Subaru WRX STI wins two of top three spots at Snow* Drift Rally
It’s a long race season, but the 2014 Subaru WRX STI Rally car and 2008 WRX STI are off to a great start this year with wins at Snow* Drift 2014. The 2014 Subaru WRX STI won the Overall and 2008 WRX STI won the Production category to get an early lead in the 2014 Manufacturers' Championship points standings. It was a cold and snowy weekend but David Higgins and Lauchlin O'Sullivan pulled off Sno*Drift Rally victories.
The cold and snow didn’t keep Rally fans from watching the action this weekend. Spectator points were overwhelmed all day with cars parked for over a mile on several occasions. Race fans even burned fires to keep warm throughout the Rally stages. Fans packed the spectator points and had a great weekend of action as they saw Subaru finished in 10 of the top 16 spots.
Fresh snow fell on the course yesterday making it much harder for the drivers, but David Higgins and Craig Drew made it look easy winning 9 of 10 stages. They extended their lead over rival Antoine L’Estage and the Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution to a solid two minutes and ran a perfect day. It was a worthwhile redemption after bitterly losing this event last year on the final stage of the rally. At the finish in Hillman, Michigan, Craig Drew commented, “This makes up for 2013!”
Super Production's Lauchlin O'Sullivan and co-driver Scott Putnam, driving a 2008 Subaru WRX STI, took the class win and finished an impressive third overall. The class victory returns the 2012 Super Production champs to their former glory after a disappointing 2013 rally season that resulted in missed events and poor performance.
"It's great to make a comeback after such a difficult 2013 season," said O'Sullivan, "To come out and get this was a work in discipline, especially when there are four up-and-coming SP drivers to compete against. I had to drive in these icy conditions not too fast or too slow. I just had to keep doing my thing and not worry about what the others are doing. I just avoided that one 'gotcha' that could end it."
The new 2014 Subaru WRX STI ran flawlessly yesterday after a very difficult first day. The roads were incredibly slick and David Higgins and Craig Drew seem to have found their groove with the new WRX STI Rally car. It was a good start and test of the new car even with the reduced grip and relatively slow speeds at this event. But next month will be very different.
The next challenge will be the Rally in the 100 Acre Wood next month in the Missouri woods which will also be an important test of the new machine. Travis Pastrana will be joining the team at 100 Acre Wood in another newly prepared 2014 Subaru WRX STI. Stay tuned to Torque News as the Subaru USA Rally team takes on Ken Block in Missouri February 21-22.