Pirelli Packs ‘Em In

David Stokes & Guy Weaver
The Pirelli Carlisle Rally looks like attracting it’s best entry for years with some 80 plus crews already in the line up for the April 25th event, with the field including several overseas entries plus all the leading contenders in the Mintex MSA British Historic Championship and the West Wales Rally Spares R.A.C. Rally Championship. These two series are proving extremely popular this year and with the rally also a scoring round in the S.G. Petch/ ANECCC and Motoscope Northern Historic championships, the organisers are confident that there will be a bumper entry for rally enthusiasts to enjoy when the event kicks off from outside Carlisle’s Old Town Hall. There is a classy feel to the entry with the historic section already including series leaders Jason Pritchard/ Phil Clark and their closest rivals David Stokes/ Guy Weaver plus other top contenders such as Nick Elliott/ Dave Price,  Rupert Lomax/ Richard Jones, Rikki Profitt/ Graham Wild and Ernie & Will Graham on a lengthly list which includes such “Hard Chargers” as James Slaughter, Phil Squires and Peter Smith. One car the spectators most certainly will be looking out for is the big Vauxhall Firenza Can-Am of rallying legend and former Pirelli rally winner Jimmy McRae who will be co-driven by Pauline Gullick. It’s a similar story amongst the West Wales Rally Spares RAC runners and current leaders Graham Standen/ Jane Edgington are sure to be pushed all the way from the other front runners such as Phil Burton/ Mal Capstick , Barry Stevenson-Wheeler/ John Pickavance and the evergreen Bob Bean. The  foreign entries are a bit of an unknown quantity, French duo Anto Vandromme/ Yoann Raffaelli will be bringing a Ford Escort RS while, from Belgium, Cristophe Jacob/ Isabelle Regnier will also be Escort mounted while Guino Kenis/ Frank Blondeel will be driving a BMW 2002.   Rounding the event off, and the icing on the cake for many spectators, will be the British Armed Forces Rally Team hurling their 2 tonne Land Rovers over the forest tracks. With such a fantastic entry, the Pirelli Carlisle Rally is sure to be a winner with the spectators who can see all the action, both at the Carlisle city centre start, with live commentary, and  at the specially located viewing areas, one  on every stage,  offering an unrivalled view of the competing cars from a safe and secure position.