Burns’ cars headline an epic Rallyday line-up

An epic array of WRC cars - some from DirtFish's own collection - can be seen in action at Rallyday 2021 this weekend


Everybody knows how many World Rally Championship rounds Richard Burns won. Everybody knows about 2001 and that stunning victory in an epic title race.

But what about the Englishman’s early days. Like, the really early days? Not many know much about those days.

Mark Higgins knows a bit.

Rallyday at Castle Combe is always a key diary date, but Saturday’s event is more important than ever: it’s 20 years since Burns and co-driver Robert Reid celebrated the biggest moment of their lives a few miles west across the Severn Bridge in Margam Park.

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And Rallyday’s bringing together as many cars and stars as possible to remember that rainy, but very special autumn Sunday in 2001.

BGMsport and the Rallyday organisers have pulled together an extraordinary collection of cars to remember Richard.

Central to the day at Castle Combe will be a parade of those cars led by Richard’s sister Jo, who drives the Subaru Impreza RB320 chassis #1.

“It will be pretty emotional on the parade,” said Higgins, who was present with Burns at Rallyday in 2005, shortly before the Englishman lost his battle with cancer.

“To be back there with those cars again, it’ll bring back a lot of memories – and a lot of really good memories of Burnsie.

“It’ll be great to catch up with people again and to remember some of the stuff we got up to.

“Looking back, I count myself as pretty fortunately to have competed alongside the likes of Richard, Colin [McRae] and Alister [McRae]. Certainly it’s a time which has left me with some pretty interesting stories to tell!

“As well as that, Richard was my son Ben’s Godfather, so it’ll be nice for him to see what Richard meant to people. He was a special guy and Rallyday will be a special day.”


Hyundai Motorsport star Craig Breen will attend and, no doubt, be distracted by the jaw-dropping display of cars which have helped shape the sport of rallying down the years.

Eleven of the best come from BGMsport, six of those courtesy of DirtFish owner Steve Rimmer.

“Steve is such a huge fan of rallying,” said Gwynne. “He has this incredible collection of cars which we look after for him, but the difference with Steve is that he doesn’t want the cars hidden away under a dust cover in a museum – he wants them to be driven and he wants them to be used.”


And those cars will be used at Rallyday’s LEGENDS stage, where some of the world’s rarest, fastest and finest cars find themselves at the heart of the day’s action for an unforgettable 90 minutes on a specially designed stage at the Wiltshire venue.

Here are some of the highlights of Rallyday:

* The Peugeot 206 WRC Richard Burns drove to second place on the 2002 Catalunya Rally.

* The Audi Quattro E2 Hannu Mikkola drove to victory on the Mänttä 200 Rally in 1985.

* The ex-Colin McRae Ford Focus RS WRC01 driven by the Scot on the 2001 Sanremo Rally.


* An 800bhp Ford Fiesta driven by Marcus Grönholm at the 2009 Pikes Peak International Hillclimb.

* The Subaru Legacy RS Colin McRae drove to second place on the 1992 Swedish Rally.

* The ex-Juha Kankkunen Subaru Impreza WRC99, used by the Finn to finish second on the 1999 Rally New Zealand.