Adam Gould is looking to add more points to his MSA British Rally Championship tally when he arrives in Antrim for the Ulster Rally later this week.
The 21-year-old, who won last year's British Pirelli Star Driver award as recognition of his promise in the sport, has already turned heads with some astonishing performances at the highest level of rallying in his home country.
Despite never having competed in a four-wheel drive car before, Gould turned in an exceptional performance to take fourth overall on his first outing - the Bulldog International Rally of North Wales - in the Pirelli-liveried Subaru Impreza WRX. Two rallies later and Gould went one better and picked up his first BRC podium on the Jim Clark Rally in Scotland.
Last time out, however, he was caught out by one of the Isle of Man's tighter than expected bends. He rolled the Subaru out of a scrap for third place. Undeterred, he's back to further his experience and to once more show his speed at the wheel of the Impreza.
Between the Isle of Man International Rally last month and this week's Ulster International Rally, the Subaru has undergone an extensive rebuild in TEG Sport's Carnforth workshop.
“The team has been fantastic,” said Gould. “I left them with a car which didn't have a straight panel and they've transformed it back into the perfect rally car.”
Gould and his co-driver Sebastian Marshall made the trip to Lancashire to help the team with the early stages of that rebuilding process. They were unable to complete the job, however, as they flew to Finland to take part in the recce for Rally Finland – a round of the World Rally Championship.
But now they're itching to get back aboard the Impreza: “I can't wait to drive again,” Gould continue. “I want to get the car to the finish of the event. I want to repay the whole team for the massive effort they've put in for Seb and I between the rallies. I'm determined to play my part and help TEG take the BRC Team award.”
While driving for points, Gould admits he's looking forward to the faster stretches of Irish asphalt.
“I don't know these stages at all,” Gould added. “The route has changed from last year – which was the first time I did the rally. I have managed to find some footage of one stage on youtube, so I've watch that. It looks fantastic, almost like an asphalt version of some of the stages we did in Finland. It's going to be a mega event – particularly with a couple of night stages; we went quite well in the dark on the Jim Clark. We won our class on this event [the Ulster] last year, it would be nice to try and emulate that result.”