||24 - 27 Jan 19
||14 - 17 Feb 19
||07 - 10 Mar 19
||Tour de Corse
||28 - 31 Mar 19
||25 - 28 Apr 19
||30 May - 2 Jun 19
||Rally Italia Sardinia
||13 - 16 Jun 19
||01 - 04 Aug 19
|| 22 - 25 Aug 19
||12 - 15 Sep 19
||Wales Rally GB
||03 - 06 Oct 19
||Rally de España - Catalunya
||24 - 27 Oct 19
||14 - 178 Nov 19
PRESS RELEASE: October 6, 2019
Tough test for Chesterfield’s world rally
star Rhys Yates
competing on some of the world’s toughest rallies
in his rookie WRC 2 season, last week’s Wales Rally
GB turned into something of a bittersweet experience for
Chesterfield driver Rhys Yates.
Rhys and co-driver James Morgan switched from their usual
RYR ŠKODA Fabia R5 to tackle Britain’s biggest
motorsport event in a Hyundai i20 R5.
The plan made a lot of sense: the Llandudno-based event
is one Rhys knows well, having competed there three times
previously and testing new metal in familiar surroundings
would offer valuable insight for next season’s programme.
Unfortunately one of the season’s most complicated
rallies turned out to be just that for Rhys, with punctures
and other issues costing valuable time.
“Before we go into the details of the event,”
Rhys said. “I want to talk about what an absolute
awesome rally this one is. Rally GB has to be one of the
best events in the world.
“When you’re coming into these corners, completely
sideways and looking out of the side window, it’s
the most magical feeling. The conditions have been a challenge
and the rally itself has been really hard work –
but that’s what it’s all about when you come
to Rally GB.
“And this one really has been a tough one for us.
All year we’ve stuck to the plan, taken the experience
and learned the rallies. And all the time we’ve
had an eye on Rally GB. I know we came here with a different
car, so it wasn’t going to be straightforward, but
I’ve got to be honest and say I really don’t
get a lot of luck on this event.
“We’ve had a few things, just some niggles
here and there and they’ve made for a pretty complicated
event. Don’t get me wrong, when the car’s
been on song it’s been great and we’ve really
“Now we’ll go home, scrub ourselves down
and start working on the next one.”
Despite his issues, Rhys still managed to deliver a top-10
result in another WRC 2 point-scoring drive.
The RYR team focus now shifts south to Spain for the
Salou-based Rally de España (October 24-27).
PRESS RELEASE: September 29, 2019
power for Rhys’ Wales Rally GB bid
British driver Rhys Yates will make his first World Rally
Championship start aboard a Hyundai i20 R5 at Wales Rally
GB (October 3-6).
Rhys has switched from his regular ŠKODA Fabia R5
in search of broader experience of R5 machinery competing
in WRC2. The Chesterfield star made his debut aboard a
Hyundai at last week’s Gymkhana GRiD event in Poland.
Rhys said: “We’ve spent the last two years
in the ŠKODA and there’s no denying it’s
a top, top car. Obviously there’s an evolution of
the Fabia R5 and we’re looking at that for the future,
but there are also a number of other really competitive
R5 cars around and I wanted to have a look at them.”
Rhys tested the Hyundai i20 R5 at Sweet Lamb earlier
in the summer and admitted he felt at home immediately.
“The car felt really good,” he said. “It
had been a while since I’d changed cars, so I expected
it to take a few runs to understand how things were working,
but almost straight away I got it and really enjoyed the
“OK, there are a few small things, a few of the
buttons and things like that, that I’ve got to get
used to, but being in Poland for [Gymkhana] GRiD last
week helped. I certainly got used to where the handbrake
“I was keen to make the switch for Wales –
it’s an event I know quite well and I’m pretty
much at home in the conditions, so it should make the
move from car to car slightly more straightforward. On
so many of these other World Rally Championship events
this year, I’ve been learning the rally, so I could
do without having to learn a new car as well.”
PRESS RELEASE: March 31, 2019
Yates continues World Rally Championship form
rally driver Rhys Yates proved his pace in the World Rally
Championship this season has been no fluke, by securing
an impressive fifth overall in the WRC2 category at a
challenging Tour de Corse (28-31 March).
