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A chance discovery on e-Bay has led to the return of a former Possum Bourne Subaru to New Zealand, with plans to showcase the celebrated vehicle at the 2007 Silverstone Race to the Sky at Easter (April 7 and 8).

The ex-works Group A 555 Subaru Impreza, which Possum purchased from Prodrive in 1996, was used for his attack on the Australian Rally Championship, which he succeeded in winning three times.

It has now been purchased from its current owner in Paraguay by Kiwi Stu Weeber who knows the car intimately, having crewed for Possum when he owned it.

“I was at a reunion of Possum’s crew at Rally New Zealand last year when I heard the Subaru was for sale on e-Bay. I jumped in as fast as I could and did the deal because I knew it wouldn’t last long before someone else got on to it,” Weeber said.

Weeber is ‘stoked’ to have found the icon car and even more excited about now owning it.

“Possum also raced it three times in the Race to the Sky and in 2000 sold it to a rally driver in Argentina. It won two championship events and then went to Paraguay.”

The car is arriving this weekend in Christchurch after some nerve-wracking delays for Weeber and his partner, Joana O’Brien, who will be his co-driver in the Subaru at this year’s Race to the Sky.

“We’re entering in the rally class and the Subaru will look just like it used to. I’ve even got the old bonnet and other parts which I’ve kept all these years, to put back on it, so it’s in its original state. It will also be painted in its original colours.”

Weeber, who has competed at Race to the Sky for the last three years in a Subaru Impreza WRX in the open class, says he is expecting huge interest in the Possum Bourne rally car from motor racing fans.

“What we want to do is bring this car down to the event and let people see it and touch it and watch it running again. I don’t have any winning expectations, I’m just pleased to be bringing the car home.”

He says Peggy Bourne and her family are delighted that one of Possum’s favourite early cars is coming back to New Zealand.

“Craig Vincent, who was Possum’s co-driver when he owned it, is also very pleased about it.”

Weeber is confident the Subaru will be pretty much ready to go when it is landed in Christchurch.

“We might have to do a little bit of fine tuning, but otherwise it should be set up for Race to the Sky."

Photo: Sport The Library

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