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Eli Evans has taken out the Mt Porepunkah Rallysprint in north eastern Victoria for the second year running.

Using the event as a shakedown before this weekend’s Great Lakes Rally in New South Wales, Evans and co-driver Chris Murphy finished nearly a minute in front of their nearest challengers in their Subaru Impreza WRX.

With a full field of 30 competitors, including a host of ARC regulars, the event was run over two stages, which were run twice in each direction during the day. Fine weather made conditions dusty, but this didn’t hamper competitors during the day.

In second place, following his third place in last year’s event, was Brenton Kaitler and co-driver John Allen in a Lancer Evo 6. Kaitler eventually got the better of young ARC star, Brendan Reeves, who drove a non-turbo Subaru Impreza RS and was at a distinct disadvantage on the hilly Mt Porepunkah stages.

In fourth place was Victorian Champion Justin Dowell in a Lancer Evo 9, just ahead of the Lancer Evo 3 of Craig Morris. Scott Spedding rounded out the top six in a Lancer Evo 1.

The award for the first two-wheel drive car home was a dead heat between the Nissan 200SX of Brian Semmens, and the Datsun 260Z of Rob Devenish. Devenish, making a return to the sport ahead of this November’s Alpine Rally, showed the form that made him a front runner in the VRC in the 1990s.

The major retirement of the day was the Subaru Impreza WRX of brother and sister Jesse and Samantha Robison, who broke a driveshaft on the third of the eight stages.

The event was directed by Gary Anstis on behalf of the North Eastern Car Club, and looks set to become a regular event on the Victorian rallying calendar.

Final results:
1. Eli Evans/Chris Murphy, Subaru Impreza STI, 24:25 

2. Brenton Kaitler/John Allen, Mitsubishi Evo 6, 25:21 

3. Brendan Reeves/Rhianon Smyth, Subaru RS Impreza, 25:41 

4. Justin Dowell/Matt Lee, Mitsubishi Evo 9, 25:52 

5. Craig Morris/Carrie Morris, Mitsubishi Evo 3, 26:04 

6. Scott Spedding/Robin Smalley, Mitsubishi Evo 1, 27:18 

=7. Brian Semmens/David Leoncini, Nissan 200 SX, 27:23 

=7. Robert Devenish/Steve Kealey, Datsun 260Z, 27:23 

9. Hilary Evans/Doug Fernie, Mitsubishi Evo 2, 27:28 

10. Ashley Allan/Paul Loxton, Nissan Pulsar GTiR, 27:33

More John Doutch photos will appear in our Photo Gallery shortly.

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