With the rest of the 2020 Irish Tarmac Rally Championship cancelled, and things a lot quieter in work, Meirion Evans has been stepping up his fitness regime – so much so that he’s now the fittest he’s ever been.
Having finished fourth on the opening round of the series, the Galway International Rally, Meirion and his co-driver Jonathan Jackson were preparing for the West Cork Rally when the coronavirus scare began to escalate.
Round two of the series was cancelled before a wheel was turned in anger – and since then all-bar one remaining event in the ITRC calendar has either been postponed or cancelled.
It therefore came as no surprise when the Tarmac Rally Organisers’ Association reached the unanimous decision to cancel this year’s championship altogether.
Meirion doesn’t know when he’ll next get to drive his The Scan Station-backed and Michelin-shod Volkswagen Polo GTI R5 in competition – but while he waits for the next rally, he has stepped up his fitness regime.
He ran a total of 100kms in April, all around the quiet country lanes near his Carmarthenshire home, and he has increased his weight training routine and been on some high intensity bicycle rides.
“It disappointing that the 2020 Irish Tarmac Rally Championship has been cancelled, but it didn’t look like there were many other options and I feel that it is undoubtedly the right thing to do under the circumstances,” says Meirion.
“It’s a very difficult and worrying time for everyone, but you have to try to keep your spirits up. I’ve been doing a lot more running, which is really good physically and mentally.
“I mix the runs up a bit, some eight to ten mile runs for endurance and some shorter distance runs at higher intensity to hit higher heart rates and improve speed. I’ve also been out on my bike, especially on days when the weather’s really nice, and doing a lot more weight training as well.
“With work being quieter and a lot more time to train, I’m probably in the best shape that I’ve ever been in at the moment!”