andy ystwyth

Andy and Cadog get air in IDZ on their way to victory (Neil Constable)

Sunday the 3rd of June once again saw club members out in action on a targa rally. This one being the Ystwyth targa, and organised by Aberystwyth and district motor club. The event took place at the Sweet Lamb rally complex near Llangurig and gave competitors some 40 miles of competitive tests. The weather was warm and sunny which was excellent for specators but meant that dust was present and hung in the air between cars given an extra challenge for the competitors.

                With it being a fairly local rally many Lampeter and district members had entered, starting off with last year’s winning driver, Andy Davies, taking the number 1 spot, this year he was partnered by Cadog Davies who was making a return to the passenger seat following the classic tracks. They were in Andy’s familiar IDZ Subaru Impreza. James Davies was navigating in car 9, for Marc Mayes, who was his navigator in the previous weeks classic tracks, they had originally entered in an escort but switched to James’ Proton compact GTI for this event instead. Richard Hughes was once again on navigating duties, this time for Tomos Evans in a Mk2 Ford escort, they were at 13. Daniel Williams was 18 in his BMW 318ti, he had Mark Rodway navigating for him. At 41 was Owen McConochie in a Peugeot 206, he had Llyr Davies navigating from him. 55 went to Rhodri Williams in a Subaru Impreza, he was accompanied by Ifan Davies. Rounding off club members at 68 were Rob Fox and Sam Woodcock once again in Robs BMW 316i.

                The rally was made up for four loops of tests around the venue. The first test of the day had a bogey time of a minute, and immediately it was the Impreza of Andy and Cadog that set the pace, taking the best time on this opening test by taking only 1 minute and 28 seconds to complete the test. It was unfortunately a short rally for Tomos Evans and Richard Hughes who retired after only managing three and a half miles but they’re pace over those opening miles had been excellent. Daniel Williams and Mark Rodway had a great start to their day achieving a very respectable time of 1 minute and 45 seconds in their BMW. Rhodri Williams and Ifan Davies began their day with a time of 1 minute and 52 seconds. Rob Fox and Sam Woodcocks day also came to a premature end as they slid of the road in the worst possible place, right in front of a cameraman! Both crew members were completely fine and the car was undamaged but it was well wedged in a ditch so they had to retire.

                By the end of the first loop of tests Andy and Cadog held a thirty-six second lead over the rest of the field with a total time of 19 minutes and 48 seconds. Daniel Williams and Mark Rodway were comfortably in the top ten as they held eighth overall with a time of 22 minutes and 4 seconds. Rhodri Williams and Ifan Davies were in thirty-second on 24 minutes and 38 seconds. Marc Mayes and James Davies had gone OTL (over time limit) after having problems.

                Test 7 was the first test of the second loop, and again Andy and Cadog were the pace setters, setting yet another best time over this test with an impressive 1 minute and 38 seconds. Daniel and Mark were going very well and manged an excellent 1 minute and 53 seconds. Rhodri and Ifan were another crew going strong and achieved a time of 2 minutes.

                On the ninth test of the rally Andy and Cadog incurred a 1-minute penalty at the beginning of the test, this dropped them down the order a little but the rally was far from over and there were plenty of tests left to do as well as a determined crew keen to push hard to make the time up. They were second quickest on the ninth test with a time of 2 minutes and 15 seconds, only 2 seconds down on the quickest time, but on the following test they were again quickest with a time of 1 minute and 33 seconds. Daniel and Mark managed more great times in the BMW, with 2 minutes and 26 seconds on test nine and 1 minute 51 on the tenth. Rhodri and Ifan were still going strong in the semi expert class with 2 minutes and 42 seconds on the ninth and 1 minute 50 on the tenth.

                By the end of the second loop Andy and Cadog were in second overall but only seven seconds behind the first placed car. Daniel and Mark had slipped down to tenth, and Rhodri and Iran were holding twenty-ninth.

                Test 11 was the first of the third loop and on this test every competitor was outside of the tests maximum so were all given a penalty of 2 minutes. On the twelfth test it was business as usual for Andy and Cadog as they set another quickest time on 3 minutes and 12 seconds. Daniel and Mark were impressive as ever on 3 minutes and 41 seconds. Rhodri and Ifan unfortunately retired after damaging the top mount on their Impreza.

                At the end of the third loop of tests things could not have been much closer, Andy and Cadog were lying in third overall but the gap between the first three cars was only 3 seconds! Andy and Cadog’s time was 41 minutes and 13 seconds. Daniel and Mark pushed hard over the third loop of tests to climb back up to eighth overall with a time of 44 minutes and 46 seconds.

                It was onto the final loop of tests with everything still to play for and very little separating the top three cars no one could afford to do a mistake. There were just three tests left to compete on and everyone was pushing hard. Test 15 was first and had a bogey time of 7 minutes, which the quickest cars (including Andy and Cadog) managed to beat, so they were all given 7 minutes. Daniel and Mark managed 7 minutes and 11 seconds. On to test 16 which had a bogey time of 2 minutes and Andy and Cadog were really trying now knowing that there weren’t too many miles left to make up any time. They were rewarded with yet another quickest time for their efforts, stopping the clocks on 2 minutes and 34 seconds. Daniel and Mark were as consistent as always and had another great time of 3 minutes and 19 seconds.

                So, it all came down to the final test of the rally and looking at the times up to now it looked like Andy and Cadog had regained the top spot, but their lead was slim and they could not afford to back off for this final test as they knew the other competitors would have one last push to try and spoil a potential victory. Thankfully both crew members held their nerve and Andy pushed IDZ hard through over every straight and through every corner, with Cadog egging him on throughout. They managed to put in another quickest time or 7 minutes and 31 seconds, 8 seconds quicker than the next competitor. This secured Andy his third win of the event, and Cadog who now also had a hat trick of wins on this event with just as many drivers. Their total time at the end of the day was 58 minutes and 18 seconds, their victory margin was 17 seconds. Andy admitted that he never had worked so hard for a victory but had thoroughly enjoyed the whole day. Daniel and Mark pushed over the last test to finish in an excellent seventh overall with a total time of 64 minutes and 3 seconds.

                Everyone credited the organisers on a very well organised and enjoyable event that was a pleasure to compete on and were already counting down the days to next years event. Thanks must go to Neil Constable for the use of his image for this report.