The winners’ list: UK Coach Rally returns in style for 2022

UK Coach Rally 2022 winners list

The UK Coach Rally returned in style to Blackpool over the weekend of 9/10 April and winners were recognised with the usual host of trophies. With a turnout of 46 coaches from a maximum possible field of 46, the event was blessed by largely good weather and a palpable sense of cautious optimism among entrants and trade exhibitors alike.

In the flagship categories, Parrys International took home the Coach of the Year award for its newly-registered Van Hool TX17 Astron. The tri-axle is one of two identical newcomers and is powered by a 530bhp DAF MX-13 engine driving through an Allison automatic gearbox. Parrys also claimed multiple other items of silverware.

Coopers Tours among UK Coach Rally 2022 winners
Russell Cooper of Coopers Tours (back row, fourth from right) was once again crowned Coach Driver of the Year

Coach Driver of the Year was again Russell Cooper of Coopers Tours. Mr Cooper retained the title, having won it at the previous Rally in 2019. He also claimed it in 2016. Coopers’ Mercedes-Benz Tourismo, too, claimed additional trophies for the Killamarsh firm.

Among other notable points of the Rally, Simpsons Coaches travelled the furthest, at 384 miles according to Google Maps from its base in Rosehearty on the Morary Firth. Cozy Travel became the first operator to enter a diesel-electric hybrid coach to the rally, while the inaugural Cyril Kenzie Memorial Trophy was won by Go North East.

The full list of 2022 UK Coach Rally winners is thus:

Coach of the Year: Parrys International, Van Hool TX17 Astron
Coach Driver of the Year: Russell Cooper, Coopers Tours
Highest placed coach operator in all classes: Classic Coaches Co Down
Top team on the road: Glen Valley Tours
Highest placed driver in Saturday tests: Darryn Hughes, Classic Coaches Co Down
Mini Driver of the Year: Ian Haines, Haines Minicoaches
Midi Driver of the Year: Darryn Hughes, Classic Coaches Co Down
Runner up to Coach Driver of the Year: Daniel Moffat, Glen Valley Tours
Directors Challenge: Tom James, York Pullman
Top mini/midi: Classic Coaches Co Down, DAF LF Noone Turas 900s
Top standard coach: Cozy Travel, Irizar i4H integral
Top touring/express luxury coach: Parrys International, Van Hool TX17 Astron
Top executive coach: Go Goodwins, Van Hool TX17 Astronef
Top coach aged five years or older: Coopers Tours, Mercedes-Benz Tourismo
Top coach aged 25 years or older: Aldermaston Coach Lines, Volvo B10M Plaxton Excalibur
Top coach from a small fleet – up to five vehicles: Heathside Travel, Irizar i6S integral
Top Neoplan: Stanley Travel, Neoplan Starliner
Top Jonckheere: Glen Valley Tours, Volvo B11R Jonckheere JHV
Top Setra: Coachpoint, Setra S250 Special
Top Plaxton: Howard Snaith Coaches, Volvo B8R Plaxton Panther
Top Mercedes-Benz: Bibby’s of Ingleton, Mercedes-Benz Tourismo
Top Van Hool: Parrys International, Van Hool TX17 Astron
Top VDL: Irvings Coaches, VDL Futura FHD2
Top coach supplied by Volvo Bus: Bretherton’s Gold Line Tours, Volvo 9900
Best Irizar integral: Heathside Travel, Irizar i6S integral
Top Temsa supplied by Temsa: Prentice Westwood, Temsa HD12
Smartest uniformed driver and/or courier: Parrys International
Best coordinated décor: Parrys International, Van Hool TX17 Astron
Top CPT member: Parrys International
Top coach from Wales: Williams Coaches, Mercedes-Benz Tourismo
Top coach from Scotland: Simpsons Coaches, Mercedes-Benz Tourismo
Best loved coach: Metcalfe Coaches, VDL SB4000 Van Hool T9 Alizee
Highest placed UKCOA member in all classes: Coopers Tours
Oldest employed participant in the UK Coach Rally: Darren Russell, Adventure Travel (corrected after event)
Coach of the Year as voted by coach drivers: Simpsons Coaches, Mercedes-Benz Tourismo
Highest placed in all classes from Wales: Williams Coaches
Cyril Kenzie Memorial Trophy: Go North East, Volvo B9R Plaxton Elite.

Click to enlarge the following images, and to scroll through the gallery: