Andrew Hockridge heads north to Cumbria hoping for a far less stressful and trouble free round two of the 2009 MSA British Rally Championship, after enduring an eventful weekend last time out.
Hockridge, who is contesting the full C2R2cup for the second year, was debuting his brand new GRH Foods supported C2R2Max on the recent Bulldog International Rally of North Wales but when the car was involved in a road accident the day before the rally the team was forced to pull out all the stops to re build the Citroen overnight.
Whilst Hockridge, and co-driver Rich Mills, may have finished the rally the ill handling car made the experience less than enjoyable.
With the Geoff Jones Motorsport prepared car restored to full health, Hockridge heads to Carlisle with fond memories. It was on this event in 2008 that Hockridge upset the form book with a strong and calculated drive to take the class win and with it, an early championship lead.
“The Pirelli Rally is a tough event with a fierce reputation, and to win there last year was a real surprise,” he said. “I am under no illusions that the pace will be really fierce this weekend and with both Jason and Marty having experience of their new cars on gravel I am still playing catch up.
“For Rich and I our championship effectively begins this weekend.”
The Pirelli International Rally is based in Carlisle and incorporates stages within the world famous Kielder Forest Complex. With three stages on Friday night, offering crews the extra challenge of high speed forest rallying in the dark, followed by another nine stages on Saturday, the surviving crews then return to Carlisle for the ceremonial finish early on Saturday evening.
by Geoff Mayes