Full ARC season for Eli Evans
- 12th March 2008, 9:53am
“We had been looking at some overseas options that would have seen me missing the majority of the ARC season,” said Evans.
“Although it’s disappointing that our plans to compete in international events did not come to fruition, I am really happy to be contesting the ARC again!
“Over the past few years we haven’t been in the position to compete in a championship for more than one year, so it will be great to settle in a series and get to put into action what I learnt last year.”
Evans was one of the few drivers to take a stage win off his brother, national champion Simon Evans, in the 2007 Championship, and is hoping he can continue the speed that saw him move up the ranks of the ARC last year.
“We’re car two on the road this year so it will be a big challenge, but I’m excited about getting the experience of running up at the front of the field. Having the experience of driving on unswept roads will be invaluable.
“We’ll be aiming to be quick, that goes without saying, but we (Evans and his co-driver Chris Murphy) are going to really use this opportunity to learn a lot about rallying.”
Evans says while beating his brother would be a great achievement, he is realistic about his options, stating he will be focused on top Privateers such as Spencer Lowndes and Michael Guest.
“It will be very difficult to get near Simon; he has proven he is the best driver in the country, however this year will be everyone’s best chance because he is competing in a new car that hasn’t been proven.
“Spencer and Guesty will be tough to beat and if you can get past them I think you should be pretty close to a podium finish, but there is a strong field of talented drivers and it’s not going to be easy for anyone to get on the podium.”
While Evans competed in the QUIT Forest Rally in 2007, he only contested a few stages before retiring from the event, which is making him even more keen to get out there and contest the rally.
“I didn’t get a chance to have a good look at the roads last year, so it will basically be a completely new event for me again this year. Hopefully I can get a good result to kick-start the season.”
Evans will be competing in the Subaru Impreza WRX STI he ran in the 2007 championship and is confident he will be able to maintain the speed that saw him leading rallies last year.
“I would love to win the Privateers’ Cup and finish on the podium for the season, but that is still a long way off and we’re just going to take it one rally at a time,” he said.
Photos: Joel Strickland
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