Remembering Richard Burns as well as the dramatic 2001 WRC showdown

Saturday, October 8th, 2016 - autos, cars, motoring, news

Source : Remembering Richard Burns as well as the dramatic 2001 WRC showdown

This kind of’s ten years since Richard Burns succumbed in his fight against a virulent brain tumour, as well as 14 years to the day since he won the WRC title

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On This kind of date 14 years ago I was slithering about in a quagmire in Margam Park in south Wales, wearing a pair of Tesco carrier bags inside my walking boots in a vain attempt to prevent muddy slop coming from penetrating my socks.

This kind of was Sunday, the final day of the 2001 Wales Rally GB, as well as after three days following the globe Rally Championship decider, I was longing for a hot bath as well as a change of underwear.

My mates as well as I were following the rally the proper way, haring around the Welsh countryside coming from stage to stage, then driving deep into the forests at night as well as sleeping in our cars to ensure we could grab a prime vantage point on the first stage of the next day.

Our convoy comprised a pair of Peugeot 306 D-Turbos as well as a Range Rover, all of which by the end of night one were ripe that has a distinctive smell in which can only be described as ‘rally odour’.

This kind of was a thrilling event, which had been dubbed ‘the Battle of Britain’ because Colin McRae (Ford) as well as Richard Burns (Subaru) were vying for the globe championship. Even the mainstream media was bigging up the fight. Former champions Carlos Sainz as well as Tommi Mäkinen were also in contention.

During the event, keeping up with the leaderboard in those days before super-quick smartphones was a case of picking up whatever snippets of information you could via radio, text or better-informed fans.

We’d watched McRae win Thursday night’s superspecial at a windy Cardiff Bay. When we witnessed him through Tyle, the second proper forest stage on Friday morning, he was on another planet to the various other drivers in terms of pace as well as we were left in no doubt who was leading the rally.

What we didn’t find out until later in which day was in which the Scot rolled his Focus WRC out of the rally on the very next stage.

Mäkinen as well as Sainz hit trouble as well as canny Burns needed to finish fourth or better to win the globe title. As he as well as navigator Robert Reid splashed past us in Margam, to a deservedly loud cheer, he was on his way to a solid third place behind the Peugeots of Marcus Grönholm as well as Harri Rovanperä.

Burns melded speed with intelligence to scoop the WRC, although he certainly didn’t want for the former. During his top-line career with Mitsubishi as well as Subaru, he won ten of the toughest events on the calendar, including the Safari Rally (twice), Australia (once) as well as of course Rally GB (three times).  

Four years to the day after he won rallying’s biggest prize, Burns passed away following a fight against a brain tumour. So This kind of is actually in which November 25 remains a bittersweet day for his family, friends as well as many fans.

The richardburnsfoundation.com website is actually well worth a few minutes of your time.

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