Here is the latest update on Steven Entwistles progress in the HRCR Clubman Championship, courtesy of Neil Johnson of the Lancashire Telegraph:
STEVE Entwistle snatched finish from failure on last weekend’s Vale of Clywd Classic.
An accomplished mechanic as well as rally driver, Entwistle used all his spannering skills to keep his Orangebox Mini on the road to claim third in class and 14th overall. Entwistle and navigator Bob Hargreaves were in the top five after the opening section, but hit trouble at the end of a forest test.
“We were flat-out towards the end of the test, came round a corner and hit a large lump of bedrock that was sticking out.
“Minis don’t have much ground clearance and the rock hit the sumpguard with an almighty bang,” explained Entwistle, who is sponsored by Mini Sport of Padiham.
“I looked at the temperature gauge 30 seconds later and it was off the end. I knew we were in trouble. “The fans blades had wrapped themselves around the shroud, and the fan belt twisted around the engine. It was a complete mess. “We set about bending everything back in place using a hammer and a steel bar to get the car going.
Championship Table after 9 of 11 events
“But crews were only allowed 15 minutes lateness, and we’d used up most of that getting the car sorted. “We had no choice but to miss three tests and go straight to the main time control. We would be penalised but at least we were still in the rally.”
Missing the tests dropped the pair down to 24th by the lunch halt leaving them with a mountain to climb in the afternoon.
An attacking drive on the remaining tests and regularites saw the pair claw back ten places, and that was enough to bag them 29 points in the chase for the HRCR Clubmans Championship.
“Without the penalties we would have been fifth overall, enough to keep our lead in the series, but we’ve been overtaken by John Ruddock,” said Entwistle, left.
“However, we’re still second and still in the hunt. There’s two rounds left and everything to play for.
“As ever, we’ll be giving it one hundred per cent.”