2017 will be a year of celebration as we get set to mark the 50th anniversary of the sport that began on 4th February 1967 at Lydden Hill. The Kent circuit plan to mark the occasion by adding cars from the 1960’s to the Magnificent Group B beasts to their programme at the FIA World Rallycross Championship round in May.
Retro Rallycross, will also be in celebratory mood, we will be welcoming Rallycross Stars from past era’s to our events, as we continue to take the sport back to its roots and present our fabulous mix of Historic Rallycross machinery, the very cars for which this amazing concept was created.
2016 saw us race for points for the first time as we moved away from our Challenge status to become a Championship operating within the MSA British Rallycross Championship. The move proved to be a popular one with organisers and drivers alike, and gave us a firmer standing in the Rallycross community. This season we will contest 7 points qualifying rounds, you can check out our calendar by navigating our website.
Other events along the way too, not least the Rallycross Legends Show which will feature at 6 events throughout France. Our participation in the 2017 Legends series is still being worked out, but we plan to appear when our other commitments will allow. I am very proud to be part of this newly formed organisation, and am delighted to see names from Rallycross history coming on board, many of whom still have their original cars which is very exciting.
Invitations have been received to appear at several special shows and events during the year which I believe is testament to our success. Our season will finally be brought to a close at Croft on 22 October where we plan to run as a support race at the MSA British Rallycross Grand Prix.
I begin the season wondering who will become the second Retro Rallycross Champion, our followers will know that Ray Morgan from Hastings has dominated at the top taking the first ever official Retro Rallycross title and winning the prestigious ‘John Button Memorial Trophy’ for the third consecutive year. Separated from Morgan by class are the fabulous Minis’ of Lance Foster and Stewart Bowes each capable of snatching that top spot away from Morgan, as is James Harrold who is expected to make a welcome return to the fold this year is in his beautifully turned out VW Beetle. All of our regulars will be there in the mix and none of them are to be underestimated so I’m not ruling anyone out at this stage. Let’s not forget the legend that is Mark Flaherty, it was 30 years ago that he hit the Rallycross scene and the sight of his MG Metro 6R4 is crowd pleaser, Mark plans to compete at every round in the Championship and for some we will also see Rob Gibson putting in an appearance. The pair will have a penalty applied due to their power advantage over the others in the Super Retro Class so you can expect lots of action as they try to overcome this on the track.
More Group B cars are on the way, Stewart Bowes, Paul Easterbrook and David Halford are just a handful of those currently working on projects which will hopefully see us add a Group B class to the Championship in 2018.
The start of a season is always very exciting and we are looking forward to getting things underway at Croft on 19 March. I look forward to seeing you during the year, no matter who you support and whichever of our events you attend you will always get a warm welcome from the Retro Rallycross Team.