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Chris Anderson Rallysport

Class Win for Anderson at Ingliston

Chris Anderson Rallying

County Durham rally driver Chris Anderson was back in action at Ingliston near Edinburgh where he was contesting his first event since the icy Jack Frost Stages Rally at Croft back in January and came away with a brilliant class win on yesterday’s DCC Ingliston Stages Rally.

The 18-year-old maintenance engineer from Butterknowle near Bishop Auckland was at the wheel of the Chris Birkbeck-prepared ex M-Sport Ford Fiesta, with backing from Wilkinson Maintenance Ltd and John Cullerton & Sons and as the rest of the country sweltered in hot sunshine, rain was prevailing in Scotland.

Along with Durham co-driver Chris Thirling, the pair didn’t enjoy the best of starts with tyre choice proving difficult in the early stages but by the third and fourth tests, it was starting to dry up. However, around lunchtime, the heavens opened and a heavy downpour meant that wet tyres were the only option.

Revelling in the conditions, Anderson charged up the leaderboard over the final four stages to emerge in seventh position overall and taking the class victory in the process to claim major points in the North of England Tarmac Rally Championship.

Chris said: Tyre choice was difficult early on and we went with a cut slick for the opening stages which proved the wrong choice. It dried up and we started to find our pace but when it rained again, I was confident with the car’s set-up and the wet tyres so I’m delighted with the result. Things are starting to come together now and we’ve had a couple of good results so hopefully I can continue the good run on the Jim Clark next month.”

Anderson and Thirling’s next planned outing is at the Jim Clark Reivers Rally based in Duns in late May.

Anderson Impresses at Croft


Chris Anderson Rallying
County Durham rally driver Chris Anderson was back in action at Croft Circuit for the second time in just over two weeks last Sunday and this time came away with a much better result with a top fifteen placing on the Cartersport Jack Frost Stages Rally.

Having contested the recent Specsavers Christmas Stages Rally in the ice and snow, which wasn’t to his or the car’s liking, the 18-year-old maintenance engineer from Butterknowle near Bishop Auckland was at the wheel of the Chris Birkbeck-prepared ex M-Sport 2000cc Ford Fiesta, with backing from Wilkinson Maintenance Ltd and John Cullerton & Sons.

Along with Durham co-driver Chris Thirling, the pair didn’t enjoy the best of starts on the annual Darlington & District Motor Club event and were relieved when the opening stage was cancelled due to a timing malfunction. SS2 saw them get into their stride despite the damp conditions and by the halfway point, had climbed inside the top twenty.

SS5 was subsequently cancelled also, and once again luck prevailed as Anderson and Thirling lost time but made amends on the sixth stage as they hoisted themselves to 16th overall, despite being held up by slower cars.

As dusk started to fall, they dropped a little time on the penultimate stage but a brilliant effort in the darkness of the final 4.5 mile stage elevated Anderson to 15th place overall and with it fifth in class as just four seconds covered Chris and the other four cars in front.

Chris said: “We had a new engine built before the Christmas Stages and it produces a lot more horsepower but in those icy conditions, we struggled a lot. The Jack Frost Stages was a lot wetter than I’d have liked, and the chicanes were very, very tight but we had a good run and am delighted to finish in 15th. It would have been a bit higher had we not caught some cars at inopportune places but it’s the same for everyone and I’m satisfied with our performance.”

Anderson and Thirling’s next planned outing is at Ingliston in Scotland on 26th March.

Picture attached courtesy of Ian Hardy, www.ianhardy.net.

Chris Anderson Jack Frost

Anderson Finally Conquers Otterburn

Chris Anderson Rallying

County Durham rally driver Chris Anderson finally conquered the army ranges at Otterburn in Northumberland today by finishing the UTS Cheviot Keith Knox Stages Rally 25th overall.

The 18-year old maintenance engineer from Butterknowle, near Bishop Auckland has failed to finish the last four events on Otterburn, so was happy to put his demons behind him when he completed the final stage in his 3M Peltor, Wilkinson Maintenance Ltd and John Cullerton & Sons sponsored Ford Fiesta.

Anderson was guided as usual, by fellow Durham Auto Club member Chris Thirling. The pair got off to a steady start in the foggy and damp conditions, however, a suspected fuel problem meant that the car was suffering from lack of power.

As the fog lifted so did the pace and Anderson started to put in some consistent times to move up the leader board. After the final loop of stages a concerted effort saw the pair cross the finish line 25th overall and ninth in the highly competitive class B11, where just 4 seconds separated the top ten.

Speaking after the event a jubilant Chris said “I am just so relieved to finish an event here, we’ve had a lot of bad luck on Otterburn but I’ve finally put that behind me now. Apart from our fuel problems early on the remainder of the event was perfect and I was very happy with my pace.”

