LUDLOW rallying duo Perry Gardener and Keaton Williams extended their lead in the BTRDA (British Trial and Rally Drivers Association) R2 Cup with a fine drive in Builth Wells last weekend.

Gardner and Williams finished 21st overall and second in class over the Nicky Grist Stages in their TNT Tyres Selley Auto Service Ford Fiesta R2 to stretch their advantage at the top of the standings.

The duo had a good clean run in the morning to arrive at service trailing Tommi Meadows – who was not in contention in the overall standings – in a similar car by just eight seconds.

The crews swapped seconds over the afternoon loop and, with just six seconds between the two going into the last stage, Gardner decided not to attack on the last test.

Nonetheless, drama still followed when the duo’s Fiesta left the road on the flying finish of the stage, hitting the bank hard.

On inspection at the stop line, the car was losing oil and still had the road section back to the finish in Builth Wells to negotiate, but some quick thinking sorted the problem out.

Gardner and Williams will hope to wrap up the R2 Cup title when the next round, the Woodpecker stages, their home rally in Ludlow, takes place in September.

In the 1400 section of the Nicky Grist rally, Chris Powell and Jim Lewis in the Herefordshire Raceway Sunbeam took victory and finished 28th overall.

They triumphed by well over a minute from Steve Black and Ross on Wye based Paul Morris in the SBG Suzuki Swift S 1400 who finished 42nd overall, making it a Herefordshire clean sweep of podium positions.