February 26, 2002
Subaru claims first rally victory
The Subaru rally team of Patrick Richard and Ian McCurdy, the 2001 North American production-class champions, moved to the next level on Saturday with their first overall victory in the Subaru Canadian Rally Championship. Richard placed first in the Rallye Perce-Neige Maniwaki, well ahead of Jean-Sebastien Besner in a Mitsubishi Lancer and Andrew Comrie-Picard, also in a Mitsubishi.
It was a victory of strategy as well as speed, with Richard choosing snow tires instead of the ice tires that most of his rivals used, and out-waiting rivals Jon Nichols and Sylvain Erickson who traded the lead back and forth in the early stages.
“This feels great. It’s wonderful,” said Richard celebrating his first national win. “I was second-guessing myself all the time, losing seconds here and there, but our tactics paid off in the middle of the rally.”
The win gives Richard, who is in just his third year of competitive rallying, an early lead in the Canadian driver’s championship. With 30 points, he is three ahead of Besner and ten points in front of current Canadian champion Tom McGeer, who did not compete in Maniwaki.
The Subaru Canadian Rally Championship, presented by Yokohama, consists of nine annual events across the country. The next event is the Bighorn Rally, near Edmonton, Alberta, May 18 – 19. For more on the Subaru Canada Rally Team, visit their web site at www.subarurallyteam.com. More information on www.carsrally.ca
the Canadian Association of Rallysport is available at their web site,