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13 January 2011
A Ford world rally technician has left his blue overalls behind and gone out on patrol with the AA in Wales this week.
Technician Ashley Fowler hits the road with AA patrol Brian Evans to complete a job swap after Brian spent time with Ford's official World Rally Championship team on Wales Rally GB in November.
Ashley, 35 years old, is a technician for the team operated by M-Sport, based in Cockermouth, Cumbria, which prepares and runs all the official Ford cars in the FIA World Rally Championship.
Ford WRC technician Ashely Fowler
Ashley says: "Brian can get called out to any problem on any vehicle, whereas I'm an engine man on just the one car, albeit a 300bhp rally car.
"In rallying, speed is everything, so the car is designed so that components can be replaced quickly, sometimes literally in just seconds. It's been a while since I've worked on a normal car, so it will be an interesting challenge."
47-year old Brian from Aberystwyth, says: "Being part of the Ford team on Rally GB was an amazing experience that I'll never forget, especially as it was a successful finale to the season.
"Their attention to detail was phenomenal and, if in doubt, they just replace parts. Obviously at the roadside, it's impossible for us to carry a full range of spares for every car, so we sometimes have to think outside the box to fix it.
"Being a patrol, it's not just the car that matters – we also have to look after the needs of the member, as breaking down can be a stressful experience, so both jobs have pressure in their own way."
AA members will be able to read more about their job swap in the Spring edition of The AA Magazine.