Mount Manganui’s David Holder has recorded his fifth consecutive podium finish in the Brian Green Property Group New Zealand Rally Championship driven by VINZ, the GoPro Daybreaker Rally, with a third place finish to round out the season.
Holder headed to the Manawatu-based event looking forward to teaming up with a new co-driver for the event with World Championship regular John Kennard drafted in to help Holder develop his pace notes, whilst also in a tight battle for second place in the season standings.
The pair, who had never competed together prior to the first stage, made a strong start with the third fastest time on the opening special stage that was run prior to dawn. A string of podium stage times across the morning saw the recently crowned New Zealand Junior champion make third place his own.
From stage five, Holder mounted an attack on second place, moving towards second place and confident of a strong result on stage seven, which would be the power stage and offer up crucial bonus points. With only three points between he and Ben Hunt heading into the event, every point would be crucial. Unfortunately a loose handling car meant Holder’s third fastest time saw him concede a single but crucial point on the 42km monster.
With advice from mentor and WRC star Hayden Paddon on some shock absorber settings at the service park, Holder was able to record the fastest stage time on stage nine and second fastest on the penultimate stage, but his charge wouldn’t be enough to get across the line and the 25-year old would be forced to settle for third place.
The third place finish also secured third in the championship, missing out on the runner up spot by a solitary point, but still a strong result in his debut season in a four-wheel drive car.
“Even though the result was solid, I’m a bit disappointed we didn’t hold on to second place,” said a highly self-critical Holder. “It was a great learning curve having John in the car though, he showed me just how much I have to learn about writing notes. Hopefully the stars can align again as it would be great to have him back in the car. Well done to Richard (Mason) and Ben (Hunt), at the end of the day they performed better than us and deserved their first and second places.”
“I really have to thank Hayden (Paddon) also, his advice over the weekend was invaluable, as well as Tony from Stadium Cars, Mike from Force Automotive and also the guys at Ralliart, without all of them there is no way we could have made it to the event.”
Holder Brothers Racing would like to thank and acknowledge the support of:
Stadium Cars, Gull Fuel, VINZ, Magnum Compliance, Force Automotive, Reaction Racing, Endless Brakes, Prelim, Sew Hot Monograms, Nichibo, Mount Wheel Alignment, Speedy Signs Tauranga, Attentive Design, Jason Gorton Building, Bay Panel Beaters, Tauranga Beaurepaires, Dunlop, Total Lubricants Mt Maunganui and Monit Rally Computers.
Press Release by BB Media