Jason Pritchard will be aiming for his fourth victory on the Manx National Rally in his North Road Garage-backed Ford Focus WRC05 when he contests round two of the Protyre MSA Asphalt Rally Championship this weekend (May 11-12). The talented 29-year old Builth Wells driver is also a triple MSA British Historic Rally Champion, and his exploits in his Escort RS1800 Mk2, Fiesta S2000 and Focus WRC05 make him one of the favourites on whatever rally he contests, in whatever car. Jason uses a Stilo crash helmet supplied by Nicky Grist Motorsports.

What crash helmet do you wear and what makes it your number one choice?
“I wear a Stilo WRC DES 8860 and I chose it because I had an accident in Ypres and my head hit the side of the roll cage and cracked my Peltor. After that, I just bought the best that was on the market and that was a Stilo 8860.”

What have been the most significant helmet changes during your career?
“The quality of the sound and comfort. We use a Stilo Digital intercom because the sound quality is amazing and the noise cancelling, especially in the Escort Mk2 and the Fiesta S2000, is a big help. Unless we had that, the co-driver would have to shout! The Stilo 8860 is so light, you don’t even realise you have it on your head most of the time, it really is very comfortable indeed.”

What incident springs to mind, where you were thankful you were wearing a good quality helmet?
“That would be the biggest crash I’ve ever had, in the black Mk2 Escort on the Neath Valley in 2014. It wasn’t a very high-speed accident, but we rolled down the gravel road. When you go into a ditch, the grass is softer and it helps to cushion everything, but the gravel road didn’t give at all and we took the full brunt of the impact as the car rolled. We got out with the Stilo helmet and Simpsons Hybrid FHR/HANS device we had on without any problems at all and I wasn’t stiff or anything the following day.”

What advice would you give someone starting out in motorsport, as regards helmet and safety equipment in general?
“The golden rule is don’t skimp on safety. You have to look after yourself. We all wear safety equipment because accidents do happen and you have to take the best precautions you can. It’s better off to invest in good quality equipment and miss a few events rather than buy sub-standard equipment and risk it.”