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Amy-Williams-with-mentor-Daniel-Barritt– Jardine and his Olympic champion co-driver to face stern night test on Rally Yorkshire

2010 Winter Olympic Games Skeleton Gold medallist, Amy Williams MBE has already completed the first challenge in her quest to make it to Wales Rally GB, the British round of the World Rally Championship, alongside her rallying partner F1 Sky Sports Analyst Tony Jardine. Having recently made an astonishing debut at the GWF Energy Merrick Stages rally finishing first in class, the duo are now bracing themselves for their first night stages in their pursuit for success at Rally Yorkshire.

Amy Williams’ ultimate aim is to reach international co-driver status in time for Wales Rally GB, the final round of the FIA World Rally Championship (WRC) on 14 – 17 November. However, in order to qualify as an international co-driver alongside Jardine, Amy, must complete three more national rallies. Rally Yorkshire, marks the second stage of her challenge, taking place on 27 – 28 September over the notoriously fast and deceptive forests of Yorkshire.

Despite their debut success, Rally Yorkshire could prove a difficult and dark challenge for Jardine and Williams. With just one rally under her belt, Amy is on a steep learning curve. Speaking ahead of the approaching rally, Williams said; “I hear that the Yorkshire stages are renowned for being among the fastest in the country and are therefore quite daunting, with long straights often leading into difficult hairpins. I am very new to this sport, so it’s both hugely challenging and exciting, however, I’m confident that I’ll continue to learn the skills to do well for the team.”

The duo will be driving in the same EuroRallye Honda Civic Type R that served them so well at the Merrick Scottish Championship event. Williams will again receive advice from experienced WRC navigator, Daniel Barritt, who co-drives for rising British rally star, Elfyn Evans. Having tutored Williams throughout her debut, Barritt will be helping her to prepare for night driving, which will be another first for Amy. “I know the first vital stages will be in the dark, which, for me will be a whole new experience. It could be tricky! This will give me a great taste of rallying in the dark, testing my awareness and acting as a portent of what could hit us on the first three stages of Wales Rally GB, which are all at night!” , said Williams.

With a fantastic York based ProSpeed team and a promising first event behind them, Jardine and Williams have made a great start to their target of competing in Wales Rally GB. Success for the team at Rally Yorkshire will lead to a double celebration. Amy said, “I really enjoyed my first rally in Scotland, which was a great start, but this is only my second ever rally, so we now need to build on that. Rally Yorkshire will be a difficult challenge, but it is a chance for us to gain yet more knowledge and experience ahead of Wales Rally GB, where we will be competing against the best rally drivers in the world. A little extra incentive is that this weekend is my Birthday, so it would be lovely to finish with a good result and enjoy a double celebration at the end!”

Amy is not alone in this experience and can rely on driver Tony Jardine for support. Tony said of the Olympic Gold medallist’s debut: “Amy amazed me in her first rally. She was cool and calm in the heat of her new sporting environment, just as you’d expect from an intelligent, supremely fit athlete. However, one swallow does not make a summer! Rally Yorkshire is deceptively fast and we go straight into the dark on the Friday night stages with possible mist or fog to clutter our view. It will be a new ball game, but fantastic training for the first night of Wales Rally GB. We will tackle four long days over some of the best World Rally Championship forest stages in the world. Mindful that November may bring difficult conditions, the daunting forests of Yorkshire will test our mettle and provide Amy with her first stern test at night!”

Supporting Amy Williams and Tony Jardine in her co-driving quest to reach WRC level will be the ProSpeed rally team; key sponsors include PlayStation®, Gran Turismo®6, MIS Motorsport, Sky Bet, Alpinestars and Arai.

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