Historic Rally Festival brings motor thrills to Shropshire

It was "Go, go, go!" as mud-splattered motors careered through rally courses and thrilled crowds in Shropshire.

Mel Lewis, from Middletown, near Welshpool, with his 1970s Lancia Stratos
Mel Lewis, from Middletown, near Welshpool, with his 1970s Lancia Stratos

The Historic Rally Festival crossed the line into the county for a two-day festival celebrating the best of rallying history.

Racing enthusiasts were geared up for a weekend of excitement, which featured a night stage at Weston Park on Saturday, before a full day of racing in the grounds of the stately home on Sunday.

The event began with a ceremonial start and live scrutineering at the QEII Arena at Telford Town Park before the cars revved to Ironbridge.

Telford Mayor Raj Mehta, starts the Historic Rally Festival stage at Telford Town Park
The Historic Rally Festival at Telford Town Park
The Historic Rally Festival at Telford Town Park

Iconic rally cars including Audi Quattros, Lancias, and Ford Escort Cosworths were on display, as well as classics from as far back as the 1960s and present day racers.

Around 50 cars took part in the racing.

Mark Constaduros, one of the organisers, said: "It's been really good. This year was the first year it's been over two days. We had a fantastic day on Saturday, starting with the scrutineering in Telford. Then we went up to Ironbridge Power Station and had four stages out there. It was really well attended. It was new for everybody because we haven't done that stage before.

Gary Gee, from Blackburn, in his Talbot Sunbeam
The Historic Rally Festival at Telford Town Park
Peter Stimson, from Devon, with his 1964 Anglia Allardette

"Then the cars went back for servicing before we went to Weston Park for the night stages that were really well-received. We had a huge crowd at the water splash.

"We've had about 50 cars involved. We've had everything from the 60s, 70s, 80s, 90s. We've had Group B cars, a bit of everything really.

The Historic Rally Festival at Telford Town Park

"It's been really successful, but we couldn't have done it without the help of Telford & Wrekin Council and Haworth Group (which owns the power station site). Without all of them playing their part we wouldn't be where we are."

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