Asphalt Asides 2014 – Issue 6

Taylor Tyneside14ASPHALT TAYLOR-MADE!…
Peter Taylor and co-driver Andrew Roughead their first outright win in the REIS MSA Asphalt Rally Championship when they took their Fiesta S2400 to victory on the fifth round of the 2014 Series, the Wilkinson Maintenance Tyneside Stages Rally.

Their 17-second advantage over runners-up Damian Cole/Elliott Edmondson (Ford Focus WRC) brought to an end the defending MSA Asphalt Champion’s run of three straight wins on the Otterburn Ranges and, although this was only Taylor/Roughead’s second score of the season, they are now just outside the Top Ten and well placed to improve considerably over the final three events.

As he becomes more used to the Fiesta, Taylor has shown an excellent turn of speed on a number of events already this season and now, on the Tyneside Stages, it all came right. For his efforts, the 23-year old from Carlisle was awarded the John Horton Motorsport Management ‘Star Performer’ trophy

The original route for the Tyneside Stages included fourteen stages but, following a number of delays, the event was brought to a close after just twelve. For their part, Cole/Edmondson set off in determined fashion and were leading for the first four, before being forced to give best to a hard-charging Taylor on the fifth.

Third were 2010 Tyneside winners Simon Mauger/Ashley Trimble who were reunited for the event in the former’s Escort MkII. They also took maximum Millington Rear-Wheel Drive Challenge points from Keith Robathan’s similar car but, in his defence, it was the Aberdeen driver’s first visit to the Otterburn Ranges since 1996!…

Fourth place for John Stone/Carl Williamson (Skoda Fabia WRC) not only maintained their 100% finishing record in this year’s Championship, but was also enough to keep them at the head of their respective points tables. However, according to their new teeshirts, they don’t like to talk about it – so we won’t either!…

As a past winner on Otterburn at the wheel of his Darrian, John Indri’s induction into the world of fourwheel drive turbo-charged machinery has been, to put it mildly, problematic. Nevertheless, with Peter James installed to read the notes, 5th overall netted his highest score of the season and, like Taylor, although dropped scores will play a part from here on in, successful outings on each of the remaining events could work wonders!

David Hardie/John McCulloch (Subaru Impreza) – the latter a late arrival in Otterburn having been in Elgin for the Speyside Stages the previous day! – were quietly getting on with it. 7th place and a class win puts them into the lead of Class B13 from fellow Scotsmen Jim Sharp/Craig Wallace whose Lancer EVO9 finished inside the Top 20.

Alex Laffey/Jack Morton continue to impress in their Fiesta R5+. Fresh from his win alongside Damian Cole on the non-Championship Harry Flatters Rally on Epynt the previous weekend, Morton guided Laffey to 8th overall, a result which puts them up to 3rd in the points. Not far behind them, David Tinn overcame a fraught scrutineering session to bring his Proton Millington back to the finish in 10th place and he, too, sees his standing in the table rise to 4th. David Tinn, Proton Millington

Now, from past experience, Kevin Tappin has shown us that he knows how to get the best out of his 1600cc Escort – and this weekend was no exception! Having travelled all the way up from Holsworthy in Devon, he and Jonathan Hawkins were rewarded with 13th overall, a class win and third Millington points. Just imagine what they could do if they had the benefit of Millington power!…

Although usurped for the class by Tappin/Hawkins, Darren & Sue Underwood claimed maximum AB Motorsport Front-Wheel Drive Challenge points in their Nova and have earned themselves a healthy lead in the category from Ian Barnard/Maria Rayner whose own Nova took the Fuchs Titan Race award for ‘Best Improvement on Seeding’ – a £50 product voucher – for the second event in a row. Darren & Sue Underwood, Vauxhall Nova

For the first time for a number of years, the Tyneside Stages had attracted a full entry of 90 cars, of which 31 were crewed by Championship contenders. In addition to those mentioned above, the finishers included:
15th Adrian Spencer/Mark Hewitt, Subaru Impreza
16th Mark Jasper/Don Whyatt, Ford Escort MkII
19th Mark Borthwick/Peter Gibson, Ford Escort MkII
21st Alan Oldfield/Ken Bills, Proton Millington
22nd David White/Mathew White, Subaru Impreza **
26th Tommy Graham/Mike Bailey, Mitsubishi EVO
31st Martin Hodgson/Tony Jones , Ford Escort MkII
33rd Mike Taylor/Peter Grant, Talbot Sunbeam Lotus
37th Steven Irwin/Neil Bye, Vauxhall Nova
40th Paul & Julian Doroszczuk, Ford Escort MkII
51st Georgia Shiels/Phil Hall, Abarth 500
54th Cathy Sewart/Colin Stephens, Sunbeam Lotus
60th Andy Hawkins/Colin Fairbairn, VW Golf
61st Andrew Irving/Reg Irving, Peugeot 205
** Class Winners

