The Ben Hunt Motorsport team made the tough but sensible decision to sideline the Subaru WRX STi, due to an electrical problem, at the Mahindra Gold Rush Rally of Coromandel today.
Subaru of New Zealand Brand Ambassador Hunt says they had made considerable changes to the Subaru since the previous Brian Green Property Group New Zealand Rally Championship round in Gisborne last month but had been unable to test them out.
“Unfortunately, an electrical problem caused us to loose boost pressure early in the rally and with the set-up we were running in the centre diff, it was just way too hard to drive,” Hunt says.
The team were unable to repair the problem and Hunt and co-driver Tony Rawstorn were forced to withdraw after the third stage.
“I don’t like giving up. I like fighting until the end but as a team, we had to make a decision. It was either we continue driving a car that is handling dangerously, or we park it up and plan some test days to get the car sorted for next year,” Hunt adds.
He was sure it was the right choice to put the Subaru on the trailer, “still in mint condition”, rather than risking an accident, he says.
Hunt has been impressed with the new-this-season Subaru’s performance over 2016’s five rallies – which included a second place at the Rally of Otago, behind Hayden Paddon – and is looking forward to fine-tuning it into an event-winning machine next year.
Ben Hunt Motorsport is grateful for support in the 2016 Brian Green Property Group New Zealand Rally Championship from: Subaru of New Zealand, Hydraulink, Motul Oil, Gull NZ Fuel, Dunlop, CL Brakes, Reiger suspension, Bluebridge, MTF Finance, Vantage Windows and Doors, The Body Shop, Wurth, Possum Bourne Motorsport, Winger Subaru, E & H Motors, Entech, Neil Allport Motorsport, Prodiesel Engineering Ltd, Vernon Developments, TCC Solutions and Kennelly Cams.