Australian star Molly Taylor to drive a South Racing Can-Am Maverick X3 for the first time in Spanish Baja
SOUTH RACING CAN-AM TEAM TO FIELD SIX CARS IN BAJA SPAIN ARAGÓN
· Lithuania’s Rokas Baciuška joins forces with South Racing for cross-country debut
TERUEL (SPAIN): The 2021 FIA World Cup for Cross-Country Bajas resumes in Spain next weekend and the South Racing Can-Am Team will field six cars with talented Australian rally star Molly Taylor joining the team and the cross-country discipline for the first time.
Taylor teams up with German co-driver Dennis Zenz for her first foray into racing in the increasingly popular side-by-side category. The 33-year-old former Australian rally champion (2016) was also a British Ladies rally champion in 2009 and 2010 and entered the FIA World Rally Championship under the Pirelli Star Driver programme in 2011.
She also took part in the TCR Australia circuit racing series in 2019 before joining the Extreme X series alongside Johan Kristoffersson in the Rosberg X Racing team. The pair won the opening round in Saudi Arabia this year. Taylor’s navigator, Zenz, is a member of the Red Bull Junior Team and has recently partnered the talented young American Seth Quintero.
Kuwait’s Meshari Al-Thefiri teams up with Qatar’s Nasser Al-Kuwari in a second South Racing Can-Am. Al-Thefiri currently holds third place in the FIA T4 Championship standings after missing the opening round in Russia and then scoring heavily on the three Middle East Bajas in Dubai, Saudi Arabia and Jordan.
After the South Racing Can-Am Team withdrew from the shortened and modified Silk Way Rally earlier this month, it was possible in the timeframe to transport equipment back from Siberia to western Europe and Dutchman Kees Koolen duly decided to tackle the Spanish event in his Can-Am. Koolen is the defending FIA Bajas T4 World Champion and has been tackling rounds of the FIA World Cup for Cross-Country Rallies this season.
The Portuguese crew of Alexandre and Pedro Ré crew South Racing’s fourth Can-Am and the Lithuanian duo of Rokas Baciuška and Mindaugas Lelys join the Germany-based operation for the first time to experience T4 racing in a fifth Can-Am. Baciuška, 21, is a former kart racer who has recently taken part in the World Rallycross Championship.
French veteran Claude Fournier currently holds a five-point advantage over Saudi Arabia’s Saleh Al-Saif in the FIA T4 standings following his success in Russia in February and consistent points-scoring finishes on the three Middle East events. Al-Saif has joined forces with South Racing in Spain and teams up with Spanish navigator Oriol Vidal to round off the formidable team line-up.
South Racing will also run a Monster Energy-branded Can-Am for the Spanish duo of Gerard Farrés and Armand Monleón.
Saudi female driver Meshaal Al-Obaidan teams up with experienced Emirati co-driver Ali Mirza to crew another Can-Am being run on the event by South Racing Middle East.
South Racing Can-Am Team’s Scott Abraham said: “This is going to be a bumper Baja Aragón for the team after the disappointing cancellation of the Silk Way Rally in its full format. We are all looking forward to getting back to it. This is a challenging route and the terrain around Teruel always offers phenomenal stages. We will face stiff competition from a number of competitors but we have some new talented drivers joining our existing line-up.”
Support for the South Racing Can-Am Team comes from Method Wheels, Tensor Tires, Motul, Bell, Lazer and OMP.
Baja Spain Aragón will be fought out over two legs with 539.36 competitive kilometres in a route of 829.95km.
The opening leg includes a selective section of 180km on Friday, July 23, while the second leg offers two stages of 151km and 208.36km before the finish in the town of Teruel.
2021 FIA World Cup for Cross-Country Bajas – current T4 standings:
1. Claude Fournier (FRA) 69.5pts
2. Saleh Al-Saif (SAU) 64.5pts
3. Meshari Al-Thefiri (KWT) 57pts
4. Pavel Lebedev (RUS) 27pts
5. Thomas Bell (ARE) 16.5pts
6. Saeed Al-Mouri (SAU) 15.5pts
7. Laia Sanz (ESP) 13pts
8. Khalifa Al-Attiyah (QAT) 11.5pts