After a year of testing both man and machine, the winners of the Rally Preparation Services (RPS) ‘Tin Cup’ have been revealed.
The Tin Cup league, a year-long championship with point awarded for each rally entered and the results, was won by Ian Canavan who competed in 12 rallies in his Porsche 911 and Nisaan Stanza including the RAC 1000 Mile Trial, Le Jog, and the Classic Marathon.
The Tin Cup Trial, a two-day rally, was won by Keith Weed and Richard Holmes in the 1940 Pontiac Coupe for the Vintageant class while the Classic winners were David and Alison Ring in the 1972 Datsun 240z.
Starting in the stunning grounds of the Englefield Estate in Reading, 15 crews set off on the 500 kilometre route that would take in the Salisbury Plains, Worthy Farm better known as the home of the Glastonbury festival, Bath, Kemble Airfield, The Classic Hub in Bibury, and finishing at Oxfordshire’s Eynsham Hall.
Special awards were also presented, with George and Margo Coelho winning the Concours d’Elegance in their unassuming 1974 Volvo 144 and Franco Lupi and Eric Warren in the 1979 Porsche 924 Turbo were presented with the Spirit of the Rally award.
The RPS Target award was given for a manourvability test which saw the crews reverse onto a target with the winner being whichever crew got nearest to the centre. The silver Spitfire, representing the previous modes of transport built on the RPS site where the Target test was held, was presented to Rudy Hug and Piere Gerber in their 1967 Ford Cortina. Rudy also finished third in the Tin Cup league.
RPS managing director Simon Ayris said: “A huge thank you to all those who brought a fantastic mix of cars and approached the event with gusto. It was a great weekend with some healthy competition.
“To reach ten years in business and to have worked with so many like-minded enthusiasts all over the world needed to be celebrated – and what better way than to do more of what we enjoy.”
RPS was conceived in 2007 and has grown steadily, now with a staff of 19 truly conscientious car fanatics. Working as a team, they have meticulous attention to detail – not only in the workshop at the preparation stage but also when they are on a rally.
The team has been part of the support crew for four of the Endurance Rally Association’s Peking to Paris Motor Challenges, the toughest endurance rally for vintage and classic cars – with RPS prepared cars winning twice, in 2010 and 2013. In 2016, RPS had 25 cars on the starting line in China with 23 making it all the way to Paris.
In the past year, the team has journeyed to Japan for Rally Round’s Samurai Challenge, won Bespoke Rallies’ Pan-Am Classic with a novice crew in a 1970 Rover P5, and seen cars achieving class wins on the Paris Amsterdam and 1000 Mile Trial.
Simon’s love of historic rallying comes from the man who challenged him to set up RPS – the late Philip Young, considered to be the founder of the entire movement that is in operation today.
“Philip Young was the most inspirational man. We were chatting over a beer and he said that he’d love to give me some work but he couldn’t as I’d already got a job. I was a service manager at Kernahans garage. When I look back, this was the trigger I needed to make the move.
“His vision of the classic and vintage car rally scene back then is now so large that many of us still wonder at it and how it too has grown over the past decade. We have so much to celebrate.”