The 6 Hours of Kortrijk Rally, held over the weekend of 24th and 25th November brought a fitting end to the Flanders International Rally Championship (FIRC) 2018.
The event organised by Autosfal Groennghe centred in and around
the town of Kortrijk, with inscription and entry documentation in a
large marque located in the town centre, with scrutineering being
deployed in a local BMW garage on the outskirts of the town.
Recce had started early with Malcolm and Steve having a run
through the first leg stages prior to the formalities of entry and
scrutineering, finishing off mid-afternoon by which time the rain had
increased considerably with no respite.
A recce of the first stage Navano 1, which was scheduled to run in
the dark through a recycling plant, proved to be treacherous, as was
to be the case on the event itself.
Fourteen stages with just over 80 km were laid on and with liaison a
total of 225 km overall.
With 150 competitors competing in the event by the time Malcolm
and Steve started the event, the rain was so heavy that the wipers
seemed useless and the crew were faced with masses of mud, water
pools and mist. The problems were magnified for Activ8 due to
having incorrect alignment of the auxiliary lights, making visibility
As a result of the poor lighting and treacherous weather conditions
the Impreza decided to argue with a mound of timber mulch, which
resulted in a drop down to 107th overall. A disastrous start to the
final round of the year!
Day 2 – Due to the previous night’s heavy rain, the crew chose to run
on full wets. Although the stages had dried out considerably, they
were deceptively slippery in parts and the wets were used for the
whole event and performed admirably with no deterioration to the
soft compound tyres.
The crew fared better from stage two and climbed up the results
table to finish 65 o/all. Whilst the overall position was a little
disappointing the Impreza ran faultlessly yet again with the service
crew carrying out checks on tyre pressures and the occasional
Activ8 Motorsport competed in 5 rounds of the FIRC completing all
with no mechanical problems which reflected on the team’s
commitment, especially considering the very fast nature of the
stages and the built-in “cutting” of corners that takes place (cuts the
full width of the car are not unusual) On one event 5 wheels had to
be replaced as they were beyond repair.
Across the years events the weather varied between 33 degrees heat
to freezing cold also torrential rain, which challenged the crew and
In order to take part, the team covered some 4500 road miles, 350
stage miles 450 recce miles and 5 Channel Crossings, all problem free.
The result for the team’s commitment was an outright class win in
Result…… Bring on 2019!
The intention of the team is to regroup whilst there are no events
taking place and return to Belgium in 2019 to compete in the FIRC.
Activ8 Motorsport’s provisional itinerary is detailed below:
- Rally Salamandre (20th – 21st April)
- Wervick Rally (14th – 15th June)
- Les Boucles Chevrotines (3rd – 4th August)
- Hemicuda Rally (19th – 20th October)
- 6 Uren van Kortrijk (23rd – 24th November)
A very big thank you goes out to every organising club, each and
every marshal and all the enthusiastic spectators who welcome the
teams to the rally’s, especially those that lifted our Impreza out of a
And last but not least Team Activ8 Motorsport comprising of;
Mick (the hammer) Manson
Phil (blame monkey) Worsley,
Rick (the body) Mindaugas Rickus,
Steve (co-pilot) Santy without who’s skill on the pace notes we would
not have been anywhere near that class win.
Malcolm Mawdsley (driver/ Mr Shouty)