Jason Pritchard
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October 5, 2017 by admin

PRITCHARD CREATES RALLYING HISTORY

Jason Pritchard made history on Saturday by becoming the first driver to win a hat-trick of successive MSA British Historic Rally Championship titles.

The 29-year-old Welshman, alongside co-driver Phil Clarke did enough over the weekend to be crowned champions for the third year in a row.

Pritchard was three points ahead of closest rival Nick Elliot before the final rally of the Championship in Yorkshire and after Elliot span out on the Gale Rigg stage, Pritchard knew it was a matter of keeping his concentration in the final stages to ensure he would stay top of the pile in the Championship decider:

“First of all, I would like to pay tribute to Nick and Dave for a fantastic battle. It really was a straight fight between the two of us and I think its credit to us both that it ended up being so close. The pace out there was electric!

“I can’t quite believe that I’ve won the Championship for a third time, I don’t think it will sink in for a while. We’ve made history and I’m so proud with what I’ve achieved.

“Nobody has ever managed to win the British Historic Rally Championship title three years in a row and myself and Phil have now done it – I’m absolutely delighted!”

The Championship was set up for one of the most exciting finishes to a season after Pritchard stylishly clinched victory in the Isle of Man and in doing so, set up the winner-takes-all finale on the Trackrod Rally Yorkshire.

The weekend started well for Pritchard as he successfully navigated his way through the first 10-mile stage on the Friday evening:

“The weather was terrible on Friday night, there was a lot of rain falling throughout the day so it was muddy and very slippy. We were aqua plaining for most of the stage! To be honest, I wasn’t feeling that good with how it went, but we went to bed on Friday night 0.8 seconds ahead of Nick, so it was the start we had hoped for.

“We were running about one minute behind on the Saturday and during the 4th stage, we drove past Nick and Dave and saw that they had ended up in a ditch.

“It was crucial that we kept our minds on the job and we didn’t even dare think about the title or congratulate each other. Phil kept telling me to concentrate and that’s exactly what I did! We kept the car in the middle of the road and the pace was good.”

Pritchard’s title hopes looked doomed during the early stages of the Championship, a run of bad luck and non-finishes meant it looked impossible for him to retain the title he won in 2015 and 2016.

However, since round five, Pritchard and Clarke have won every round and his impressive victory in the Isle of Man over a double-round weekend gave him every chance to complete the hat-trick and in doing so, make rallying history.

“I honestly thought the title was out of my reach in the early rounds, however we’ve not looked back since winning the Harry Flatters stages in July and I’m just thrilled to bits with what we’ve achieved.

“I’m lucky to have such a fantastic team around me and this title is dedicated to them, sitting next to Phil is a privilege and he puts in so much time and hard work in making sure we get the results we get, thank you Phil.

“I also want to mention my Mum and Dad (Helen and Eian Pritchard) without their support, none of this would be possible, they do so much for me and are fantastic.

“The boys who are by my side each weekend are second-to-none and again, this title wouldn’t be possible without having their backing and enthusiasm.

“Viking Motorsport have once again prepared and delivered a world class car, a world class car that has now won the British Historic Rally Championship three times in row!

“And, a special mention to my sponsors: North Road Garage Builth Wells, Harkness Competition Tyres and Monaville Guesthouse”.

Next up for Pritchard and Clarke is the RAC rally over the 10th – 14th November. This is the longest rally in the UK since 1990, starting in Wales and then finishing in Carlisle.

“We can’t wait for the RAC, it attracts some great drivers and also support, we are actively seeking sponsorship, so if anyone is interested, please do get in touch!”