CHAMPION EYES MORE MITSUBISHI MAGIC
Trackrod podium for Yorkshireman prompts quest for Barbados trip with rare Lancer
Ryan Champion has targeted an outing in Barbados after a podium finish on last weekend’s Trackrod Rally Yorkshire.
Champion returned to the Dalby forest event 10 years after he headed off the likes of Mark Higgins, Jonny Milner and Gwyndaf Evans for the victory when it was a round of the British championship.
He won the Trackrod in a Group N Mitsubishi Lancer in 2006, and returned to the event in Tristan Bailey’s Lancer WRC 04, believed to be the only example of the car still in use.
Now Champion is hoping to return to one of his favourite events – Rally Barbados – in the car.
“We’re certainly going to see what we can do in terms of Barbados,” said Champion. “It’s an event I’ve done before and one I’d like to do again. We’re going to talk about it, whether it’s possible or not, we’ll look into it but it would certainly be nice to do it.”
When asked if he would compete again this year, Champion said: “I’ll pay the bills for this weekend first!”
Champion struggled early on Saturday’s Trackrod as the Lancer suffered from low turbo boost, but once the problem was rectified, the Yorkshireman had the car – run Dom Delaney’s SVP organisation – scoring fastest stage times. He beat the BTRDA regulars, including a host of Ford Fiesta R5 and S2000s, to fastest time through the tricky Dalby stage.
“I had a couple of spins, it’s probably a couple of things, me overdriving and me trying to make up a lot of time with the turbo issues,” said Champion, once a factory driver for Mitsubishi in the BRC.
“We had an overshoot in Dalby and a quick visit to the undergrowth. But apart from that we had a clean run at the stage. We were within a second of Charlie [Payne] on the last two stages, and there’s quite a bit of difference in the technology to Charlie’s car.
“There’s definitely more to come from me and the car together.”
Bailey and SVP owner Delaney are hoping to rent out the car again after Champion proved its pace.
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