Photo Credit: Jack Clayden Photography
Jersey born driver Ed Fossey will be taking to the wheel of his Yokohama Peugeot 208 R2 for the 37th Roberts Garages Ltd Jersey Rally next weekend (11/12 October). Fossey will be joined by Guernsey co-driver Will Rutherford for two days of challenging stages for Jersey’s biggest motorsport event of the year.
28 timed stages equating to 100 miles lay ahead for the Channel Island crew, with iconic tests including St Ouen, Trinity and St Martin providing the gauntlet. A highlight for Ed and the other 79 crews will be the six demanding night stages in the east of the island – creating an electric moonlight atmosphere for the thousands of spectators expected to line the route.
Fossey recently graduated from Bournemouth University with a first-class degree in History and while balancing his studies in 2019, Ed has competed around the country in forestry events. With a switch back to tarmac for his home event, the Jerseyman will start at car 14 as he hopes to undertake another giant-killing performance.
“Absolutely buzzing, I cannot wait to come back and compete on the stages I grew up on,” enthused Fossey. “Last year I was dialled into the sealed-surface as I won my class in the British Asphalt Championship. This year, I may not be as explosive out of the blocks as I have had a year on gravel. However, I know the car much better now and a year on with Will [Rutherford] I feel at one with the whole package and I feel we can challenge for a strong result.”
Fossey and Rutherford were running as high as fifth overall on the second day last year in the 1600cc machine. However, on a tricky, slippery section on the infamous Waterworks stage the pair crashed out of the event. This time around, Fossey returns to finish the job and secure a lucrative finish.
“Expectations I think may be quite high for us this year after our strong showing last year. We were disappointed with the retirement in 2018 but my target in 2019 will be to finish and hopefully better my 13th in 2017. A top ten would be a dream result against such top opposition, but I really think we can be in the mix if things go our way.
“I am going to micro manage each part of the event and break it down into smaller chunks and pick my battles. Push when I can, and be realistic with my pace against the more powerful cars. I am going to always remain cautious as the roads this year will suit the more powerful cars with the ‘point and squirt’ nature, but they look great fun as always and the stages on the Saturday morning in the north west of the island will suit me and the car – so I cannot wait for them.”
Fossey has grown-up in a successful motorsport dynasty and will always have a soft spot for his home event – as he relishes the chance to compete on the roads that played a massive part of his life.
“I am excited, there is no question about that. It’s always the first date I put in the calendar every year. It’s impossible not to be in love with this event, and competing in it is a real buzz, and I think this year the entry is one of the best in recent times. It’s going to be a great challenge and a great show for all the spectators.”
The Roberts Garages Ltd Jersey Rally gets underway on Friday 11 October. For further details head to www.jerseyrally.com