McRae wins RAC Rally
- 4th December 2006, 9:57am
McRae and co-driver Andy Richardson led the event for the first two stages, but only regained the lead after the final test was completed and after they had braved a challenging mix of weather.
“It’s a fantastic feeling especially as we were playing catch-up for most of the rally,” said McRae. “We were a minute behind coming into the last day and before the final stage we were still 21 seconds behind and thought we wouldn’t do it.”
The then rally leader, Jeremy Easson, suffered a throttle cable failure in the stage, meaning that McRae won the event by almost two minutes from Gareth Lloyd, with Ford Escorts making up the top 13 places on the event.
“We were on three cylinders in the first two forest stages and had a puncture so we had our fair share of problems too,” said McRae.
McRae has won numerous rallies around the world and is five-time British Rally Champion, taking the title in 1981-82, 1984 and 1987-88. The opportunity to contest the Roger Albert Clark Rally only came about after Eddie Stobart Ltd MD William Stobart had to pull out due to business commitments.
“A big thank you to William. He was so busy with his business that he couldn’t drive on this event, so I hope his business continues to flourish! I only met Andy Richardson, William's regular co-driver a few days before the rally and I am very pleased at how we worked together his road rallying experience proved very useful,” said McRae.
The Stobart Motorsport liveried Prepfab-prepared Escort was the fastest car over ten stages of the event, including all bar two on the final day.
“I didn’t win the old RAC Rally, it is one event I would have loved to win, but this is a pretty good substitute,” said McRae. “We had three days which have been run faultlessly, we had snow in Scotland, rain on stages, dry stages and rough stages, it’s been a fantastic event.”
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