13 Feb Smith and Jones powered West Head the Way
Back in the summer, renowned engine makers Smith and Jones Engines came on board to support the Championship, but now, four rounds in, they also power the series leader.
Coupled with West’s spectacular style and housed by an unused works Peugeot 306 Maxi initially planned for Gilles Panizzi, the combination has begun to click and clicked in style.
As after weathering the early honeymoon period, back-to-back wins at Knockhill and Brands Hatch have left West and Smith and Jones confident of more to come.
“They’ve been great so far, and they’ve always been there for us which is a nice thing to have”, says West. “We’re getting there, but there’s still more to come from us. It’s already a beast, so we just need to make a few more tweaks to it and it will be a proper monster soon!”
Not content with just partnering with reigning champion Chris West and Keith Hounslow, they have engage full opposite lock in the world of rallying and continue to provide power plants for a number of competitors, having also previously catered for former MNCRC frontrunner Martin Hodgson.
And West is able to call on proper rallying experience when asking for advice, as Nigel Mummery, an experienced rally driver now competing in the form of an M-Sport Ford Focus formerly piloted by Markko Martin, is a partner in the successful engine supplier.
It’s already a beast, so we just need to make a few more tweaks to it and it will be a proper monster soon!”
Nigel made a welcome return to the MN Circuit Rally Championship last month in the Brands Hatch Stages; his first outing since last season’s visit to Oulton Park. An avid rallying fan, he has managed to tailor a rallying hobby into a successful business.
“British Aerospace gave me a university course once”, says Mummery, “but when you get to your late-40s, people start thinking about things they wish they had done. For me, I did rallying.”
Mummery is now semi-retired as a silent partner in the business and his relationship with Smith and Jones remains strong after a simple rolling road meeting.
Specialists in the manufacturing of lightweight Cosworth YB Race engines and associated components, they are specialists in their field and have developed a reputation unrivalled since being founded in New Zealand back in 2004. Being part of the Championship has given them a chance to benefit from more prominent exposure in one of Britain’s top rallying series.