Alister McRae takes excellent podium finish on home event
Nov 22, 2009
Former works driver Alister McRae brought his Proton Satria Neo home in third place and claimed a rightful spot on the podium of his home event, the 2009 RAC MSA Rally of Scotland. This marks the best result for the Satria, coming off the back of a promising performance in China just a week before.
Despite travelling to Stirling for the start of the recce directly from China, McRae was clearly pleased to be rallying at home. He was on the pace from the start, assuming third place overall from the first of the forest stages on Friday morning and putting in a string of top three stages times to retain third place overall throughout the event.
The Proton ran well, as McRae followed a fiercely developing battle ahead, between recently crowned IRC champion Kris Meeke and Guy Wilks, making his debut in the IRC. While the pair traded times, Alister remained consistent, with the possibility of a podium position and Proton’s best result to date in his grasp.
Despite the dreadful weather conditions, which saw heavy rain for most of the weekend generate extremely slippery and difficult conditions, Alister negotiated the worst of the conditions to bring the Proton back to the finish ramp at Stirling Castle in third place and with it, its best result.
Speaking at the end of the event, Alister said: “It’s been a great weekend, both for me and for Proton. To come here and get Proton’s first podium in the IRC is a great result. It’s a very small team and a very young team in the IRC and I think that they will only go from strength to strength.
“There is still a lot of potential to be unlocked from the car and we have proved this weekend that the car is quick and can only get quicker. We tried a new engine before the event, for example which was better but we decided not to use it as it isn’t proven yet. The chassis is probably one of the best chassis I have ever driven and the levels of grip are really good, so all together, it’s a very good car.
“It’s very early days for Proton and I think that Mellors Elliot Motorsport has done a fantastic job to develop the car themselves. Proton are now very keen to move forward, so I hope that I can be part of that and come and fight with the likes of Kris and Guy again.”
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