Sponsored by Weir Engineering. 14th February 2015.

40th Anniversary dinner and book launch

A dinner, and book launch, will take place deep in the Forest of Dean to celebrate this huge milestone in the history of the Forest of Dean Motor Club and the Wyedean Forest Rally."

All the great and good and assorted glitterati from the rallying world will be in attendance. We hope to host many who were competitors and officials from the early years, so expect some unbelievable (fisherman’s) stories.

This is your chance for a great get-together and meet some of the legends from the past.

Dinner booking details and form

The Wyedean at 40 book is a soft cover publication of 116 A4 pages with a 16 page colour section.
The book includes a synopsis of the 39 Wyedean Stages Rallies that have taken place since 1975, and contributions from competitors who have faced the challenge of some of the best known Rally Special Stages in the UK.

The chosen good causes benefiting from sales of the book are The Midlands Air Ambulance Charity and The League of Friends of The Dilke Hospital

Book order form

Forest Hills Golf Club, - Thursday 12th February, - 19.30hrs

Press Release.


In the absence of both 2013 & 2014 Weir Engineering Wyedean Forest Rally winners and defending REIS - RAVENOL Gold Star® Champion Steve Perez entering in his Lancia Stratos this time, the event organisers, Forest of Dean Motor Club Ltd, have the task of deciding who will run with No.1 on their car doors this time - and they’re not short of possible contenders!...

The most recent Wyedean winner who will be heading for Chepstow Racecourse on 14th February is Yorkshireman Charlie Payne who took his Ford Focus WRC to top spot in 2012. That has now been replaced by a Fiesta R5, while 2007 victors Hugh Hunter/Andy Marchbank have since switched from their Focus to an Impreza WRC.

Then there’s Paul Bird who has remained loyal to the Focus in which he finished 2nd overall in the Forest of Dean last year, but also in the frame must be the likes of Stephen Petch/Ian Windress (Fiesta R5+) and Dave Weston/Kirsty Riddick (Impreza WRC) who are both proven winners at this level.

There may well be others who come to the fore during the day and, running as it does in February, it’s always possible that the weather will also have an influence on the result. Who can forget the snowy scene in 2012 when Julian Wilkes brought his 1400cc Vauxhall Nova to the finish in 3rd place overall?....

All the questions surrounding seeding will be answered in a couple of weeks’ time when the entry list is published, but what we already know is that the 40th Anniversary Weir Engineering Wyedean Forest Rally will be fielding a capacity entry of 165 cars.

For further details of the Weir Engineering Wyedean Forest Rally, contact the Press Officer : details in the left columm, to whom all requests for Media Accreditation should be addressed.

Graham Elsmore testing in Escort RS1800

photo- credit Ian Hale

Three time Wyedean winner Graham Elsmore tested the Escort RS1800 that he will be using on the forthcoming Weir Engineering Wyedean Forest Rally,last week in the Walters Arena complex.

The former Ford & British Leyland factory driver enjoyed plenty of mileage in the RSR prepared Escort,in difficult conditions with rain, snow, hail stones and high winds, the car has been loaned to him for the 40th anniversary event by Wyedean event sponsor Rob Weir, who had the car totally rebuilt from a new shell following a huge accident on the Woodpecker stages in 2013.

"The car is just fantastic, these new BDA's just rev and rev, and the torque is amazing, I just wanted to blow the rust and cobwebs off me, before the Wyedean."Said Elsmore

"The car is as good as any factory car I drove, that's the best compliment I can give Rob Smith and his boys, and I can't thank Rob Weir enough for giving me and Stuart this opportunity".

Weir Rally Team spokesman Paul Willetts said".It was just like the old days, you could hear that fantastic sound of a BDA singing away in the distance, and you knew by the blips on the throttle it was Graham, made the hair on the back of the neck stand on end, the hair may be a bit greyer the eyesight might not be the same as it was in the seventies, but the talent is still there in abundance, and I am sure,thousands of spectators will line the stages come the 14th February to see him in action."

FROM 0 - 165 IN 10 DAYS!....

Such is the popularity of the Weir Engineering Wyedean Forest Rally that, just ten days after the regulations and entry forms went online, the capacity entry of 165 cars has been reached.
However, don’t despair! Especially at the beginning of the season when, for a variety of reasons, cars cannot be readied in time, there will be a number of withdrawals between now and 14th February.
Consequently, the organisers have opened a ‘reserve’ list and, thus, there is still a chance to take the start of the rally at Chepstow Racecourse on Valentine’s Day.

Although 2014 Wyedean winners David Bogie/Kevin Rae will not be defending their title, the list of possible successors is very impressive, to the point that whoever is tasked with seeding the entry will have a difficult task on their hands!

At the other end of the spectrum, for Forest of Dean Motor Club member Charles Hopkinson from St Briavels, the Wyedean will be his first-ever competitive rally. Charles, who let’s just say won’t see 50 again, has recently taken delivery of his MSA competition licence and has entered his ‘home’ event in an Historic specification Ford Escort MkII, lining up against the similar car of fellow Forest of Dean residents Dave Jenkins & Graham Cox who won the event outright back in 1996.

