Experienced Queenslander rally star Tristan Carrigan has added another trophy to his cabinet after winning the Brisbane Sporting Car Club’s KCF Winter Stages Rallysprint.
Behind the wheel of a modified 1999 Mitsubishi Magna alongside co-driver Jenny Prince, Carrigan took out the victory over a strong field of 43 crews thanks to his consistent driving and multiple stage wins.
With crews completing three passes of the first heat’s two stages and their top two times combining with their second heat stage time, it was a highly competitive event as Carrigan and Prince eventually came away with a 38-second win.
The Inverted Motorsport duo didn’t have it all their way though as they trailed Ronnie Bustard and Colin O’Brien in the Glendun Group Mitsubishi Evo 9 by the end of heat one, while Thomas Dermody and Ryan Preston were a further 19 seconds place in third.
Although Bustard and O’Brien had the lead at the conclusion of stage one as a result of their opening two runs of the stage, their Evo suffered engine damage on the third pass – ultimately forcing them out of the event.
As Carrigan and Prince then went on to blitz their way through the second heat to secure the win, behind them was a dramatic battle for the remaining podium places as Dermody and Preston had a tyre pop off the rim of their APX Suspension Ford Escort – ruining any chance of a podium.
Taking advantage of their heartbreak was another Mitsubishi Evo in Allied Timber Products’ Richard Galley and John Andreatidis as the duo navigated their way through the heat to seal second place and the 4WD class win.
Rounding out the top three a further 11 seconds off and making it an all-Mitsubishi lockout was Shaun Gill and Kelvin O'Shea in their Albion Motorsport 1996 Evo 3.
Despite gallant efforts from a number of other crews, the day belonged to Carrigan and Prince who defied the odds to win a car few thought would offer a challenge.
“It’s good to win in a stock car like the Magna because it showed what can be done when you add a few important upgrades that are essential to all rally cars,” Carrigan said.
"We thought we would be getting whipped by everyone because there was some really good machinery and honestly, our car wasn’t in the same league.
“But the modifications we made made the car easier to drive and it was satisfying to see the fruit of out labour come to fruition. It was a pleasant surprise to win the event in a car that had a few knockers.
“It’s good to see that the car has some street cred. Hopefully it inspires more people to get involved in rally even if they don’t have a powerful car such as an Evo or WRX.
“Sometimes the cheap cars are good because they allow you to take more risks than if you had an expensive car.
“If we wanted to win, we would not have used the Magna, it was a bit of a special project for us to show what is essential to win events at rallies. We knew we’d be up the front, but didn’t think we would win – so it was a great little reward.”