John Stone made a fantastic return to the Protyre Motorsport UK Asphalt Rally Championship, taking third placed points on the Rallynuts National Tour of Epynt Rally in his Legend Fires-backed Ford Fiesta WRC – and now the Blackburn ace is ready to push for victory on the next round, the Masterpixel Media Manx National Rally (10/11 May).
John suffered an early misfire on Epynt in his new Fiesta WRC, which is the same ex-works car that Mikko Hirvonen won the 2011 Rally Australia in. New spark plugs and a replacement coil cured the problem, allowing the 2014 Asphalt Rally Championship runner-up to press on.
Co-driven by Jack Morton, John didn’t expert to challenge Jason Pritchard and Damian Cole for victory on Epynt, especially in such horrendous and changable weather, so third-placed points was what he was aiming for. And with those safely in the bag, he’s looking forward to the Manx National.
“The first round of a championship is always tricky – but third is what we had targeted owing to the quality of the entry, and it means that we can now have a push on the Manx,” said John. “We usually go okay over there.
“After that, well we’re quite used to going to Ireland, so who knows. Jason and Damian are very strong opponents, but you have to be in it to win it – and hopefully we’ll be there at the end of the season.”