Young Hyundai Excel driver Adrian Coppin picked up where he left off last year making a very successful return to the rally tracks around Canberra in the 1st round of the ACT Rally Championship yesterday.

Driving his Renew Landscaping/Total Traction Services Excel in an event he was using as a shakedown for the 1st round of the NSW Excel Championship, Coppin finished 10th outright and 2nd in the under 1600cc Production Rally Car class.

The first stage, which also used part of the Coppin’s Crossing Road, saw Adrian clock a time of 20:30 for the 23.3km test.  Eventual class winner, Mike Behnke recorded 19:31.

“I have a habit of making a slow start” Coppin said.  “I need to do something about that as it makes it hard to claw back the time” he added.

Coppin then reeled of a series of fastest times to claim the next four stages by 24 seconds. Benke won the penultimate stage and both drivers tied on the short last stage.

“I’m really happy with the result.  The car was going beautifully so all the hard work over the summers has improved the cars pace and my relief navigator, Michael Taylor did a great job” Coppin said.

Building on the momentum established this weekend, Coppin is quietly confident about his chances of taking the 2010 NSW Excel Rally Championship when the series kicks of next month in Lithgow.

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