Sara makes rallying history

07/05/2013 16:33:24
 
 
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ImagesClick Image for 300dpi jpg fileSara makes rallying history

Brecon rally driver Sara Williams, 24, took outright victory on Saturday’s (4th May) Swansea Bay Rally exactly 30 years after the same event produced the first ever female winner on a National rally.

In 1983, Louise Aitken-Walker from Cumbria won the event, organised by Port Talbot Motor Club, in a Ford Escort and on the weekend Sara used her Subaru Impreza N12b to emulate the success of a driver who she says has been an inspiration in her own rallying career. In a curious twist of fate, last year saw Sara presented with the Louise Aitken-Walker Award by the British Women Racing Drivers Club for her achievements in the sport.

At the time, Sara commented, “Louise is a real heroine of mine. She’s an inspiration to my rally driving and proof of what can be achieved by a woman at the top level of the sport.”

With both her regular co-drivers, Dai Roberts and Patrick Walsh, competing on another rally, Sara teamed up with the hugely experienced Aled Davies from Swansea for what would prove to be his fourth outright win on the event.

In was Sara’s third rally in as many weeks after she travelled to Ireland where she and co-driver Dai Roberts came 9th overall in her first Irish event, before tackling the inaugural London Rally for Heroes which raised funds for the Help 4 Heroes charity, where co-driven by her father, Jonathan, she won her class driving a Honda Civic.

Before the start of Saturday’s event, Sara and Aled were anticipating strong opposition from top seeds Wug Utting and Bob Stokes, also in a Subaru Impreza, but the Welsh pair were three seconds quicker in the first of the rally’s five stages situated in the Walters Arena complex above the Neath Valley.

The challenging roads in Walters Arena have been a key feature of Wales Rally of Great Britain in recent year and with conditions in the morning particularly slippery, the Surrey driver went off the road on the second stage of the event, losing over five minutes before he was able to re-join, with Sara once again quickest. Stage three saw Sara and Aled slowed when the intercom that they use to communicate over the noise of the car failed.

With the problem fixed during a service halt, they set the fastest time on both the remaining stages to make it four stage wins from five and complete a dominant victory. Second place went to the Mitsubishi of Gloucester based Jason Morgan and Adrian Williams with the Ford Escort of Richard Lane and Frank Richer third.

After receiving the winner’s laurels Sara commented, “After rallying for six years this is my first outright win. It’s certainly been worth the wait. There are so many people who have made this possible for me, including my family and friends. I also have to say thank for the support I have received from Millers Oils, Pro-R and Ian Jones Tyres and Geoff Jones Motorsport. Dunlop Tyres, Brecon Motors & Brecon Car Rental's.

Keep up to date on her web site www.sararally.com

Photo Caption: Sara Williams in her Subaru Impreza N12b. Credit should be given to jmsphotographic.co.uk.

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