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RallySport Magazine August 2016

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The August 2016 issue of RallySport Magazine is now available, and includes: Latest news: * Dowel backs rallycross to be bigger than V8 Supercars * Quinn’s Rally Australia WRC car bid falls short * New WRX STi could be Rally America bound * Up to 10 AP4 cars for 2017 NZRC * Skoda R5 for Mark Pedder at Rally Australia Feature stories: * Famous stages - New Zealand’s Motu * A close look at the Skoda Fabia AP4+ * Group B Mitsubishi Starion 4WD remembered * Budget rallying - Hyundai Excel * Where are they now - Wayne Bell * Hayden Paddon column * Vale: Steve Ashton Interviews: * Molly Taylor - Subaru factory driver * David Holder - NZ Rally Champion * Col Trinder - Chairman of ARCom * Emma Gilmour - NZ’s fastest lady Event reports: * Rally of Finland * APRC - China Rally * Catalans Coast Rally * NZ’s Northern Rallysprint Series * Walky 100 Rally, SARC

INTERVIEW: COL TRINDER

INTERVIEW: COL TRINDER Aussie Chris Atkinson made it all the way to the WRC, but it’s not an easy path to follow. visibility for our sport in the community. We achieve this by creating the environment where it is possible to host major events such as Rally Australia, IROQ (Rally of Queensland) and the ARC. ARCom also puts in place rules and regulations that it thinks might make it easier to encourage newcomers to the sport through the efforts of others at state and local club levels. Simplified rules around entry level events like rallysprints, entry level vehicle eligibility, safety approaches commensurate with the degree of risk are all things that ARCom continues to work at. Not everyone thinks the mix or balance is always correct, but we are always happy to receive well-argued cases to make change. Our over-riding responsibility though is to ensure that change does not just suit one person or group, or move the risk from the competitor to an organiser or volunteer. What is ARCom doing to retain competitors? We do what we can to try to keep costs down, for instance, by allowing additional freedoms in some areas of vehicle eligibility. For example, we introduced some very basic rules to recognise eligibility for our Club Rally Car category. We have also introduced a rolling eligibility date for Classic Rally Cars that means those with older cars can transition directly from PRC into the classic fraternity without changing their 46 | RALLYSPORT MAGAZINE - AUGUST 2016 “I think we will see a number of new cars such as AP4, latest spec FIA R-categories, PRC and G4.” vehicle, if they wish to do so. I do accept that there have been other cost pressures on competitors, particularly on the safety side, that have contributed to increased costs, such as the adoption of strict requirements around helmets, frontal head restraints and apparel standards, but these are also examples of the kind of mitigation we have to accommodate to address the risk shifting I mentioned earlier. What do you think will be different about rallying in Australia in 10 years? I doubt that, in society where everything is changing at an accelerating rate, anyone can foresee with much clarity what might happen in 10 years time. What I can say is that my vision would be that we continue to run the best WRC round in the world, that our efforts to reshape the APRC bear fruit in the form of increased international participation, that our ARC competition remains a strong and commercially viable showcase for the sport, and that the mainstay of competition in the country – those state and club level events - have willing and capable organisers and a thriving competitor base. I think in the next five years or so we will see a number of new generation rally cars such as the AP4 (a specification we share with NZ), mixing it with some of the latest spec FIA R-categories, as well a some PRC and G4 cars for outright honours in our rallies. I think the interest in classic rally cars is going to continue to grow and, who knows, we may even see the first allelectric rally cars emerging. Do you see a clear pathway for an up-andcoming Australian driver to head overseas and make it into the WRC? It is always a difficult task but we have seen pioneers like Chris Atkinson, and NZ has Haydon Paddon, who have had the capacity and ability to crack the WRC. I doubt there is a single pathway that automatically leads to success. I’d think that once the apprenticeship has been served and the necessary skills acquired in club and state level events, a young competitor should aim to be seen in our national and international series events, and have a crack at some events overseas in an FIA category car such as R2 – where they can demonstrate their talent against others doing the same thing in similar machinery. Molly Taylor and Brendan Reeves have both been down this path, but despite talent by the bucket-load, are yet to crack it in the WRC league. Why have we gone back to 4WD for the

ARC this year, and now have the AP4 and G4 regulations, and not the two-wheel drive regs? The move to a 2WD championship a few years back was hoped to attract additional manufacturers and sponsors into the sport, and initially there was a lot of interest. Honda came on board and was running the Civic and then Jazz cars, but the format did not capture people’s imagination. The development of the AP4 specification cars with NZ, as the southern hemisphere’s more affordable version of the FIA R5, opened up a pathway for a regional car that would be exciting to see and to drive, and importantly, it would be eligible for international competition. With a successor identified for our old Group N and PRC cars, an opportunity to recast the ARC as an open competition with 4WD and 2WD cars eligible was seen as a sensible progression. Many say that ARCom is only interested in WRC, APRC and ARC. What is ARCom doing for grass roots rallying in Australia? Many might say that, but it doesn’t make it true. It’s one of those great myths in our sport. I’ve sat around the ARCom table for a great many meetings over the years. I can say with some authority that the succession of commissioners who have served on ARCom have always been intensely focused on what the effect of some decision or other might be on the young person starting out, or on the club organiser, or state competitor. I think this perception arises because ARCom collectively does not deliver events on the ground that people can identify with (though curiously, everyone on the commission does so as an individual). Rather, many of its policies are delivered through State Councils and State Rally Panels or through the CAMS administration. To my mind, the state bodies are the main mechanism to deliver grass roots motorsport, and are much closer to the specific needs of competitors at the local level than ARCom’s panel of volunteers drawn from across the country can. Nevertheless, ARCom is always looking for opportunities to improve the sport at all levels and does not have a mortgage on all the best ideas. I’ve often asked those who say “we should do something to improve the grassroots”, what it is that we should try to do differently? More often than not the response is a blank look. We are happy to consider good ideas wherever they come from, and we routinely look at submissions from individuals, clubs and State Panels, as well as from the CAMS administration itself. My suggestion is that if you have a good idea, work it up into an actual proposal – run it by as many people ARCom keep a close eye on club rallying through the various state rally panels. as you think might be interested to identify the rub points (because that is what we will do with it), and submit it to ARCom. It will always get a fair hearing from a jury of your peers. The only proviso is that you can’t shift risk from a competitor to a volunteer. What is the difference between what ARCom does and what the ARC, chaired by David Waldron, does? ARCom and the ARC often get confused, probably because of the similarity in the acronyms. ARCom is the panel of volunteers that advise CAMS about rallying, whereas the ARC is the panel of volunteers that run the sporting and commercial elements of the Australian Rally Championship. I chair the ARCom meetings, and David Waldon is Chairman of the ARC. North Eastern Car Club presents the… KILLAWARRA RUSH Saturday, 24 th September 2016 A new event that will challenge the novice competitor, all the way through to the experienced campaigner. More details at: www.northeasterncarclub.com.au • 4 gravel rally stages, 70km competitive • Run in 100% daylight hours • Less than 30km of transport • Fully route-charted, perfect novice event AUGUST 2016 - RALLYSPORT MAGAZINE | 47

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