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Reigning Australian Rally Champion, Harry Bates, is raring to go for the Rally of the Bay early next month. The Toyota driver had a perfect season in 2019, but like everyone, has had to wait to get back behind the wheel “Ideally we would be getting ready for the third round of the ARC but obviously we are not due to COVID-19, so we’re very excited to finally be back,” Bates said. “We were always planning to do an event as a test prior to the first round of the revised ARC calendar after so long out of the car, and what better event to do it at than Batemans Bay. It’s only an hour and half from home and it’s quite special to me. “I was very keen to do it because it’s not only a fantastic event, but it was where I did my first ever rally back in 2014 and I have only been back once since. It will be the first time in five years I compete there and I know they’re fantastic roads." Bates will join many competitive drivers on the start line - most notably his brother and teammate, Lewis Bates.

Harry Bates tested the Hoosier tyres at the ARC test day in February. Photo: Luke Whitten

Also on the entry list is 2017 national champion, Nathan Quinn, as well as many well known names such as Dalton, Windus, Hatton and Dowel. “I had a look at the entry list and there are a lot of talented people doing it. Plenty of crews are capable of challenging for podiums and stage wins, but I am hoping to go out and set some of the fastest times and pick up where we left off in 2019. I am well aware we’ll have to work hard to do that. “The main goal though is to get rid of the cobwebs on the car as we have not driven for a while. The priority is obviously the ARC so next month’s event is an ideal test and I will be looking to be as competitive as I can,” he added.
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