THE Old Forge Garage Mewla Rally took place on the Epynt Ranges over the August bank holiday weekend.
The rally was in several regional championships as well as being the final round of the MSA Asphalt Rally Championship. Eleven demanding stages covering 75 miles over the military roads were held on Sunday August 28.
Due to an illegal rave being held on the ranges the organisers were faced with putting in lengthy diversions at the last minute for the competitors to access the stages. Due to this there was more rally traffic on the Upper Chapel to Garth road and the organisers apologise for any disturbance caused.
As well as diversions the competitors had to deal with very changeable weather conditions, from bright sunshine one minute to torrential downpours the next, making tyre choices very tricky.
The overall winners were Damian Cole and Paul Morris in a Ford Fiesta WRC who set the fastest time on seven of the eleven stages and lead the rally from the first stage to the last. They finished 43 seconds ahead of last year’s winners Steve Simpson and Patrick Walsh in a Subaru Impreza, who finished second overall.
Narrowly missing out on second place by 17 seconds were Bob Fowden and Paul Wakely in a Subaru Impreza WRC. Bob Fowden first won the Mewla Rally in 1982 and is still competitive over thirty years later, setting the fastest time on two of the days stages.
The winners of the road rally class, Malcolm Tar Jones and Ryan Thomas-Hands, also won a free entry on Epynt Motor Club’s next rally, the DG Jones Agri Ltd Powys Lanes Rally, which will be held on 5/6th November, also based on the Royal Welsh Showground.
Spectator programmes were sold to raise funds towards Llandovery Carnival, Sennybridge Junior Football Team and Wales Air Ambulance.
Epynt Motor Club would like to thank everyone for their assistance in the running of this year’s Old Forge Garage Mewla Rally.