2001 Weeton Stages Rally Report

Blackpool South Shore Motor Club’s annual rally at Weeton Camp attracted a capacity seventy-five car entry with competitors coming from all over Britain to compete in
the behind closed doors event.

After almost fifty miles of competition the final margin between first and second was a mere twenty-three seconds with the winner’s laurels going to Tony Janetta and Lee Carter in their MG Metro 6R4. Local crew Mark Holmes and Andy Minns, who were piloting a similar car, were left to rue what might have been as Holmes said “There were some strange noises from the gearbox early on which made me back off. That probably cost us the win because we were the quickest car through the last few stages.”

Gearbox problems proved to be the downfall of two other South Shore crews. Graham Butler and Rick Forster were in or around the top three all day despite two time
consuming spins. “We dropped around forty-five seconds as a result” said Butler later. Their challenge to the leaders was to end on stage ten when the gearbox
in the ex-Carlos Sainz Ford Escort Cosworth cried enough.

The ANWCC Championship aspirations of Duncan Taylor and Stephen Graveson, were finally ended midway through the rally when their Escort Cosworth’s gear linkage broke. It had been a day of high hopes and high drama for the pair who suffered a complete loss of brakes resulting in them taking a maximum time on stage three. Afterwards Graveson reflected on what might have been saying “If there had been a brick wall at the end of that long straight we’d both be history now!”

By the final reckoning the third podium place had gone to Rob Barry and Wayne Hunt in their Mitsubishi Lancer Evo6 with the similar car of Steve Simpson and Mark Booth settling for occupancy of fourth place. Class C winners Dave Willett and John Roberts completed the top five in their Ford Escort Mk2.

View a gallery of photos from the 2001 Weeton Stages Rally, here.

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