Atko’s Tales #4
- 17th August 2007, 7:55pm
G’day everybody and welcome to the latest edition of Atko’s Tales. Well, as normal I’ve been up to a fair bit in the past couple of months so I have a few tales to share with you.
The team and I attended the Goodwood Festival of Speed in southern England , over the Summer break and what an event it was, apart from the typical UK weather! For those who aren’t familiar with Goodwood, it’s basically a celebration of all motorsport disciplines, both past and present, and it brings some of the biggest names and their cars along for the ride.
There’s a big tarmac hillclimb and up the top is a forest rally stage so the F1, Touring Cars, Le Mans cars and Superbikes all race up and down the hill all day against the clock, while we tackle the forest in our rally cars. The event brings in something amazing like 200,000 people over just three days!
The likes of Coulthard, Button, Webber and Lewis Hamilton were there, and Bayliss and Corser from the Superbike guys. Then you’ve got you F1 and rally greats like Stirling Moss, Sir Jackie Stewart, Hannu Mikkola, Carlos Sainz along with us current rally boys – Petter, Matt Wilson, Markko M ä rtin and Colin McRae, all came along for a drive. I
t’s a great event and it’s the only place you can see all these cars in action while getting close enough to touch them. I took Corser for a ride in the car which was cool to show him the sort of stuff us rally boys get up to, and I went in a cycle race against Bayliss, Webber and Button but what can I say, I’m a runner not a rider… top-four finish!
Rally Finland was pretty satisfying to get a result like we did in a rally of that level, and considering our two best results of the year have come on the two most famous rallies, Monte Carlo and Finland is cool. Ok, it was only 4th but it was more encouraging to see a consistent pace from the car. We still have some work to do to get everything sorted, and then hopefully we will really be able to shake things up a bit.
The rest of my time has been spent training, apart from a quick trip to Prodrive for the open day. With 4000 people turning up, and all the proceeds going to charity, it was a great event and a good opportunity for people to have a look around all aspects of the team.
I’ve been keeping my strict training regime up to speed as well as my healthy sushi diet… best food in the world! Lately, the WRC events have been pretty hot so it’s ultra important to have a top-level of fitness for maximum concentration under these conditions.
This weekend is Germany before heading back to Aus for the launch of the new Impreza prior to Rally NZ. And from what I hear, a lot of people are coming over from home so I hope to see the Aussie flags out there. On that note, just a quick thanks to all the Aussies I see at the rallies around the world. It’s nice to be driving flat out on some of the greatest roads in the world and see Australian flags on the side of the road!
Till next time,
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