Defender Rally Series by Bowler 2023 UK Launch

Posted on 21 October 2022


Following a hugely successful first season of exciting and close fought competition, off-road performance specialists Bowler have today announced the Defender Rally Series for 2023.

The Defender has proven to be an incredibly tough, durable and capable platform from which to grow the series in the UK and beyond.  Designed for novices and competition veterans alike, the Defender Rally Series by Bowler consists of 12 teams taking part in 9 events, including 7 competitive rounds in identical Defender rally cars. After the first private round, fully supported teams participate in 6 rounds of public events in which they will develop both the driving and organisational skills required of open competitive motorsport.

Building on the popularity of the Tata Elxsi Bowler Defender Challenge for 2022, the Defender Rally Series by Bowler has been specifically designed to offer entrants the chance to gain rally motorsport experience and know-how, facilitating progression to rally-raid events. Bowler can offer the necessary support and training enabling entrants to achieve the correct licensing in order to compete in the UK and internationally.

The series provides an inclusive team atmosphere with full technical support on hand at every event. The professional presence of the team, with comprehensive on-event spares support and team hospitality area creates a true ‘paddock within the paddock’ and underlines Bowler’s unique proposition and commitment to the sport.  As a result, the camaraderie among current teams has been exceptional whilst still remaining highly competitive, demand continues to grow within the UK and overseas.

Packages for the 2023 Defender Challenge Series will start at £108,334 (plus VAT).  This includes purchase and full ownership of a brand-new, fully converted Defender rally car, based upon the latest road registered model year Land Rover Defender 90 P300, management through 9 events, including 7 competitive championship rounds with full works support consisting of a dedicated team of race technicians, event hospitality, professional guidance, access to a fully stocked spares container and rally support unit, plus training.  Competition organiser race entry fee’s are additional to the Bowler package.

A number of additional support options are available, these include Arrive and Drive whereby the rally car is entirely managed by Bowler for the duration of the 2023 Challenge; cars are professionally managed, cleaned, inspected, stored between competitions and delivered to each round ready to race.  Rounds take place in remote areas around the UK so this option is particularly attractive for time poor and international drivers wishing to indulge their passion.  Further options include licence development and bespoke training delivered by a professional driver.

Calum McKechnie, Bowler General Manager, comments: The 2022 Championship has exceeded expectations on all fronts.  As we anticipated, the latest generation Defender has proven to be a highly capable and extremely tough rally car which continues to surprise and thrill anyone who has experienced it.  It has delivered incredibly close competition amongst the teams whilst still competing aggressively against the competition in the open rounds. Above all, the team camaraderie and relationships formed around the series has been a highlight which has attracted many new interested customers.

The provisional 2023 UK calendar is as follows:

All dates and events are to be confirmed.

Dave Marsh, Bowler Head of Motorsport, comments:  

We knew from our initial test programme with a pre-production Land Rover Defender we had the basis of a rally car that would deliver great poise and stability under race conditions – essential for new drivers but still bringing great capability for experienced drivers.  The big test was always going to be whether our 2022 competitors agree, the answer has been an unequivocal yes!  It’s been fantastic to see the cars relative performance against very serious competition in the diverse range of events selected for the Championship.

The 2023 Defender Challenge Rally Series will benefit even further from Bowler’s pedigree and experience which has helped this year’s racers hone their skills. The 2023 season will be even more keenly fought in a car that turns heads wherever it goes. Bowler is pleased to offer this opportunity which provides unique challenges, adventures and experience that embody both the Bowler pedigree and team spirit.

For further information on entry to the 2023 Bowler Defender Championship please contact info@bowlermotorsport.com or call +44 (0)1773 824111

  • Unique Defender production-based championship from off-road performance specialists Bowler
  • Both RHD and LHD vehicles available for the first time due to international demand
  • Competition is based over 7 rounds incorporating both Gravel and Hill Rallies throughout Scotland, England and Wales
  • Drivers receive dedicated race support and infrastructure from highly experienced Bowler Works crew
  • 2023 product specification enables progression to international competitions
  • Applications now open for 2023 season of competition – please contact us for more details.

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