2005 Mitsubishi Evolution 9 RS
- Engine: 1997cc 4-cylinder Mivec Turbo
- Engine management: Motec with 3 stage antilag
- Power: 325 Bhp on BP 98 Octane fuel
- Gearbox: 5 spd Mitsubishi
- Clutch: Racing clutch by Competition Clutches
- Differential: Ralliart front and rear
- Brakes: Front – Alcon 4 piston calipers with 365mm slotted and ventilated discs Rear – Brembo factory 2 piston calipers
- Wheels and Tyres: Speedline wheels with Dunlop gravel tyres
- Interior: 2 x Sparco Evo seats, WIllans and Scroth Racing harnesses, Sparco steering-wheel with OMP boss kit
- Full competition Roll-cage
- Helmets: Stilo
- Race suits: Sparco
- Auckland Mitsubishi Motors
- Hughes Transport
- Neil Allport Motorsport
- Fleet Tyres
- Bascik Transport
- Transvisual Graphics
The season started off with little practice aside from a test day in Maramarua Forrest with rally legend Neil Allport to offer some advice. This was Bryns first time to see how the car responded on gravel and to get a handle on the big power the Evo 9 can push out when you put the accelerator to the floor. Bryn would pick up some confidence and valuable information for the year ahead.
With repairs being made and confidence regained the next event was the Gisborne rally on 27th June. Bryn and Richard began to jell together and began to form a good rhythm seeing them go from 48th place at the beginning of the day to 29th overall and 7th in class.
Following this was the Rally of Coromandel late August. With a focus on getting through the next few rallies in one piece the Auckland Motors Mitsubishi Evo set off from 44th seeding. Steadily they progressed through the field as they picked off cars within reach and others retired throughout the day finishing a respectable 24th overall and again 7th in class.
Next the team made the long drive south for the Rally of Wairarapa. This was a very challenging rally and saw Bryn and Richard in the Auckland Motors Mitsubishi Evo 9 tackling some of the best roads the area had to offer. Seeded 49th they quickly began climbing through the field - their confidence building every stage. Close battles with the surrounding cars lead and a nail biting finish seeing the boys clinch 23rd overall and a very respectable 4th in class.
The last rally on the calendar for this year was a favorite of the rally community – the Rally of the North. Run on a lot of ex-Wrc roads it combines tight and technical stages, with high-speed segments, and fantastic scenery throughout the event. This year the rally was not part of the championship so without the added pressure Bryn and Richard were able to focus on getting faster and putting down some competitive times. They started off the rally with some very quick times, going from 20th down to 12th by the early afternoon. With their new found speed the boys continued on this pace and eventually ended the day in 8th place overall and 5th in class.
As the Auckland Motors Mitsubishi Evo 9 was also competing in the top half series the points were calculated after this event and the guys did extremely well. Bryn took 2nd overall driver in the championship with 56 points and Richard took out 3rd overall for co-drivers with 60 points – a fantastic result after a highly successful first year.
Coming into the 2016 season the Auckland Motors Mitsubishi Evo 9 underwent a slight rebuild gaining some upgraded parts and a little bit more engine power. After a little bit of testing at a local Rally Sprint – the car was performing fantastically and was ready for action.
First up was last years problem rally – The International Rally of Whangarei. This year the entry field was large and highly competitive – even New Zealand WRC legend Hayden Paddon had entered! Unfortunately this rally usual Co-driver Richard Allport was away on his honeymoon so the highly experienced Len Fisher jumped in the passenger seat for this event. Anticipation was high as the Auckland Motors Mitsubishi Evo lined up on the start line for the Pohe Island night stage. This stage is run on the Friday night right in the city of Whangarei and always has a huge spectator turnout of fans and curious locals checking out the action. Unfortunately clutch issues saw the car head out of the stage and straight into the service park for the team to get to work on. Thankfully the issue was patched up and the car headed into Saturday at full pace. Bryn and Len began to climb through the pack and finished the day in a good position for their continued effort into Sunday. A lot of cars pulled out after the first day meaning for those that were left Sunday was going to be a sprint to the finish. The Auckland Motors Mitsubishi really began to grab everyone’s attention as it continued to progress through the field – leaving an angry combination of flames and anti-lag crackles throughout the surrounding hills and countryside. At the end of the day Bryn and Len had managed to take out 1st place in open 4wd – a massive result. The progression from the previous year from retirement to first place was a truly special moment and the entire team were over the moon.
The next event on the calendar was the Rally of Gisborne on 2nd of July. Pre-scrutineering fuel pump issues meant that the rally was almost over before it started but the team was luckily able to fix this issue and get the car to the start line. Once again roads were very challenging with ice in a lot of stages but this didn’t bother the guys as they piloted the Auckland Motors Mitsubishi Evo to the sharp end of the field. The rest of the rally was problem free with Bryn and Richard managing an impressive 15th overall and 4th in class. This result held them 2nd overall in the Open 4wd class going into the last round – the season was going better than ever.
Even though this was not part of the New Zealand Rally Championship the team decided to enter as this was a fantastic rally with amazing roads and a favorite among drivers new and old. Due to work commitments Richard was unable to attend so crew member Andy Beck jumped in the passenger seat to take care of Co-driving duties. The Auckland Motors Mitsubishi got off to an amazing start setting times in the first few stages consistently in the top 10. However disaster struck in the 4th stage when a high speed accident put them out of the rally in spectacular fashion. Bryn was badly hurt and was rushed to hospital were it was later confirmed that his back had been broken in several places. Luckily after a successful operation he has started the road to recovery and showing great commitment is already up and walking as he prepares to come back next season stronger than ever. The car was badly damaged and is already undergoing a rebuild for next years return. This incident was yet another learning experience and has taught the team a lot as they think about next year. Needless to say the car will be back, with more power, and looking for greater results as the team moves forward.
A big thank you to Auckland Motors Mitsubishi for all their help and support over the last two years. We would not have achieved such high success without you and we are truly thankful. Using genuine parts all over the car ensures we have minimal break-downs or part failures and is one of the biggest reasons we are so competitive. Once again a big thank you goes out to Mark Barton and Wayne Franklin as well as the rest of the staff at Auckland Motors Mitsubishi – thanks for always being great to deal with and going the extra mile to help us achieve our goals.
The Auckland Motors Mitsubishi Evo 9 RS will be back in 2017 – watch this space for updates!