MONTREAL, QC – Quebec driver Antoine L’Estage (of St-Jean-sur-Richelieu) will contest this weekend’s Rally of the Tall Pines, in Ontario, the final round of the 2013 Canadian Rally Championship. After clinching the North American title earlier this month with a victory in British Columbia, the Rockstar team driver’s goal this time is to capture the Canadian title, which would be the sixth of his career.
With four consecutive Canadian victories, and unbeatable since the spring, Antoine L’Estage is not looking to win this time. A fifteen point lead over second place in the championship allows him to only need to finish sixth or higher in order to clinch the overall title, if his main rival claims the event victory.
“We’re coming to Tall Pines in an ideal situation, with a comfortable lead at the head of the championship. But, it’s a very difficult and tricky rally that I can’t take lightly. Everything will be done to win the title and not the actual rally,” he assures.
Antoine L’Estage will once again be co-driven by Welshman Craig Parry, with whom he won the two western events.
“Craig is very keen to work with the Rockstar team again and to help me win this title. He’s an excellent co-driver and I put my trust in him,” indicates Antoine, who is expecting challenging weather conditions for the 2013 edition. “It’s supposed to be very cold, possibly with a blanket of snow covering the gravel roads in the Bancroft area, where the rally is located. With our Yokohama tires, we have everything we need for these conditions. In addition, our Mitsubishi Evo X has been meticulously prepared for this rally. We’re confident heading into the 2013 Tall Pines but I repeat that we’re going there to manage our lead in the series and it’s never over until it’s over ! The title is the only goal for this weekend,” specifies the Quebec driver.
If he wins the title, Antoine L’Estage will tie the record held by Canadian champions Frank Sprongl and Tom McGeer, as the only ones to have succeeded at becoming champions six times over.
Reconnaissance for the Rally of the Tall Pines will take place on Friday, with the rally being contested solely on Saturday. The start will be from Bancroft at 9am, finishing at around 10pm.
Antoine L’Estage holds six North American championship titles (2007, 2008, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013), five Canadian titles (2006, 2007, 2010, 2011, 2012), one American title (2010), and forty-two overall victories in Canada and the US.
Craig Parry has had extensive experience, competing in Europe, in both the World Rally Championship (WRC) and European Rally Championship (ERC).
Source : Coyote Rallye Media Services, (514) 825 – 4332