Round 5 - EventSigns Mewla National Rally, 24th August
Defending MSA Asphalt Rally Champion Steve Simpson consolidated his lead in this year's series with a maximum score on the penultimate round, the Eventsigns Mewla National Rally. His Hyundai Accent WRC finished a fine third to set up a three-way battle for the title on the final round, the Cheviot National Rally on 19th October.
The Mewla took place on the Epynt Military Ranges and 2006 Champions David Kynaston/Andy Russell brought their Audi A3 Quattro back to the Builth Wells finish in 5th place, just 8 seconds ahead of David Mann/Alun Cook (Subaru Impreza WRC) after 90 miles of stages.
The stage is now set for a showdown on the Otterburn Ranges in Northumberland before this year's champions will be revealed.
Retirements on the Mewla included John & Caroline Price (MG Metro 6R4) and Simon Mauger/Brian Cammack (Ford Escort RS) who, while no longer in line for overall honours, can still feature in the final top three - provided they have good runs on the Cheviot.
1 Damian Cole/Paul Spooner Hyundai Accent WRC 1h23m42.7s
2 Gareth Jones/Ryland James Subaru Impreza WRC 1h23m46.9s
3* Steve Simpson/Patrick Walsh Hyundai Accent WRC 1h24m08.5s
4 Peter Lloyd/Graham Handley Subaru Impreza WRC 1h24m40.7s
5* David Kynaston/Andy Russell Audi A3 Quattro 1h25m04.6s
6* David Mann/Alun Cook Subaru Impreza WRC 1h25m12.6s
* denotes registered for MSA Asphalt Championship