For further details of the Weir Engineering Wyedean Forest Rally, contact the Press Officer : details in the left columm, to whom all requests for Media Accreditation should be addressed.

Roll of Honour

Winner 1975 - Graham Elsmore/Stuart Harrold - Escort RS 1600. Winner 1976 - Graham Elsmore/Stuart Harrold - Escort RS 1800. Winner 1977 - Graham Elsmore/Stuart Harrold - Escort RS 1800. Winner 1978 - Andy Dawson/Kevin Gormley - Datsun Violet. Winner 1979 - Malcolm Wilson/Terry Harryman - Escort RS 1800. Winner 1980-81 Jeff Churchill/Roger Evans - EscortRS1800. Winner 1984 - Russell Brookes/Mike Broad - Opel Manta 400. Winner 1985 - David Llewellyn/Phil Short - Audi Quattro. Winner 1986 - John Brown/Andy Sutton - MG Metro 6R4. Winner 1987 - Ian and Pat Beveridge - MG Metro 6R4. Winner 1992 - Pete Doughty/Jerry Freeman - Sierra Cosworth. Winner 1996 - Dave Jenkins/Graham Cox - Escort Cosworth. Winner 2000 - Andy Burton/Rob Morgan - Peugeot Cosworth Winner 2002 - Mark Perrott/Garry Mansell - Escort WRC. Winner 2003 - Andy Burton/Rob Morgan - Peugeot Cosworth Winner 2004 - Andy Burton/Rob Morgan - Peugeot Cosworth Winner 2005 - Dorian Rees/Paul Willetts - Subaru Impreza. Winner 2006 - Jon Ingram/Ian Allsop - Ford Focus. Winner 2007 - Hugh Hunter/Andy Marchbank - Ford Escort WRC. Winner 2008 - Andy Burton/Shelley Rogerson - Peugeot Cosworth. Winner 2009 - Nik Elsmore/Craig Drew - Mitsubishi Evo IX. Winner 2010 - Steve Perez/Paul Spooner - Ford Focus WRC07. Winner 2011 - Andy Burton/Robin Kellard - Peugeot Cosworth. Winner 2012 - Charlie Payne/Craig Thorley - Ford Focus. Winner 2013 - Connor McCloskey/Francis Regan - Subaru Impreza. Winner 2014 - David Bogie/Kevin Rae - Ford Focus WRC.
Mouseover to freeze display. - More photographs will be added.

A list of all previous winners can be found here.

Many thanks to Russ from http://www.90right.com For most of the photographs.

40 glorious years.

Our first Wyedean Forest Rally took place in October 1975. The organisers were young, enthusiastic and still in their teens or early twenties. What they lacked in experience they made up with hard work and a desire to “make it happen” for the Forest of Dean and their club.

Little did they know that some 41 years later, now a lot older and clutching bus passes, that many would still be organising “The Wyedean” and that it would become a premier event in the motorsport calendar.

It is a fantastic journey that they have made, the Wyedean has suffered from sub zero temperatures, gales bringing trees down on the stages and knee deep snow, but still the events went ahead with no cancellations.

Many people have come and gone over the years, but each has added something to the event and have left with knowledge of having been part of something special.

The experience our organisers have gained over the years has only added to their polished professionalism which has gained many accolades over the years.

Our Clerk of Course.

Phil Turley was a founder member of the Forest of Dean Motor Club and has been CoC for every event, a record that I believe is unmatched by any other club.
Now clutching his bus pass which he received many years ago he is still the driving force with a keen eye for detail and a quick mind to resolve all those issues that inevitably arise during the event.

Phil was also one of the first to obtain his radio controllers licence, that was back in the day when it ran on 86mhz.

For the mathematicians

Using fingers and toe's many will come up with 41 years since 1975.
In 1980 the World Rally Championship decided to use the Forest of Dean, and as they were bigger than us and had fancy jackets, clip boards and pens we gave way.
Whilst we welcomed the WRC to our forest it was decided to avoid this little event by moving our future events to the spring where it has remained.

Did you know ?

Back then the Chrysler Alpine was launched, Microsoft was founded , Maggie Thatcher was made leader of the Tories (fortunately beer was only 28p a pint) and the average weekly wage was £50.00 - £60.00, and finally, the 1975 British Grand Prix was won by Emerson Fittipaldi.

So why not join us as we celebrate this milestone and be part of history in the making.

Our championships.

We have attracted a number of championships again for 2015; as in recent years we are the first round of the BTRDA Rally Series, which is sponsored by REIS - RAVENOL, This series again incorporates the REIS - RAVENOL Gold Star Championship, REIS - RAVENOL Silver Star Championship, Kick Start BTRDA 1400 Championship, Vital Equipment BTRDA Rally First Championship, BTRDA Historic Cup, BTRDA Hyundai Genpower Production Cup and MG ZR Rally Challenge.

