Kiwi rally star, Emma Gilmour, is keeping the wheels turning on her rally campaign one event at a time.
The next outing for the Dunedin driver and her Suzuki Swift Maxi will be on Waitomo roads later this month when she contests the Hamilton Car Club round of the ABC Pipe Fitters Northern Rallysprint Series.
After that two rally outings are pencilled into Gilmour’s diary.
"It’s up in the air. All our sponsorship went on hold for this year when the national championship was cancelled,’’ she told RallySport Magazine.
"Now I’m balancing my budget while also trying to get as much mileage as I possibly can.
"We are planning to be at Hoddle Road and all going well the Timaru Rally. After that I’d like to do the Auckland Rally and the Jack’s Ridge Rallysprint.’’
Like all competitors it’s a very different programme than she had originally envisaged for 2020.
"We were ready to rally and chase the championship again,’’ said Gilmour.
"We had a big off-season getting the car ready to go and hoping to make up for the disappointments of last year. We were able to complete a shakedown just before lockdown.’’
Emma Gilmour is already planning for a big 2021 rally season.
Since then Gilmour has lined up at four events in two different cars.
"It was great to drive Kirky’s (David Kirk’s) new Fiesta at Whare Flat and the Circle Hill Rallysprint,’’ she says.
The Fiesta is a Proto-spec car based on Mitsubishi Evo 6 running car.
With her Suzuki Swift currently in the North Island in the care of Choice Performance, Gilmour has also been behind the wheel at the Rally Drive NZ test day in Maramarua Forest and a Wanganui Rallysprint.
Those events have allowed Gilmour to forge a new co-driver partnership with Mal Peden.
"It’s been great working with Mal. We were all set for the NZRC, but now we’ve had the chance to start working together at these smaller events. It’s been good in that respect.
"And it’s great to see the events that have started running again have been well supported.’’
Emma Gilmour at a test day in her Suzuki Swift Maxi. Photo: Geoff Ridder
Rally plans, however, aren’t at the forefront of Gilmour’s daily routine at present.
"Right now my priority is business [her Suzuki cars dealership in Dunedin].
"It’s a weird time. We’ve just had a couple of fantastic months but nobody knows what might be coming, so I am focused on that.
"But I’m also working away towards a New Zealand Rally Championship programme in 2021.’’
The Hoddle Road Rallysprint near Otorohanga uses a 10km former WRC Rally New Zealand stage on Sunday, August 23.
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