The Canadian Rally Championship presented by Subaru and supported by Yokohama wrapped up on the weekend at the 2013 Rally of the Tall Pines. With such a heavy involvement in the series, and a cultish rally following in general, Subaru Canada thought it might be a good opportunity to show us automotive folk the pleasures of high-speed rally action in Northern Ontario.

And because he thinks he is funny, Senior Editor Jonathan Yarkony decided to send an Australian to the coldest event of the year. Luckily we had a host of Foresters to ferry us about in relative comfort.

Coming in to the final round of the season there were just two drivers vying for the championship, Pat Richard (paired with his sister, Nathalie Richard) and Antoine L’Estage (paired with co-driver Craig Parry). Adding extra spice, Nathalie was back with her brother at the event for the first time since 2006. Her driving partner for that period? Antoine L’Estage.
As it stood, L’Estage was poised to take the title. He would need to finish sixth or lower and Pat Richard would need to win or place second to steal an unlikely title.

Determined to upset the duo was “Crazy” Leo Urlichich. The Torontonian has shown blistering but ragged pace all season and was fast out of the gates. A sign in the crowd read, “Crazy Leo, please don’t crash too early”, and to his credit, Urlichich didn’t.

Urlichich was a rocket in the opening stages as L’Estage struck trouble and Richard took it easy. Halfway through the day L’Estage had dropped back to 14th courtesy of a suite of punctures and Richard was second.

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As night fell, Lady Luck switched direction again and Richard blew a centre differential leaving Leo in the lead.

But, two-thirds through the rally and with more than a five-second lead his black and orange Impreza broke a camshaft, ending his rally.

That left ice-racing specialist Chris Martin in control at the wheel of his 20-year-old Subaru, and the local went on to claim a surprise victory.
Antoine L’Estage rallied back to finish second overall, clinching his sixth Driver’s Championship and the manufacturer’s title for Mitsubishi.

Pos Time Vehicle Class Driver/Co-driver
1 2:17:21.0 Subaru Impreza 93 4wheel Open Christopher Martin – Richmond Hill, ON
Brian Johnson – ,
2 2:19:12.3 Mitsubisi Evo X 11 4wheel Open Antoine L’Estage – St-Jean, QC
Craig Parry – ,
3 2:20:12.7 Subaru WRX 02 4wheel Open Maxime Rochefort-L. – Longueuil, QC
Jérome Milette – Saint-Basile-le-Grand, QC
4 2:20:51.0 Subaru STI 10 4wheel Open Steve Hobbs – St-Gedeon, QC
Jean-Mathieu Tremblay – Saguenay, QC
5 2:30:58.0 Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 8 05 4wheel Open Simon Losier – Blainville, QC
Brian Maxwell – Port Hope, ON
6 2:33:35.7 SUBARU STI 07 4wheel Prod Alexandre Ouellette – Gatineau, QC
David Lamarre – Chelsea, QC
7 2:34:39.1 Nissan 240SX 91 2wheel Open Martin Walter – North Gower, ON
Ferdinand Trauttmansdorff – Nepean, ON
8 2:35:18.1 Subaru WRX STi 05 4wheel Open Nick Mathew – Columbus, OH
Kelly Mathew – Caledon, ON
9 2:42:08.4 Subaru WRX 06 4wheel Prod Boris Djordjevic – Devon, AB
Andrew Avery – Beaumont, AB
10 2:46:14.0 Mitsubishi Lancer DE 09 2wheel Prod Jeffrey Dowell – Windsor, ON
Emily Dowell – Hamilton, ON
11 2:56:02.3 Toyota Echo (Yaris V1) 04 2wheel Prod Eric Deschenes – Repentigny, QC
Catherine Asselin – Pointe-Claire, QC
12 2:56:52.7 Ford Fiesta 13 2wheel Open Danny Grant – Bethlehem, NH
Steven Harrell – Springfield, MA
13 3:00:30.6 VW Golf 99 2wheel Open Paul Hartl – Toronto, ON
Chuck Storry – North Gower, ON
  DNF Subaru STI 08
Mechanical prob.
4wheel Open Patrick Richard – Squamish, BC
Nathalie Richard – ,
  DNF Subaru Impreza 04
4wheel Open Leo Urlichich – Thornhill, ON
Patrick Walsh –
  DNF Subaru Impreza WRX STI 07
Excluded been towed
4wheel Open Adam Yeoman – Hancock, MI
Jordan Schulze – Hancock, MI
  DNF Mitsubishi Evolution 03
4wheel Open Jean-Sebastien Besner – Montreal, QC
Alan Ockwell – Toronto, ON
  DNF Subaru Rocket Rally 07
4wheel Open Max Riddle – Vancouver, BC
Darren Garrod – Pwllheli, Gwynedd, Wales
  DNF Subaru STI 13
4wheel Open Dillon Van Way – Carenco, LA
Andrew Edwards – Colchester, VT
  DNF Subaru STI 07
4wheel Open Alexandre Beland – Val d’Or, QC
Lyne Murphy – Saint-Constant, QC
  DNF Subaru Impreza RS 05
Mechanical prob.
4wheel Open Nicola Narini – Hampton, ON
Massimo Narini – Hampton, ON
  DNF Subaru Impreza STi 00
Off road
4wheel Open Ryan Huber – Mississauga, ON
John Vanos – Markham, ON
  DNF Mitsubishi Evo IX 06
Mechanical prob.
4wheel Open Michelle Laframboise – Picton, ON
Dean Hopkins – Mississauga, ON
  DNF Mitsubishi Evo VI 01
Mechanical prob.
4wheel Open Ian Crerar – Picton, ON
James Drake – , ON
  DNF Subaru Impreza 2.5RS 00
Mechanical prob.
4wheel Prod Jeremy Norris – Kitchener, ON
John Merry – Ottawa, ON
Regional only
  DNF Subaru Impreza STI 00
Off Road
4wheel Open Zoltan Kovacs – Kitchener, ON
Guy Boudreau – Guelph, ON
  DNF Subaru Legacy 91
Mechanical prob.
4wheel Prod Eric Vlasic – Paris, ON
Chris Pye – Ottawa, ON
  DNF Peugeot 205. 4WD Turbo 88
Head Gasket
4wheel Open Karoly Toth – Georgetown, ON
Eva Toth – Georgetown, ON
  DNF Mitsubishi Lancer 04
Group 5 Robert McNeil – Acton, ON
Patrick Wieler – Brampton, ON
  DNF Ford Focus ZX3 00
Mechanical prob.
2wheel Open Andrew Kulikowski – Guelph, ON
Ryan Nichols – Brantford, ON
  DNF Volkswagen Golf 91
Off road
2wheel Open Chris Krepski – Gatineau, QC
Alexei Stapinski – Toronto, ON
    Ford Focus 00 2wheel Open Gary Sutherland – Burlington, ON
Yevgeniy Gospodinov – Georgetown, ON
    Eagle Talon TSI 93 4wheel Prod Richard Fender – Shelburne, ON
Tom Delaney – Caledon, ON
  DNF Ford Focus 00
Mechanical prob.
4wheel Open Eric Courchesne – Drummondville, QC
Aaron Crescenti – Glen Gardner, NJ
  DNF Subaru Justy 88
4wheel Open Matt Follett – Ville Montreal, QC
Jeff Dixon – McDougall On, ON
© George Marcotte, v8.2.7f,
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