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McRae chases strong Proton showings

Alister McRae gets set to chase success for Proton in both Asia and closer to home on the Rally of Scotland
Alister McRae faces a busy two weeks as he prepares to compete in back-to-back events in China and one home soil in Scotland.

McRae will take part in Rally China, the final round of the Asia-Pacific Rally Championship, this weekend before boarding a plane as soon as the event finishes to head back to his native Scotland for the final round of the Intercontinental Rally Challenge season.

Following last month's positive outing in Indonesia in the works Proton Satria Super 2000 rally car, McRae will again drive the car on both events.

While the Mellors Elliot Motorsport team suffered technical issues on the extremely rough stages in Indonesia, it has modified several key components for this weekend's event in China, which will use the same car as in Indonesia.

A one-day test prior to the start of the recce in China showed that revised dampers gave the car a more balanced and stable feeling over the rough test road while modified steering components have also been fitted although McRae admits it will still be a difficult event.

"I've been to China for the rally three times before but never to this event in this region,” he said. “Looking at on-board videos from previous years and the test road, while it looks to be a reasonably solid base, the roads are very narrow and twisty, so it's going to be hard work.

"The aim this weekend is to get a solid finish for Proton. The Mellors Elliot Motorsport team has done a fantastic job of developing new parts in light of what we learned in Indonesia and I'm looking forward to the weekend. I hope that perhaps the weather will improve, it'll stop raining and we'll have a clean run to show what the car is capable of and get a solid result.

"It's not going to be easy though; there's a very strong top ten this weekend. There's Cody Crocker, Katsu Taguchi, Emma Gilmour, Dean Herridge, David Higgins, Jusso Valimaki and Juha Salo, so I think there will be some good scraps."

As soon as he has completed the event, McRae begins a five-hour drive to Shanghai to catch a plane to the UK, to arrive in Perth, Scotland just in time to begin the recce for the final round of the IRC, the RACMSA Rally of Scotland.

It will give McRae the chance to compete on home soil and he admitted he was ready for the challenge.

"I'm really looking forward to competing at home again," he said. "I've done some of the stages that make up the event as they formed part of the McRae Stages rally and some were also part of the British Rally Championship when I competed in the mid 1990s.

"MEM is putting the finishing touches to the car for Scotland in the UK now and hopefully, we'll have a chance to carry out a small test before the event but realistically, I think it'll be little more than a shakedown, because of the tight deadlines with me arriving. Again, this car will use the revised components and a few more changes as we move forward in what is effectively the car's first year of competition and development."


Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Alister McRae
Thomas Gray / David Wilson Proton Satria
Thomas Gray / David Wilson Proton Satria
Arwel Davies / Helen Gilbey Proton Satria Gti
Arwel Davies / Helen Gilbey Proton Satria Gti
Thomas Gray / David Wilson Proton Satria
Thomas Gray / David Wilson Proton Satria
Thomas Gray / David Wilson Proton Satria
Thomas Gray / David Wilson Proton Satria
Jimmy McRae / Pauline Gullick Vaxuahll Firenza Can-Am
Jimmy McRae / Pauline Gullick Vaxuahll Firenza Can-Am
Jimmy McRae / Pauline Gullick Vaxuahll Firenza Can-Am
Jimmy McRae / Pauline Gullick Vaxuahll Firenza Can-Am
Jimmy McRae / Pauline Gullick Vaxuahll Firenza Can-Am
Jimmy McRae / Pauline Gullick Vaxuahll Firenza Can-Am
Jimmy McRae / Pauline Gullick Vaxuahll Firenza Can-Am
Jimmy McRae / Pauline Gullick Vaxuahll Firenza Can-Am
Jimmy McRae / Pauline Gullick Vaxuahll Firenza Can-Am

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Gareth - Unregistered

November 14, 2009 8:42 AM

I think the event needed Mr Wilks to big it up !! in his usual style in the new Skoda otherwise there won't be as much interest for us petrolheads to see who wins the big scrap at the front. Running order I hope will help Al Mcrae because they are reversing the top 10 & I am sure it will be a bit moist under foot.

Dafydd Larcombe - Unregistered

November 13, 2009 1:58 PM

You could almost crawl throught the Rally in a basic entry level Rally car and probably get a Decent result. A Top 20 finish in an international event does wonders for your seeding for future events Its Sad to see such a poor attendance. I feel sorry for the organisers. They must be Gutted. I think Alister could give the boys a nasty shock here, he used to go so well in the Yellow Golf back in the day, that required a simular driving technique (Ref keeping it on the Boil) I think Kris should win here no problem, but I wonder who will finish closest to Kris. The Proton flew in Ireland with Crazy Nial peddeling it, Im sure Alister can get a Really Good Result if it stays Reliable.



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