RALLYDAY IN ASSOCIATION WITH DIRTFISH. THE BIG DAY HAS ARRIVED
It’s only been 12 months, but we can’t wait to get 2022’s Rallyday started. Saturday can’t come soon enough.
Head for England’s south-west corner, type Castle Combe into the satnav and prepare to revel in a World Rally Championship history lesson.
The quarter of a century in question? The 25 glorious years between 1997 and 2021. The World Rally Car era.
Prodrive leads the charge on this one, with three stunning Subaru Imprezas WRCs all originally built by the Banbury firm taking to the Legends Stages (remember, there are two Legends stages on Saturday).
There are a pair of stunning two-door cars (both ex-Kankkunen cars from 1999 and 2000) and the WRC2003 used by Tommi Mäkinen to bring down the curtain on his stellar career at the 2003 Wales Rally GB.
Bringing the World Rally Car story more up-to-date, Prodrive supplies a static display of its Mini John Cooper Works WRC.
This being Rallyday, there’s far more to Saturday than just the World Rally Car celebration. How about an ex-Hannu Mikkola Audi quattro E2. Standing still, this thing is just wild. Wait until it’s fired up.
Talking of noise, it’s worth travelling further back in time and cocking an ear to a 555bhp Vauxhall Firenza Can Am. Listen up, you’ll see my point. If you’re more about the raucous than the roar, try an all-original ex-works Group A Prodrive BMW M3.
But if rare’s your thing, you’ve come to the right place. You’ll find one of only five Ford Escort RS1700Ts left in the world and then there’s the Group N Ford Sierra RS Cosworth Jimmy McRae used to win the 1989 Tour of Britain.
Well, we say Group N… this was definitely the pokiest ‘showroom’ motor the five-time British Rally Champion ever pedaled.
Those stories, those people and those cars are what Rallyday in association with DirtFish is all about.
It’s a one-day festival of everything that’s good, great and gorgeous in our sport.
Looking forward to Saturday, Castle Combe managing director Graham Marshallsay said: “Rallyday is always one of our most popular events and this year’s shaping up to be one of the best.
“This year will offer a real history lesson, with cars from right down the years. We’ve got some fantastic Group 4 machinery, then there’s the magic, madness and mystique of Group B right through Group A and Nicky Grist driving his ex-Carlos Sainz Toyota Celica Turbo 4WD – what a beautiful machine that is.
“Then it’s the World Rally Cars and some of the fascinating class cars like the Peugeot 208 T16 or the Nissan Sunny GTi F2 car Tommi Mäkinen drove.
“We have to say a very big thank you to BGMsport’s Ian Gwynne and, of course, our sponsor DirtFish. DirtFish owner Steve Rimmer will be with us, enjoying the sport and sharing the moments through the day. Like all rally fans, Steve’s very welcome and we look forward to seeing you all on Saturday.”
Please note, to commemorate the life and service of Queen Elizabeth II, we will be holding a two-minute silence.
Saturday September 17
0900-1130: Track sessions
1015: Interview with DirtFish’s Steve Rimmer and David Evans
1145: Legends Car Parade
1230-1400: Legends Stages 1 & 2
1415: Interview with Gwyndaf Evans
1415-1545: Rally Car Package
1445: Interview with Nicky Grist and Matt Edwards
1515: Interview with Ryan Champion
1600: Passenger rides
1630-1700: Slow Parade Laps (Subaru only)
– Tickets for Rallyday on Saturday September 17 can be purchased on the gate priced at £25 per adult. See Rallyday.com for more details.