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British rally driver Sam Bilham

2014 MSA RSF Young Driver of the Year, BTRDA Rally First 1.0, F1000 senior and MSA English Rally Junior Champion. 2016  MSA English Rally Champion, 2300 Club John Easson Award Winner and NEWLY CROWNED *DMACK Fiesta ST Trophy and BTRDA N3 Champion*.

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2300 Club John Easson Award Winner 2016

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LATEST NEWS

Welcome to Sam Bilham Motorsport - Latest News

 

Here you will find all the latest news, updates and press releases from Sam Bilham Motorsport.  Please feel free to share, comment and like the posts with your friends!

By sambilham, Mar 20 2018 09:17AM

Reigning Fiesta ST Trophy champion Sam Bilham will make his debut in a Vauxhall ADAM Cup car at the opening round of the Rally2 championship this weekend (24th March), Rally North Wales.


His inaugural event in the new machine will be bolstered by support from leading motorsport tyre manufacturer DMACK who will assist Bilham throughout the 2018 season. The Cumbrian outfit were responsible for providing tyres to the Fiesta Trophy in 2017 and will continue their relationship with the Bingley driver in the Vauxhall.


The 2016 John Easson Award winner has been offered the use of the impressive ADAM by Nigel Lewis, owner of specialist engineering firm Mechanical Solutions. The Nottinghamshire business will back Bilham’s outing in the machine and keeping it in the family, he will be co-driven by F1000 Junior contender Eddie Lewis, son of owner Nigel.


The Dolgellau based event will be Bilham’s first since taking the Fiesta ST Trophy title last season and is eager to compete across some of the stages utilised by the WRC qualifier, Wales Rally GB in the new machine.


Bilham enjoyed one of the best seasons of his career in 2017, taking multiple class and category wins to take the coveted Fiesta trophy with two rounds to spare. After lifting the title, the 21-year old has been searching for the budget to progress his career ever since.


The offer of the ADAM Cup car to contest selected Rally2 events was too good to pass up and he will head to Wales in a bid to learn the car which offers a new driving experience for the Yorkshire man. He is excited by the prospect of competing on world-class stages in the nimble steed.


“We had a small test a few weeks ago but it was simply designed to allow me to get used to the car and the sequential gearbox which is certainly a very new experience for me” says Bilham.


“I think I will learn a lot more in the first few miles of the legendary Dyfi stage though and whilst I’m a little apprehensive, I’m really buzzing to get going. The car handles really well and turns in and stops perfectly. It’s a lot closer to an R2 car which is where I want to progress into so this gives me the perfect opportunity to learn my craft without too much pressure.”


Rally North Wales offers over 42 miles of stages in the Dyfi and Gartheiniog Forest complex and is the first event to utilise the new Rally2WD format. Competitors in the two wheel drive section of the event will leave Dolgellau early on Saturday (24th March) before returning to the town for the rally finish at around lunchtime later that day.


Sam is supported by Mechanical Solutions, The 2300 Club John Easson Award, Calvert Construction, Reis Motorsport Insurance, DMACK Tyres, The Garage at Stanley Mills and Gareth Hooper Motorsport Services.



By sambilham, Feb 1 2018 07:43AM

The 2017 DMACK Fiesta ST Trophy champion Sam Bilham will make his first outing since winning the title last September, taking to the wheel of a Vauxhall ADAM Cup for Rally North Wales (24th March).


Bilham, who has been out of action since taking the title thanks to selling his car, has been offered the use of the Vauxhall for the Dolgellau based event and will be supported by Mechanical Solutions for the outing. He will be co-driven by F1000 Junior contender Eddie Lewis.


The 21-year old from Bingley has long been an ambassador for the F1000 Junior series for 14-17 year olds and after graduating from the championship in 2014, has sought to assist in the progression of youngsters into the sport. Bilham has agreed to co-drive for Lewis on selected events in 2018 and was offered the use of a newly acquired Adam Cup by Eddie’s father, Nigel.


Bilham took charge of the single make Fiesta series in 2017, winning five of the rounds of the six contested but since selling the car in the latter part of the year, has been seeking a budget to take the next step of his career.


He is excited by the opportunity ahead, after admitting an outing behind the wheel this season was looking unlikely due to saving funds for a new machine.


“This really is a fantastic chance to get acclimatised to something more up to date than the old Fiesta ST and I’m very grateful to Nigel (Lewis) for this amazing offer” says Bilham.


