Alan Healy Memorial Cadwell Park Stages Rally 2018
The Alan Healy Memorial Cadwell Park Stages Rally forms part of the Motorsport News Circuits Rally Championship for 2018. This is a very popular rally championship & some fantastic machinery had made the trip to Lincolnshire for the event.
This would be my first visit to Cadwell Park & I was looking forward to seeing what the circuit had in store. I had watched a lot of video clips on YouTube & it certain looked like it could produce some great photos.
The photography this time would be only part of my day rather than the actual reason I was attending. My brother Nick Skelton was making a return to rallying after a 15 year break in my Dad’s Escort. So today I would very much have my Big Brother ‘spectator head’ on & support my Little Brother!! The day dawned grey but dry & promised a good start for the first stage for Nick to find his feet again.
Many years ago in a ‘former life’ Nick had navigated for me on a few rallies. He then got his own car & we ran as a 2 car team for a season in Skoda Trophy. I retired from driving competitively & helped in the Service Crew. Nick went on to drive several different rally cars over the next few years. Winning the Diahatsu Charade Rally Championship along the way. He is definitely the quick one of the family…..(but don’t tell him I said that!!)
Stage 1 certainly was a dramatic start to the day. Unfortunately a car, 2 cars ahead of Nick had a massive crash on the bend I was spectating at, closing the stage.
A Renault Clio went off into a fence causing a length of it to go through the windscreen!! Thankfully both the driver & co-driver were unhurt in what must have been very frightening for them. I can tell you from personal experience as a navigator when a metal Bailey Bridge came through the windscreen. It is extremely scary & something you don’t forget!!
The marshals & recovery crews did a fantastic job. Without them there would be not motorsport for any of us, competitors or spectators. So big thank you to the Orange army! We were soon back in action & Stage 2 was under way.
The grey day turned progressively damper & damper making the surface slippery for the crews. Trying hard on a greasy track often results in knocking a few edges off here & there!
By the halfway lunch halt the weather had worsened & the rain was falling & set in for the day. It caught out many drivers as the track became water logged. For some it would be the end of their rally, while others luckily got away with it….. I’m not sure it will polish out though!!!
Eventually Mark Kelly & Andy Baker in their Escort Mk2 came home the Rally Winners after a hard fought battle
Nick drove brilliantly & brought Dad’s Escort Mk1 home in 29th Overall, 8th in Class. Well done R Kid, on to Abingdon CARnival in August.
Hopefully I captured some of the action from Cadwell Park Stages Rally 2018. You can see a larger collection from the rally in Photo Galleries, Just Click Here