Ford chase podium finish to 2007 ARC
The Pirtek Rally Team is expected to put in its strongest performance of the year at the final round of the NEC Australian Rally Championship, the NGK Rally of Melbourne on 10-11 November.
The Pirtek Rally Team is the only organisation in the world running the Super 2000 version of the Ford Fiesta. The Pirtek Rally Team is the only team fielding two S2000 Ford Fiestas in Melbourne for Michael Guest / David Green and Darren Windus / Jon Mortimer.
At the previous round, the Great Lakes Rally outside Forster in New South Wales, Guest finished just 0.5 of a second outside of second place in leg #2. It was a clear indication of the marked improvement in the Super 2000 Ford Fiesta
Guest is keen to show the potential of the car at the team’s home event.
"There’s so much potential in the Fiesta," said Guest.
"We are keen to show that on the challenging roads throughout the Yarra Valley.
"It is an event we feel should suit our cars, but more importantly it’s about finishing the year on the right note and looking forward to 2008.
"The Great Lakes Rally proved that we have made massive gains with the Fiesta. Even though we had a fuel pump issue on the first day, we proved that our reliability has improved. That’s given us every reason to look towards a podium result in Melbourne.
Driver of the #5 Pirtek Rally Team Ford Fiesta, Darren Windus, is back to full confidence after completing the entire rally in New South Wales.
"After a couple of tough outings in Canberra and South Australia, our rally in New South Wales proved that we are back," said Windus.
"I have done the Melbourne event on numerous occasions and it’s been a bit of a bittersweet rally for me.
"Our package is well suited to this event and we are aiming at keeping up the pace, but ensuring we keep it clean at the same time.
"A just reward for everyone involved in the program is bringing both cars home in strong positions."
Pirtek Rally Team Chief Engineer Marcus Clarke has been kept busy since the last event with preparations for the NGK Rally of Melbourne, as well as the upcoming FIA (Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile) homologation for the Fiesta Super 2000 from 2008.
"We chose to develop the Fiesta S2000 in competition this year," said Clarke.
"It’s been a pretty hard process at times, but the entire Pirtek Rally Team is confident that the NGK Rally of Melbourne will bring a worthy result to all that work.
"There are a number of updates we have made since New South Wales. Importantly they have been to improve performance without sacrificing reliability.
"The process of preparing for the FIA homologation at the same time has not hampered our efforts. It’s been a very informative process and we feel that we have truly developed a very competitive package for those wanting to run the Fiesta S2000.
"There have been a number of milestones this team has had to meet this year, including getting two cars to the first event in Queensland in just 18 weeks. We have met all the FIA targets for the upcoming homologation process and the opportunity to have other teams run the S2000 Fiesta both here in Australia and overseas is very exciting for everyone involved."
The Pirtek Rally Team will complete preparations for the NGK Rally of Melbourne with a shakedown test on Wednesday 7 November in the Yarra Valley.
The rally gets underway at New Quay on Friday night in the Docklands area of Melbourne. The NGK Rally of Melbourne covers two days of competition totaling 18 timed stages and 226 competitive kilometres.
The Pirtek Rally Team would like to pass on its condolences to the family of the late Paul Flintoft, who was fatally injured at the Mount Buller Sprint. A long-time competitor Paul was well known to the members of the Pirtek Rally Team.