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Bovington Stages 2023


Jack Bowen and Dan Petrie were the only contenders representing Ludlow Castle Motor Club at the fast-flowing Bovington Stages.


Jack was navigating for his usual partner Oliver Davies starting at car 7 in his immaculate Ford Escort Mk 2 and Dan was navigating, for the first time, for Jeremy Straker in his Darrian starting at car 5.


Photo courtesy of RallyGallery.com


Oliver Davies/Jack Bowen – 3rd Overall, 2nd in Class


The plan was to use the event as seat time before the upcoming Three Shires Rally. The event started with four stages on the Saturday afternoon and they were both pleased to be on a good pace from the word go. No dramas saw them third overall overnight just 3 seconds ahead of Jeremy and Dan. The battle for the top slots was already close with just 14 seconds covering 3rd to 7th place.


Sunday morning’s first stage felt good but the times reflected Jeremy and Dan taking 3 seconds from the escort pairing making it dead level on the playing field. A further push in the next stage saw the pair cement their position in 3rd although an issue at the split saw the Darrian drop down the leaderboard. Both pairings were gutted as they were enjoying the close battle.


The hardworking pair elected to use the remainder of the rally for tyre testing although a small issue on SS8 when a pinion nut came loose, resulted in a whining diff which was sorted in service. However, a bit of a push was required on the last two stages to ensure they stayed ahead of the chasing R5s maintaining a creditable 3rd overall and 2nd in class D.


Photo courtesy of RallyGallery.com


Jeremy Straker/Dan Petrie – 12th Overall, 3rd in Class


A steady start for the Darrian pairing as Jeremy hadn’t been in the car for twelve months with a fresh engine and gearbox.


A change of tyres and getting into the rhythm of things for SS3 and SS4 saw the crew lying 4th overall overnight.


The plan was to have a good start on the Saturday which saw them take 3 seconds out of Oliver/Jack however on SS6, approaching the split too quickly and on the wrong line saw the pair take avoiding action by doing another lap of the stage which dropped them to 19th overall.


Choosing to continue but using the event as a test for suspension set up and tyres, they were able to make up some time on their fellow competitors to finish 12th overall and 3rd in class D.

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