Evans heads Rally SA entry list
Toyota Racing Development’s Simon and Sue Evans head a large field of entries for round four of the NEC Australian Rally Championship, the Toyota Kluger Rally South Australia, with the aim of continuing their unbeaten run in the 2007 season.
Evans will be hoping his current form will be strong enough to hold off the bumper field of 70 competitors – combining NEC ARC, SA Rally Championship and Classics – who will be tackling what is regarded as the fastest rally on the NEC ARC calendar.
The strong field has increased from 58 cars in 2006 and will ensure there will be plenty of action in the forests surrounding the Adelaide Hills and Barossa Valley region of South Australia.
While Evans carries form and confidence into the event, he has not had a great history in South Australia, with it being his lowest scoring round in the past two seasons.
“This event has always been a big challenge for me, but I’m really happy with the way the car is handling and Sue and I are in the zone right now,” Evans said.
“It’s going to be another tough event, and I’m just going to go out there and drive the way I have this whole season – it’s worked so far so I’m not going to change anything now.”
The Pirtek Ford Rally Team have used the mid-season break to focus on further developing their two Super 2000 Fiestas and the team are hopeful that the second half of the championship will produce some better results.
“The faster, flowing roads will suit the Super 2000 cars a lot better than the roads we’ve seen in the first half of the championship,” explained Michael Guest. “It’s a rally where you really need to be on the go all the time, but the surface is very smooth and the shire stages are some of the cleanest we do in the championship.”
Steve Glenney will be back to defend his 2006 event title, and will have added incentive this year when he hits the forest in his new car, the ex-Les Walkden Racing Subaru Impreza driven by Cody Crocker in the Asia Pacific Rally Championship last year.
Glenney, a thoroughbred horse trainer from Wistow in the Adelaide Hills, stole the show at last year’s Toyota Rally SA, taking out the rally ahead of Maximum Motorsport’s Dean Herridge and TRD’s Neal Bates. Glenney will be eligible for points in this year’s round, after registering for the NEC ARC for 2007.
“We are aiming for a repeat of last year’s effort but it is going to be tough after a 12 month break from the sport, and with the form Simon Evans is showing, it’s going to be a good challenge,” Glenney said. “Hopefully it will be a close battle and give us a good start for the rest of the season.”
With the competition in the Privateer’s Cup heating up as the championship heads into the second half of the season, Brendan Reeves will be out to close the gap to Dean Herridge, while Eli Evans will be looking to put together two solid heat results to stay in touch with the competitors ahead.
The competition for the Rally Challenge will be tight, with the event boasting the biggest entry list for the second tier privateer category for the 2007 season to date.
Toyota Kluger Rally SA Event Director, Ivar Stanelis, is encouraging locals to come out in force to support the teams and see rallying up close and personal.
“The super special stages introduced at Angaston Oval will provide rally viewing like never before,” explained Stanelis. “The two stages will enable us to bring the sport to the public and will increase the already high profile of the event in the Barossa region.
“We are really pleased to have achieved such a great field, the strong number of entries is a good sign that rallying in South Australia is on the up.”
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