Prestone BRC Heads to Ypres for Round 2

This weekend the Prestone MSA British Rally Championship heads overseas to Belgium for the Renties Ypres Rally for round two of the 2018 series and the Prestone BRC team are sending the best from all of the home nations in the quest for European silverware. Tony Pond, Jimmy McRae and Kris Meeke are the only British drivers to have lifted the trophy in northern Belgium.

Two days comprising more than 160 competitive miles in daylight and atmospheric night time conditions on the fast and flowing Belgian Tarmac roads await the BRC stars. In the series 60th anniversary season, the finest BRC crews will compete against some of the best in the world including FIA World Rally Championship leaders Thierry Neuville and Nicolas Gilsoul in a factory Hyundai i20 R5 and last years Ypres Rally winners Kevin Abbring and Pieter Tsjoen in their brand new Citroen C3 R5.

As well as chasing the overall podium, competitors will be vying for the Tony Pond Award, which will be presented to the first BRC crew across the finish line. There will also be a Junior Tony Pond Award adding another incentive for the emerging talent of rallying to go for in the Flanders region.
Leading the championship after the first round in England are Matt Edwards and Darren Garrod in their MSport prepared Ford Fiesta R5. The Welsh pairing claimed the opening BRC event on the gravel of the Pirelli International Rally, their breakthrough BRC win. Ypres is a happy hunting ground, with the Fiesta duo having finished second in the BRC section and tenth overall last year. Edwards will be hoping for more of the same this season as he bids to maintain his championship lead.

Keith Cronin and Mikie Galvin topped the British Championship crews in Ypres last year, receiving the Tony Pond Award in the process, courtesy of a fine seventh overall in the main event. With event knowledge under their belts and a switch to a new Michelin-shod Hyundai i20 R5, the reigning British champions will look to lead the British attack as the BRC takes the fight to the local Belgian drivers.

Rhys Yates and Elliott Edmondson have rallied all around Europe, getting to grips with the new Skoda Fabia R5. Second on the opening round will give them confidence for an all out assault for British honours in Ypres as the pair relish the switch to Tarmac. Yates took his first outright win on the recent Rally van Wervik against strong opposition, forming the perfect warm-up for Ypres.

Two fellow British teams in Skoda Fabia R5s will be hoping for better luck in Flanders this season. Marty McCormack, a driver who won the hearts of the local fans with a spirited drive in an S2000 car in 2015, rolled out of contention in dramatic style on the second stage of the rally last year. With David Moynihan sat alongside, the Irish pairing will be striving for their first BRC win and a change of fortunes this time around in their Kumho backed Fabia R5. David Bogie similarly rolled out of the opening round of the championship in England and will be eager to get his championship back on track. The 2011 BRC title holder will be joined by the experienced John Rowan on the pacenotes as the pair aim to be top of the BRC pile at the spectacular Ceremonial Finish in the DMACK shod Fabia R5.

Tarmac ace Alex Laffey and co driver Patrick Walsh chalked up their best BRC result on gravel on the Pirelli Rally in sixth place and will be pushing for their first BRC podium in their Ford Fiesta R5, while BRC newcomer Lawrence Whyte will be learning the art of ditch cutting on his first foray to Ypres. Fellow Scot, Paul Beaton will join the young charger in the striking Fiesta R5.

21st June, 2018