Regular NSW Rally Championship contenders, Andrew Penny and Rhys Llewellyn have swapped their Subaru WRX for a Classic Nissan 240RS for the AMH Automotive Group Rally of the Bay. The pair have intensified their commitment in 2021, taking on the NSW Championship as well as the Motorsport Australia Rally Championship (ARC).
At the Accent Benchtops Rally of Queensland ARC event in May, Penny rolled the WRX, putting them out of the event and leaving the car damaged.
“With Queensland, we had a bit of a misdemeanour in the forest with the GC8, so that’s in the process of being repaired”, Penny said.
“I saw the 240RS for sale online and it turned out that Michael Harding had it and over a work-related conversation we struck up a deal. I didn’t actually mean to buy it but decided that it would be a bit of fun. It’s super cool, and that’s why I bought it. And I’d just sold a ski boat, so I swapped a ski boat for another rally car”, Penny joked.
Penny and Llewellyn have entered the AMH Rally of the Bay to continue their bid for the NSW Rally championship, but also to get some practice in the new car before the Alpine Rally at the end of the year.
“We’re going to do the Alpine because someone said it was a fun rally to go to. But, I’ve actually never driven a rear wheel drive rally car and I figured the only way to learn was to get in and have a go. It looks like fun, but I don’t know how fast I’m going to be, but the car is allegedly very quick” Penny says.
The Nissan 240RS has some rally heritage and was built in Victoria by well-known rally driver Darren Snooks. The car has rallied in New Zealand with former Australian Rally Champion, Simon Evans behind the wheel. The car has a five-link rear end, FJ240 motor, twin 48 webers, dry sump, electric steering with a ratio reducer and was built to a high specification.
The Alpine Rally is a road book event, but Penny says he is planning on using Pace Notes at the Rally of the Bay.
“Rhys asked me if we’re going to use the Road book, but I said no, we’re going all in. I want to go as fast as we can with as much knowledge as we can. And I reckon knowing what’s around the next corner is going to help me learn faster”, Penny added.
“We want to go as fast and as hard as we can, because I don’t want to drive slow. I’m too competitive”, Penny concluded.
The Nissan 240RS is also eligible for the East Coast Classic Rally Series and this will be Penny and Llewellyn’s first appearance in the classic rally series. They currently rank eight overall on the 2021 NSW Rally Championship scoreboard with 28 points. Nathan Quinn and Ray Winwood-Smith lead the series on 50 points.
The AMH Automotive Group Rally of the Bay is set to take place on Saturday the 17th of July in the forests surrounding Batemans Bay on the NSW south coast. The first car will be flagged away from Corrigan’s Beach Reserve in Batehaven at 8:45am.