Bitter sweet result at ECB Rally Calder
- 7th March 2012, 12:33pm
Young Canberra driver, Adrian Coppin came away from the 1st round of the Australian Rally Championship held in Melbourne this weekend, quietly satisfied with his performance.
The young driver will be in third place in the 2WD section of the Australian Rally Championship after points for the series are allocated. The 2WD competition will become the outright category for the ARC next year and the 2013 Australian Rally Champion will drive a 2WD vehicle.
“I think I surprised a few people with my pace in the diminutive Ford Fiesta. We were giving away a lot of power to the cars in front of us, so to be sitting in third place in the ARC with one of the works Honda’s is pretty amazing,” Coppin said.
Coppin’s Ford Fiesta is homologated in the FIA Group N category, and is used as an introductory vehicle for rally series around the world. To drive a Group N car to 3rd place in the 2WD category against more highly developed vehicles, including the new factory backed Honda Jazz, is a testament to the young drivers skill.
The team just missed out on their primary objective for the event, failing to qualify for the final of the Rallyschool.com.au Australian Junior Rally Challenge by seconds. The team accepted that the format of the event would make it a difficult task, so to get so close made the outcome all the more bitter sweet.
“The format of the event was always going to make it difficult with the mix of tarmac and gravel surfaces. I would take a lead on the gravel, but would lose the advantage I had fought so hard for on the gravel, when we got to the tarmac sections. I was so frustrated during the rally,” Adrian said.
“My Fiesta was flat out at 139 kph on the tarmac while the other competitors were getting closer to 160 kph down the straights but that’s rallying and we’ll see how we go when we get back to the forests later in the year.”
The team will miss the next round of the ARC in Western Australia, instead choosing to compete in the 1st round of the NSW Rally Championship, the Trussme National Capital Rally in Canberra to see if they can find some more speed within the limits of the Group N regulations.
The Innate Motorsport team will then contest the International Rally Queensland, a round of the FIA Asia Pacific Rally Championship (APRC) and the Australian Rally Championship in May to attempt to qualify for the RallySchool.com.au Junior Australian Rally Challenge.
The team would like to thank their sponsors, Penrite Oil, Inklab, Landscape Direct, Shannons Insurance, and Total Traction Services for their support at Rally Calder.
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