Goodman and Cockerill battle on

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The regular pairing of John Cockerill and Jim Goodman took part in the historic section of the Riponian Rally on Sunday based at Thirsk and centred around the forests in the Sutton Bank area.

Some snow left over from Saturday made the early stages very slippery with a covering of mud and soft slush which made tyre choices very difficult.

The engine maladies which have struck the crew on the last two outings were now solved with the engine running faultlessly at first, but another problem would strike in the second half of the race.

A troublefree morning saw them safely through the first run of six stages in Boltby, Wass, College Moor, Pry Rigg, Ricall Dale and Roppa, but at the end of the second run through Boltby, John said he didn’t like the feeling of the clutch and it began to slip very badly.

Goodman said: “I asked John if he could manage it or would he prefer to retire as we didn’t want it to fail mid-stage and be stuck there for hours.

“But we are not quitters and as Wass was only a short 2.37 mile stage we decided to give it a go.

“As it turned out once we were driving at rally speed the clutch was fine (it was only troublesome on road sections) and we completed the rest of the stages with no further problems apart from the tremendously slippery conditions which were far worse in the afternoon when all the four-wheel drive cars had done their first run.

“The ruts were also over a foot deep on some corners which made it impossible to take a correct line.”

Goodman added: “But despite the worsening conditions we still beat our morning times by a total of 48 seconds to finish in 51st place overall and 16th historic.

“My next time out is on March 20 at Weston Park in Staffordshire, when I will be partnering Huw James from Aberystwyth.”