“The Fiesta was proven of course, but the Adam Cup has a fully sequential gearbox and whilst it may be lower powered than the ST, it should be a great way to ease my way into one. Ultimately, an R2 car is where I want to be but we don’t have the budget for that at the moment. So I just plan on enjoying the experience and learn as I go.”


Whilst the outing is a one off, he hopes it will ensure he can hit the ground running if he acquires a R2 spec machine in the future.


“The Adam Cup is a great little car and they use them in Europe in a single make series. There isn’t that much between the Cup and a full blown R2 so it will give me a good idea of what lies ahead. I know I have the pace, I proved that last year but the leap into say the British Championship is just too great budget wise. I`d really like to contest the Rally2 championship as it offers a great mix of events plus some night stages too. So for now, I’m heading out to enjoy this and see where it leads ”.


Sam is supported by 2300 Club John Easson Award, Calvert Construction, Reis Motorsport Insurance, The Garage at Stanley Mills and Gareth Hooper Motorsport Services.



By sambilham, Oct 3 2017 08:39AM

Sam Bilham’s return to the Fiesta ST Trophy was scuppered by engine woes, but solid finish secures Junior title.


Bingley rally driver Sam Bilham endured a tough return to the 2017 DMACK Fiesta ST Trophy with engine issues forcing the current champion out of contention for a home win on Trackrod Rally Yorkshire (30th September).


But a fifth-place category finish was enough to add another title to his name, securing the Ravenol BTRDA Rally Series Junior Driver Award at the event.


The 2300 Club John Easson Award winner had already wrapped up the hotly contested single make championship title back in July but headed back out for Bilham’s home rally in the Yorkshire forests without the pressures of a title to contend with. Partnered once again by Cameron Fair, the duo were looking forward to a rather more relaxed day in the super-fast Dalby stages.


It’s been a dream season for the Calvert Construction & Reis Motorsport Insurance backed Fiesta pilot, winning every round of the series he has contested so far. With the season drawing to a close, Bilham was eager to end the year on a high before finalising his plans for 2018.


Bilham kicked off the event with a second fastest time on the opening Langdale test, just four seconds adrift of the leading crew. But his hard work would be undone on stage two as the usually reliable Fiesta developed a misfire and he was forced to limp through the following test at a walking pace, losing almost five minutes in the process.


Back in service, the team were able to trace the issue and duly affected a repair to bring the Championship winning Fiesta back to full health. Bilham was then able to make his charge back up the leaderboard. Setting a class fastest time on his way from seventh to fifth; his result was enough to win the Junior Driver award to add to his already secured Fiesta and Class N3 titles in 2017.


“It’s a bit of a shame we couldn’t have rounded the year off in style but to be fair we have had a pretty much perfect year so I can’t complain,” said Bilham.


“The guys were great in sorting the problem for us and getting us back up and running. It was a nice experience to enjoy the stages without any pressures of a title to go for. It’s not often you can do that when chasing a championship. We didn’t take any risks at all and still managed a fastest time over the last loop which is nice to take away from the weekend.”


Bilham will now look ahead to the closed season to weigh up his options for 2018.


“As I said before the rally, we are looking at all options available to us for next year. We have a budget shortfall to be able to step up into the British Championship so will need to look at how best to use our Fiesta ST Trophy prize drive. We will just have to wait and see what happens now”.


Sam is supported by 2300 Club John Easson Award, Calvert Construction, Reis Motorsport Insurance, The Garage at Stanley Mills, Northern Life Magazine and Gareth Hooper Motorsport Services.

By sambilham, Sep 18 2017 08:12AM

2017 DMACK Fiesta ST Trophy champion Sam Bilham returns to the series to contest Trackrod Rally Yorkshire


Despite clinching the DMACK Fiesta ST Trophy with two rounds to spare, Bingley rally driver Sam Bilham will make a comeback to the series on his home event at the end of the month at Trackrod Rally Yorkshire.

The 2300 Club John Easson Award winner secured five wins from five starts this season which ensured he took the title at the Nicky Grist Stages in July. Bilham and co-driver Cameron Fair make a return after missing the Woodpecker Stages and will bid for glory in the Yorkshire forests on 30th September.

The Calvert Construction & Reis Motorsport Insurance backed Fiesta pilot has been a dominant force in the championship this year after narrowly missing out on taking the title in 2016. But with nothing to prove, Bilham can contest one of his favourite events of the year without the pressures of a championship to worry about.

