Peter Thomson won the 2010 Shannonville Stages Rally, edging Targa regular Glen Clarke.
“I really like this event, and have a lot of fun here,” said Thomson, who was co-driven by Frank Sprongl. “We picked the right tires for last years’ rally, but conditions here weren’t right, so we ran out of tires by the end of the event and had to slow down.”
Thomson drove his Mitsubishi EVO VIII to a 28 second victory after six stages, though had to work hard to hold off an attacking Clarke. The Targa veteran entered his Porsche 911 Targa car, a serious threat on the Shannonville road course.
“We had a few issues early, but got up to speed quickly,” said Clarke. Unfortunately he and co-driver Ray Felice ran out of brakes with approximately five laps remaining on the final stage, the longest of the event.
The pair had been catching Thomson, with only one second separating the two teams heading into the final stage.
After four of the stages, a strong battle had developed for third place, between drivers Nicola Narini, Chris Martin, Nick Mathew and Martin Donnelly. Narini would go on to finish third, with co-driver Massimo Narini, 1:43 back from Thomson. Chris Martin and Phil Narini finished fourth, just four seconds back of the Narini pair. Martin Donnelly and co-driver James Drake finished fifth, while Nick and Kelly Mathew finished sixth after a spin on the final stage cost precious time.
“We weren’t building boost properly and were on second hand tires,” said Nicola Narini, “but this is our second ever regional podium.”
Peter Kocandrle won the Group 2 class in his Suzuki Swift, finishing ninth overall. Alan Ryall and Bruce Leonard were the lone entry in a Subaru WRX Production GT car, finishing 12th overall, the only team to run gravel tires on the tarmac course.
Shannonville Stages was the second round of the Ontario Performance Rally Championship, and unlike last year where rain and snow dumped from the skies, near cloudless conditions and sun kept conditions clear for the crews.