THE Pitstop Garage Pengam Dixies Challenge held over the daunting Epynt military ranges at Sennybridgre saw last year's winners Malcolm and Rhys Jones in the Darrian T90 GTR repeat the success from the Fiesta R5 of Rob Tout and Terry Martin, reports PAUL WILLETTS.

The Sunday, May 5, event run jointly by Forest of Dean Motor Club and the Foresters Car Club offered some 41 miles over 10 stages, and such is its popularity, more than 140 entries were received for the 80 places.

The Dixies Challenge is a round of many championships including the HRCR Stage Masters, the HRCR Mini Cup, AWMMC, ASWMC and the TCS Plant Rally Challenge.

Of the local crews, Paul Robins and Jordan Wilkinson had an excellent run to take fourth in their new Escort RS1800.

Ross Motor Club's Ryan Taylor with Dan Petrie calling the notes finished 24th and first in class in his Mini.

Club mates and rallying veterans Eric Davis and Russ Joseph in the Dennis Motorsport Mini GT were looking for a good run after an early retirement on the Agbo Stages, and took 36th and third in class.

Youngster Harry Pinchen had experienced Forester Colin Jenkins on board the Gotherington Cross Garage Peugeot 106, and 42nd overall and sixth in class was their reward.

Wye Valley father and daughter team Paul and Jemma Taylor in yet another Mini finished 51st and fifth in class.

Those who unfortunately never made the finish included multiple Epynt winner Damian Cole from Abergavenny, who this time with Jamie Vaughan calling the notes in the Get Connected Citroën C3 R5 retired on stage 7 with power steering failure.

Marcus Padgett and Lloyd Morgan in the Nissan Micra unfortunately had a very early bath retiring on the opening test.

But it was yet again a very well run event and it is no surprise why entries are at a premium.

The organisers paid a big thanks thanks to everyone for making it a success.

Last weekend's Jedburgh-based Border Counties was the latest BTRDA encounter, with the fabulous Scottish borders stages in Wauchope Riccarton Craik and Cardrona some of the best in the UK.

The event offered up some 44 miles, in very warm dry dusty conditions.

Nigel and Karen Jenkins rev it up in the
Nigel and Karen Jenkins rev it up in the Border counties. Photo: Kevin Money (Kevin Money)

But for Forest of Dean husband and wife duo Nigel and Karen Jenkins it was a return to the top step of the 1400 category podium and 21st overall in the NJ Autos Vauxhall Nova, as a trouble-free run apart from a brief trip into the undergrowth on stage 4, costing some 15 seconds, saw them win the category by over two minutes to get his championship campaign back on track.

John Lowe and Cliffy Simmons turn on the gas in the Border Counties stages.
John Lowe and Cliffy Simmons turn on the gas in the Border Counties stages. Photo: Kevin Money (Kevin Money)

Cliffy Simmons from Monmouth teamed up with Yorkshireman John Lowe in his immaculate Escort RS1800.

This was Lowe's first event in a long while so it was a case of playing himself back into the groove, and with every mile a bonus they had a trouble-free run to finish 32nd and seventh in class.

“It was an absolutely fantastic rally, and the stages are some of the best in the country," said Cliffy.