ACT rally title tussle resumes
- 24th September 2010, 11:39am
With just 3 points separating the top4 crews, the competition for valuable series points will be fierce over the forest roads in the region around Bathurst.
Joint series leader Jeff Eastman and co-driver Tony Caldwell will start from position 8 in the Autotech Lancer Evo 3. Eastman is tied on 62 points with fellow Canberran, Ian Jeffrey; however, Jeffrey is not contesting the event. “My main competition will definitely come from Jamie Neale” Eastman said. “He (Neale) has been really fast this year and I am going to need to be on my game if I want to beat him and retain the title lead” he said.
The equal third place holder, Penrith school teacher Jamie Neale will start from position 5 in his Galant VR4with regular co-driver Matt James alongside. Neal is a second generation rally driver, the son of Frank Neale, a successful driver at international and state level for many years. Jamie is having a solid season this year and driving well. “I think I can run strong this weekend. The car is improved and I can’t wait to get back behind the wheel” Neale said.
Also tied on 59 points with Neale is doyen of the Canberra rallying scene, Jon Waterhouse. Waterhouse has been a regular competitor in ACT rallies for longer than he wants to recall but is still extremely competitive. He will be driving his Reliance Automotive Mazda RX7 and start from position 13.
While these guys will be watching each other carefully as they try to maximise their title points, further up the field two other Canberra series competitors will be going head to head to win the event outright and claim bragging rights.
Starting from position 4, will be Caltex Starmart Canberra Airport proprietor, Peter Taylor with son Michael alongside. Driving the ex Neale Bates Toyota Corolla NP, the Taylors are sure to be fast over the demanding Bathurst forest roads, an area where Taylor has tasted success in the past.
Three places further back will be former ACT champion John Stilling with wife Kim in his Renaissance Homes Lancer Evo 9. Following an extensive rebuild after an engine failure in an earlier round of the series, Stilling is keen to win the event to emphatically announce that he is back.
Towards the rear of the field ACT novice competitor, Julie Boorman will be putting her Daihatsu Charade through its paces “I need to finish and make sure i score points” she said, as she look so win the Novice title.
The 2010 Peter Rogers Real Estate Rally gets underway from the front of the court house at 1030am.
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