Press Release

July 21, 2003
For more information,
Contact: Tim Gage
Phone: 604 505 5960
Rocket Rally Racing
Phone: 604-803-6095
Fax: 604-803-6095

Canadian Champion Patrick Richard
Brings New Car to ADAC Rallye Deutschland

Trier, Germany -- Canadian rally champion and North American Group N champion Patrick Richard will be driving a new Subaru Production Car for the next round of the World Rally Championship to be held in Germany on July 25-27. This will be Patrick's first all-asphalt WRC event and will also be his fifth opportunity this season to challenge the other Production Car drivers competing in the WRC.

Patrick, the only North American to be competing in the WRC, will be entering the race with a 2003 Impreza WRX STi, the same model in which he and the Subaru Rally Team Canada won the sixth round of the Canadian Rally Championship on July 5th. The new car has been built specifically for the all-asphalt challenges that he and the team will face at ADAC Rallye Deutschland and Rallye de France later in the year.

"I think our older WRC car was showing its age and we realized that we were better off running a car that has been specifically built for asphalt" said Patrick. "We want to put our best foot forward to ensure a good result and some points at the end of the event. Hopefully the new car will help us achieve this."

The new car will offer the latest in STi technology and will put Patrick and his team on the same level as other Subaru Production Car competitors who have also been running the new model this season. The timing is perfect for the team since all their remaining WRC races will be on asphalt. The old car was designed with a heavier build to withstand the punishment of the earlier gravel events. However the new car will have light-weight under body protection and a centre differential and handbrake setup designed specifically for asphalt. Since the roads will be smoother and the speeds much higher, the car has also been designed to handle the greater G-forces with stiffer suspension and bigger brakes.

Patrick's strategy for Germany will be much the same as his earlier WRC events. He plans to drive cautiously and try to make it to the finish line with some points. "I'm not saying I'll be driving slowly" said Patrick "however I've never seen these roads before and it's only my second time in an asphalt rally. I'll go at a stable pace then try to crank it up near the end of the event. Hopefully we will set some respectable times on the later stages."

The ADAC Rallye Deutschland will be a tough event for all competitors. There will be a variety of conditions including very rough asphalt, narrow roads and slippery conditions if it rains. Concrete blocks embedded in the edges of the roads could also create a further hazard.

"We can get extremely good grip with the slicks we are using. But when they lose grip they snap away quickly. It's not a progressive change like gravel where you can feel the car starting to let go" said team coordinator Bob Hermans. "On gravel Patrick likes to slow the car down with some sideways drift but on asphalt he can't do that."

Patrick will therefore be concentrating on driving clean lines and taking advantage of the new car's stable handling. He and his Norwegian co-driver Ola Flöene will also be working hard on their pace notes this week to ensure that Patrick can confidently commit to corners with the kind of speed that's going to bring them points.

"We are refining the pace notes system to more accurately describe the corners" said Ola. "We need better accuracy in order to go faster, otherwise we end up taking excessive amounts of risk just to keep up. So that's the area where we need the most amount of work."

While the members of Subaru Rally Team Canada prepare for this event in Germany they remain acutely saddened by the loss of fellow Subaru driver Mark Lovell and co-driver Roger Freeman. The pair tragically lost their lives at the Oregon Trail Rally in the USA on July 12th. The team's thoughts and sympathies are with the family and friends of these two great rally professionals. They will be deeply missed.

Further information about ADAC Rallye Deutschland:

For further information about Patrick Richard go to:

Press inquiries: Tim Gage
604 505 5960

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