2004 British Rally champion David Higgins saw his run of seven successive wins in the Chinese Rally Championship come to an end on the Longyou Rally last weekend.

Higgins and co-driver Ieuan Thomas had a difficult event and after overcoming suspension problems in the first two stages, they lost the use of their wipers during torrential rain in stage five.

With the stages full of mud it was difficult to see further than 20 kilometres - but they still managed to lead the Chinese Rally Championship runners, and were lying third overall in the Asia Pacific Rally Championship event.

The car was fixed at service, but on the last stage of Saturday they went round a corner and got dragged into a ditch. The car then slipped down a hill. The crew had built up a 43 second lead when it happened.

Conditions in China were so bad that no cars could get to the stricken Mitsubishi to rescue it, leaving Higgins and Thomas stranded for six hours in heavy rain.

In the end they had to walk approximately 8 kilometres out of the stage to get picked up.

Due to the amount of time taken to rescue the Mitsubishi, the crew were unable to re-start on Sunday.

Fiesta SportingTrophy regular James Everard meanwhile was making his Chinese Rally Championship debut - standing in for Nick Rowland, who was in action on the Tempest Rally in his Suzuki Swift instead. Everard and Craig Drew eventually finished twelfth.

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