Duns rally driver Garry Pearson goes fourth to pick up points in Wales
Duns rally driver Garry Pearson missed out on a podium place at the Nicky Grist Stages in Wales at the weekend, the third round of the Motorsport UK British Rally Championship, but managed to pick up points by finishing fourth.
The 30-year-old and co-driver Dale Furniss guided their Ford Fiesta Rally2, making its loose-surface debut, to a finish just outside the podium spots to keep up their championship challenge.
After claiming four major rally titles last year, Pearson got off to a bad start this season with a zero score at the Clacton Rally in Essex but bounced back from that disappointment with his first-ever championship podium placing by finishing third in May’s Jim Clark Rally, based in his home-town.
A switch to forests on Saturday offered up new challenges, but Pearson built up his speed throughout the day to head into the mid-point service halt in fifth spot, then, following some changes to his car’s set-up, pushed on over the final four of the day’s eight stages to finish fourth.
“We had a goal in mind when we came into the weekend and that was to get a minimum of fourth place, so it’s mission accomplished in that regard,” said Pearson afterwards.
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“We do have some work to do, though, as I know our pace is better than what we could manage today, so we need to use the time between now and the next round to reset, work hard behind the scenes and see if we can bridge that gap to the leaders.
“I’m still learning the car and the tyres on the gravel, so there are plenty of positives to take away, but I know there is more to come.”
The fourth round of the championship, the Grampian Forest Rally near Aberdeen on Saturday, August 13, stays in woods but, being back in Scotland, will be more familiar territory for Pearson.
“I’m looking forward to the Grampian as I’ve finished on the podium there in the past and took the Scottish Rally Championship and national win last year, so it has good memories,” he said.
“It’s always great to be rallying in Scotland, and hopefully we can challenge towards the front and repeat our Jim Clark Rally podium.”