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The last round of the Australian Rally Championship was one of ups and downs for the Opti-Coat Rally Team and driver Steve Mackenzie as they entered their home rally.

The round started off the best way possible, with Steve placing the Ford Fiesta in the top 5 for the power stage setting 2nd and 4th fastest times in qualifying, Steve and Brent would eventually wind up 4th outright in the power stage results.

Steve was equally happy with the result. “I was a bit surprised with our pace, I didn’t think that I did anything special for the qualifying runs, I just focused on being tidy and managed to find the grip. Our power stage run was a little untidy, even though we still managed to match the bigger teams which is always pleasing.”

Heading into Heat one the team was confident of a good result until driveshaft failure put them out on the re-run of the Ada River Stage, with the team sitting in the top 5, 15 seconds off 3rd until the driveshaft broke it was an encouraging yet disappointing way to end the day.

Heat two and again Steve and Brent were sitting well inside the top 10 until a gear selector issue forced them out on the 3rd stage of the day, leaving them stranded in Service Park as the other teams left for the heats final loop of stages.

“We had the pace, which for me is the biggest positive that we can challenge the top teams, this event is the last one for me in this car, it’s been tough but we have shown what we can do with outdated machinery and now we can look forward to 2014 with the new G2 fiesta we are currently building,” Steve said.

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