Cirrus Research signals move into motor industry with rally driver sponsorship deal
Environmental noise specialists Cirrus Research are moving up a gear in the motor racing industry sector after agreeing a sponsorship deal with leading UK rally driver Ashleigh Morris.
Morris, 33, is one of only two women drivers currently competing in the Motorsport News Circuit Rally Championship. Cirrus Research has agreed a three-race sponsorship deal that will help her compete over the coming season.
Her interest in rallying began after a passenger ride in a rally car at Knockhill Racing Circuit, near her hometown of Dollar in Scotland. In July 2016 she took to the driver’s seat for the first time for the Enville Stages at Anglesey Circuit. She has taken part in the MSN Rally Championship for the last two years.
Ashleigh is currently competing in the MSN Championship in her Ford Fiesta R200, aiming for class victory in the 1600 class (Class B). Her career achievements so far have been impressive:
2nd in Class B - MSN Circuit Rally Championship 2017/18
1st in Class B - Lee Holland Memorial Rally 2018
2nd in Class A – MSN Circuit Rally Championship 2016/17
Ashleigh hopes her success will encourage other women to come through the sport and compete at all levels. She said: “Rally driving is still very male-dominated and I’m not sure why. There are more female co-drivers now, which is how I came into the sport, and that’s encouraging but it would be good to see more women involved. There are plenty of female spectators at events, so the interest is definitely there.”
Martin Ellison, Head of Sales at Cirrus Research, said: “Ashleigh’s determination to compete and win in this difficult sport is inspiring and we’re delighted to be supporting her this season. Cirrus is involved day to day in many different sectors, and the motor sports industry is very much a growth area for us so it’s great to up our profile in this way.”
Ashleigh added: “The Cirrus Research sponsorship means a lot to me and having the support of a large company can make a huge difference. Rallying isn’t cheap, there is the initial outlay of buying your car and then the constant wear and tear and servicing costs to meet. On top of that there could be unexpected expenses for instance, if you have a crash!”
Cirrus Research will be sponsoring Ashleigh at the TIC Volkswagen Donington Rally; the Lee Holland stages, Anglesey; and the Alan Healy Memorial, Cadwell Park stages.