Welsh rally driver Bob Fowden took maximum points in the JD Tyres Welsh National Tarmacadam Championship at the weekend, writes Roger Gale.
It was his third time in succession this year with a second overall and class victory at the Marshall & Hall Caerwent Stages on 2 April.
He had to give best to local driver Paul Willet in his potent and nimbler in the tight stages – 2.4 litre Ford Escort, who was not a Welsh Series contender.
Fowden’s Comline Auto Parts – Kumho Tyres – NGK backed Subaru WRC was a handful around the tight and tortuous roads within the venue, where unforgiving kerbs lie in wait to smash wheels or suspension of any car even slightly off line on the multitude of corners, and discretion was the better part of valour for the Welsh Championship leader and multiple Welsh Tarmacadam Championship winner.
Twenty two crews retired during the six special stages, including a number of top runners, so the Subaru crew’s caution was rewarded by those maximum points.
Fowden was co-driven for this event by Paul Williams as regular co-driver Paul Wakely was unavailable for the Caerwent round.
The Comline-Kumho – NGK Impreza WRC held a strong second place throughout the rally, setting second fastest times on every one of the six stages.
He raised the pace over the final two, just one second down on the leading Escort on the fourth stage, and two seconds on the fifth, the sixth and last another one second difference, as Fowden underlined his position.
The third placed Darrian T9 was almost a minute down on the Impreza WRC by the finish.