Sam Bilham conquered appaling weather conditions to win his first event of the season in Lancashire at the weekend.

The 17-year-old Bingley rally driver, who has now moved up from the junior ranks to compete in the senior categories, left much older and experienced drivers in his wake.

Bilham, co-driven by Gareth Hooper of Steeton, did not have it all his own way as a spin on stage six cost him valuable time and dropped him into the clutches of second-placed Darren Brown.

But after briefly surrendering the lead, the level-headed youngster fought back to take the win after 12 stages.

Bilham moves up to a new level this coming weekend as he begins his BTRDA Rally First Crown challenge at the Malcolm Wilson Rally, staged over the testing Lakeland Forest Stages.

This will be his first taste of forest rallying and also his first time out with a new navigator, Keighley-born Graham Wild.