Tom Cave and co-driver Craig Parry enjoyed a near perfect weekend's rallying after winning their class on the Malcolm Wilson Rally, before going on to win the Mid Wales Stages outright the next day in their 2004 specification Group N Subaru Impreza.
Cave was quick from the start on the Cockermouth-based Malcolm Wilson Rally, trading times with class rivals Tristan Pye and Sky Sport BRC presenter Robbie Head. Cave and Pye began to stretch away, before a problem for Pye saw Cave hold a 22 second class lead with two stages to go. He held his advantage to take the class win and sixth place overall.
This saw him pick up a good set of points for the BTRDA Gold Star, as wlel as Production Cup and Junior Driver awards. However Cave had no time to celebrate his achievements, as he headed the 180 miles across Wales to Newtown for the Mid Wales Stages, an event consisting of four long, tough stages as used on Wales Rally GB.
After setting the fastest time on the opening stage, Cave never looked back, holding a 28 second lead at the halfway stage. He continued his great pace over the afternoon to win the rally on his first attempt, with a final winning margin of 44 seconds.
Speaking after his hectic weekend, Tom said: “This has been a fantastic weekend – I am absolutely shattered now but it’s been amazing.
“On the Malcolm Wilson, I was slightly surprised at Tom Naughton’s pace to begin with but then, Craig and I found a really good rhythm in the car. It all seemed to click and it felt manageable and competitive. It was really important to find that feeling, I think, as we needed to maintain the pace throughout the day and it’s especially satisfying considering it’s such an old car – we really had to drive the door handles off it to stay ahead of the Evo9s.
“On Sunday, on the Mid Wales, I knew the first stage reasonably well from Rally GB in the past and I knew that if I pushed hard, we might catch the others napping and get them on the back foot. As it transpired, that’s just what happened – we took time out of them and they had to push to catch up and that meant that it was more likely for them to make mistakes.
“I think this weekend, everything just came together – I feel I was driving better than I have done for a long time, Craig was perfect on the notes, the Pirelli BRC-spec tyres worked really well and the Davis Motorsport boys gave us a really good car.”
Cave leaves the weekend leading the BTRDA Production Cup and Junior Driver award, lying fourth in the BTRDA Gold Star Driver category and second in the British Rally Championship.