Up to a few days before the 63 event, the joint Clerks of the Course, Harry Morgan and Richard Binns, were worried that the recent heavy snowfalls might cause a major reroute, but a bit of manual snow clearing ensured that the original route was declared clear at the last minute. At 9.30 pm on the Saturday evening the Ford Anglia of David Seigle-Morris and David Stone led the pack of 160 cars away from the Chapel Ash start. The first car was to have been Pat Moss, last year's winner, but she had to be in Kenya for the East African Safari in which she was competing for Ford.
After the usual run-out to Control X at Church Stretton, the cars started the 200 mile rally proper. There were 68 time controls on the 200 mile route which was not expected to be cleaned by even the fastest crews. The Clerks of the Course differed about the likely lateness; Morgan thought the winning car would lose 15 minutes; Binns reckoned they would not be more than 6 minutes down.
The cars were again drawn from a wide cross section of makes and models, including several Anglias and their supercharged counterparts the Allardettes, Mini Coopers, MGBs, VWs, and a lone Triumph Spitfire all appearing in the top fifteen finishers.
The route wound round the Long Mynd and Snailbeach for the first seven controls and by this point the eventual winners Tony Fisher and Brian Melia were already 3 minutes down which Fisher said was due to the appalling state of the ice-damaged roads.
The route continued through mid-Wales almost to the coast, but the roads in the desolate area between Devil's Bridge and Pont ar Elan were so bad that the organisers decided to ignore any lateness between controls 66 and 68. Near the end of the route, Seigle-Morris/Stone who had been running first on the road suffered a broken exhaust which was to lose them first place, but the top women's crew Pauline Mayman/Val Domleo only managed two miles from the start before a white on the Mynd damaged their sumpguard so badly that they could not continue.
The rally finished at Llandindrod Wells, as it did last year, and the superb results system developed last year by Dr Peter Carlyle of Cannock, and refined even more this year, ensured that each competitor received his final scores within ten minutes. The final results were available half an hour after the last car reached the hotel.
Chris Knights writing in WSSCC magazine DASHBOARD 2005