Hendy Motorsport European Exploits
This year, as in the past few years, the Hendy Motorsport team, and Steve Hendy, have spent their time competing on the testing tarmac roads of Northern France. Seduced by the convenience of a 90-minute ferry crossing, a small jaunt from Calais, outstanding deals, and a very warm welcome - the team has been campaigning their efforts in Belgium, Holland and France for the last 8-years.
The last two events were National level French rounds, based on the tricky closed roads in the Bethune area, where local knowledge is as important as enjoying the whole 'superstar' experience. It proves that rallying is still very much alive and indeed thriving in Europe. With entries in excess of 200 cars, and spectator numbers in their thousands, on a National level event our favoured sport is still very much alive and kicking.
The 2000 spec Focus WRC is not necessarily the newest of machinery but with some pushing and hard work on the notes, we have been on the podium no less than 6-times in the last 3-years - although still not quite the top step!
This year saw us with a new corporate sponsor; a braking manufacturer 'Project Mu', and we were keen to go that one place better to really raise their profile. Alas, it was not to be! On both our French visits this year, despite running in a strong 2nd place, we failed to reach the final control. The events are always 2-days long which plenty of mileage, so the test on the car is a challenge in itself and two mechanical failures brought both campaigns to an earlier conclusion than we had hoped!
The first round for us in 2016 will be Le Touquet, again in France, in March where we will once again aim for the podium, and to beat the other British crews, the numbers of which are growing every year.
For those that haven't tried it yet, put it on your 'bucket list' - I can assure you, you won't be disappointed, and it'll give you a flavour of how rallying in the UK used to be!