I hadn’t visited Woodbridge in over a year, and that was for a stage rally in May 2016. Given it’s location we headed to Ipswich the night before to make things easier for the Sunday early morning start. Using the MG ZR gave the benefit that we could travel together in the same car (not possible in the Micra with spares etc) and with the event a week after stage rallying at Down Ampney, it made life easier for Matt in terms of preparing and packing cars.
We were seeded as Car 4, which felt a little high! Matt drove the first set of three tests first and things seemed to go ok, it was very much a team event with good input needed from the navigator and some tough bits and pieces to call/explain/instruct on as quickly as possible. It was then my turn to drive, and having not driven the MG on a targa before it was good to be in the right hand seat. All was going ok, until test three when we had a page turn on the test. In the heat of the moment, things happen and unfortunately Matt turned the page the wrong way and then was unsure where we were. We stopped (it’s better to go slower the right way than quicker the wrong way due to the penalties) and I ended up grabbing the map, finding where we were and off we went.
Matt was hugely apologetic at the end of the test, but these things happen and whilst yes it may have cost me a few places, such is life. It was then time for tests 4, 5 and 6 which were the same as we had just done, and this time it was my turn to complete these first. They were all completed without any issues, and then it was time to swap seats so I could navigate for Matt.
The day continued with no real dramas and we both completed all 12 of the tests. There were a few rough bits at Woodbridge and more than once we thought we had punctured a tyre, but thankfully hadn’t. We had the normal “turn left, turn left, LEFT NOW” as Matt went to sail on by and I started to shout louder and louder, but no real dramas.
As classes are split by experience and class, Matt and I were in different classes with him as a Master (having won his class in the last five years) and myself as an Expert. We both finished 5th in class which was ok, but we both had lost time early in the day which didn’t truly help our positions by the end of the event.