The Dukeries Rally is based at Southwell Racecourse and the stages will be mainly flat, fast and sandy. The Bowler team is hoping for a bit of rain to give the Defenders a competitive edge against the other smaller, lighter vehicles taking part – and it looks like they might get it, with weather forecasters predicting a 90% chance of rain, and thunderstorms...
A road-going version of the Bowler Defender 90, from Sturgess Land Rover, will be used as a course car on Stage 1, and is bound to create a buzz among spectators.
Teams Harford and Taft are in a neck-and-neck battle for first place in the championship, so will be looking to break the stalemate. The Taft cousins will have their work cut out, as Bowler works driver Edd Cobley will be driving Rob Harford's car again for this round, having won in it on the season-opening Mid-Wales Stages.
The Race2Recovery team took victory in Round 2, but only by 24 seconds, so there's still everything to play for! Belgian amputee Stephanie Boddez, who was due to take part in the Somerset Stages but had to pull out at the last minute, will get her turn in the co-driver's seat alongside Quin Evans.
Donning their Nomex in this round (ranked according to their Defender's current overall position in the championship) will be:
Edd Cobley (replacing Rob Harford due to illness) & Alan Jackson
Damien Taft & Simon Taft
Quin Evans & Stephanie Boddez (Race2Recovery)
Matthew Mills & Jon Chester
Stephen Richards & Kevin Handley
Richard Hayward & Matthew Lister
Simon Armstrong & Aynslie Morrow
For spectator information, visit the event’s website here.
See here for more details on the Defender Challenge.
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