by Geoff Mayes
Andrew Hockridge is focused on just one thing when the 2008 Citroen C2R2 Cup heads to Yorkshire for round five this weekend - to gain as many points as possible and further extend his championship lead in only his first season in the series.
The Welshman began the season, way back in April, with no idea of how he would fare, but then promptly dominated the opening rally, the Pirelli International.
Since then he has surprised the established regulars with a string of podiums that have shot the GRH Foods supported driver to the top of the leaderboard. This is all the more remarkable when you consider that this is the first time he has ever tackled a full championship.
At the beginning of the season Hockridge, whose car is run by Geoff Jones Motorsport, admitted that he was not looking forward to the three tarmac rallies, but after podiums in both the Isle of Man and Ulster, he actually rather likes the black stuff now.
However, gravel is where he learnt to rally and as such the Gino's Pizza Cheese-backed man, who is co-driven by Rich Mills in little the pocket rocket, is really looking forward to the weekend.
"I've never contested a rally in Yorkshire before so don't really know what to expect," he stated. "But our goal really has to be to take away as many points as possible.
"We have a small lead now and need to build on it. We won the season opener, the Pirelli International, and so a similar result this weekend would be fantastic."
Hockridge and Mills both head the respective C2R2 Cup drivers and co-driver championships with three more opportunities to score points left this season. However the series allows competitors to 'drop' their two worst scores which means that the championship is sure to go down to the wire on Wales Rally GB, regardless of how this weekend pans out.