Contact: Paul Westwick|
Tel: (604) 707-3305
|Date: June 11, 2003|
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Merritt, BC, Canada - After an absence of more than twenty years, the Canadian Rally Championship returns to B.C. on June 14th for the Pacific Forest Rally in Merritt.
Defending Canadian champion Patrick Richard from Vancouver considers Pacific Forest his home rally. With a recent Group N win in Belgium, Richard is expected to be the crowd favourite in his new Subaru WRX STi.
Richard and co-driver Ian McCurdy from Whistler, will be challenged by Subaru team mate Tom McGeer. McGeer, from Georgetown, ON, is coming off two consecutive wins in the Western portion of the Canadian Rally Championship presented by Yokohama. Wins at the Makita Bighorn Rally in Edson, AB and Calgary's Rocky Mountain Rally currently give him the lead in the on-going battle for Championship points.
But the win won't come easily for Richard or McGeer. Driving a Mitsubishi EVO, Sylvain Erickson from Gatineau, Quebec is third in points. After winning the Perce-Neige Rally at the beginning of the season, Erickson is looking for another victory.
A disappointing DNF at the Rocky Mountain Rally puts driver Andrew Comrie-Picard from New York fifth in points. A podium finish with his Mitsubishi EVO in Merritt would move him up in the standings.
The Pacific Forest Rally was part of the national championship in the 1970's. It was revived in 2000 as a regional event. This year's course covers 195 km over sixteen special stages. The main spectator area at Active Mountain is expected to draw the large rally following which has developed in B.C. over the past couple of years.
A ceremonial start will be held at 8pm PST on Friday, June 13 at the Merritt Civic Centre. The first stage of the rally begins at 9am PST, Saturday. Competitors will finish the rally around 8:30pm PST. An awards presentation will follow at the Merritt Civic Centre.
For more information on the Pacific Forest Rally, including a full list of entrants, visit the rally's website at www.pacificforestrally.com or contact Paul Westwick at Rally Headquarters during the event at 604-617-4132.
2003 Pacific Forest Rally