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Last weekend’s Capital Rally of Canberra saw great results again for Molly Taylor and Dale Moscatt, as they finished heat one in ninth place. Heat two was a little more challenging for the duo with their Mitsubishi Mirage's mechanical problems, but the team still managed to storm home in 15th place for the weekend. For Dale ,it is now off to the Bega Valley Rally this weekend, before flying out to Beijing to compete in yet another championship in China.

Heat one of the Capital Rally saw Molly and Dale set some fantastic times against crews with far more horsepower at their disposal, the most impressive moment being perhaps Stage one which was held after dark and saw Molly and Dale tenth quickest. The team also managed to set a ninth fastest time on stage eight to finish the heat over five minutes ahead of their nearest P2 class rivals.

The 220 competitive kilometres of this event were rough on vehicles and unfortunately the Mirage lost second gear during Heat two. A gearbox change was done in 28 minutes at the next service, but driveshaft failure followed soon after costing the team a further eight minutes.

“As we’ve been saying all along, this year is about experience and covering extra kilometres for Molly, and yet again we managed to complete the rally and learnt a lot along the way,” said Dale. “The pace we showed in Canberra in a two wheel drive car on the rough and slippery roads was great and with our only issues being mechanical dramas that were out of our control, we are both more than happy with the results.”

“You have to be brave to attack the roads in Canberra and I’m sure all the spectators that came out to watch saw that bravery is an attribute Molly has in abundance.” said Dale. The next event for Dale alongside Molly will be Toyota Rally of South Australia to be run from August 10 - 12.

For now though Dale is gearing up to spend the Queens Birthday weekend in Bega with friend and occasional team mate, Kelvin Croker. The Bega Valley Rally will be held this Sunday with 88 crews coming from the ACT, NSW, Victoria and as far afield as Queensland.

Kelvin and Dale will start as Car 1, a true measure perhaps of Kelvin’s skill behind the wheel in that his aging Lancer Evo III is seeded ahead of many more modern vehicles, including Lancer Evo IX’s. The Bega Rally will also be a family affair for the Crokers with Kelvin in Car 1, older brother Gavin and cousin, Eric in Car 2, as well as younger brother Clinton in Car 21.

“Kelvin and I finished runners up by one single second at this event in 2004 but won it in 2005,” Dale said. “In 2006 Michael South and I were leading in a Subaru when the engine failed near the end of stage six. This disappointment was compounded when after that very stage, all the teams went into service where they were told the event was then concluded because of the torrential rain.”
 
“Kelvin and I had separate outings during the Capital Rally of Canberra last week, where both Molly and I, as well as Kelvin (co-driven by Eric) showed a great turn of speed but were both let down with little mechanical problems,” Moscatt added.

 
“With a scheduled finish for us of around 10pm on Sunday night the next race for me is to then get back home to Sydney for my next commitment. It is a six hour drive home and I don't really have too much time up my sleeve to swap bags and head to the airport to catch my 10:15am flight out to China,” explained Dale.
“This year’s Beijing rally will be new for everyone competing there too. There have been rallies in that area in the past but this one is a full tarmac format so the roads are all new and we are not really sure what to expect. We do know the competition will be as fierce as usual..”

During the Shanghai round a fierce battle with Jarkko Meittinen, David Higgins, Xu Lang and PWRC newcomer Takuma Kamada had persisted right through heat one with just seconds separating the five teams. Martin and Dale were in the lead going into day two until a puncture costing them around 20 seconds dropped the team three places. The Beijing round is sure to be a repeat of such tight competition especially with fellow Aussies, Dean Herridge and Bill Hayes to join the mix.

Photo: Neil Blackbourn
 

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