MAGAZINE: Wales Rally GB 2013 Special
Check out our FREE Wales Rally GB special of Road Magazine – featuring the tale of VW's total dominance in this historic, gritty gravel event and the 2013 season (unbelievably their 1st in WRC!), a local WRC2 win by Elfyn Evans' M-Sport Ford, Citroen's many rolls, Olympian Amy Williams & TV's Tony Jardine's ace class win and a report from the new 'RallyFest' stages, and more. This epic event – when it was the iconic Lombard RAC, then Network Q – is what made me a petrolhead, motoring journalist and lifelong rally fan. Standing stage-side as a young boy, obligatory bobble hat on and armed with an airhorn, I witnessed the legendary Group B cult cars – 205 T16, Delta Integrale, Audi Quattro – spit flames and gravel, wastegates chattering: I was hooked. I adored that era of rallying, but I’m not all misty-eyed. The event, the cars and the world of rallying got faster and evolved and I moved with it – always enjoying the unique, special sport. But, in recent years, our only UK WRC round – Wales Rally GB – lost its way, the crowds, and the buzz that went with them. I’m not sure, but it may have even come close to losing WRC favour too: A tragedy. Cue a re-think, a revitalisation of this historic, amazing, challenging event. And boy, did MSA Chairman, Alan Gow and all the Wales Rally GB team work wonders this year – new North Wales base, night stages, the introduction of family-friendly “RallyFest” stages, lively ceremonial start/finish, pop concerts... the lot. And, best of all, 196-miles of some of the best, most challenging, technical, slippery, tricky and epochal special stages in the world – Hafren, Sweet Lamb, Myherin, Gartheiniog, Dyfi... names that sing louder than a male voice choir to rally fans the world over. The event re-brand – and targeted, hard work of the PR and social media team – not only created what is essentially a new Wales Rally GB event, but it did something even more magical... it brought the crowds back, and with it the uniquely Welsh forest flavour. And the WRC and national drivers didn’t disappoint... as you can read here in our Wales Rally GB special.