“It’s been pretty much a dream season for Cameron and I, we couldn’t have asked for more really,” says Bilham.


“We made the decision to skip the Woodpecker as there wouldn’t really be much to gain from going down there but we just have to do my home rally. I wait all year for this one!”

As the final round of the BTRDA Rally Series, Bilham has been making plans for next season in the downtime between events and has put his championship winning Fiesta ST up for sale. If the car hasn’t sold by the time the event comes around, Bilham will be looking to take a sixth win of the year.

“We are at a bit of a crossroads at the moment and it's hard to figure out which way to turn next season,” he says.


“We would love to progress into the British Championship but we simply don’t have the budget for that at the moment. We do have our prize drive’s available to us next season so we are trying to figure out a programme which best fits around that. But first, we have the Trackrod to contend with and I`m looking forward to going out and just enjoying myself”.

In the other categories of the Ravenol BTRDA Rally Series, Bilham will also fight for a Silver Star, Production Cup and Junior Driver Award podium places.

Trackrod Rally Yorkshire takes place on 30th September and contains 44 miles of stages in the Dalby forests based around Filey Brigg Country Park.


Sam is supported by 2300 Club John Easson Award, Calvert Construction, Reis Motorsport Insurance, The Garage at Stanley Mills, Northern Life Magazine and Gareth Hooper Motorsport Services.


By sambilham, Jul 10 2017 02:09PM

Sam Bilham becomes the 2017 DMACK Fiesta ST Trophy champion with win number five at the Nicky Grist Stages


Bingley rally driver Sam Bilham secured the hotly-contested DMACK Fiesta ST Trophy at last weekend’s Nicky Grist Stages after taking his fifth win of the series.


Bilham and co-driver Cameron Fair needed only a podium result on the event but took yet another victory to seal the championship with two rounds remaining.


The 2300 Club John Easson Award winner has dominated the series this season, maintaining an unbeaten record on each one of the five rounds Bilham has contested. The Calvert Construction & Reis Motorsport Insurance backed Fiesta pilot will now receive an exciting prize drive which is due to be announced by the championship organisers in the coming days.


Since he started in the sport, Bilham has always followed a progressive career path which culminated in tackling the inaugural Fiesta ST Trophy in 2016. He narrowly missed out on the title after leading for much of the season but his efforts did not go unnoticed by the panel of the prestigious John Easson Award, who handed him the opportunity to contest the championship again in 2017.


Bilham returned to the popular single-make series this year in the hope of going one better and taking the illustrious championship honours. He achieved his goal, winning each one of the rounds to become unbeatable as the series heads into its summer break.


The Nicky Grist Stages offered 44 miles of all-gravel action in classic Welsh forests surrounding the Epynt Military Ranges and Bilham knew what he needed to do to secure the title. A podium spot would be enough for the 21-year-old and taking no risks, opened proceedings with second Fiesta runner through the first two stages.


However, drama struck on the third test when the gear selector fell apart, leaving Bilham with only fourth gear mid-way through the stage. Not only did Bilham manage to nurse the car through the remainder of the test, but through the next as well before the team could effect repairs on the Fiesta. Despite losing a chunk of time, Bilham found himself back in front after the retirement of rival Alasdair Currie.


There he would stay for the remaining four stages to cross the finish of the final test as 2017 Fiesta ST Trophy champion and securing the BTRDA N3 title to boot.


“It’s a fantastic feeling to have finally won the championship after last year's close call,” said Bilham.


“On paper, it looks like we had it all our own way this year but the competition has been really tough out there and the pace has been incredible at times. I learnt a lot from last season and we played the long game, pushing only when we needed to and backing off when we didn’t. The car has been perfect too thanks to the efforts of the team who have been great, as has Cameron. It’s great to have him alongside me and share the win with”.


Bilham is also excited for the future.


“It's always hard to progress in the sport and budget is the biggest obstacle with that,” he says.


“We understand the prize drive for winning is a pretty impressive one so hopefully we can put that to good use. I’m overjoyed to win this title and reward all our backers for putting their faith in me. It’s been a great year”.


In the other categories of the Ravenol BTRDA Rally Series, Bilham now moves into second place of the Silver Star Championship, third in the Production Cup and heads the Junior Driver Award.


Bilham will now use the summer to decide his next steps for the remainder of the season.


Sam is supported by 2300 Club John Easson Award, Calvert Construction, Reis Motorsport Insurance, The Garage at Stanley Mills, Northern Life Magazine and Gareth Hooper Motorsport Services.


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