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WWRS14 CunninghamIrish brothers Ray and Frank Cunningham will go head-to-head for the first time in their long rallying careers when they enter a pair of Mini Coopers in this season’s West Wales Rally Spares R.A.C. Rally Championship.

Younger brother Ray is widely regarded as one of the fastest Mini drivers in the world on asphalt rallies, but has virtually no experience on gravel. Meanwhile Frank, who started his successful rallying career in Minis in the 1990s, has far more gravel experience but only at the wheel of Ford Escorts.

“We’ve never rallied against each other, so this is a battle of the brothers,” said Galway-based Ray. “The cars are identical and they are within one bhp of each other on the dyno. We’ll try and create a bit of a storm!” Ray will prepare both cars at his Galway Mini Centre, while further support will come from UK-based Mini Spares.

Ray says that his only knowledge of the Welsh forests has been gained on a mountain bike. “I’ve done very little gravel rallying and no forestry,” said the former winner of his category on the Killarney Historic Rally. The brothers will start their campaign on the opening round, the Red Kite Stages (2 February) and will go up against established Mini pacesetter Clive King in the Aldon Automotive Mini and Imp Cup. “Clive has been a big help with things like tyres and I think he’ll show me how it’s done. I also expect to get beaten by Frank initially as he has the gravel experience.”

“We’ll do the Red Kite and the Mid Wales and then see how many more we do,” said Ray. “The four Welsh events are easy for us to get to. This all came about over a few beers at Christmas. I’ve been looking at the in-car from Marty McCormack and the stages look superb.”

The 2014 R.A.C. Rally Championship starts on the Red Kite Stages on Sunday 2 February and more details are available from

The West Wales Rally Spares R.A.C. Rally Championship is the only championship that runs historics first on the road on all events.

More details about the R.A.C. Rally Championship can be found at Follow the championship on Facebook at and on Twitter: @RACRallyChamp.

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