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Four-time Australian rally champions Neal Bates and Coral Taylor (Toyota Celica RA40) dominated Leg One of the International Rally of Queensland's classic category on the sunshine coast today.

The pair won all nine stages to lead the leg by a massive 9min15.8seconds from Richard Anderson/Martin Darch (Alfa Romeo Alfetta GT).

"It was the best day's rallying I've ever enjoyed," Bates said. "I was the pioneer on the road this morning - the first car out on slippery stages, but the car was superb.

"The road had dried for the second pass and we were able to safely take a lot of time out of our first stage times."

Bates rebuilt the rear-wheel-drive RA40 as a replica of the Ove Andersson world rally championship car of 30 years ago to compete in the Australian Classic Rally Challenge, which is for pre-1986 rally cars.

Five-time national champion Ross Dunkerton and co-driver wife Lisa (Ford Escort RS1800) retired after stage one with engine failure.

Australian Classic Rally Challenge series leaders Jeff David/Grant Geelan (Porsche 911) challenged Bates until mechanical difficulty forced them back to sixth.

The Australian Classic Rally Challenge of the International Rally of Queensland resumes with Leg Two tomorrow.
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