Subaru Rally Team USA Affirms 2018 American Rally Association National Championship Series Commitmen
David Higgins to Run Full Season, Second Car Shared Between Three Subaru Rally Stars
Cherry Hill, New Jersey (February 15, 2018)
Subaru Rally Team USA (SRTUSA) announced today their commitment to the 2018 American Rally Association (ARA) National Championship Series. The team will field two cars at all seven National-level events this year.
David Higgins and Craig Drew will lead the team, competing for the championship at every round this season. Defending ARA champions Travis Pastrana and Robbie Durant will run a limited schedule this year, owing to schedule conflicts with the Nitro Circus live-event Tour. In Pastrana's place at conflicting events, SRTUSA will enter Subaru Red Bull Global Rallycross drivers Chris “Atko” Atkinson and Patrik Sandell.
Atkinson will be the first guest driver, competing alongside Higgins at the first round of the ARA National Championship Series, Oregon Trial Rally (April 20-22). Other driver dates for the second SRTUSA car have not been announced at this point.
“I’m really excited about this opportunity to do a rally in the USA, having had a glimpse through rallycross of how awesome the Subaru fans are in this part of the world, the atmosphere will be amazing,” said Atkinson, “it’s been a while since I’ve done a high-speed rally and I don’t underestimate the challenge, but know we have a great team and car so it will be fun.”
The Rallycross competitors are both accomplished Stage Rally drivers and have seen success on World Rally Championship stage roads.
Sandell won the Junior World Rally Championship in 2006 and competed in the SWRC class, equivalent to the modern WRC2 class, for several of the following years before turning his attention to Rallycross. Despite the career shift, Sandell still enters rallies near his home in Sweden, including Rally Sweden last year in the Historic class.
Atkinson is no stranger to the inside of a Subaru rally car. The Australian rallyist was a factory driver for Subaru World Rally Team between 2005 and 2008 alongside rally legend Petter Solberg. Atko's accomplishments in the WRC include 41 Stage Wins and 6 podiums, including podiums at Rally Monte Carlo and Rally Mexico.
Photo Credit: Alex Wong (Top), Subaru Rally Team USA (1), Matt Kalish (2)
About American Rally Association (ARA)
A member-driven organization dedicated to the sport of Stage Rally, the American Rally Association provides a transparent, inclusive, and growing sanctioning body to competitors throughout America. A 501 (c)(3) non-profit and wholly owned subsidiary of the United States Auto Club (USAC), ARA is lead by seasoned Stage Rally professionals who work hand in hand with an experienced Board of Directors to deliver a framework for safety, competition, promotion, and education for all aspects of the sport. The common goal of our members, volunteers, and organization is a thriving Stage Rally program in America.