The current point score leader of the 2011 Bosch ARC Justin Dowel has attributed his recent maiden Bosch ARC Round victory and elevation to the top spot on the leader board in this years series to a regime of hard work in the gym.

"I've been in the Australian Rally Championship for four years and to secure my first win feels amazing," explained Dowel. "It's come after a lot of soul searching by me, a lot of hard work by the team and in particular my co-driver Matt (Lee)," said Justin Dowel.

Dowel's career in the ARC can be described as turbulent at best, with flashes of amazing speed and skill tempered by frequent erratic driving, punctuated by off road excursions.

"I've especially got to take my hat off to Matt, he's been through a lot with me in the past, and he could have walked away at anytime, but he's stuck with me and I can't thank him enough for that," said Dowel.

However the Victorian says a fresh approach to his personal preparations away from the rally stages, including hitting the gym, has transformed his approach.

"I've really worked on my fitness, and spent the weeks between Rally Queensland and Rally SA really pounding the weights in the gym.

"I've seen a huge improvement already so that side of my preparation between rounds is going to be an aspect I'm going to really continue with."

In addition, Dowel signaled ahead of the recent Scouts Rally SA that he'd spent time reflecting on his frequent over enthusiasm which had led to mechanical failure or crashes off the road.

"I've got to make sure I don't drive like a goose," Dowel said at the media day prior to Rally SA, which looked in immediate danger when he promptly crashed off the road just three runs into the shakedown.

However this proved a wake up call for the Melbourne driver and he was able to turn his weekend around to claim victory.

"That crash really made me stop and think very hard about the way I was approaching things," said Justin.

"I realised that if I was ever going to win a round of the ARC then I really had to live up to the comments and claims I'd made," Dowel explained.

"So to get to the end of the weekend and be standing on that top step of the podium felt even more special," he added.

"I can look ahead to Rally Australia now, and work to stay in touch with the ARC front runners, especially Ryan Smart and Mark Pedder and make sure that I don't make any mistakes or undo the hard work I've done," he concluded.
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