AUSTRALIAN Rally Champion Scott Pedder will drive a Ford Fiesta R5 run by M-Sport and supported by DMACK tyres for his attack on the WRC2 category at Coates Hire Rally Australia.
Pedder and co-driver Dale Moscatt already have contested four European WRC2 rounds in an identical Spanish-run Fiesta. A stunning run to fourth in the most recent round in Finland clinched the deal for Australia.
“It’s exciting to reveal that we’ve secured an R5 car for Rally Australia and to have it run by M-Sport is incredible,” said Pedder, whose car will share a service area those of M-Sport’s WRC drivers Elfyn Evans and Ott Tänak.
“To work with a team the calibre of M-Sport and to be a part of their history in the World Rally Championship, even if it’s just for this one round, is definitely a highlight of my career.
“Also having the support of DMACK behind me throughout the year, but especially at my home event, is something I’m massively grateful for.
“The Fiesta R5 that I will be driving will be identical spec to the car I’ve rallied in Europe this year, but it’ll be the special car #100, which M-Sport celebrated being built at the start of this year.
“Malcolm Wilson has told us this car will never be for sale because of its special meaning to the business, but he will supply it to us for the event. Knowing I’ll have this car for my home Round actually feels very special.”
M-Sport Managing Director Malcolm Wilson welcomed Pedder to the elite squad.
“Scott is an extremely determined driver. He’s taken to the WRC strongly, building his confidence step by step, which culminated in a fantastic fourth place at Rally Finland.
“He’ll face some fierce competition in Australia, from a number of WRC2 regulars, but given his progression so far this year I see no reason why he can’t be challenging for the top positions.”
While Pedder has faced more than 30 WRC2 competitors at the European rounds, the long haul to Australia sees a diminished number of entrants but a fierce line-up of drivers nonetheless.
“We’re up against guys like Yazeed Al Rajhi, Yurri Protasov, Nasser Al-Attiyah and Abdulaziz Al-Kuwari and they’ve all won stages and events in the WRC2 category. To think I’ll have an easy run on home soil would be fooling myself, but I’m still going to be out there for the win,” he said.