After an eight-year hiatus from the Motorsport UK British Rally Championship, front-running national driver Callum Black will bid for the 2023 title behind the wheel of a Ford Fiesta Rally2.
Black, 31 from Brackley will launch his first British Rally Championship campaign since 2014, when secured a handful of BRC podiums during the two-wheel-drive era of the series in a Citroen DS3 R3.
After several seasons at national level, concentrating largely on gravel, Black and co-driver Jack Morton will go toe-to-toe with the top-flight BRC1 protagonists, in what is set to be a season dominated by the next generation of talent in the championship.
“I’m really excited to make my return to the BRC. I loved my time competing in it at the start of my career and on a personal level, it’s always something I’ve aimed to be competitive in. I feel like I’ve come on a lot as a driver over the last couple of seasons and I’m looking forward to seeing what we can do”.
And his pace is already proven, with overall rally wins at the Trackrod Forest Stages and Woodpecker Rally, the arrival of his all-new Pallas Connections-backed Fiesta Rally2 from M-Sport means he is well-equipped to fight at the sharp end of the BRC in 2023.
“The Fiesta is a joy to drive and although I’ve only done a handful of events in it, I’m confident there’s more pace to come. I’m optimistic that we can be fighting for wins, we won’t be turning up to make up the numbers that’s for sure! Our pace running in the BTRDA field vs the BRC competitors last season was promising and unexpected, I’m hoping we take that a step further this season.”
Black is no stranger to the British Championship, having been a large part of the series from 2010 onwards. Campaigning an MGZR in the BRC Challenge, he switched to the fan favourite Suzuki Swift S1600 for a full assault on the BRC the following year. A move to the Citroen in 2012 and 2013 saw him become a regular, with second place at the Scottish Rally the following year a highlight.
He took third in the BTRDA series in 2021 but could only manage three events last season whilst awaiting the arrival of his car from M-Sport. Now, he kicks off his campaign at the site where the car was built but is well aware of the challenges ahead of him.
“It’s quite sad, but I’m genuinely excited to be doing the recce’s again. For me, it brings another aspect to the rally and I’m hoping that it’ll unlock some more pace. I’ve developed my pacenotes massively since the last time I did a BRC event and my knowledge of the car & setup is extensively better. I’ve developed a great relationship with Jack in the car and I think that will bode us well.”