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Gardener and Innes on the attack in Ludlow's Woodpecker Stages Rally
8:00am Thursday 30th August 2012 in Sport
LUDLOW’S ace Shaun Gardener has vowed to attack in Saturday’s Woodpecker Stages Rally.
Gardener and his codriver Ben Innes have won the Woodpecker twice - and will be going all out to complete a hattrick.
“It’s my local event - I’ve won it twice before and it would be nice to repeat it for a third time,” said Gardener, who triumphed in 2006 and 2008.
“We are going to attack and go for it but it won’t be easy.
“I have only missed the rally twice in 27 years and it’s a very demanding rally with stages in Wigmore and Bringewood.
“Roger Chilman will be a threat because he’s got local knowledge and Nigel Griffiths is another driver who will also be challenging.”
Ludlow Castle Motor Club duo Gardener and co-driver Innes, from Cleobury Mortimer, are leading the 2012 REIS – Get Connected BTRDA Rally Series.
There are just two rounds remaining in this year’s championship and the duo hope to repeat their 2006 title triumph.
This season, the pair’s Mitsubishi Lancer EVO5.9 has finished each of the six rallies.
However, Gardener and Innes are seeded third ahead of the local event, with Chilman and Bryan Thomas and Hugh Hunter and Andy Marchbank above them.
“Charlie ‘Smudger’ Smith has been working very hard on the car,”
“I get great support from my five-man team - it’s not just about me - we are all in it together.”
The Woodpecker Stages Rally is one of the most popular events in the BTRDA calendar. It is organised by the Sixty and Worcestershire Motor Club.
The first batch of cars - contesting the 1400cc category - will leave from the Ludlow Racecourse base at 8.30am on Saturday.
Rally fans can watch the adrenaline-filled action in two areas in Haye Park near Ludlow.
Haye Park Picnic Area is on a minor road between Ludlow and Wigmore, with catering and commentary available.
And Haye Park Blackpool Gate is on the B4361 south of Ludlow. The cars visit Haye Park twice, with the first car due at 9.20am.