Update News

November 23rd 2002
Coventry Automotive are out rallying on a couple of events in the near future.

Catch the cars on The Killarney Historic Stages Rally in southern Ireland on December 1st, where the team is supporting long term customer Mike Jones in his beautiful black MkII Mini Cooper S. Apparently the car used to be owned by the Police in Yorkshire at one time in it’s history. I bet that surprised a few people!
More info can be found on www.irish-rallying.com

Trevor himself is out again, with regular co-driver Ian Harrop, on the Grizedale Stages Rally in the Lake District on December 7th. Some famous old RAC Rally stages will be tackled in the trusty yellow Mini before it is put away for the winter.
Details can be found on www.grizedalestages.co.uk

For the future, Coventry Automotive are looking into the possibilities of entering The Acropolis Rally in 2003. The rally is a famous round of the World Rally Championship, held in Greece in early June 2003. The event is generally considered to be the roughest round of the championship, but the team are not deterred. As the homologation on the car runs out at the end of 2004 there is not much time left to compete in the footsteps of the legendary works Minis of the sixties, and Coventry Automotive want to be there! If you are interested in getting involved in this exciting project, contact Trevor for more information.

Arrive & Drive

Since 1994 the COVENTRY AUTOMOTIVE RALLY TEAM have competed with their two Mini Coopers in major UK national rally series and over a dozen FIA World and European Rally Championship events.

The team can justifiably claim the best record of any team competing with a modern Mini and the COVENTRY AUTOMOTIVE RALLY TEAM have become well known throughout Europe. When the Mini was re-homologated for international rallying in 1994 the COVENTRY AUTOMOTIVE RALLY TEAM responded by preparing a Group A Mini for that year's RAC Rally, going on to achieve the first of a series of creditable results on WRC Events. A second Mini was prepared just over a year later, this time to Group N specifications, this car also has been used extensively for international events, debuting on the 1997 Rally Finland.

The first entry on the Rally Finland, formerly the 1000 Lakes Rally, was made in 1995, and with the exception of 2000, the COVENTRY AUTOMOTIVE RALLY TEAM have competed every year since. "I used to dream of spectating in Finland" team driver Trevor Godwin states, "now I have competed on the event six times!"

In the seven years that the team have been rallying Mini's, entries on the Rally Finland, Rally Great Britain, Rallye Portugal and Rallye Catalunya, all World Rally Championship Events, have been made. Additionally The South Swedish Rally and the Rally Hunsruck, European Rally Championship rounds have also seen the team competing.


Trevor Godwin is the team driver and is the owner of Coventry Automotive. He has been rallying since the 60's with many trophies to show for his efforts. Trevor is a well known figure in the national rallying scene and along with the Mini's has enjoyed a keen following in recent years.

David Wyer is an Emissions Engineer with Jaguar Cars and has been Trevor's co-driver from theoutset. It was with David that Trevor first competed on the RAC Rally in 1986 and the pair competed together on the first overseas event in 1995. More recent recruits to the co-driving role have been Ian Harrop a Development Engineer with Zytek and Rick Spurgeon a Product Specialist with HORIBA. Both Ian and Rick have also competed with Trevor at all levels, as well as fulfilling support roles as necessary, enhancing the strong team spirit has been developed over the years. On the support side Roger Cooke is the service manager for the major events, and is supported by Ambrose Butcher, Nimrod and Phil Leeson. All of the support crew are long standing members of the team and have a wealth of experience at the top levels of motorsport.


What is more quintessentially British than a Mini Cooper? The small car with the big heart and an international reputation. The COVENTRY AUTOMOTIVE RALLY TEAM are proud to present modern day Mini Coopers in contemporary rallying. Wherever our Mini's compete they turn heads and attract attention, be it a basketball court (1998 Rallye Catalunya scrutineering) or Hafren in deepest Wales. During the Mini's rallying heyday in the 60's this was the car to drive, much as today's Impreza's, Lancer's and Focus'. Obviously with limited power the Mini cannot compete with today's rally cars, some of which are up to 4x as powerful, but it can still turn in impressive times on intricate, twisty stages – despite the age of the design the Mini is still as nimble as ever!

Modern day international rallying is being radically re-formatted and TV coverage on terrestrial channels will treble with the switch from BBC to Channel 4 in 2002. In addition there is a promise of an interactive presentation to the viewer – these are exciting times in this respect. The events that we compete in are regularly covered on BBC, Sky and Eurosport.

In the past the COVENTRY AUTOMOTIVE RALLY TEAM have been prominently featured by radio stations, especially in Finland.

The Rally Great Britain is the biggest live event in the country and attracts over 2½ million spectators. TV viewing figures have identified an audience of 2 million – this is 20% of the total UK audience.

There are regular editorials of our activities in the national motorsport press and a regular column in Mini World magazine covered our progress through recent seasons.


