One of the factory Ford Fiesta S2000 rally cars, built by Jason Bright's Britek V8 Supercar team, will return to Australian forests later this year.
Leading Victorian driver, Luke Sytema, has purchased the ex-Michael Guest car from New Zealand, and plans to debut the car in a couple of rallies later in 2019, before embarking on a full Victorian Rally Championship assault in 2020.
Run in iconic Pirtek colours, the four-wheel drive Fiestas were built by Bright's team and made their ARC debut at the start of the 2007 season.
The Ford Australia mechanics service the Fiesta in Canberra in 2007.
A two-car team consisting of Michael Guest and Darren Windus ran in the Australian Rally Championship, before the cars were sold in a package deal to New Zealand early in 2009. At the time the advertised price, including a comprehensive spares package, was $300,000.
The Windus car had a Honda V6 engine installed by veteran New Zealand driver, Dave Strong, and is still competing today.
But according to Sytema, the Guest car has seen little use.
"Guest's car has done less than 1000km in 10 years. It is still 100% original S2000, as raced by Michael Guest in 2008," Sytema says.
Luke Sytema has purchased the ex-Guest Fiesta S2000 from New Zealand.
"It is no longer the famous Pirtek blue (for now). It was painted by Britek before it was put up for sale.
"We hope to run one or two events later this year, but want to run the full VRC in 2020.
"We are very excited to have this iconic car coming back to Australia, and hope to do it justice and drive it accordingly," he added.
The car is still in tip-top condition and doesn't require a rebuild, other than to customise it for its new owner.
The Fiesta S2000 sits ready to rally, and will return to the forest later in 2019.
However, a full program of events will need to wait until 2020, as Sytema concentrates on an Alpine Rally assault late this year.
"I'll be holding back as it's an Alpine year, and I want to do as many kilometres as possible in my Escort so that I have my eye in to give our team the best chance possible," he said.
Having the Fiesta S2000 back in Australia is great news for local rallying.
While the Fiestas weren't as successful as Ford had hoped, as a home-built S2000 car they are a real piece of Australian rallying history, and seeing one of the cars back out in the forest will bring real joy to local rally fans.
Sytema will use the car for a full Victorian Rally Championship assault in 2020.
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