We are also the first round of the MSA English Rally Championship, a round of the Pirelli MSA Welsh National Rally Championship, REIS ASWMC Loose Surface Stage Rally Championship, the Gwynne Speed Rally Challenge and finally a round of the Brian Dennis Motorsport Welsh Historic Rally Championship 2015

A celebration of rallying in the Forest of Dean.

Frank Pierson and Jim Smith in 1975 win an award for the
highest recorded speed of 98mph on Spruce Ride.

The Forest of Dean Motor Club was formed in July 1967 and ran the first Wyedean Stages in October 1975 and this has ran continuously since.

The first event was a battle between Graham Elsmore, David Stokes and Frank Pierson, they headed the field all day and finished in that order. Graham won the next two Rallies to complete his hat trick.

The entry fee was an eye watering £27.00 for 54 stage miles, the winner, however, did collect a prize of a cheque for £40.00.

Neil Henderson has chronicled all motorsport events held in the Forest of Dean this can be found by clicking the link in the left column.

To celebrate our 40 years of running the Wyedean, Neil is producing a booklet which covers every Wyedean Rally since 1975 this will include 16 pages of colour photographs and anecdotes from competitors.

To describe in detail each of the 40 rallies is a huge undertaking, fortunately Neil has become a walking encyclopaedia and the book, for some, will have many little known details which he has unearthed.

The book is not for profit, all proceeds after printing costs will go to the Midlands Air Ambulance Charity and the Dylke Hospital.

If you have any memorabilia you would like to share, I am sure Neil would be delighted to hear from you, just use the contact page on the Dean Rallies website.

More details of how you can obtain a copy will be posted here.

Weir Engineering Wyedean Forest Rally Results Top 10 overall in 2014

1. David Bogie/Kevin Rae 0:42:59
2. Paul Bird/Aled Davies 0:44:01
3. Luke Francis/John H Roberts 0:45:29
4. Ollie Mellors/Alex Lee 0:46:14
5. Russ Thompson/Andy Murphy 0:46:22
6. Roland Llewellin/Jamie Edwards 0:47:23
7. Matthew Robinson/Sam Collis 0:47:40
8. Jim McNeil/Tom Hughes 0:45:20 +2:30
9. Rob Smith/Ross Weir 0:47:50
10. Paul Davy/Roger Allan 0:48:19

Full Results. Click the link to the BTRDA results page Clicky Link

Our sponsor for the Wyedean.

The father-and-son team behind laundry equipment manufacturers HJ Weir Engineering Co. Ltd. & Weir Laundry Equipment Co. Ltd is taking its love for rally driving to a new level by sponsoring the Chepstow Racecourse-based Wyedean Forest Rally for three years starting in 2014. The event, which takes place on 14th February, will henceforth be known as the Weir Engineering Wyedean Forest Rally.

Rob and Ross Weir

As one of the world’s largest manufacturers of flatwork finishing equipment, the family firm’s business has no obvious connection with rallying, but Rob and Ross Weir are enthusiastic participants in the sport and are both keen to support the Forest of Dean Motor Club, organisers of the event.

“It’s good to support a local motor club at a local event,” says MD Rob, 60. “It’s a well-organised event, they are all volunteers and they put a lot of work into it.”

The Wyedean Forest Rally holds special significance for both the Weirs. Rob was a keen rally driver in his younger days but gave up when son Ross, now 30 and a director of the firm, was a toddler.
The Wyedean Forest Rally was his final event before retiring and it was also the same event that later got him back into driving.

“Two years ago the Forest of Dean Motor Club approached us to see if we had a suitable facility in which carry out scrutineering for the rally,” he says. “We accommodated them and provided warehouse facilities. When we watched the rally that year, Ross said that I should have another go. I got the bug back and decided to do something reckless, just at the age when most people are packing it in.”

The pair bought a Subaru Impreza, built by Rob Smith Rallying Ltd., and started driving as a team, with Rob as driver and Ross as co-driver, starting with the Wyedean Forest Rally in 2012. They have since enjoyed considerable success, most notably at the Sol Rally in Barbados where, two years in a row, they have been placed second in their M8-A category in 2012 and International Historic 2013.

HJ Weir is particularly looking forward to being sponsor for the fortieth anniversary celebrations of the Wyedean Forest Rally in 2015 and plans are already afoot to mark the event in style.

Andrew Haill

Event Officials.

Clerk of Course.
Phil Turley.
07530 366114

Entries Secretary
Lilian Turley
Oakdene, 32 Park Road
Berry Hill, Coleford
Gloucestershire GL16 7QU
01594 810161, 07896 967443

Press Officer.
Andrew Haill
0121 313 1416

Chief Marshal.
John & Sam Brain.
01594 543513 (7.00pm - 9.30pm)

Places to visit.

H J Weir Engineering
Visit our Sponsor's website.

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dean rallies
The history of Rallying
in the Forest of Dean.