Tauranga’s Phil Campbell has continued his strong run across the second half of the 2014 season at the final round of the Brian Green Property Group New Zealand Rally Championship driven by VINZ, the GoPro Daybreaker Rally, securing a solid fifth place finish.
The Manawatu-based event offered up the unique challenge of a 4am start and one stage prior to sunrise. Campbell and co-driver Venita Fabbro made a strong start to sit sixth, albeit only 11 seconds away from fourth place, after the opening pair of stages.
As the sun came up, Campbell’s pace increased and he would not set a stage time outside the top five for the remainder of the day, showing incredible consistency. A strong time on the 30km stage four saw Campbell close right in on fourth place, a position he was able to take in the following stage.
Fifth fastest time on the power stage gave Campbell a bonus point towards the battle in the championship, however the time would also see him bumped back into fifth place as he engaged in a big battle with Matt Summerfield, the pair swapping stage times across the remainder of the afternoon.
With everything to play for, Campbell produced his best performance of the day in The Roofing Store Mitsubishi Evo 9, recording the third fastest time in stage eight to enter the final service just 12 seconds away from fourth place.
Campbell was able to reduce that margin to four seconds with only two stages remaining, but was unable to close the gap any further, coming home happy with a fifth placed finish.
“It was really good to get another solid finish under our belts, it’s been a pretty good way to finish the championship,” said Campbell. “It was really exciting to battle with Matt and we also really enjoyed the challenge of plenty of k’s and the early start.”
The Campbell Rally Sport team now turn their attention to Rally of the North on October 11.
Press Release by BB Media