Driving his Brettex Skoda Fabia R5, Yates and co-driver
James Morgan battled against some of the quickest young
drivers in the feeder series to the WRC, setting a string
of inspiring stage times on their way to yet another top
result. Added to a career-best fourth at Rallye Monte
Carlo and tenth at Rally Sweden, Yates is sixth in the
WRC2 championship and just five points away from second
The 26-year-old would head to the Mediterranean island
for the very first time and would have yet another challenge
to overcome on his debut WRC campaign. Steeped in history,
the Corsican roads are famed for their super-fast asphalt
roads with a ragged rock face on one side and a sheer
drop into the sea on the other.
Over 345 kilometres of competitive driving was in store
over three days with long, arduous stages making tyre
choice and conservation critical, highlighting its place
as one of the hardest on the WRC calendar.
Day one would offer one of the toughest starts to a rally
with six special stages and over 121 kilometres during
the day. Although not the longest of the event, no service
was permitted during the tests aside from a remote tyre
zone, so it would be essential to make it to the end of
the leg without any issues.
Yates would need to bed his way into the unique roads
and tenth quickest on the opening test was a positive
start. However, there was more to come and his day was
littered with impressive stage times ensuring he would
climb to eighth overall at the end of the day.
It would be always tough to beat the French Tarmac drivers
at home, but Yates kept his cool over the longest leg
of the event which housed 175 kilometres on day two. The
whopping 47-kilometre Castagniccia test would be the longest
Yates had driven in his career, enduring flat out driving
for a staggering 32 minutes.
He set a time good enough for eighth on that test and
by the end of the day, he climbed to sixth spot with just
two stages remaining on Sunday.
A clean run through the two tests including the televised
Power Stage saw Yates grab fifth and a haul of valuable
points for his WRC2 campaign.
“I thought Rallye Monte Carlo was a difficult event
but this has just taken it to another level,” said
“Everything about this rally has been difficult
and it’s been very hard to adapt to the roads here.
It requires a big commitment on the fast stuff and inch-perfect
precision on the technical sections, it’s very unforgiving.
But I`ve loved every second of driving here”
He was delighted with his pace during the weekend and
believes that the event will help him as the season progresses.
“I’m so very pleased with the result to be
honest. If you said we would have been fifth last week
I would have taken that there and then. There are some
very experienced asphalt drivers here so to have come
to the rally for the first time and take a result like
that is very pleasing.
The season is long, and I need to keep bagging these
results event by event and get the points on the board.
We are not really taking any risks either so there is
more to come, but for now sixth in the WRC2 championship
is an amazing achievement in my first year.”
Yates will now contest the first event in the UK in 2019
as he makes a guest appearance at the Pirelli International
Rally in Carlisle at the end of April.
PRESS RELEASE: Feb 17, 2019
Success in Sweden for British rally ace Yates
rally driver Rhys Yates ensured his impressive debut season
in the FIA World Rally Championship continues, with a
top ten WRC2 position at last weekend’s Rally Sweden
(14th – 17th February).
Yates and returning co-driver James Morgan set a string
of blistering stage times throughout the weekend despite
Yates making his snow rally debut. He guided his Brettex
Skoda Fabia R5 to tenth place in the WRC2 category which
means he heads to round three in sixth place, just five
points shy of a top three position.
It has been a dream start to the 26-year-old’s career
in the World Rally Championship, taking fourth place on
his maiden outing at the legendary Rallye Monte Carlo
in January. Despite the unpredictable conditions on the
stages in the south of France, Yates returned a mature
drive to set his stall out early for his 2019 campaign.
However, the tightly packed ice and snow-laden stages
of Rally Sweden would offer a new challenge and aside
from a short test in Scandinavia ahead of his British
Rally Championship campaign in 2017, Yates would be contesting
a full “snow” event for the very first time.
After a brief test on the Monday morning, the Englishman
would be thrown straight into the deep end on Thursday
night with a super special stage for the fans in Karlstad.
Stopping the clocks fifth fastest, Yates was shocked with
“I’m pleasantly surprised with how the first
stage has gone and our shakedown time was good as well,”
he said. “But it’s nowhere near what the stages
will be like for the rest of the weekend”.
