2 Wheel Drive Rallying Gets a Boost!


Ford Escort Mark 2 Rally Car with drivers

There is a problem in British rallying according to a number of people. Smaller teams are dropping out, events are getting less money and the issue seems to be caused by the treatment of 2WD cars, new and classic. However, the answer is here and everything is looking rosy!

The Problem

As it stands the 4WD cars race along side 2WD cars which also happen to include the classic as most of them don’t have fancy 4WD systems. This leads to a seeding issue where the 2WD cars, being slower for obvious reasons, get seeded at the back of the pack and have to race on poor quality surfaces. This in itself then causes more problems because not only are they feeling rather sidelined and having to deal with gravel that has been well and truly thrashed by the big boys but they are also risking damage. As the track surface deteriorates so it becomes more likely to break something on what tend to be more fragile cars. Small 2WD entries to rallies are often not a robust as the bigger teams’ cars and the classic car entries are certainly more at risk of damage and the resulting costs can be huge.

This issue has lead to a lot of smaller teams pulling out and this then effects the events themselves. The major players have huge budgets and money is really no object but the younger new comers and classic teams are struggling to afford to keep going and are also perhaps a little tired of running at the back end of events all the time. This is bad for the sport and bad for the fans!

The Solution

The plan is to launch  a 2WD rally which is split into a standard 2WD class and a separate classic class. These new events will run on the same days as the 4WD class but as a different race totally. The entry fees will be the same as will everything else so there is no second class treatment which should help support the smaller and classic teams. The upshot of this in terms of the track is that the 2WD teams will get to race at the front on much better track and let the 4WD teams handle whats left because it won’t effect them at all.

The Red Kite Stages, Mid Wales Stages and Rally North Wales are all planning on using this format next year; interestingly the Pirelli International Rally has actually already put something very similar into play!

If this plan works we should see more teams returning to British Gravel Rallying and that can only be a good thing. There could be a lot of 1.4 litre cheap and cheerful cars where young people can get a chance to enter the sport but also we might just see some more of the mighty Mk2 Ford Escorts and other classics!

Here at FEV we love rallying and are very proud to work with the Skoda WRC team in supplying them with their fire suppression systems. If you are thinking about getting into rallying, or maybe you have a 2WD car you are going to get back up to racing spec after a break then get in touch today. Our friendly team can help with anything from servicing your existing unit to choosing the right fire extinguisher for your racing needs.



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