Triple New Zealand Rally Champions, Richard and Sara Mason have charged to an emphatic all-the-way victory at the Drivesouth Rally of Otago - round 3 of the Brian Green Property Group New Zealand Rally Championship [NZRC], powered by Brother - winning by more than 2 minutes and in so doing, have taken a commanding lead in the national championship.
 
In one of the fastest rounds of the NZRC for some time, the Masterton Flyers blasted into the lead by winning all three night stages on Friday and were never seriously threatened throughout Saturday and Sunday, as they won six of the remaining high speed tests.
 
"Our plan for the weekend worked perfectly," said an ecstatic Richard. "We thought we could steal a march on the rest of the field on Friday night and then control things from the front, and that proved to be exactly the case. This really is an awesome result for us."
 
By winning the rally for a record equaling 4th time, being fastest on both days, as well as setting a new stage record on Kuri Bush - the Power Stage for this round - the Masons took away maximum NZRC points (42) for the weekend, and now lead the championship by 20.
 
"It was awesome to win Kuri Bush by setting a new stage record and knock almost half a second a kilometre off our own current Production World Rally Champion Hayden Paddon's time through there last year.
 
"So that, along with the end result - a 4th victory here and now a significant lead in the championship - is everything we could ask for really.
 
"We said before the start that we felt we had the BNT STI going fast, and this weekend has proved that it is," continued Richard.
 
"So now we can plan for Rally NZ confident that we have the package to not only pursue our season goal of winning a 4th NZRC, but also take a good fight to the top Group N drivers who will be here competing in the Production World Rally Championship [PWRC].
 
"And who knows, after our performance at Whangarei against some of them, we may even be able to 'rattle the cage' of a few of the Super 2000 [SWRC] guys too......."

Photo by Geoff Ridder


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