IT was a mixed bag for local crews at last weekend's Get Jerky Rally North Wales, reports PAUL WILLETTS, with silverware for some, disappointment for others.

Round two of the Fuchs British Historic Rally Championship and the opening round of the Pirelli Welsh National championship returned to its former Welshpool base, but the format remained the same, with two loops in the Dyfi and Dyfnant complex, where heavy rain made the forestry roads slippery.

Geoff Phelps and Coleford's Colin Jenkins opened their Welsh championship campaign with an excellent class win in the Hartpury Farms Escort RS1800.

A trouble-free day and more aggressive start paying dividends with 15th overall.

Goytre's Graham Thatcher and Tim Samuel in the awesome-sounding PVM-backed TR7 V8 had a good run to 29th and third in class.

But it was retirement for the Braces Bread RS1600 of Jonathan Brace and Abergavenny's Paul Spooner with a failed wiper motor.

It was also the opening round of the Mini Challenge series, mixing gravel and asphalt events, with, the crews doing the opening loop and 22 miles.

Former junior 1000 front-runner Jack Birch had experienced Forester Mike Jode alongside in the 17-year-old's first gravel rally, as he steps up from his Micra to the Mini, finishing seventh out of 14 and winning class W10 in the Tarleton Tyres & ENV Graphics-backed car.

It was a disappointing day in the Historic event for locals however. Hoping to build on their round one result in the Allglass Anglia Escort RS1800, no brakes for the opening loop saw Ben Friend and Monmouth's Cliffy Simmons 16th at service, so they retired to save the car.

Wye Valley garage owner Steve Bennett, on his first event in a while, and Osian Owen worked their way up to sixth only to rip a wheel off in the last test, with retirement a sad end to an excellent drive.

Meanwhile, next month's Rally Nuts Stages has attracted a phenomenal entry with an international  flavour.

The Llandrindod Wells-based event will offer 62 of the finest Welsh gravel roads.

Round two of the Probite British Rally Championship sees Jos Verstappen, father of current F1 champion Max, bring his Red Bull Skoda Fabia Rally 2, alongside fellow Dutchman Roger Hodenuis.

The event has also attracted a host of local crews, as this year’s British Rally Championship has really captured people’s imagination with its new look format.