Carwyn Harries made it two successful weekends of rallying in a row as he survived a last stage drama to secure a class win - and 14th overall - on the Telford Winter Stages Rally.

Driving his Harries Plant Hire backed Peugeot 106 GTi, the 18-year-old was keen to get more experience under his belt before starting his BRC 'Stars of the Future' Championship campaign on the Denbighshire Astra Stages Rally in April.

Saturday morning would bring icy conditions at the Sweet Lamb testing complex near Llangurig, and Harries found his tyre choice for the opening two stages not ideal for the hard gravel roads. A switch to Matador Tyres for the remainder of the event would bring better fortune for the youngster and see confidence rise as he put in some excellent stage times in the Peugeot.

Harries held the class lead going into the final loop of two stages before a broken gearbox mounting meant that the Peugeot was left stuck in gear on the final stage - with the damage also puncturing the radiator and forcing the engine temperature to soar in the process.

Luckily for Harries, he was able to nurse the car back to the finish of the rally to secure the class victory - a result he was understandably pleased with.

"At the moment it's about getting as much practice in as we can before the serious competition begins," he said. "Gareth and myself are both young and neither of us has great experience, so we're both learning very quickly. We've been fortunate to receive help from Dorian Rees and his D&C Rallying preparation team, and that is certainly making life easier for us at the moment.

"Today was very good - the conditions varied throughout the rally so it was an excellent learning day. The car ran very well apart from the problem on the final stage, and Gareth and I were very happy with the class win. We hope to get out on another rally before the Astra Stages to make sure we go there in a good frame of mind to do well."


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