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STEVE BROWN


 

2017 Flanders International Rally Challenge
1 Rallye Salamandre 23 & 24 April 2017
2 ORC Canal Rally 27 & 28 May 2017
3 Rally van Wervik 9 & 10 June 2017
4 Rallysprint TBR 8 & 9 July 2017
5 Les Boucles Chevrotines 5 & 6 August 2017
6 Hemicuda Rally 7 & 8 October 2017
7 6 Uren van Kortrijk 25 & 26 November 2017

 

PRESS RELEASE: 30 May 2017

Broken pipe halts Steve Brown's Honda debut at ORC Canal Rally

Rochdale rally driver Steve Brown endured a disappointing debut of his new car in Belgium last weekend, with a broken brake pipe forcing the Honda Civic pilot out of the ORC Canal Rally after just the second stage of the event.

Brown had been forced to delay the use of the Honda at the beginning of his Flanders International Rally Challenge campaign due to transmission gremlins at a pre-season test, so was hopeful of a decent result at the second round of the series in his new steed.

Sadly just a few miles into the second test, a burst pipe caused a significant loss of brakes on the Civic and with another stage to go before he could reach service, his rally was over.

Brown had secured a deal to contest the Belgian series in a more powerful Honda Civic for the 2017 season whilst his own familiar Nissan Micra Kit Car undergoes a series of upgrades to allow him to match some of the more powerful cars in the 3F class.

With regular co-driver Paul Stringer alongside, Brown headed to Oostrozebeke in West Flanders hoping for a solid haul of points to assist in their championship aspirations.

After using the short opening stage to acclimatise to his relatively new surroundings, Brown began to settle into the Civic during the second test of the day which was some three times longer than the first. But any chance of a result disappeared a few miles in, along with Browns brakes and he was forced to retire at the end of the test.

“Im really gutted to end the rally like this, after all the work the team has put in to get us here” said Brown.

“Everything felt good through stage one and I’d made a conscience effort to build on my pace gradually through the day. But when your foot goes to the floor it’s never a nice feeling and we had no option other than to withdraw to save further damage. I know the potential is there with this car so we will persevere and see how we get on next time out”.

Brown is unable to contest the next round of the series due to other commitments and will now look to the remaining rounds of the series to evaluate his championship aspirations.

You can follow Steve's progress throughout the season via his website www.stevebrownrallying.co.uk, on Facebook and Twitter.

Brown is supported in 2017 by Fuchs Titan Race, Questmead Ltd, 710, Mintex Racing, PIAA, Brake Prep and Pirelli.

 

PRESS RELEASE: 23rd May 2017

Rochdale driver Steve Brown finally gets Honda Civic run at ORC Canal Rally in Belgium

Flanders International Rally Challenge contender Steve Brown heads back to Belgium this weekend to contest The ORC Canal Rally and this time, at the wheel of the Honda Civic he was due to debut at the start of the season.

His usual 1400cc Nissan Micra Kit Car had been at a power disadvantage to the others in his class last season and the Rochdale driver had to do battle with two-litre machines. Brown had managed to secure a deal to contest the overseas championship in a more powerful Honda Civic for the 2017 season but has endured a delayed start to his campaign in the new steed.

Brown’s debut of the new car has been thwarted by mechanical issues on both pre-season tests but now, with all the issues resolved, Brown will take the car across the Channel to contest round two of the FIRC.

Thanks to the loan of his old Nissan Micra on the opening round Rallye Salamandre, Brown and co-driver Paul Stringer managed to bag some points for his campaign, finishing third in class on the event. The duo will now head to the host town of Oostrozebeke in West Flanders hoping for a solid haul of points to assist in their championship aspirations.

“It feels like we have had a bit of a false start to the championship this year” says Brown, “so I`m delighted to finally be able to take the Honda to Belgium”.

“In the initial test in the car at the start of the year it felt really great to drive and I think it will really be a great bit of kit for the Flanders roads. But I need to take a measured approach as I really haven’t had any experience of anything other than a circuit in the car so we will certainly have to ease our way into the event and build our pace gradually."

With that in mind, Brown as ear-marked points as a goal this weekend rather than a podium result.

“We have to be sensible and get the points on the board during the early part of the season. The plan is to bag as many as we can on this event and perhaps begin to push over the next few outings. We will certainly be taking it event by event but either way, I`m really looking forward to finally getting out in the car”.

The ORC Canal Rally takes place on Sunday 28th May and comprises over around 85km of special stages on the closed public roads in the West Flanders region.

You can follow Steve's progress throughout the season via his website www.stevebrownrallying.co.uk, on Facebook and Twitter.

Brown is supported in 2017 by Fuchs Titan Race, Questmead Ltd, 710, Mintex Racing, PIAA, Brake Prep and Pirelli.

 

PRESS RELEASE: 25th April 2017

Belgium podium for Brown despite car drama

Rochdale rally driver Steve Brown took third in the two-wheel-drive category of the Belgium based Flanders International Rally Challenge (FIRC) last weekend, a feat made much more impressive by the fact it was achieved with his old, borrowed car.

With his usual Nissan Micra Kit Car out of action for opening few rounds of the season, Brown had secured a deal to contest the overseas championship in a loaned Honda Civic which would give him the opportunity to challenge for the class 3F and two-wheel-drive honours. But disaster struck whilst on a pre-season test in Wales when the Honda was side-lined by transmission issues at the beginning of April.

When it became apparent that the parts required to fix the transmission would not be available in time, it was looking likely that Brown would have to withdraw from the opening round of the season at Rallye Salamandre.

