H&H CarlisleH&H CarlisleH&H Carlisle

From Four Legs to Four Wheels

The Exhibition Hall at H & H Borderway Auction Mart is normally the venue for livestock sales with pedigree cattle and herds of woolly sheep parading round the show ring but this weekend four legs will be replaced by four wheels when over 120 powerful rally cars will roll up ready to contest the Pirelli Carlisle Rally, the two day event featuring all the top UK drivers plus a number of overseas competitors.

The huge, 27 acre site will be transformed as the teams set up their service and support vehicles turning the whole area into something resembling the pits at a Formula One race and spectators can soak up the atmosphere, photograph the cars and sample the atmosphere. They can see the cars being worked on, last minute preparations being made, suspensions set up, tyres tested and engine finely tuned, ready for the battle ahead.

The high speed action all take place, well off the public road, on the tight and twisty gravel tracks in the giant Kielder Forest complex where two days of high speed action will decide who takes the winners laurels. The rally organisers have set up a number of car parks and special “Spectator Areas” where the public can watch the cars, and experience the thrills and spills, in a safe environment . Details of all the viewing areas are available in the special souvenir event programme or by visiting the Spectator Timetable page of our website.

The opening day sees the first cars away, the competitors in the Historic section who will have an early 8:00am start with the modern cars following on later. The Historic’s return for their finish prize-giving around about lunchtime. The British Rally Championship contenders return around 5:30pm, ready to be refurbished for another days hard action, they restart day two at 8:00am and the grand finale sees the winners arriving back around lunchtime.

The climax of the rally, about noon on Sunday, will be when the surviving cars return to Carlisle and the Borderway site will become a sea of celebration as the winners mount the podium for the ceremonial prize-giving, complete with the traditional champagne spraying. Again the public can join in the celebrations, see all the prizes being presented and take a photograph or two.

Championships