IT ALL STARTED WHEN...
Andy first started road rallying in the 60s - his first car was an Imp Singer Chamois, which got christened when he hit a bridge sideways in 1965. After a quick re-shell and a new engine, Andy entered his first event and came third behind Roger Clark and Imp ace Colin Malkin.
University and a graduate traineeship at Rootes Chrysler then beckoned. While at Chrysler, Andy started Special Tuning (the now renowned Peugeot-owned company), helped develop the Avenger Tiger, and co-ordinated the Bevan Imps to win the British Saloon Car Championship (later renamed the BTCC) in 1970, 71 and 72.
After this engineering triumph, it was time for Andy to take the wheel himself. Andy’s first ‘pro’ drive was in a Clan Crusader and resulted in second place in the 1972 Manx International Rally.
Andy then gave the Chrysler Avenger its first International win with David ‘ProDrive’ Richards navigating. He went on to win Group 1 on the RAC Rally in ’73 in an Avenger and won Group 1 on the Welsh in an Alfa Romeo. At the end of ‘74 Andy was awarded the Kleber Scholarship and with it a Datsun Violet – at the time, probably the biggest prize ever in UK rallying. Andy went on to win the Snowman Rally in Scotland with the Violet in 1975.
In 1975, Andy prepared and drove a Dodge Avenger to victory in the Rothmans 747 Rally in Jamaica, beating the renowned rally driver, "Flying Finn" Timo Makinen.
Andy was the first person to tame a Lancia Stratos in the forests by winning the Mintex International Rally in 1976, described by Retro Cars magazine as “one of British rallying’s greatest wins” (Apr 2004). Andy also won the Texaco Rallysprint in a Stratos in ’78, and has the accolade of being the only driver to have driven all 3 versions of the Stratos in competition.
In ’77 Andy developed the Mark II Escort with Ford, culminating in leading the RAC Rally. He also gave Mazda its first international rally win in South Africa at the end of the year.
In ’78 Andy began managing and driving for Team Datsun Europe in their 160J Violets, continuing to do so for 5 years. With Datsun, Andy achieved runner-up spot in the World Championship in ’79, ’80 and ‘81, and during the period 1979-80 scored more points in the World Rally Championship than any other British driver.
In ’85 Andy started the 555 Rally Team to enter the Hong Kong to Beijing Rally, engineering victories for Hannu Mikkola and Stig Blomqvist in Audi A2 Quattros which won in both ’85 and ’86.