Hereford driver Roger Chilman and co-driver Patrick Walsh were crowned 2023 Fuchs Lubricants British Historic Rally Champions after taking their Ford Escort MKII to third on the Carlisle Stages Rally on 20-21 October.
Chilman headed into the final round of the seven-round season with a slight advantage after three wins took the crew into a head-to-head race for the crown with Nick Elliott and Dave Price in their Fiat 131 Abarth. It was Chilman’s to lose, with Elliott needing to win to even stand a chance of the title, but by the end of the opening stage, it was virtually decided in the Escort driver’s favour after Elliott beached the Fiat for nine minutes, all hopes of a win and a title gone.
All that was left was for Chilman to stay on the road for the remaining stages and, with Elliott electing to call it a day and save the car for the pending Roger Albert Clark Rally, the championship was sealed. It was nonetheless a fine display over the Kielder stages, with Chilman also taking the Category Three (cars up to 1981) title in the process.
For a full report of the Carlisle Stages Rally see our December 2023 issue…
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