New Zealand rally driver Mike Young drove his way to the second step on the podium during his first ever tarmac-only rally event at Rally Montre in Japan over the weekend.
The kiwi driver was fifth overall in the event but took second place in the FIA Asia Pacific Rally Championship category.
Behind the wheel of the Cusco Racing team’s Toyota TRD CH-R, Young battled challenging conditions with frequent showers dousing the paved stages that were already littered with gravel and mud.
Co-driving with Young for the first time was fellow New Zealander Amy Hudson, who made the most of her first international event.
The pair was thrilled as they reached the finish on day two with Young commenting, “Great to finish my first event on tarmac and learnt a lot.”
Young went on to add that “It’s a completely different driving style, especially under braking and the complete opposite to gravel, you do have to change your mindset,” referring to the change in surface he’s used to.
Co-driver Hudson said “It was a challenge with the wet weather,” but added “I’ve really enjoyed Japan, the fans are awesome, the team’s awesome so I definitely want to come back.”
It’s safe to say the pair enjoyed the 125km event and are eager for more.
Round three of the FIA Asia Pacific Rally Championship takes place at Danau Toba in Indonesia on September 23 to 25.
Main image: Mitsuru Kotake