Brean Stages Rally 2018 Wheeler & Layland take to the Stages for the first time.
Chris & new co-driver Shaun Layland started 2018 at the Brean Stages Rally. They would be using this event as a shakedown for the DS3 & at the same time this event would be used as time to bond with each other in the car & working as a team.
The Rally was 52 miles in total which took place over two days at Brean Leisure Park. This is a single venue event but would be perfect to test the car on. The first day would see the rain fall all day, making the Stages very slippery & not the easiest way to start off back in the DS3.
Chris & Shaun got off to a flying start on the first stage setting 18th fastest time & straight away was sitting top 3 in their class. The car came back with no issues & was working well. The following stages Chris & Shaun pushed on & was sitting in the top 20 Overall all day, the team was working well & Chris & Shaun seemed to be getting on well in & out of the car. Everything was looking good on this first day back.
After day 1 Chris & Shaun was 21st Overall & 3rd in Class, the surface on the Stages was very slippery & the grip levels had been poor all day. We was all hoping for a dryer day 2 to see how the car would be in better conditions & to try different set ups with the car to see how it would handle.
Day 2, we woke up to dryer conditions but the tarmac was still wet, we set up the car’s suspension for the day & choose different tyres to try out for the next six stages. All we had to do was get through another 27 miles to complete the event. We set off on the days first stage, but this lead to our first drama of the day with the Auxiliary belt coming off. Chris managed to get the car back to service & the mechanics got a new belt on so we was ready for the next stage.
A couple of stages later & another problem had occurred, this time the had a split turbo pipe, the crew did their best to fix the issue which they did just in time before they had to set off once again for Stage 9. As they pulled off the start line the pipe came off meaning they had a massive lack of power for the whole stage, but lucky enough we had a plan.
In service the crew managed to find a brand new turbo pipe which they put on & the issue seemed to be fixed, but only time would now tell. Chris & Shaun set off for Stage 11, the second to last stage of the event. This time the turbo pipe worked & the boys managed to set a fantastic stage time, this boosted the teams confidence & left us with one stage to go to finish the Rally.
Stage 12, 4.8 miles to go, this stage would be our best stage of the whole Rally as we set 13th fastest time & finished the event 20th Overall & 3rd in Class. The DS3 ran faultlessly for the last two stages & we came away having learned a lot from the car, from set up, to tyres & also fuel loads we got all the information we needed to go forward this season. Chris & Shaun picked up their first award together & got off to a great start.
For more information on events, progress & images throughout our 2018 season please also check out “ Chris Wheeler Rallying “ on Facebook.