Just one month on from the opening round of the Chinese Rally Championship, David Higgins is back and gearing up for round two, the Huairou Rally in Beijing.

Last time out Higgins and co-driver Ieuan Thomas finished second on the Jiangning Rally, narrowly missing out on the win when they suffered damper problems.

"This event is a full asphalt rally which looks quite similar to the 2007 event which we won," explained the former British Rally champion. "The stages are very twisty, but smooth too.

"I remember that in 2007 there wasn't much grip so it was easy to overheat the tyres if you weren't careful - and this year's event looks set to be even harder because the temperature could be up in the 40s."

As usual, Higgins and Thomas have travelled out to China before the event to test their Mitsubishi Lancer Evo9 with the WY Rally Team, but this time their test will take place on a kart track because of a lack of closable asphalt roads available in the area.

Unfortunately though, a change in the initial calendar released for the Chinese championship now means the Huairou Rally takes place on the same weekend as David's home round of the MSA British Rally Championship, Rally Isle of Man.

"Even though we are not doing the BRC any more, it would have been great to have been able to contest Rally Isle of Man which we always enjoy," David added. "We did make initial sponsorship enquiries to try to put a deal together, but then the Huairou got put back a week to the same weekend.

"I hope we can get back to our winning ways in China now after the damper problems we had last time out. And even though we will be about 5,000 miles away from Rally Isle of Man, we will be keeping an eye on the results to see how my brother Mark and my cousin Andy Leece are getting on."


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