Rallyday 2017

The sun shone down on Castle Combe Circuit last weekend for another epic edition of the UKs premier rally show, Rallyday. Thousands of fans rocket-up at the convenient Wiltshire venue to see some of the very best that rallying has to offer with cars, drivers and personalities from almost every era of the sport catering for all tastes including. The icing on the Rallyday cake was undoubtedly the M Sport teams welcome return, fitted in between its WRC commitments with the stunning 2017 R5 Ford Fiesta WRC becoming the first new-generation world rally car to be driven in anger in front of British fans on Wiltshire tarmac too.

As current FIA World Rally Championship leaders, the Cockermouth team brought their impressive M Sport Village together with the Ford Focus RS Rally cross car, Mikko Hirvonens 2011 Ford Fiesta RS WRC and Colin McRaes 1999 Ford Focus RS WRC. Team principle Malcolm Wilson OBE brought with him Ott Tšnak, Elfyn Evans and the young RallyX ace Andreas Bakkerud.

Malcolm Wilson commented, What a fantastic event. Everywhere you turn theres a blast from the past or someone with a story from way back when. Its been a great day and a great opportunity to bring some of our best drivers and cars to the fans. The support that we ve received this year has been phenomenal, and it was nice to give a little something back.

Joining the famous faces from M Sport was Toyota WRC team leader Jari-Matti Latvala, 1984 World Rally Champion Stig Blomqvist, Finnish rally & race driver Harri Toivonen, the late Colin McRaes co-driver Nicky Grist and recently crowned British Rally Champion Keith Cronin.

Once again the Cooper Tyres interview stage proved the epicentre of paddock action and the place the enthusiastic fan base tended to congregate to listen to inquisitors Howard Davies and Mike Board quiz the star names in their knowledgeable, pithy but light-hearted style which has become a characteristic of these two former top flight international co drivers! Following each interview, the stars were willingly available to fans for autographs or simply a selfie with a fan or just simply a short chat.

Elsewhere, car clubs, specialised trade stands and rally teams proliferated in all corners of the expansive Castle Combe paddock and the on-track action was continuous with passenger rides and tyre-smokin donuts the order of the day during demonstration runs by star-drivers in star cars!

A significant anniversary being marked at Rallyday was the 10th anniversary of the tragic and untimely death Colin McRae in a helicopter accident in 2007 and as well as his former co-driver and friend Nicky Grist being a prominent guest, several of Colins rally cars were being demonstrated on the circuit and displayed in the paddock for fans to remember the popular Scottish legend.

Since Castle Combe Circuit took Rallyday in-house 3 years ago the event has grown inexorably in statue and steadily improves year on year. It is now the only show dedicated to the sport of rallying that takes place in the UK or even Europe and this unique selling point is undoubtedly the key to its enduring success, roll on 2018!

27th September, 2017