Tauranga’s Phil Campbell has put a tough start to the year behind him to set some strong stage times and inspire confidence at the third round of the Brian Green Property Group New Zealand Rally Championship, the Stadium Finance South Canterbury Rally.
A tough start to the season at Dunedin that eventually led to an accident, the damage from which would cause Campbell to miss the second round at Whangarei, led to a major rebuild of The Roofing Store Ford Fiesta AP4.
After a successful pre-event test, Campbell and co-driver Jared Hudson eased into their work with the sixth fastest time on the opening stage, but arrived at the stage end with no water pressure in the radiator and were forced to temporarily withdraw, ending hopes of a top result.
With the team working their magic, Campbell rejoined for stage four, immediately back amongst the top five stage times before really pushing on and setting three top three stage times to round out the event.
“Obviously it’s disappointing not to come away with a result, it certainly would’ve been interesting to see where we’d end up in the results, but the times are heading in the right direction,” said Phil Campbell.
“The really encouraging thing is we’ve gone from driving the car on what felt like the limit and not knowing why the times were no good, whereas now I know we can push harder, but the times are better already. It’s encouraging for the rest of the season, that’s for sure.”
The Campbell Rally Sport team now turn their attention to the Kennedy Park Resort Rally Hawkes Bay on July 24.
See also: Tough start to season for Campbell