West on verge of MN Rally crown

Group National Editor
@jackbenyon

Peugeot 306 Maxi driver Chris West can seal the Motorsport News Circuit Rally Championship this weekend with a strong finish on the Alan Healy Memorial Rally at Cadwell Park.

West – who has won this event previously – needs a top-five finish in the championship overall on the event to guarantee honours. But the driver isn’t getting carried away with the opportunity.

“I’ve got to finish and that’s the important thing for me,” he said. “I’m not going to go mad. I’ve got Anglesey left, I’m not in a panicked state at the moment. I have a lot in reserve so if I have to pull something out of the bag I will. I have 25% left in reserve if someone challenges me.”

However, West has alluded to problems with driveshafts, which could halt his charge to the trophy.

“Hopefully the car will hold on, the driveshafts are worn out and I can’t get the part from Germany so there’s the potential they might break. I just have to hope they will hold out,” he said.

“I haven’t got any budget, I can’t even afford Cadwell really and I’m having to beg and borrow. I can’t afford new tyres like most of the people in the championship, I’m using scrubs, the tyres I’m using, I probably had those the last time I went to Cadwell. I’ve just got to see how we go.”

West’s co-driver Keith Hounslow needs a ninth place finish in the MN series to guarantee the co-drivers title, while top points in the Michelin Cup will award that trophy to reigning champion Ian Woodhouse, who can still win the overall title.

The Cadwell event features a junior rally on Saturday with the main event, organised by Border Motor Club.

Also taking part this weekend, the Irish Tarmac Rally Championship visits Antrim for the Easter Stages and its second round of the year. The Circuit of Kerry in the Republic of Ireland has a strong entry despite clashing with the ITRC, and the Get it Sideways Stages offers single-venue fun in Cirencester.

The Rali Bro Preseli and Derbyshire Rally offer road rallying action.

MN Circuit Rally Championship points with two rounds remaining (dropped scores taken into account)

1 West 268
2 Stone 242
= Kelly 242
4 Woodhouse 237

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