Brean Stages Rally
- Seeded: 17th
- Overall Position: 27th
- Position in Class: 7th
On the weekend of January 30th/31st, championship rally driver Stuart Bliss began the 2010 rally season on his home ground of Brean rally, renamed this year as the K&R Mitsubishi stages rally. With the superb atmosphere which always accompanies Brean Stuart began stage one of the rally on the sunny yet bitterly cold Saturday seeded 17th.
Things didnít start well for Stuart and his co-driver Richard Marsh as a bit of under-steer turned into a shuddering vibration leading Stuart to believe a wheel was about to fall off when in actual fact the drive shaft had sheared a bearing. Corrected for stage two Stuart did well to pull a competitive time with yet more under-steer. A change of tyres followed ready for stage three completely transforming the car and allowing Stuart to get into a rhythm.
This continued into stage four where the he got even quicker still and would have continued into stage five where he got stuck behind an Escort with just not quite enough power to overtake. Frustrated at getting stuck behind the Escort again in stage six forced a minor error in direction adding a few seconds onto Stuartís time.
Despite a few minor blips Stuart finished the first day of rallying laying 1st on class and 14th overall, demonstrating his superb driving quality. Wanting to retain his class lead Stuart began day two of the rally as he finished day one making a superb time on stage seven and eight.
Stage nine looked like it was going to be just as good until the gearbox began grinding and eventually all gears were lost except 2nd causing a 20 second loss in time pushing Stuart down into 2nd in class. Back in the pits Stuartís service showed their dedication to the team by managing to change his gearbox in only 28 minutes meaning he was ready in time for the next stage.
With a standard gearbox in for stage ten Stuart took it steady as he had no sump guard on and not all the engine mounts were connected. The gearbox felt ok however, just missing the diff! By stage eleven though the gearbox started to sound noisier despite performing ok. Pushing hard to make back some time Stuart put a wheel up on the grass bank, fortunately not causing any damage other than a few seconds in time.
With the noise the gearbox was creating by stage twelve Stuart didnít think the car would make it but with a 48 second gap behind him to 3rd in class he decided to take it easy. Throughout the stage the car got slower and slower until all gears had eventually gone and Stuart had to stop the stage and along with Richard pushed the car to the finish, to come in at 7th in class and 27th overall.
Stuart would like to say a massive thanks to the service crew for their hard work and commitment, as well as thanking Piaa UK for their continuing support, as well as his other sponsors.
- Seeded: N/A
- Overall Position: N/A
- Position in Class: N/A