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Neil Allport has been handed the keys to what is definitely one of New Zealand’s most expensive rally cars, Peter (PJ) Johnston’s Group B Ford RS200, for the Dunlop Rallyfeste weekend in New Zealand.

Allport’s only instructions from the owner were to “use the car”. PJ imported the historic 1986 rally car from the UK about two years ago and has since competed in several Dunlop Targa events, but this will be the first time Allport has driven the car in a rally.

The car boasts huge horsepower, is four wheel drive, has a lightweight body, and is from the turbocharged, flame-spitting, mid-1980s era. Shortly after these were introduced, they were banned, along with the other highly powerful Group ‘B’ cars, the Peugeot 205 Turbo 16, Lancia Delta S4 and Audi’s Sport Quattro.

Previously Allport drove Mazdas to win three New Zealand National Rally Championship crowns, the first in 1986 driving the Group ‘B’ Mainfreight RX7 (now owned and restored for classic rallying by Bert Murray and also entered in this event). Allport won again in 1989 and 1992 using a Mazda 323 4x4.
 
Allport and his Ford RS200 join the growing list of competitors entered in the Rallyfeste Rally “event”, which starts on February 24.

“It is great to have one of our rallying stars in Neil Allport, and using such a historic car, take part in the rally,” Dunlop Rallyfeste chairman Laurie Brenssell said. “Neil and his motorsport business have always supported the sport they are in, and both he and the car will attract the spectators out to watch the action.”
 
Further information is available on the Dunlop Rallyfeste website


 

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