01 Jun 2017
Dyfed-Powys Police Roads Policing officers and staff from GoSafe were last week [Wednesday, 24 May 2017] joined by international rugby player, Scott Williams, and professional rally co-driver, Nicky Grist, to launch the Nicky Grist Stages rally.
GoSafe, the Wales Road Casualty Reduction Partnership, will have a highly visible roadside presence around Builth Wells during the event in July, aiming to make the roads safer by educating drivers and preventing motoring offences.
Sgt. Ian Price, Dyfed-Powys Police, said:
“The GoSafe Partnership has traditionally been speed camera enforcement but road casualties are not just caused by speeding. Officers will be looking out for a range of offences, including: inappropriate driving, dangerous driving, overtaking on solid white lines, driving while using a mobile phone and not wearing a seatbelt.
“We don’t want to catch anyone committing an offence, we’d rather everyone drive safely and lawfully.
“To have the support of Nicky Grist and Scott Williams is fantastic. It is important we can interact with their supporters and try to encourage safer driving on the roads. If fans want to drive like rally drivers there are many motorsports club they can join - we appeal to them to not drive like rally drivers on public roads.”
Both stars have close links with motorsports. Rally co-driver Nicky has supported GoSafe for a number of years, promoting messages around casualty reduction on the roads, while Wales rugby player Scott owns and directs his own rally team.
Scott Williams said: “I jumped at the opportunity to show my support to the Nicky Grist Stages and the GoSafe Partnership. It’s important that people drive safely to and from motorsport events because we want everyone to enjoy themselves and have a great day out. Leave driving flat-out to the competitors on the stages.
“When you compete on a stage rally it’s on a closed road, you know that nothing will be driving towards you and you’re in an extremely strong car that’s been built with all the motorsport safety equipment.
“Living in west Wales I do a lot of miles on the road each year, driving to rugby matches and training camps and driving to motorsport events with my own team, Scott Williams Motorsport. It’s important that you drive sensibly on the public road and not only keep yourself safe, but other road users safe as well.
Nicky Grist added: “Stage rallying gives competitors the opportunity to drive at speed in a controlled manner, but the long-term benefits of rallying in general are not just about what happens on the stages. You need those same competitors, their service crews, all the event officials and all the spectators to drive safely and responsibly on the public road. That’s what gives the local residents, who are perhaps not interested in motorsport and going about their normal weekend business, the perception of what’s going on.
“The partnership between GoSafe and the Nicky Grist Stages is about creating a very positive perception and to help keep road users both involved in the event, and those who are not, safe.
“If anyone is inspired by the speed and skill of the drivers competing on the Nicky Grist Stages, getting involved in motorsport is a great way to test your driving ability in a safe and controlled environment. Never do it on the public road.”
Neil Cross, Nicky Grist Stages Clerk of the Course, said: “Our relationship with GoSafe has gone from strength to strength and Quinton Motor Club are thrilled this has carried over to a fourth year. We are keen to show the local communities we travel through that we take their safety as importantly as those of the competitors out on the stages, and this partnership helps us with this. Every year we ask GoSafe for feedback and I am delighted to say they are always very complimentary about the behaviour of our competitors, officials and spectators.”
This year the Nicky Grist Stages takes place the weekend before a week-long Mobile Phone Campaign [10-16 Juy 2017] that aims to raise awareness of the dangers of using hand-held mobile phones while driving. GoSafe will be at the Nicky Grist Stages giving out CELLslip pouches, which disconnect the phone’s signal without needing to adjust the phone’s settings.
NOTES TO EDITORS
- The Nicky Grist Stages 2017 will take place around the Epynt Ranges, near Builth Wells, from Thursday 8 July to Friday 9 July 2017. More information on the event: http://www.nickygriststages.co.uk/index.php
- Photo Caption: Photographed from left to right is Karl Protheroe and Sgt. Ian Price, Go Safe, Nicola Olsson, Carmarthenshire Road Safety, Scott Williams, Nicky Grist, and PC Nigel Nelson, Dyfed-Powys Police Roads Policing Unit Rally Event Coordinator.