The spectator audience at Rallies is principally comprised of males in the age range 25-45 years, with a definitive interest in performance cars and especially motorsport. Many of this audience will have an interest in the engineering aspects of the competing cars and often are employed in this area both in the aftermarket and by motor manufacturers. The enthusiast can often be also be typically described as an affluent, technical, professional. Apart from the superficial interests of the "boy racer" who is often interested in accessories that will improve the appearance of his car, many of the sport's enthusiasts are curious about more technical aspects and have a deep interest in technology in a more general sense.

Promotional Opportunities are presented in many ways apart from the obvious decal on the competitor's car and represent an exceptionally cost effective means of reaching a well-defined target audience. Media coverage of Rallying is now increasing at an unprecedented rate and recent figures show that the worldwide television audience has trebled over the last five years, the figure of 8 billion viewers annually has recently been stated by the FIA. As a promotional venture the sponsor is represented at all times – not just when the car is "on stage" but travelling to and from an event, in service areas, on link road sections and at pre-event rally shows. A sponsor's goods or services may be indirectly endorsed by the Rally Team in that equipment used can imply quality and reliability especially when it is demonstrably so. Sponsor Profiles cannot be categorised in a total sense, it is only necessary to look at the variety of goods and services that have been promoted by rally teams at all levels over the years.

Rally Team sponsorship by suppliers of certain products and services can relate directly to the activity eg car accessories(especially performance parts), fuels, lubricants and motoring related services such asinsurance or breakdown organisations. On the other hand what are the items that are important to the spectator in an indirect way? Good examples of this could be personal computers, HiFi, DIY products or Internet Service providers where an unexpected prompt could prove to be a timely reminder or sow a seed in a spectator's mind.

Presentation of the product is quite subtle when a Rally Team is used by a sponsor, nonetheless it can be effective and has certain distinct advantages. Consider hard sell via TV advertising where it is arguable that you may get the coverage in terms of audience, but is interest and attention stimulated? If not then TV advertising is an exceptionally expensive means of achieving nothing and produces no sales result.

Very often we see TV adverts for breakfast cereals, but do these change which are bought as a direct result ? Probably not, the best reaction that can be achieved will be "hmm that sounds different…" but, regardless, the selection of the cereal brand will undoubtedly made at the point-of-sale. When you are being bombarded by advertisements or hard sell are you receptive? The answer must surely be "no" the saturation is distracting and as we all know downright irritating at times. Contrast a rally spectator, quietly enjoying an eventwith little other distraction, and the name of a potential supplier to a planned purchase is presented, surely the probability of that potential supplier's name being noted and remembered is much better.


Anything that is pertinent to the audience, both for personal and professional purposes. By understanding the lifestyle of the spectator some products can be identified:

Motor Insurance – in some respects a necessary evil, but when in mind of matters automotive the audience is likely to be receptive.
Mobile Communications – a vital link for all Rally Teams, to update on progress, expedite problem solving and plan remedial actions. Since many Rallies take place in remote locations and the ability to communicate (or not) is a very practical demonstration of the service quality provided. This is distinctly accentuated when mobile A functions and mobile B is unable to
provide service.

Toiletries for men – an ideal opportunity, can lead to a sale from the basis of curiosity " hmm… I wonder what that's like?"
Computer Services – accepting that many spectators will be technically minded almost anything related to IT can benefit, from software, to hardware, internet service provision and even related publications. Many people nowadays construct their own computer hardware and are very enthusiastic about learning of new devices, why not provide a reminder of what could be done?

Life Assurance – the age group of the spectators will in many cases be establishing families and embarking upon provisions for the future, such as life assurance and pensions. Promotion in Rallysport arenas can certainly register alternatives that may have been overlooked in normal circumstances.

Children's Interests – items that the youngsters may register such as sportswear, designer labels, toys, computer games, confectionery, resorts and theme parks are just a few examples. Often children accompany their spectating parent(s), what better way to grab their attention?

Holidays and Travel – usually an important aspect of the spectator's annual expense and alternatives are always worthy of consideration.

Motoring Accessories – from simple valeting products to a whole plethora of car accessories, an endorsement is bound to be noticed.

Motoring Services - in-car navigation systems, traffic warning devices, national breakdown organisations are but a few examples.
Transport and Shipping – travel to and from overseas events presents the opportunity to promote such companies, whether directly involved or not, especially if international operations are offered.

Examples are many and those given are non-exclusive, the reaction to Rallysport promotion is likely to be positive but difficult to quantify. Overall a cost effective, selectively targeted promotion with a high percentage conversion (compared to other media promotions) is likely to be achieved.

Secondary benefits – a sponsor's staff can relate to the Rally Team, without necessarily becoming directly involved. "Team building" and "bonding" are terms that are prone to mis-use and often glibly applied in the wrong context, however, such a sponsorship can focus attention and generate a common interest. Sponsorship of a Rally team can be made in many ways, as outlined, and can be tailored to a specific requirement. Why not discuss this in more detail? Contact COVENTRY AUTOMOTIVE, we will be pleased to help you decide what is appropriate to you.

Coventry Automotive David Wyer Ian Harrop Rick Spurgeon
01455 - 221313 (Day) 024 7620 6728 (Day) 024 7646 3892 (Eves) 01604 542511(Day)