Those destined not to see the finish included early season Championship leaders Steve Simpson/Patrick Walsh whose Impreza WRC registered its second consecutive DNF when the clutch failed on the opening stage of the day. Second in the points prior to the start, Darren Atkinson/Phil Sandham survived a huge accident in their Escort MkII – the home-built car stood up well to the battering but will need plenty of TLC before it sees the light of day once more!…

Chris Ford’s Impreza was another SS1 casualty, Richard Felgate/Mark Mason’s return to the Championship was short-lived after their BMW M3’s engine developed an unhealthy rattle, while illness ended Richard Slinger’s challenge after three stages.

The team from ‘Special Stage’ were out on the Wilkinson Maintenance Tyneside Stages Rally and the forthcoming programme is due to be broadcast on Motors TV on Friday 15th August at 21.00. Wayne Goldring will have his work cut out on this one as, on 6th August, he took time out to tie the knot with Lisa Leonard – congratulations to you both and good luck from everyone involved with the Asphalt Championship!…

Points following the Tyneside Stages have already been circulated – they will become FINAL at midday on 12th August and, therefore, if you have any queries on them, please contact the Championship Coordinator before then.


Round 6: The entry list for the Old Forge Garage Mewla Rally (24th August) is fast filling up. Regulations/entry forms may be downloaded from but, if you are intending to enter, please contact the Entries Secretaries:
Keith & Trina Edwards – Tel : 01982 551246
as a matter of some urgency….

Round 7: Regulations for the Wexford Stages Rally (13/14th September) are now available to download from This is another event that has a habit of filling up quickly and, so, any Championship contenders who are planning to make the trip, but have yet to place an entry, are advised to do so without delay! The Entries Secretary is:
Gary Nolan
Tel : +353 87 9007152 (7.00-9.00pm only)

Round 8 (FINAL): Plans for the Cheviot Keith Knox Rally (9th November), sponsored by ALM Engineering Solutions & Ford Parts UK, are taking shape. At this stage, anyone wishing to register an interest should e-mail :

We value any communications from competitors and therefore if you have any news, comments, questions or simply require advice we would like to hear from you.

Coordinator – Andrew Haill: Tel 0121 313 1416, Mobile 07836 729 549, Email:

Eligibility Scrutineer – Geoff Doe: Mobile 07808 129 663, Email:

Website – Facebook –

Twitter – @AsphaltRallying


March 9 Tour of Epynt (Llandovery)
Entries – Baryan Joseph Tel: 07895 085 585 Email:
Secretary – Robert Wilson Tel: 01639 849 413 Email:

May 9/10 Manx National Rally (Douglas)
Entries – Mark Quayle Tel: 07624 479 587
Secretary – Hilary Moore Tel: 07624 477 152 Email:

May 30/31 Jim Clark National Rally (Kelso)
David Malthouse Tel: 07881 363 911

July 6 ALMC Stages (Trim, Co. Meath)
Entries – Raymond Scullion Tel: +353 876 187 829 Email:
Secretary – Lyndsay Doran Tel: +353 861 519 697 Email:

Aug. 3 Tyneside Stages (Otterburn)
Maurice Mabon Tel: 01665 602 690

Aug. 24 Mewla Rally (Builth Wells)
Entries – Brian Jones Tel: 07974 948 193 Email:
Secretary – Keith &Trina Edwards Tel: 01982 551 246 Email:

Sept. 13/14 Wexford Stages Rally (Wexford)
Entries – Pat O’Dowd Tel: +353 879 184 022 Email:
Secretary – Gary Nolan Tel: +353 879 007 1252 Email:

Nov. 9 Cheviot Keith Knox Stages (Otterburn)
Entries – Charlie Tynan Tel: 0191 258 3509 Email:
Secretary – Gordon Bradford Tel: 07412 107 269 Email:

29th November: Awards Evening, Moor Hall Hotel, Sutton Coldfield, West Midlands

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