TWO times RAC rally champion Dave Hemingway put engineering students on the right road when he brought his favourite racer into a South Yorkshire college.
Dave’s specially adapted Ford Escort gave the youngsters from Barnsley College a chance to examine the differences between a professional rally car and a normal vehicle.
The Escort, named Phoenix, is over 25 years old and has gone through major changes over the years to bring it up to its current specifications.
It is still used in competition and Dave recently took the car into third place in the 2012 Robert Albert Clark rally.
The competition involved a gruelling three-day 200-mile race through the forests of North Yorkshire and ended in Dumfries.
Dave said how proud he was that he had completed every single RAC rally since its inception in 2004.
He also talked to the students about how he became a professional rally driver, starting out in the sport in 1989.
Things became more serious four years later when Dave said he decided to blow all his savings on a rally car.
Motor vehicle student Tom Peacock said: “I really enjoyed looking inside the car and talking to Dave.
“It was a great opportunity for me to get experience and learn more about different types of cars.”
Matt Coggins, the college’s motor vehicle tutor, added: “The students were very enthusiastic about Dave’s visit and were asking lots of questions.
“It’s not often that we have a professional rally car driver visiting the college, so it was great for the students to gain a more in-depth knowledge of the car.”