Nannup rally driver and new Western Australian rally champion Tom Wilde beat all competitors to take the outright win at the Western Sarfari Rally at Chidlow on the weekend.

Despite having the driver’s championship all wrapped before the event started Wilde, driving with fill-in co-driver Lee Tierney, set a blistering pace by winning five out of the nine special stages and the rally by more than 30 seconds.

“To win on the weekend was just the icing on the cake for the whole team, I really wanted to win the Safar rally,” Wilde explained. “Without Chris [Anderson] there, part of me felt like I had something to prove,” he said.

Wilde enlisted the services of co-driver Lee Tierney of ARC ilk to replace his regular side-kick and sister Nerralie because she sits out of the ‘blind’ rallies due to what can only be called a form of motion sickness.

“I'd like to thank Lee Tierney for navigating for me on the weekend; he is very professional and made me feel very confident to push hard,” Wilde said. “On our first event together we found the roads were very challenging over the weekend and we obviously had to gain trust in each other quickly.”

“I would also like to thank all the guys at the Busselton Subaru Rally team, Cambray Sheep Cheese, Wendy's Bunbury Forum and Donnybrook Panel Beaters.”

Despite not contesting the final rally of the year, Nerralie had still accrued enough co-driver points for her to take out the co-drivers championship, which is the second navigator’s title in a row for the Nannup resident.

“It was a bit different being a spectator than being in the car,” Nerralie explained. “It was quite hard to sit there and watch someone else in the car especially when we both won the championship,” she said.

“I didn’t want to risk Tom losing any time because I don’t know why but I just get really sick in the blind rallies.”

“It feels really good to be the co-driver champion again but I am just glad that Tom was up there with me this year as I really wanted him to win,” she said.

Nicholas Box and Matt James-Wallace managed a sensational second place, which is an exceptional effort seeing as though they are not regular WARC drivers. Travis White and Greg Flood finished third in what was another superb effort considering this was the pair’s first attempt at a rally in a 4WD car instead of 2WD. Alex Stone completed a successful return to rallying by coming fourth overall with new co-driver Hannah Drury.
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