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Successful gravel rally test for Dalton’s Ford Fiesta Proto

Richie Dalton Ford Fiesta
Digital image / Wishart Media

Fresh from his top 10 finish in last year’s Kennards Hire Rally Australia, Richie Dalton has completed a successful test in his new Ford Fiesta Proto.

After months of teething problems with the build of the car, Sydney based Dalton completed 100 kilometres of testing in the new car in hot and dry conditions.

With regular co-driver, John Allen, unavailable for the test, Dale Moscatt sat in the car and called the pace notes.

“We have two more tests over the next 10 days, before the car heads across the water to New Zealand at the end of the month,” Dalton said.

“We are really happy with the car, and were blown away by the strength, balance and handling of it.

“Even Dale said the brakes were like WRC brakes.

“We found the perfect diff and damper set-up after just four runs, running on Pirelli KM4 tyres,” he added.

Asked to compare it to the Skoda Fabia R5 he drove at Rally Australia, Dalton pauses, before answering:

“What a tough question. It’s definitely not worse than the Skoda for handling, that’s for sure!”

Dalton, Allen and their Shamrock Motorsport team will contest all rounds of the 2018 New Zealand Rally Championship, beginning with the Otago Rally in Dunedin on the second weekend in April.

The Fiesta Proto body shell was built in Poland, before being shipped to Sydney.

Dalton also plans to contest some NSW events in his Ford Escort during the 2018 season.

Richie Dalton Ford Fiesta

The build of Richie Dalton’s Ford Fiesta Proto has taken longer than expected. The car will debut in April.

Related news:

Two rally championships, two countries in 2018 for Dalton

Dalton a broken man after Fiesta woes in testing

WRC star Hayden Paddon enters 2018 Otago Rally

Peter has been the editor of RallySport Magazine since its inception in 1989, in both printed and online form. He is a long-time competitor, event organiser and official, as well as working in the media.

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Richie Dalton’s Ford Fiesta Proto is on its way to New Zealand for the first round of the NZ Rally Championship, the Otago Rally (April 13-15).


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