ARC Toyota brothers first and second in Forest Rally

Harry Bates leads brother Lewis in the Forest Rally

Harry Bates leads brother Lewis in the Forest Rally

Toyota Gazoo Racing Australia finished the Bosch Motorsport Australia Rally Championship second round one and two at the end of the first heat in the Make Smoking History Forest Rally in Western Australia.

After they started the day as the leaders after victory in the Special Stages of Friday evening, Harry Bates and Coral Taylor powered on over the next seven stages to win by 43.1 seconds in their Toyota GR Yaris AP4.

The day was a drought breaker for Harry Bates with his first heat victory in nearly a year.

“It’s been a long time between drinks and probably longer than I would have imagined, but it was the perfect day,” Bates said.

“We really focused on getting our rhythm and enjoying ourselves and Coral and I’ve had the perfect day. The car has been amazing, and we really felt at one with it all day.

“Traditionally WA has been a strong event for me. I had my first-ever heat win of the ARC back here in 2016. So, it’s just been one of those days where everything clicked.”

Second at the end of the first half of rally was Harry’s brother and team-mate Lewis, with Anthony McLoughlin.

The current champions were 8.2 seconds in front of third-placed Nathan Quinn and Ray Winwood-Smith (Hyundai i20).

After two stage wins on Friday, Harry Bates scored four in the daylight after his brother won the morning’s first.

The other two, Stages 10 and 12, were taken out by Quinn. Stage 9, Folly North 2 over 5.59 kilometres, was cancelled due to a hole that had formed on the road.

Fourth were Tasmanians Eddie Maguire and Zak Brakey (Subaru Impreza WRX STi) who were also the winners of the White Wolf Constructions ARC Production Cup.

They finished ahead of 23.6 seconds ahead of Troy Dowel and Bernie Webb in their Skoda Fabia Evo.

Next were Eddie’s brother, Steve Maguire and Dale Moscatt (Mitsubishi EVO 9) who were just over six seconds in front of the locals Daniel Gonzalez Daymon Nicoli (Skoda) who took the rally-within-a-rally state championship honours.

Then came Peter Rullo and James Marquet (Hyundai i20 Rally 2), Craig Rando and Scott Beckwith (Subaru GD STi), and Luke Anear and Malcolm Read (Ford Fiesta MkII) who were fifth until a poor last stage.

After a strong showing on Friday night Alex Rullo and Steve Glenney (Hyundai i20) crashed on stage eight.

Meanwhile, the ARC 2WD Cup victory went to Todd Payne and Jeremy Edwards (Nissan Silvia S15). David Thomas and Amanda Lister (Ford Escort) took the ARC Classic Cup.

The Forest Rally resumes on Sunday with five stages to run in heat two and starts at 9:11 AWST.

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