After the opening two Rounds of the East Coast Bullbars Australian Rally Championship Brendan Reeves finds himself in the unfamiliar position of points leader, yet the young Victorian is taking it all in his stride as he enjoys adapting to a new mindset.

“For sure it’s a new position for me to be in, to be top of the points after the first two events of the year, but I’m really liking the feeling of being out the front,” said Brendan who currently sits 34 points clear of second placed Scott Pedder.
Reeves has benefited from a clean sweep in Canberra, where he claimed the ARMOR ALL Power Stage, as well as both Heat’s One and Two, before capitalising on Pedder’s problems in Western Australia to swoop in for the outright win.
“Last year I really just focused on gaining experience, and learning the car and team. How I started in Canberra was totally different to how I started in WA. In Canberra I wanted to start the year with maximum points and I was happy we were able to achieve that!” explained Brendan.
“At the Forest Rally though I was happy to settle for what points were on offer. We had some problems like all the others but we managed to keep them to a minimum and come through to claim the win.”
Reeves explains that his approach to rallying has changed over the off season, now that he’s comfortable within the team and with the Mazda2.
“I think the mindset I’ve had to adopt this year is about consistency, and I really learnt that last year driving in the US 2WD Championship. We missed the opening Rounds, so we knew if we were going to win the title we had to finish every rally.”
“I’ve looked at how Eli (Evans) won last year, and how Cody (Crocker) used to win before that, I even look at someone like Sebastien Loeb. They’d all come out fast on the first stage and then settle into a solid rhythm from there.”
“That’s been the game plan but when you’ve got Scott (Pedder) and I at each others throats from the start, with one of us waiting for the other to make a mistake, that can change things quite a lot,” he added.
“Unlike circuit racing with rallying you often have no idea if your rivals are having problems. With Scott’s problems on the Sunday in WA though I knew about it straight away because it happened right on the start line in front of me.
“I knew after that that I just had to focus on driving to the finish,” said Brendan.
Reeves though admits when the year started he felt like he was stepping into battle blind folded, despite his experience from the 2013 season.
“This year I didn’t know what to expect. We had Eli unsure of what he’d be driving, the two new Citroen’s were a real unknown and while Scott was in the same car he was racing with a new team.”
The ECB ARC now switches to the first of two endurance style events, where drivers compete over a full three-day course rather than a split Saturday and Sunday sprint style event.
“I’m really looking forward to the endurance events coming up, I think they definitely suit my experience overseas a lot more than the sprint style rallies. Queensland is always a really tough event, the roads last year were very rough and that made it hard work on the cars,” Brendan commented.
“Punctures are always a concern, and the road conditions can change a lot between what we see in recce and what we experience during the rally. Partly because the weather can change and partially because we run behind the leading APRC cars.”
“My aim is to stay out of trouble, hopefully avoid any punctures, and leave Queensland with as strong a points lead, or hopefully stronger, than I have right now.”

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