· Leading points table in BTRDA Production Cup· Leading points table in Junior Driver· Fourth in Gold Star Driver
Following a fourth Group N class win on this weekend's Woodpecker Stages Rally, teenage rally driver Tom Cave now tops the points table in the BTRDA Production Cup category. In addition, the 19 year-old from Aberdovey was also elevated to fourth overall in the Gold Star Driver category and leads the points in the Junior Driver category.
Driving a rented Clark Motorsport Mitsubishi Lancer Evo9, Cave and co-driver Craig Parry were on the attack from the outset. They knew that to keep the Production Cup campaign alive, they had to beat Jamie Anderson, who led the series going into the Woodpecker.
Cave and Parry took the Group N win on the first three stages of the event, as they instantly found the right rhythm for the car and conditions. They were beaten into second-fastest on the fourth stage by just one second by Tom Naughton and by the mid-point of the event, held a commanding 10-second lead over Naughton who was a further four seconds ahead of Anderson.
On the first of the final loop of three stages, Dylan Davies tried to redress the balance, taking five seconds from Tom with Anderson also taking four back. However, Tom and Craig responded immediately and took the class win on the last two stages, stretching the winning margin back to 13 seconds over both Davies and Anderson.
With the series now into dropped-score territory, with the best six of eight rounds counting, Tom tops the leaderboard, with 111 points to Anderson's 105. However, while Tom can still add six points to his overall total, Anderson is only able to add a further four. Third-placed James Grint is on 91 points but cannot gain enough points to trouble Tom.
Tom's performance also elevated him to fourth in the Gold Star category for overall performance, one position behind Anderson. However, again with dropped scores taken into account, a class win on the final round of the championship, the Cambrian, could promote him to third overall, ahead of Anderson and a fitting end to the season.
Commenting, Tom said: "It was a great weekend - everything went according to plan. The car was perfect - no problems at all, we didn't make any mistakes and found a really good feeling with the car straight away.
"We weren't doing anything silly and it all came together. We found a good pace and stuck with it. The others were pushing hard to catch us and Dylan and Jamie took some time out of us. But we upped our game and took it back again and I am delighted to take the class win.
"I understand that we are in the running for winning the Production Cup, Junior Driver and the Welsh Rally Championship, if we get a clean sweep of class results on the Cambrian, like we did on the Woodpecker. So there's still a lot to play for on the last round. I'm certainly not going to back off yet."