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Steve_Brown_PR__ManxRochdale rally driver Steve Brown will head across the Irish Sea this weekend as he heads to round two of the REIS MSA Asphalt Rally Championship, the IMGold Manx National Rally. The Isle of Man event will mark Brown’s second outing in his newly built kit car and the Nissan Micra pilot will aim to capitalise on his strong debut last month in Wales where he secured a creditable fourth in class B9.

With several revisions to his unique kit car made over the break between events, the 27 year old Questmead sales engineer has his sights firmly set on a podium result in the tough Manx lanes, but is well aware that he faces stiff opposition from both his rival competitors and the island itself. The rally is run entirely on the closed public roads around the 32 mile long island which crams over 107 competitive miles into one and a half days and which will be a tough ask for any crew.

Co-driven once again by Paul Stringer, the duo will begin their journey to the island early this week to ‘recce’ the stages ahead of the event on Friday evening.  “I’ve historically done quite well over on the Manx but the roads are so unique in there you can’t afford to be complacent” says Brown.  “It’s important that we have a strong recce as notes are a critical part of getting a good result, the roads can really bite you back and you really have to be inch perfect on every corner of every stage”.

Friday night will see a handful of stages which provide an extra challenge for crews as they will need to adapt to competitive night-time action.  “I`m still learning the car so it will be a case of getting round on Friday night and see how we are placed for Saturday. The weather can be so changeable in the space of just a few miles so tyre choice will be critical throughout the weekend. It will be a case of taking each stage mile by mile.”

Brown is also mindful of the fact that the car is still in a development phase and he is still learning the car too. “We are developing the car all the time and we have made some revisions after Epynt in March so hopefully it will pay off for us this weekend. I’ve managed a few days testing with Geoff Jones who knows his Micra’s which has really helped get the set up right. Points are as important as always and as I’m sitting third in the championship it would be great to think we can bag a few more to help bridge the gap to first.”

The IMGold Manx National Rally takes place on the 8th/9th May and is based at the famous TT Grandstand in Douglas. The first stage kicks off at 19.00 on Friday night and finishes under the cover of darkness later that evening. A full day of competitive driving lies ahead on Saturday with the bulk of the stage mileage before a podium finish in Douglas later that afternoon.

Brown is supported in 2015 by Questmead Ltd, Mintex, Fuchs Titan, PIAA, 710 oils, Power Maxed and SIX80 Limited.

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