Anderson and Thirling’s next outing is at the Christmas Stages Rally at Croft Circuit in December.

Unlucky 13 For Anderson in Cumbria

County Durham rally driver Chris Anderson was yet again denied a good result when an accident robbed him of a promising finish at yesterday’s Stobart Rail Pendragon Stages Rally based in Penrith.

The maintenance engineer from Butterknowle near Bishop Auckland had hoped his recent run of bad luck would be over and with fellow Durham Auto Club member Chris Thirling alongside reading the notes, the pair made an impressive start to the event, moving up from a seeding of 66th to 19th overall after the first stage.

After the first two loops of stages the pair were still lying 19th overall and 3rd in class in their 3M Peltor, Wilkinson Maintenance Ltd and John Cullerton & Sons sponsored Ford Fiesta. Anderson was within a mile of the finish of Stage 13 when disaster struck on the demanding Tank Training grounds at Warcop.

Chris said:  “We were really pushing hard and trying to improve on our position when I took a left hand bend with a crest, the car went light and I ended up on some loose gravel, causing me to slide into an embankment which damaged the suspension so that was it: Game over!”

Anderson and Thirling’s next outing is at the Cheviot/Keith Knox Stages Rally on Otterburn in October.

Picture attached courtesy of Ian Hardy, www.ianhardy.net.


Chris Anderson Rallying

Keith Frecker Memorial Weeton Stages Rally – Weeton Camp, Lancashire
Sunday 7th June 2009

County Durham rally driver Chris Anderson saw his hopes of another good result vanish when he encountered problems on the final two stages of today’s Keith Frecker Memorial Weeton Stages Rally held at Weeton Camp near Blackpool.

The 17-year-old maintenance engineer from Butterknowle was in scintillating form in the ex-Guy Wilks Wilkinson Maintenance Ltd and John Cullerton-sponsored Ford Puma S1600, which also has the additional backing of Bell’s Truck Sales for the Blackpool South Shore Motor Club event, and throughout the morning, gradually climbed the leaderboard in his and Durham co driver Chris Thirling’s MSR Motorsport-prepared car.

After SS10, Anderson was up to 18th overall going into the final two stages and as he pushed to climb even higher on his first ever visit to the tricky and demanding venue, he dropped the front of the car off the side of one of Weeton’s unforgiving roads, which resulted in steering damage and he had to nurse the car back to service for urgent repairs.

His team sorted out the problem and going into the twelfth and final stage, Chris was hoping to salvage a deserving result but luck wasn’t to be with him as he suffered a clutch problem dropping even more time and relegating him to 35th overall after the 55 miles of stages.

Despite his setbacks, Anderson added valuable points in the AS Performance North of England Tarmacadam Rally Championship, of which the event was a qualifying round.

“Of course I’m very disappointed to finish well down the order as it looked at one point that a top 15 placing would have been possible but it wasn’t to be. We’d flirted with the kerbs a couple of times but we got caught out when we did it once too often and it broke the steering and then we had the clutch go on the final stage. However, I’m not totally disheartened as I’m getting faster the more I learn the car and how to drive it properly. The stages were a lot different to what I’ve been used to and my thanks go to Chris for doing a great job and to the MSR team for their hard work too” said Chris.

Picture attached (copyright of Phil James – www.pro-rally.co.uk) Chris Anderson in action in the ex Guy Wilks Ford Puma S1600


Tuesday 1st June 2010
For immediate release

County Durham rally driver Chris Anderson was in action in the Scottish Borders on Sunday when he contested the 67-stage mile Jim Clark Reivers Rally and he came away with a fine class victory.
The 18-year-old maintenance engineer from Butterknowle near Bishop Auckland was at the wheel of the Chris Birkbeck-prepared ex M-Sport 2000cc Ford Fiesta, with backing from Wilkinson Maintenance Ltd and John Cullerton & Sons, and along with Durham co-driver Chris Thirling the pair made a steady start on the damp roads around Duns.

Holding second in class for the opening loop through the Bothwell and Moon stages, Anderson was subsequently held up behind another car on SS3 which dropped him to 3rd in class but with the roads drying, a concerted effort in the second half of the rally pushed him back into contention.
On the 11-mile Blackadder 1 stage, Anderson grabbed second place back and was just 15 seconds down on the class leader going into the final two tests whereby some great driving saw him outpace his rivals to take a class win by 12 seconds and with it, maximum class points in the Scottish Tarmack Rally Championship.
Chris said: “We took it a bit cautiously on the opening couple of stages as the roads were quite damp and we didn’t want to do anything silly but it didn’t help being held up by a slower car. It meant we had to push a lot harder in the afternoon but it was all under control and I knew we had the pace to win the class if everything went our way which thankfully it did so I’m delighted.”
Anderson and Thirling’s next outing is at the Keith Frecker Memorial Stages at Weeton Camp near Blackpool on Sunday 13th June 2010.
Picture attached courtesy of Jon Suter www.jmsphotographic.com.



