Rally favourite Simon Evans was thrilled with his second place at the Eureka Rush in his LWR Subaru, and also gave us an update on the family's Mini Cooper AP4.
The rally may well have been Evans' last in the Les Walkden Rallying Subaru, with the car now likely up for sale.
"This is easily the best Subaru I've ever driven," Evans told RallySport Magazine during the pre-event test near Ballarat.
"It just does everything so well and is great fun to drive."
The multiple Australian Rally Champion contested a Side By Side race in his factory-backed Polaris on Saturday, before joining the ARC event on Saturday night.
Evans explained his rally in depth in a lengthy Facebook post that included:
"This rally was even more technical than the motocross track I raced on yesterday. Lots of crests with sharp turns and trees and stumps lining the roads edge, just waiting for you to run a little wide and end your rally.
"First stage on Sunday and the pace was sensational. Everyone was fast and Molly was on a mission, taking 11 seconds off me, and I wasn’t going slow!!
"The old me would’ve stepped it up on the next stage, the longest of the rally and most dangerous! But I thought, I’m happy with my pace at the moment so I stuck to my plan and maintained our current pace.
"Clearly this was the decision of the rally. Hayden clipped a rock and broke the suspension (not that I was anywhere near Hayden for pace).
Simon Evans had a busy weekend in Ballarat. Photo: Peter Whitten
"Molly got it wrong over a crest and visited one of the stumps I’d mentioned earlier, ending her challenge for a win. So after this stage I found myself in second place, with Lewis Bates breathing down my neck just a handful of second back in third.
"So last stage of heat one I said to Lewis, seeing your brother has a huge lead and we are fighting for second place, let’s put beers on this stage to keep it interesting. It’s something Ed Ordynski and I used to do in the good old days. 😉
"Well, Lewis was up for it, we get to stage end and Lewis won the stage with me 0.6 seconds behind, and Harry a further second behind me in third! I think we should race for beers more often.
"Going into heat two, a repeat of heat one, we had made a couple of adjustments to our car to cope for the stages being swept. We had a couple niggling issues with our car for the last three stages and I thought for sure we were going to loose second place, but in the same instance Lewis was having dramas with his car as well.
"When we finished I thought, well I did the best I could so no matter the result I should be happy. The results came through and I was in second with Lewis third and I extended my lead over him by a little bit as well.
"So to split the formidable Toyota team was a true feat.
It goes to show that rallying is not about raw speed, but consistency and reliability play big factors into this as well. It also helps to have an awesome car and team behind you. Thank you to Les Walkden for trusting me with your car."
Away from the pressure of the rally, Evans said that the Mini Cooper AP4 that his brother, Eli, drove in a number of ARC rounds is unlikely to see ARC competition again.
"I've told dad I'll prepare it and run it in the Finke Desert Race, but he didn't like that idea," he laughed.
"I reckon with extra suspension travel and a few other adjustments it would be perfect for it!"
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