On Friday (CET) New Zealanders Dave Holder and Jason Farmer have successfully completed the first day of Tour de Corse to hold seventh place in the 14-strong FIA Junior World Rally Championship field.
It’s the first-ever tarmac rally for Holder and Farmer, from Mount Manganui and Hamilton respectively, and they’re enjoying the experience so far.
Of Friday’s four-stage itinerary, Holder says: “A pretty good day, seventh in class, so we’re pretty happy with that for our first time on tarmac. We were about 20km into the 49km first stage when the stage was red-flagged due to an accident with another competitor; it kind of worked in our favour as we got 20km of warmup to get through the stage without worrying about stage times. Stage two went pretty well for us; we were about seventh on the stage and starting to get more of a handle on when to brake – there’s still much work to be done on that for real pace around the corners. Following the lunchtime service, we repeated the first two stages. We spun on the very first corner of stage three, the repeated run of the 49km stage, so had to back it up, losing some time. Lost a wee bit of confidence through the middle section of the stage but finished quite well. We ended up catching another competitor and following him along for a while. It was quite interesting to do a bit of learning behind him, and how he drove the road and the lines, so it was actually quite good as he’s a tarmac specialist and we kept up with him. Finished the day with the repeated 13.5km stage, another nice, clean, consistent run for us. Learning about the car and how things handle on tarmac. Tomorrow we’ll try and keep building on this.”
On Saturday Holder and Farmer tackle the longest leg of this rally, with six stages totalling 136.90km. Three morning tests are repeated in the afternoon as the event visits the northernmost Cap Corse tip of the island for the first time since 1995.
Holder and Farmer are the first New Zealanders to enter the JWRC, the entry-level WRC category, and aim for this to be the first step in their bid to create a full-time WRC career.
Results are easy to find on: https://www.ewrc-results.com/results/44258-corsica-linea-tour-de-corse-2018/
Follow https://www.facebook.com/DaveHolderRally/ for more from Dave directly.
by Kate Gordon-Smith/Relish Communications