Mike Stock will be reporting from Rally NZ - be first to know the latest results and all the action!
World Championship rally action returns to Waikato district roads tomorrow (Friday, August 29) when the Repco Rally New Zealand starts from Mystery Creek.
Works drivers from Citroen, Ford, Subaru and Suzuki will do battle for World rally Championship points while New Zealand’s top drivers get their chance to pit their skills against the cream of the world’s Production Car (Group N) drivers in near-identical – but usually bigger budget – Mitsubishi Lancer Evos and Subaru Impreza WRX STis.
Three Kiwis have entries in the Production World Championship (PWRC) segment of the event, all driving Lancer Evo 9s.
NZ Rally Championship leader, Hayden Paddon, and former champion Chris West both won Repco scholarships that carried PWRC entries as prizes, and Stewart Taylor has secured a privateer entry.
As well as going all out against the PWRC regulars, they’ll be vying for the title of first New Zealand finisher and for Vantage NZ Rally Championship points.
Out to secure the first Kiwi crown is former double champion and 2007 first NZ finisher Richard Mason (WRX STi), and fellow Subaru runner Emma Gilmour will be chasing the honour too, as well as the Ladies’ prize.
The NZRC section of Rally NZ runs on Friday and Saturday.
On Saturday, local drivers will contest the one-day Possum Bourne Memorial Rally, which is a round of the Kiwi 2 and Classic NZ Rally Championships.
The battle for overall Rally NZ honours is likely to be a needle match between Citroen’s Sebastien Loeb and Ford’s Mikko Hirvonen.
The Kiwi battle is likely to be just as intense.
Auto Trader will be at Mystery Creek to bring you up-to-the-minute news and views from the rally on our website, www.autotrader.co.nz.
Log in regularly for updates. They’ll appear in the News and Reviews section of the website and also in the Motorsport section.