Melvyn Evans will contest selected rounds of the Protyre Motorsport UK Asphalt Rally Championship this year in his Škoda Fabia R5.
When the series returned after a sabbatical, he won the opening round of the new era – taking his Subaru Impreza WRC S12b to victory on the 2018 Tour of Epynt.
Since then Melvyn has focused on developing R5 cars – and his family-run Melvyn Evans Motorsport operation has built up a fleet of Volkswagen Polo GTI R5s, including the ones he runs for Osian Pryce and Matt Edwards in the British Rally Championship and for his son Meirion Evans on Irish Tarmac and other asphalt events at home and abroad.
Melvyn last drove the Fabia R5 on the Argyll Stages, where he was challenging for victory before receiving a one minute time penalty for clipping a chicane with the back of the car. Meirion went on to win the Scottish closed road event in a Polo GTI R5.
Melvyn has entered the opening two rounds of the Protyre Asphalt Rally Championship, The Old Forge Garage Mewla Rally (Sunday 29 August) – which he won in 2003 – and the Hills Ford Three Shires Stages Rally (Sunday 5 September) and will see how it goes after that.
“We’ve been doing a lot of development work on R5 cars, and with some ratio changes it will be interesting to see how the Fabia R5 goes against World Rally Cars on Epynt,” says Melvyn.
“I’ve had the Škoda for three years and it’s getting more and more competitive against the older World Rally Cars, which are getting a bit outdated now. We were second on the Argyll Rally when we got a time penalty, so that shows how quick the R5 cars are.
“I had thought about driving one of the Polo GTIs on the Mewla, but the Škoda fits like a glove and it will be nice to get back out behind the wheel.
“We’ll definitely do the first two rounds of the Protyre Asphalt Rally Championship and see how it goes after that. It’s a good calendar of events and I’d certainly like to do more. It all depends on our other team commitments.”
Melvyn will be co-driven by Mark Glennerster.