As the day of the inaugural East Riding Stages Rally comes ever closer, it’s time to start looking at some of the names among the 100 strong entry.
One of the first to get his entry was former racer David Henderson. He is the son of ex-rallyman Fred, and made his name racing in Formula Renault in the nineties.
After a lengthy lay-off he dabbled with Toyota MR2’s and Mazda MX5’s, before a more intense campaign in the MX5 Supercup. He had rallied a Ford Puma, Ford Ka and Mitsubishi E4 & E6 and came back into rallying in 2019 with an Escort Mk2, before changing to the ex-Alan Kirkaldy chassis. He decided to step up to a Fiesta R5 last season.
Mark Jasper is a baker from Staffordshire who is in his 36th year of rallying. After starting with an Escort and Suzuki Swift, he moved to a Peugeot 309 GTi. His expertise has always been asphalt and over the years he has rallied some mouthwatering machinery. From a Sierra and Escort Cosworth, he had his first Metro 6R4. Add a Mitsubishi E6, an Escort WRC and a Hyundai Accent WRC to the mix, before going back to a Mk2 Escort.
His current favoured car is another 6R4 but Nissan powered, and he came ninth on the Dukeries Rally at Donington before Christmas, with trusty navigator Don Whyatt who has guided him for 17 years!
John Stone has been a front runner in asphalt rallying for 20 years, mainly associated with 6R4’s, but also as a rally sponsor. After a few smaller club rallies with an Escort and Peugeot 106, he had his first 6R4 in 2002 and had five wins the following year.
Mixing the club and national rallies, the wins came thick and fast, mainly with legendary navigator Lee Carter on the notes. But opted to try a Hyundai Accent WRC midway through 2006, but always favoured the 6R4 and soon returned to it.
Occasional outings with an Escort and Subaru Impreza followed before swapping to a Skoda Fabia WRC for 2006, winning the Promenade Stages and at Rockingham. Having stuck with the Skoda for the major events, he then started to go back to his roots, where he was also able to have son Alex sat alongside.
In 2015 he moved to a Fiesta S2500 Millington, later upgrading to WRC spec, before changing to his current VW Polo GTi R5 in the middle of last year. He also continues to various smaller events with Alex too and is a former ANWCC Champion.
Neil Roskell has come the fore in the last year, having taken his first win in the MSN Circuit Rally Champion at Cadwell Park last December and currently leads that Championship. He started last year with a Subaru Impreza, before changing to his current Fiesta R5. In only his fourth season of rallying, he was also the SD34 Champion last season.
2008 BTRDA Gold Star Champion Hugh Hunter has always been equally at home in the forests or on tarmac, with well over 20 years experience under his belt. His early career was mainly in Sierra and Escort Cosworth’s, with his first major win coming on the 1997 Astra Stages. His pace was never questioned, but a number of incidents along the way thwarted his success.
He tried a Mitsubishi E4 in 2003, before reverting back to an Escort and in WRC Spec came a regular top six finisher during 2006. He then won the Wyedean and Premier Rallies in 2007, changing to a Focus WRC, before three wins and a 100% finishing record gave him the BTRDA title a year later. More wins followed before changing to a Subaru Impreza in 2013, with a win in Galway, and he stayed with the Impreza until the end of 2015, when he changed to a Fiesta R5. But in 2017 he used a Focus in the forest and the Fiesta on tarmac, before favouring the Focus again in 2019 onwards. His last win was on Greystoke last season.
Watch this space, as there's plenty more to come.
You can check out the entry list via our partner Rallies.info