Former Marlboro Holden Dealer Team and Hyundai World Rally Team driver, Wayne Bell, will return to rallying this weekend when he competes in his first rally in over six years.

The Sydneysider, who is often referred to as the best driver never to win the Australian Rally Championship, will drive a Fiat 131 Abarth replica in this weekend’s Bega Valley Motors Rally on the NSW coast.

Bell’s long list of cars that he has driven include Holden Geminis and Commodores, Toyota Sprinters, Mazda 323s and an array of factory Hyundais, but this will be the first time he has driven a Fiat competitively.

He will be co-driven by Fred Gocentas, one of Australia’s most recognized and respected navigators. While the two were rivals in the seventies, eighties and nineties, they have never competed together.

Bell will drive the car that has previously been driven by Greg Carr and Shawn Urquhart, and in testing reportedly drove the car quicker than anyone ever has.

The Fiat’s main opposition on the smooth, flowing Bega roads will come from the Datsun Stanza of Darryn Snooks, who finished a brilliant eighth outright in the recent Otago International Rally in New Zealand.

Other likely front-runners in the event, which runs ahead of the NSW Rally Championship round, include Pat Cole in a Mercedes 280SL and Richard Galley in a Datsun 260Z. The classic event will see a vast array of cars, including Escorts, Porsches, Peugeots, Toyota and Holdens.

Thirteen cars will compete in the classic rally, while a further 75 cars will go head-to-head in the combined NSW/Victorian Rally Championship round.
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