Evans Wins But ANCRO Returnee Roger Claims Pirelli GRC Honours

Welshman Melvyn Evans took his second victory in the RBS International Manx Rally today as Roger Duckworth claimed the honours in the 2008 Pirelli MSA Gravel Rally Championship as he finished second overall.

Evans and Irish co-driver Sean Mullally finished 50.9 seconds ahead of Duckworth and co-driver Mark Broomfield in their Subaru Impreza WRC to win the event for the first time since 2002.

Duckworth and Broomfield were making a return to competition following their accident on the Cork 20 International Rally in October and despite losing a considerable amount of time on stage seven with a clutch slipping, posted a solid performance to take maximum points in the ANCRO-organised 2008 Pirelli Gravel Rally Championship in their Subaru Impreza WRC.

“We’ve had a good run,” Duckworth said. “That’s the sixth time we’ve been second on this event! It’s been good and I’m happy with the comeback we’ve made after the Cork 20 and to get the points in the championship but I’m upset not to have won the Tony Davies award for the fastest times through the two Kella stages.”

Championship leaders Jon Ingram and co-driver Ian Allsop, who won round two, finished third in their different, hired, right-hand drive Subaru Impreza WRC. The crew battled through several problems and were doubtful if they would continue at the restart on Saturday after they had an issue with the gearbox. They also had a problem with the diff on the first stage on Saturday but battled back to make the podium and increase their lead to 13 points.

Irish crew Keith Cronin and Greg Shinnors finished fifth overall, first in Group N, took third place in the Gravel Championship and won the Mitsubishi Evo Challenge. It was Cronin’s first time in the Isle of Man and he showed some good pace despite a puncture on the final stage in his Mitsubishi Evo 9 to end up behind the Audi A3 Quattro of David Kynaston/Andy Russell.

Neil McCance and Graham Hopewell were sixth in their Mitsubishi Evo and second in Group N followed by Stephen Moore and Tony McHugh in the Ford Focus WRC. Daniel Barry and Mark Bowens overcame the odds to finish eighth overall and sixth in the Gravel series in their Mitsubishi Evo. At one point the pair thought they would not make the finish after they picked up substantial damage to the rear end of their car on stage seven.

Reigning champions Marcus Dodd and Andrew Bargery rounded off the top ten in their Hyundai Accent WRC behind the Metro 6R4 of John and Caroline Price. Dodd had been a solid third overall heading into the final stage but an off cost them a considerable amount of time after they had earlier struggled with a puncture and a turbo problem.

Bad luck of the rally went to Richard Cathcart and Martin Brady in their Group N Mitsubishi Evo machine. The pair had shown blistering form on their first visit to the Manx stages and were fourth and leading Group N ahead of the penultimate test before a puncture and a lost wheel cost them enough time to put them OTL.

The Pirelli MSA Gravel Rally Championship will return in a brief three weeks for round four, the Builth Wells-based Severn Valley Rally on Saturday 30 May.

Provisional Classification

1, Melvyn Evans/Sean Mullally Subaru Impreza WRC 1h:41m:40.0s
2, Roger Duckworth/Mark Broomfield Subaru Impreza WRC 1:42:30.9
3, Jon Ingram/Ian Allsop Subaru Impreza WRC 1:44:06.3
4, David Kynaston/Andy Russell Audi A3 Quattro 1:44:12.9
5, Keith Cronin/Greg Shinnors Mitsubishi Lancer Evo9 1:45:11.6
6, Neil McCance/Graham Hopewell Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 9 1:45:58.9
7, Stephen Moore/Tony McHugh Ford Focus WRC 1:46:24.1
8, Daniel Barry/Mark Bowens Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 9 1:47:36.7
9, John Price/Caroline Price MG Metro 6R4 1:47:39.3
10, Marcus Dodd/Andrew Bargery Hyundai Accent WRC 1:47:46.0

Provisional Championship Standings (after Round 3)

1, Jon Ingram 66 points
2, Daniel Barry 53 points
3, Neil McCance 48 points
4, Marcus Dodd 41 points
5, Nik Elsmore 41 points
6, Andy Burton 38 points
7, Stephen Moore 38 points

Pictures attached and previously sent today (courtesy of www.cmwi.net) – Roger Duckworth & Mark Broomfield in their Subaru Impreza WRC.

More details, including full results on the event can be found at www.manxrally.org and information on the Pirelli MSA National Gravel Rally Championship is listed at www.gravelrally.co.uk.