Northallerton motorsport broadcaster and journalist, Larry Carter, emerged from an ice and snow-bound Croft Circuit with an unlikely top ten placing overall on the Specsavers Christmas Stages Rally last weekend.
Despite the arctic weather in the region threatening the event, Northallerton Automobile Club managed to get the event on although sheet ice and hard packed snow greeted the 76 competitors who made the start.
Driving the 1600cc MSR Motorsport-prepared Motorcycle Racer Magazine Peugeot 206 Super Cup car, Carter and Thirsk co driver Amanda Cornforth made a reasonable start and despite a number of spins on SS1, they were 20th after the opening stage.
Changing from the Pirelli N3 wets on the back to standard road tyres, but with snow tyres on the front, the pair set eighth quickest time on SS2 holding ninth overall which they held to the lunch halt as conditions thawed slightly.
However, heavy snow returned in the afternoon and despite a couple more spins, the pair claimed 10th overall and 3rd in the 1600cc class at the finish, and in doing so, Carter recorded his best ever rally result as a driver.
"That was one of the craziest days I've had behind the wheel of a car and it was thoroughly enjoyable," Carter reflected. "If someone had told me I'd be anywhere near the top ten at the start of the day, I wouldn't have believed them but I'm delighted with the result, especially as it's the first time I've driven competitively in snow and ice.
"All credit to the organisers for their efforts in running the event and whereas I thought we may have had a bit of panel damage, there's not a mark on the car. Thanks to the MSR Motorsport Team for their hard work and to my co driver Amanda for stepping in at relatively short notice also."
Carter will next be in action on the Cartersport Jack Frost Stages Rally at Croft on Sunday 17 January 2010.