The challenge came throughout the following three days
with over 315km and 19 special stages of high-speed driving
ahead. Whilst the temperatures were low, there was some
unseasonably warm weather in store, which turned the traditionally
thick ice-packed stages into gravel, meaning the stud-equipped
Pirelli tyres would struggle to find grip on the surface.
Eager to ensure more points for his WRC2 campaign, Yates
elected to manage the risks and only push when the surface
allowed. His approach worked over the opening day, ending
the leg in 12th
PRESS RELEASE: Jan 27, 2019
Yates enjoys career-best result at legendary
Rallye Monte Carlo
British rally driver Rhys Yates drove “one of the
best events of his life” to finish fourth in the
WRC2 category at the momentous Rallye Monte Carlo last
week, kick-starting his 2019 World Rally Championship
campaign (24th – 27th January).
Known as one of the most difficult events in the World
Rally Championship calendar, “Monte’s”
reputation is etched in the history books for claiming
some of the best drivers in the sport. But despite making
his debut on the daunting event, Yates drove with maturity
and speed beyond his years, enjoying a trouble-free run
and bring his Brettex backed Skoda Fabia R5 home just
shy of the WRC2 podium.
Launching his season’s plans at the Autosport International
Show just a few weeks ago, Yates has made the leap from
a British Rally Championship campaign and selected European
outings, into the World Rally Championship WRC2 category
for aspiring young drivers this season and all are aiming
for the top rung of the WRC ladder.
Contesting events Spain, Portugal, Finland and Germany,
the Chesterfield driver will endure the biggest challenge
of his career this year and his season would begin in
Gap in the South East corner of France on Thursday night.
Famed for its unpredictable conditions, the opening leg
of Rallye Monte Carlo did not disappoint with ice, snow
and sub-zero temperatures greeting Yates in the mountains
Yates had recruited the experienced Denis Giraudet to
co-drive after previous outings together at the Monza
Rally Show, and the duo would need to ensure they made
it the first two stages of the event under the cover of
Understandably, Yates was cautious through the opener,
electing to use the 20-kilometre test to bed into his
new surroundings. The second stage would allow Yates to
find his feet, tiptoeing through the tricky conditions
to the end the leg in seventh spot.
Day two was the longest of the event with 125km of flat
out driving awaiting the 100 or so crews on the rally.
Tyre choice has always been a gamble on the rally, compromising
between snow tyres, ice or dry asphalt tyres. Yates made
the perfect start to the event on the opening loop of
stages on Friday, taking his first top-three stage time
of the season and by the end of the day, he had made it
Despite the sunshine on the stages, patches of black
ice and snow still lay in the shaded valleys, making the
stages as notorious as ever. Yates elected to be cautious
with his approach to Saturday’s leg and his tactics
paid off. A second top three time on the final stage of
the day ensured he held onto fifth going into the final
day in Monte Carlo.
Just four stages remained for the final day of the event
and Yates would need to draw on all his experience to
make it through unscathed. He duly delivered, taking fourth
WRC2, a stunning 14th overall and his best WRC finish
Yates was overjoyed at his result as he crossed the finish
ramp in the iconic backdrop of Monte Carlo harbour.
“This moment is exactly why I love competing in
this sport,” he said on the ramp.
“You mention the Monte Carlo Rally to anyone and
they immediately connect with you and here I am over the
finish ramp, taking fourth place on my WRC2 championship
debut. It really doesn’t get much better than that”.
Yates has been working hard to prepare for a full season
in the WRC and despite only making the decision to compete
late last year, feels his result was a long time coming.
“I think I can safely say I’ve driven one
of the best events of my life this week. Everything just
came together both in and out of the car. I have a great
team around me, and I could really concentrate on the
event. Monte is the kind of the rally that punishes you
if you take your eye off the ball. But I`ve built myself
up to this point and this pace and I know there is more
to come. It was a trouble-free run too. We stayed out
of trouble and were consistent to the end and that’s
how I want to play this year.
To compete on Monte for the first time and come away
with fourth, well that’s just mega.”
Yates now only has a few days to spare as the car is
brought back to the UK for re-preparation before heading
out to round two of the series, Rally Sweden in the middle