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At Rally Victoria Scott Pedder was crowned the new Australian Rally Champion, but for co-driver Dale Moscatt it became his second title having won the sports top honour nine years earlier alongside Cody Crocker.

The ARC media team caught up with the new dual Australian Championship winning co-driver to get his thoughts on the win and the season just past.
ARC: Dale first what has it been like helping Scott to the Championship this year?
Dale: It’s been really rewarding, he thoroughly deserves the title and it’s been fantastic sitting alongside him, it’s a great result for everyone involved.
ARC: And you’ve now earned two co-driving titles against your name, and interestingly the last time you won your main rival was in fact Scott Pedder.
Dale: The last Championship I won in ’05, nine years ago, with Cody (Crocker), the only Round we didn’t win was the event Scott won. He didn’t seem to have a lot of luck back then but he was always a big challenger. I don’t know if it was trying too hard or inexperience, or what it was, but he was certainly always a threat.
ARC: So what’s changed over the past two years? How have you and the team been able to turn Scott from just a challenger into a Champion?
Dale: This year we’ve been able to put all those pieces together and it’s been a complete Championship. From my part I’ve helped provide him, I think, with all the little tools he needed to succeed. I see my job as a co-driver to take away all the stress and the little jobs that can distract a driver, so that he can just focus on the driving. It’s one of the things we’ve worked quite hard on.
ARC: Can you give us some examples of what areas you’ve been able to help him with?
Dale: I’m spending a lot of time on preparing things for Scott before we’ve even gotten to the rally. So this Round for example, because we’ve been here before, I’ve prepared all the pace notes in advance, as well as all the onboard footage, so he can sit and study the stages and refine the notes to get the best out of himself and the car once the event kicks off.
So really it’s a lot of the little things like that. I think that’s one of the things that’s helped him, especially with the amount of effort we’ve put into this thorough preparation this year. He’s an extremely busy guy away from rallying so it’s just one example of the things that let him focus on what he needs to do without wasting time with the stress of everything else that goes on around him.
ARC: And of course the Walkinshaw Performance team this year stepped in and have produced an incredibly fast and reliable car for Scott.
Dale: We’ve all known for years that Scott can drive fast, that’s never been in question. The car now, especially having the Walkinshaw boys here this year, the car has developed and been amazing. People say this car is a rocket, well it is, all the top G2 cars are rockets. We learned a lot from the Jazz and Mazda 2 last year compared to our more standard R3 spec car and the boys did a great job to get us up on a level playing field with the other G2 spec cars.
ARC: Scott’s definitely had the speed this year, his stage wins record shows that, but it has been a massive fight too hasn’t it? All the way to the final Heat of the year.
Dale: Brendan was our main competition this year, he’s a seasoned campaigner in front-wheel drive cars and he’s certainly pushed us very hard to bring the best out in ourselves. It’s been a very even playing field too this year, our dampers were changed to the same as Brendan’s before the start of the year, then after Round two we got the engine G2 spec’d so then horsepower and top speed were the same, our tyres, car weights (with crew) they are all the same.
The difference then comes down to a combination of our own personal preparations and commitment out on the stages. Scott believes in himself 100% as a driver and knows his capabilities, and the team has given us a reliable car that allows him to drive flat out, but still comfortably. We only replaced one bumper all year, which speaks volumes for his development as a complete driver.
This year Scott has really driven to his full potential, and that’s been great and we’ve really enjoyed the year. Everything has all gelled together, and when you’re in a calm, relaxed, confident environment the stage times and results seem to just come that little bit easier.
Nothing ever comes easy, but it was ‘easier’ and more familiar this year and that allowed Scott and I to both do our jobs properly with complete confidence.
ARC: So how does Scott rate amongst all the drivers you’ve sat beside and all the success you’ve had in rallying?
Dale: I’ve been fortunate to sit with some very good drivers at the elite levels of our sport. I’ve won stages outright in the WRC, and done lots of events with all sorts of well-credentialed drivers. So I’m reasonably qualified to say as far as Scott’s concerned, to compare, his commitment both in and out of the car is amazing, that’s what puts him right at the pointy end of the guys I’ve co-driven for. All of the elements we’ve just spoken about, plus the experience we have together now really does have Scott right at the top of his game.
ARC: And how does this Championship rate for you?
Dale: For me this second Championship feels a lot more personal this time around. When I won the Championship with Cody I was part of a very big team, a big organization with so many people behind the scenes. So yeah, this feels so much more personal. I couldn’t be happier for Scott, and the entire Pedder’s family, they’ve invested an awful lot over many years and it’s great to be a part of this success.

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