It’s an event steeped in rallying history and the stages are well known the world over, however, it can’t be called as iconic as a Finland or Monte Carlo might be.

Bates shared on the new episode of the Special Stage Rally Podcast why that event was chosen.

“I think it has the most similar characteristics to Australia,” Bates said.

“The roads … if you look at most of the other events, they’re all about survival. If you look at Greece and Sardinia, they are renowned to be so rough and it becomes all about survival. Then if you look at some of the faster rallies like Finland, then they’re so unique and specific.

“Portugal seemed like the logical decision.”

Bates’ thoughts and conclusions on the event are backed up by fellow Australian, Scott Pedder, who has also competed on the Portuguese rally.

“I’ve spoken to a few people and especially Scott Pedder, who’s done Portugal before, and he says it’s exactly like Canberra,” Bates added.

“Obviously, it’s still going to be a really tough event and it seems to have gotten rougher over the years, so it’s still going to be an incredibly tough event, but I’m really looking forward to it.”

Bates also revealed that the Toyota GR Yaris Rally2 he’ll drive in the event is the one that will head ‘down under’ to Australia immediately after the event.

After the event in Portugal, it will be delivered in time for Rally Queensland.

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Luke Whitten

Luke is part of the third generation of the RallySport Magazine team and holds a degree in marketing & communications.
Luke is part of the third generation of the RallySport Magazine team and holds a degree in marketing & communications.

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