Kielder Forest’s gravel tracks will echo to the thunder of high revving engines this weekend as the Pirelli International Rally brings a field of over 100 super fast rally cars to the North Tyne valley reviving the days when the legendary Lombard RAC Rally was an annual highlight for thousands of enthusiasts who flocked to the forest to see the cars in action. Today’s rally enthusiasts are in for a double helping of high-speed action for the Pirelli backed event is a round of the UK’s two top championships, the British Rally Championship sees an International field with all the leading contenders on the entry list plus world-class drivers from as far away as Finland, the USA and New Zealand.
Meanwhile, the older generation can wallow in nostalgia as the FUCHS Lubricants Motorsport UK British Historic Rally Championship sees some phenomenal cars from yesteryear line up ready to thrill the crowds as they charge along Kielder’s undulating gravel tracks at a quite astonishing speed. Although some 40 years old, the performance of these cars such as Ford Escorts, Hillman Avengers and the ubiquitous Mini Coopers is quite amazing as is the skill of the guys who drive them.
The Pirelli International Rally features an early morning start from Carlisle with the cars heading straight for the Kielder stages for a day of fast and furious competition. The organisers have worked with Forest Enterprise to arrange special spectator viewpoints with car parking and these are located at the following venues:-
Blackaburn : Off the Wark to Stonehaugh road.
The Bower : Off the C200 road enter via The Birks.
Elf Hill : Off the C200 road near Tower Knowe Information Area.