Just days before the event in Belgium, Brown had exhausted all possibilities and was ready to pull the plug on his campaign, when the opportunity of using his old Nissan Micra came about. Brown last used the car in 2015 and whilst it wasn’t as powerful as his Kit Car or Honda, was an ideal solution to enable him to contest the event.

“It was pretty much a last ditch effort to be able to still go to Belgium” said Brown. “It was a no-brainer for us as we really just needed to get some points on the board and as it was a much lower power Nissan than I`m used to, it actually fitted perfectly into our plans”.

Brown soon settled into the Micra again and with regular co-driver Paul Stringer alongside, the duo did their best to stay out of trouble on the arduous closed public roads of Hainaut. Crossing the finish ramp on Sunday (22nd April) evening after over 100km of action, Brown brought the humble Nissan back in a worthy 3rd spot in the 2WD section of the event.

“Well that was certainly an experience” beamed Brown at the finish. “To think a few days ago we weren’t event coming over it’s pretty fantastic to think we now have our first points on the board for the season. It’s great to be back behind the wheel of the old faithful again and despite being a little down on power, performed faultlessly. I must say a huge thanks to Andy for the loan of the car to do the event. Not sure he will get it back now!”

Brown will now look towards the second round of the championship, the ORC Canal Rally at the end of May where he will use the Honda in a bid to get his season back on track.

 

 

 

PRESS RELEASE: 10th April 2017

Steve Brown suffers gearbox drama’s ahead of Belgium outing

Asphalt rally driver Steve Brown had a shorter than usual event last weekend, after his Honda Civic was side-lined by transmission gremlins at the SMC Stages in Anglesey.

The Rochdale driver had swapped his usual Nissan Micra Kit Car for a loaned Honda and would contest the North Wales based event to acquire seat time in the new machine before crossing the channel to begin his assault on the Belgium based Flanders International Rally Challenge (FIRC).

But drama struck on the opening test of the day when the Honda developed a transmission issue and despite attempts to cure the problem during the morning, Brown was forced out of the race circuit based event.

Brown will use the Type R Honda for the early part of the season and has his eyes set firmly on bettering his 2016 result of third overall in the two wheel drive category of the FIRC this year.

Whilst the Micra is undergoing a raft of changes to improve on the horsepower shortage which it suffers against others in the class, Brown has been offered the use of the Civic for the season.

Not wanting to learn the car on the tricky closed roads of Rallye Salamandre at the end of April, Brown and co-driver Paul Stringer made the trip to Anglesey to ensure they could adapt to the new steed before heading across the channel.

But Brown’s event was over before it really began, suffering transmission issues during the first stage of the circuit based event. To ensure he had a chance of fixing it before the opening Belgian round, he elected to withdraw from the rally later that day after an attempt to cure the problem.

“At least it happened in North Wales and not in Flanders” said Brown.

“We do have to look at the positives from it and that has to be the biggest thing, I would have hated to retire on the first stage in Belgium so this way, its gives us the opportunity to attend to the issue before the end of the month”.

It will still be a race against time for Brown to ready the car for Salamandre.

“This is exactly why we came to Anglesey to make sure everything was right, but we now have to work fast to ensure we can get it ready for our Belgium campaign. We will start working on it as soon as it’s back in the workshop and will put all our resources into getting it ready in time. It’s certainly a shame but these things do happen in rallying and we need to remain focused for the rest of the season.”

You can follow his progress throughout the season via his website www.stevebrownrallying.co.uk, on Facebook and Twitter.

Brown is supported in 2017 by Fuchs Titan Race, Questmead Ltd, 710, PIAA, Brake Prep and Pirelli.


 

PRESS RELEASE: 30 March 2017

Steve Brown will test Honda Civic at Anglesey ahead of Belgium outing

Rochdale rally driver Steve Brown will contest the forthcoming SMC Stages at Anglesey Race Circuit in a loaned Honda Civic to ensure he has a pre-season test before heading to Belgium to contest the Flanders International Rally Challenge later in the year.

After a successful season behind the wheel of his popular Nissan Micra Kit Car, Brown has decided to make some changes to the car ahead of another campaign on the Challenge. Suffering from a power shortage compared to other contenders in the hotly contested two wheel drive class, Brown has spent the winter upgrading the Nissan but won’t have the car ready in time for the first round.

To ensure he doesn’t miss the first round in Belgium, he has secured a deal to use a Honda Civic Type R for the opener. After a brief test earlier in the month, Brown was comfortable in the car but has since lodged an entry to this weekend’s circuit based event to ensure he is ‘match fit’ when he crosses the channel to contest Rallye Salamandre at the end of April.

The 28 year old Questmead Sales Engineer will be co-driven once again by Paul Stringer and the duo will be looking to get the most from the Honda during the all asphalt event in North Wales. Whilst class honours may not be at the forefront of Brown’s mind during the weekend, he is confident of settling in quickly to the new machine.

“It’s a great opportunity to be able to use a different car whilst the Micra is undergoing some changes to I really do need to grab it with both hands” he says. “Despite a test a fortnight ago, I do think it would be a little risky to head to Belgium without some prior competition experience in the car. I know the roads over there are very much different to the race circuit of Anglesey, but seat time really is important and it will help get a feel of the limits of the car before we go.”

The event consists of fifty stage miles over ten stages on the circuit complex during Sunday 9th April.

You can follow his progress throughout the season via his website www.stevebrownrallying.co.uk.

Brown is supported in 2017 by Fuchs Titan Race, Questmead Ltd, 710, PIAA, Brake Prep and Pirelli.