The seeded entry list for this Sunday’s Ford Parts Cheviot Stages Rally has been unveiled, with the three drivers battling for the Protyre Motorsport UK Asphalt Rally Championship all starting high up the quality 79 car field.
Jason Pritchard/Phil Clarke have been seeded at number two in their North Road Garage Ford Focus WRC05.
They finished second on the Cheviot in 2018 and third in 2019 – both times clinching the Protyre Asphalt overall drivers’ and co-drivers’ titles.
Mark Kelly leads the Protyre Asphalt overall drivers’ standings heading into the final round. For his first visit to Otterburn he and co-driver Neil Colman have been seeded at number four in their Flext Ford Fiesta R5+.
Neil Roskell is also in contention for the overall drivers’ title. He and co-driver John Cope are seeded at number 14 in their ND Civils/Collins Construction Ford Fiesta R5+ and could benefit from knowing exactly what’s going on ahead of them. Neil got as far as the first corner of the opening stage on his only previous visit to Otterburn after the engine blew on his Subaru on the Tyneside Stages, so he’ll be hoping for better luck this time.
Six time Protyre Asphalt champion and four time Cheviot Stages winner Damian Cole makes his first appearance in his Get Connected/TCL Ford Fiesta R5+ Mk1 Evo 2. He starts at number three and has Andrew Roughead alongside on the pace notes.
John Stone/Tom Woodburn start at six in their Legend Fires Volkswagen Polo GTI R5, while Stephen Simpson/Patrick Walsh have been seeded at number seven in their Tudor Glass Ford Fiesta R5+.
It’s great to see Lee Edwards on the entry list, seeded at number 19. He is leading class B11 and lying second in the Ford Escort Challenge but thought his double title hopes were over after crashing his CR M-Tech Motorsport / Auto Tech Ford Escort G3 on the PokerStars. But he and co-driver Will Atkins have been given a championship lifeline and will contest the Cheviot in Matt Pierce’s Escort Mk2.
It will be a great fight for those two titles as Lee is three points ahead of Ben Crump (co-driven by Ian Beamond in their Coltech Rally Services Escort Mk2) in class B11 and 20 points behind in the Escort Challenge – although Ben has the potential of a high score to drop in both come the final four scores from five round points tally.
Mark Jasper (co-driven by Don Whyatt) will be aiming to clinch class B13 in his Escort Mk2, while Mark Holmes/Mark Perryman lead the R5 class by nine points in their Ford Fiesta S2000 (pictured).
The Ford Parts Cheviot Stages Rally starts at 08.30 and is held exclusively on the Otterburn military range in Northumberland.
Ford Parts Cheviot Stages Rally – top 10 seeds
1. Alan Kirkaldy/Cameron Fair….Ford Fiesta R5+
2. Jason Pritchard/Phil Clarke….Ford Focus WRC05
3. Damian Cole/Andrew Roughead….Ford Fiesta R5+
4. Mark Kelly/Neil Colman….Ford Fiesta R5+
5. Frank Bird/Jack Morton….Ford Fiesta Rally2
6. John Stone/Tom Woodburn….Volkswagen Polo GTI R5
7. Stephen Simpson/Patrick Walsh….Ford Fiesta R5+
8. Gordon Morrison/Calum Macpherson….Ford Fiesta R5
9. Joe Cunningham/Josh Beer….Ford Fiesta
10. Kevin Procter/Peter Gibson….Ford Fiesta
The full seeded entry list can be found here.
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