9 October 2010
IRC: Cave completes Scotland test
Tom Cave: We had a very good test last week. As it was my first time in the car on wet gravel, it was a bit of an eye-opener to start with but we carried out 75 kilometres of running and I'm happy with the set-up we have now for Scotland.
Tom Cave completed a 'good' test last week for next weekend's Rally of Scotland, the penultimate round in this year's Intercontinental Rally Challenge, where he will be back behind the wheel of his works-specification Proton Satria Neo S2000.
The teenager spent a day testing in Wales to try to establish a base set-up for the tricky roads he is expecting.
Even though this year's Rally of Scotland is running a month earlier and the long-range weather forecast suggests dry weather, the chances are the ground conditions will still be damp and slippery.
"We had a very good test last week," Cave explained. "As it was my first time in the car on wet gravel, it was a bit of an eye-opener to start with but we carried out 75 kilometres of running and I'm happy with the set-up we have now for Scotland.
"Not only were we trying suspension and tyre options, we were also looking for any issues that might crop up on the event. We suffered with the windscreen steaming up to start with, for example, but soon resolved that.
"It's exactly that kind of thing that we were looking for and to find a solution for, since if we came across that for the first time on the first stage, it could seriously jeopardise our chances of a good result."
The route for the 2010 Rally of Scotland is broadly similar to last year and so Cave is more than aware just how tricky it can be. That's why he is planning to study the in-car footage from the 2009 event, to learn the stages better and identify where he may encounter hazards.
"It's a very challenging event," Cave continued, "but also, a very rewarding one. The first stage, at Scone Palace, for example, is very tricky. At first sight, it may seem like just a spectator stage but there's nothing Mickey-Mouse about it. We had a huge moment there last year and it's definitely a stage where the cliché: 'You can't win the rally there but you can lose it' applies.
"Loch Ard will also be a big test. It's the longest stage of the rally and run twice on Sunday, the last day. It's a very technical stage and I'll be studying the in-car footage carefully to try to remember the rhythm and how it flows.
"I've got very fond memories of the event, despite the weather last year. It was a fantastic rally from a driver's point of view and of course, we had a brilliant result - eighth overall in the Fiesta.
"Of course, I'm hoping to get a better result this year in the Proton but we'll have to see what the competition is like."
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