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Molly Taylor Wins Forest Rally - Photo: CAMS Media

Molly Taylor Wins Forest Rally – Photo: CAMS Media

Defending Champion, Molly Taylor, has won the second round of the CAMS Australian Rally Championship, after clean sweeping both heats of the Forest Rally.

Saturday’s action saw Subaru’s Taylor battle with Toyota’s Harry Bates, with the pair swapping the lead over 5 times during the days running. Taylor ultimately ended up 3.1 second lead over Bates at the final stage.

Taylor said today’s result was much more than they expected.

“After the problems we had at Ballarat we wanted to be in the top three, that was our goal, but to be in this close battle, it forces you to drive as hard as you can and it was great to have that opportunity to have to push and fight for something—it makes it more rewarding.”

While on Sunday Taylor was challenged initially by Eli Evans, until he rolled his Peugeot 208 Maxi on Special Stage 14. Bates was also in contention when his Toyota struck mechanical issues on Special Stage 17.

After Sunday’s running Taylor said “Les Walkden Rallying prepared the car perfectly for this weekend and both Bill and I feel we found a new level, so of course we’re delighted by this result.”

“We’ve combined car reliability with our own ability to achieve the perfect result. It’s been a fantastic competition with Harry, Eli and Nathan and to come out on top after such a close fight feels great.

Meanwhile Coffs Coast Rally Team’s Nathan Quinn now leads the CAMS Australian Rally Championship after two rounds following his second place finishes in both the Eureka and Forest Rallies.

“It was a pretty bad weekend to be brutally honest but the result worked out really well for us. It’s a real shame what happened to Harry and Eli. We definitely weren’t fast enough this weekend but had you have asked me after the super special stage on Friday night, I wouldn’t have told you we would be anywhere close to the podium, so its good we got through.”

Quinn continued: “The only thing the championship lead means to me is it’s pretty cool to have my name at the top but the championship is just like the rally and you saw what happened this weekend.  It can take just a single rally for everything to turn pear-shaped.”

Keep tuned into Auto Action for all the coverage of the Australian Rally Championship.