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Reigning British Rally Champion Matt Edwards took a sensational victory on the Visit Conwy Cambrian Rally to kick-start his title defence with new co-driver Patrick Walsh.

Former champion David Bogie and his navigator John Rowan brought their Skoda Fabia R5 home in second place, while Marty McCormack drove his similar machine to a fine third overall with Barney Mitchell reading the notes.

Tom Cave returned after a year’s absence and pushed the previous champions to the limit in the fight for a podium position. Two punctures on the final stage dropped Cave and co-driver Dale Bowen down the order and with no more spares in the car they were forced to retire.

Results
1 Matt Edwards/Patrick Walsh (Ford Fiesta R5) 54m58.7s
2 David Bogie/John Rowan (Škoda Fabia R5) 55m25.2s
3 Martin McCormack/Barney Mitchell (Škoda Fabia R5) 56m06.7s

Championship standings
1 Matt Edwards – 25 points
2 David Bogie – 18
3 Marty McCormack – 15
Pirelli Welsh Forest Rally Championship

ROUND ONE: VISIT CONWY CAMBRIAN RALLY, 16.02.19

Russ Thompson scored maximum championship points on the opening round, the Llandudno-based Visit Conwy Cambrian Rally.

Thompson and co-driver Andy Murphy were the first crew to leave the town centre start and set the pace on the opening stages. They went on to finish second overall behind Steve Simpson, who was not registered for championship points, and his navigator Mark Glennester. Glennerster collected the maximum points haul for registered co-drivers.

Scott Faulkner and co-driver Gareth Parry battled with championship newcomer Richard Hill for the final podium place, with Faulkner coming out on top.

Results
1 Stephen Simpson/Mark Glennerster (Ford Fiesta) 41m52.1s
2 Russ Thompson/Andy Murphy (Mitsubishi Evo IX) 41m53.5s
3 Scott Faulkner/Gareth Parry (Mitsubishi Evo IX) 42m22s

Championship standings
1 Russ Thompson – 30 points
2 Scott Faulkner – 27
3 Richard Hill – 25

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