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Grip : GRIP October 2011
SPORT GRIP forester takes safari title on debut THE Australasian Safari is branded as this country’s ultimate endurance motorsport event. “The Dakar Downunder” takes competitors across seven days and nearly 4000 kilometers of brutal West Australian outback terrain. In a tribute to driver, co - driver, car and service crew, the Subaru Forester XT, built and prepared by Maximum Motorsport, and steered by long-time Subaru man Rob Herridge with Tim Batten calling the notes, took the Australasian Safari Production Car title on debut in the classic race. It was a remarkable achievement, a team effort with a bittersweet ending. Herridge was naturally thrilled to bring the Forester home first, but his Maximum Motorspor t business partner, Steve Wisby, passed away a day after the car crossed the line in first place. Steve, who had been battling illness for 12 months, urged Maximum’s inaugural involvement in the Safari. Though gravely ill, he insisted on checking out of hospital prior to the event start to cast his eye over the project. Many hospital visitors kept Steve up to date on the Forester’s progress during the event, but he finally succumbed to his illness as the team returned home from the WA Goldfields. “This win is one of mixed emotions. It’s a real testament to the skill and versatility of our team, including Steve, and we’d like to dedicate this win to him,” Rob said. The Maximum Motorsport Subaru Forester XT survived the challenges of rocky breakaways, overgrown fence lines, severely rutted and washed away tracks, stone roads, flood plains and salt lakes to claim the inaugural ‘Safari Production’ class win. “It’s been an incredible week of rallying,” a weary but happy Rob Herridge said at the Kalgoorlie finish line. “Every day this event has thrown new challenges at us. We have asked a lot from the Forester, but it’s amazing the way it has risen to the challenge. “Apart from the safety features required by the event, the Forester is basically showroom standard, with very few modifications. “So to keep it racing, for seven days, over tracks where most people would never even consider taking an SUV like a Forester, underlines the durability of the All-Wheel Drive Subaru.” Forester took the production class win and was 10th outright. INSIDE GRIP HOME PAGE AFTERSALES MARKETING ECONOMY RUN PARTS & ACCESSORIES FINANCE AMBASSADOR NEW PRODUCT BRAND COMPARISON DEALER RANKINGS SPORT
GRIP September 2011