun’.”

They completed the first run through the four stages, but then it was discovered that they had a very loose track rod end in the steering. Although they could have continued, they decided against it and retired.

Two rounds of the BTRDA championship remain, the Woopecker Rally on September 3 and the Trackrod Forest Stages on October 1. They also plan to contest Wales Rally GB, the British round of the World Championship at the end of October.

Before then Clare’s son Aaron may well make another appearance, this time on Chelmsford MC’s Wethersfield Stages, on August 29.

SHORT CIRCUIT

Mixed weather conditions and mixed results came the way of nine-year-old Toby Partridge as he took in the latest round of the Ninja Kart Championship at the Aldershot Oval.

The first heat saw everyone out on wet tyres, but as the race progressed so the conditions improved as the track dried out.

This left drivers looking for wet patches, and this resulted in several getting caught out.Toby was among them and a 13th place finish was the result.

Heat two, and now on slick tyres, Toby was holding down third and looking for second. However, as he tried to pass on the outside, the defending driver attempted to close the door, which then saw them both passed on the inside, resulting in an eventual fifth position.

The final saw a similar situation. Again holding down third with a few laps to go, he made another brave move round the outside and took over the lead, which he then extended on his way to the chequered flag.

This weekend could see Toby taking in meetings at Swaffham and Arena Essex.

DIARY DATES

Motor Racing.Snetterton, BRSCC, Saturday/Sunday. Caterhams, TVR, Honda VTec.

Anglesey, 750 MC, Saturday/Sunday. Races include RGB Championship.

Brands Hatch, MSVR, Saturday/Sunday. Mini Festival, FF 1600.

Short Circuit. Foxhall Stadium, Saturday 6.45pm. Stock Rods, UK Sprint Cars, Bangers.

Great Yarmouth, Sunday 5.30pm. Junior Stock Rods, Mini Super Twos, Rookie Rods, Bangers.

Autosolo. Debden, Essex, West Suffolk MC, Sunday. AMSC Challenge.

Karting. Ellough Park, Beccles, Saturday. Ellough Park KC Championship.

Rallying. Twyford Wood Stages, Grantham, Lincs. Mid-Derbyshire MC. No known local entries.