B&FC car to make its debut in top UK rally

Published on 22/03/2019 by nmoo

A high-performance rally car developed by students at Blackpool and The Fylde College (B&FC) is to make its debut this weekend at one of the UK’s top car rallies.

The 1.6 litre BMW mini will be one of more than 130 cars to converge on Garstang on Friday for the start of the Legends Fire North West Stages rally, which is regarded as one of the toughest in the country.

The B&FC rally car has been subject to a major programme of preparation by students in the automotive section of the Advanced Technology Centre on the Bispham campus. Along with mechanical improvements and tuning to achieve optimum performance, the car has been repainted and a number of safety modifications have been made.

“All of this work has been carried out within the college by students under the supervision of tutors,” says Robert Oldale, automotive centre manager.

“For those on our motorsport courses this has been a centrepiece of their studies, giving them real hands-on experience of what lies behind preparing a car for competitive racing. Students in other parts of our automotive centre have also gained valuable experience by working on the project in areas like body repair, painting and finishing to a professional standard.

“They are all very proud of the end result, which is a great advertisement for the high levels of skill that they are already achieving as a result of their training at B&FC. A number of them will form the team that will be present throughout the rally to keep the car in tip-top condition so that it performs perfectly during this very demanding event.”

The car will be crewed by experienced professional rally driver Rob Jones, who has a long pedigree in motor sport. Alongside him will be another stalwart of the rallying scene, Tom Murphy. Both will be driving the car to the limit in what promises to be one of the most exciting motorsport events in the North West this year.

For the first time the Legend Fires North West Stages rally has been able to take advantage of recent changes in legislation that allows local authorities to close roads to enable car rallies to take place safely. As a result several stages will be on roads in the Beacon Fell area of Lancashire that will be closed to the public but with special arrangements being made for enthusiasts to access places from which to view the event.

The rally gets underway in the centre of Garstang on Friday evening when all the cars will parade through the town with full commentary being provided about each car and its drivers.