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Phil Campbell has been pipped at the post in the chase for the FIA two-wheel drive title at the final round of the Brian Green Property Group New Zealand Rally Championship, the TrusthouseRacetech Rally Wairarapa.

Driving the Letts Construction Ford Fiesta R2, Campbell has endured a season long battle the identical car of Josh Marston and headed to the season finale with a slender lead of just three points, creating an effective winner takes all shootout across the nine special stages.

But the day got off to a difficult start when Campbell spun on the opening special stage, but fought back with a win on the following stage as the season long battle resumed.

But another spin on stage six, followed up by a puncture on stage seven put the final nail in the coffin and despite a win on the power stage, Campbell slipped to third in class and with it saw his championship chances disappear.

There were some celebrations in the team however with co-driver VenitaFabbro having secured the FIA two-wheel drive co-drivers title.

“It just wasn’t our day today,” Campbell said. “Josh was really fast all day and we made mistakes trying to catch him that ultimately made it really tough for us.”

The Campbell Rally Sport team now look to the 2014 season and are in the process of finalising some exciting new plans for next year’s NZRC season.

Photo: Jason Byrne

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