But his unplanned enforced break ends Sunday when he contests the Aarova Rally, Belgium.
The 25-year old driver was all set to challenge for the Irish Tarmac Rally Championship title this year – but the series was cancelled after he’d finished fourth on the opening round, the Galway International Rally.
Since then, Meirion has only conducted some high-speed demonstration runs at the Race Retro event at Stoneleigh Park in Warwickshire, and more recently gave the new The Scan Station-backed Volkswagen Polo GTI R5 that he’ll drive in Belgium the very briefest of shakedown tests in west Wales.
Returning to full blown competition after such a long lay-off won’t be easy. His third start in Belgium and his first for three years won’t be made any easier either by the fact that his regular co-driver, Jonathan Jackson, is unable to contest the event. So, for the first time in seven years, Meirion will share the car with somebody else; and he’s drafted in the experienced navigator Michael Gilbey for the Aarova Rally.
“I haven’t competed in a rally for over eight months now, so I didn’t want to go into another winter break without doing an event or two and then face starting the 2021 season having been out of the car for over a year,” said Meirion.
“We were hoping rallying would restart in some shape or form at home or in Ireland, and we have also been monitoring the situation very closely further afield. It’s difficult to plan too far ahead, but it looks like we’re finally good to go to the Aarova Rally.”
He added, “After such a long time, I’m just happy to be getting back out in a rally car. The first couple of stage miles might feel a bit strange, but I’m confident I’ll be able to remember what to do!”
The Aarova Rally takes place on Sunday 11 October and is based in the East Flanders town of Oudenaarde, which is best known for its Oud Bruin (Old Brown) beer, made by the famous Liefmans Brewery. The event starts at 09.10 and finishes at 17.20 – after all 10 asphalt stages, totalling 57.23 miles (92.11kms), have been completed.