Two of Australia’s leading motorsport stars linked up at the Goodwood Festival of Speed last Sunday, when Subaru World Rally Team driver, Chris Atkinson, gave World Superbike ace, Troy Corser, a ride in his Subaru Impreza WRC2007.

The ride was a high point on the final day of the three-day motorsport extravaganza, which takes place in the beautiful grounds of Goodwood House and brings together some of the most famous names from all disciplines of motor racing.

Corser strapped himself into Atkinson's 300bhp, 160mph Impreza WRC2007 for a high-speed ride along Goodwood’s Forest Rally Stage, a narrow, three-kilometre gravel track through trees and tall earth banks. Heavy rain made the track muddy and slippery, but gave Atkinson the perfect opportunity to impress the double World Superbike champ with his skills.

After two runs through the course, Corser was left wowed by his compatriot’s driving and keen to get behind the wheel himself.

“It was awesome – these guys have so much control and balance. Watching from the outside it’s sometimes hard to appreciate how much work they’re doing behind the wheel. Chris was placing the car where he needed to and even bouncing off the earth banks at times as we went between the trees, stumps and logs in the forest. What he does needs one hundred per cent concentration.

“Obviously I’ve known of Chris from Australia but I’ve never really had a chance to catch up with him. He’s a good guy and I really enjoyed his driving, that’s for sure. It was really awesome to see one of the best rally drivers in the world at work.

“I’ve had a little play in a rally car before, and I always try to catch it on television whenever I can, but I’d love to have a proper go. Maybe not in the kind of conditions we experienced at Goodwood though!” 

Atkinson was also happy. “I think Troy enjoyed the ride, because he had a smile on his face at the end. It’s always tough in these conditions, but we managed to show him what we can do in one of these cars. We were sideways most of time through the stage, but that is why rallying is so much fun and why we do it.

“It’s always good to take bike riders like Troy for a ride – he’s got immense skill and what we do in the car is nothing at all like he does on a motorbike. I’d love to go on a two-seater bike one day and sit behind one of these guys. And it sounds as if Troy’s interested in actually driving a rally car too – so let’s get him out there. Maybe one day we’ll be lining up as rivals in a rally!”


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