South Aussie racing pro set for Australia’s newest tarmac rally

The owner of one the country’s most successful independent race outfits, Adelaide-based Team BRM, will be taking some well earned time out this November to try his hand at Australia’s newest tarmac rally; the Hotham Auto Corsa Alpine Tarmac Rally.

Team BRM boss Mark Rundle, who lives in the inner Adelaide suburb of Payneham, will dust off his four-wheel drive 2003 Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution 8 to contest the inaugural 11-stage, 250 competitive kilometre rally in Victoria’s North East from 14-15 November this year.

Team BRM has set the pace in some of Australia’s quickest and most challenging forms of racing, with success in Australian Formula 3, Formula 4, Formula Ford and Porsche Carrera Cup.

“With the race team I do around 10 events every year following the V8 Supercars championship around with Carrera Cup and Formula 4, so finding a weekend free to have my own fun can be tough,” said Rundle.

Rundle manages the operations of the team, overseeing both at-track activities and those at the workshop, which is in the suburb of Beverley, North West of Adelaide. There Rundle employs seven full time staff and come each race weekend calls on a further 14 specialised contractors.

The 37-year-old will have his long time navigator and friend and fellow South Australian, Steve Fisher, at his side for the two-day Hotham Auto Corsa which will be based at Mount Hotham and take in roads around Falls Creek, the Alpine National Park, Harrietville, Omeo and Mount Beauty.

“The Hotham event looks like being just fantastic,” said Rundle. “The roads being tight and twisty are what I enjoy over some of the flat out silly stuff you see in other events, so we really can't wait to get back in the car and have a bit of fun.”

Rundle has run the Evo at a number of events since he first acquired it in 2008, including tarmac rallies like the Adelaide Hills Tarmac Rally (which he won in 2013 and says is one of his favourites) and last year’s Targa High Country. Rundle also took it to World Time Attack in 2011 and 2012 and this year’s Mount Alma Mile Hillclimb where he finished third.

Mark Rundle in his EvoWhile there is no doubt his intimate knowledge of race logistics will give him a competitive edge, Rundle says he’s happy just to get to the end of the event with his Evo still intact.

“It’s been about four years of constant tinkering and development to get the car where it is today, so I am keen to make sure it stays as shiny as it will be when it arrives at Mount Hotham.”

The Hotham Auto Corsa Alpine Tarmac Rally is expected to attract a competition field of up to 150 cars across its Tour, Challenge and Competition categories. It will be held in conjunction with the Mount Hotham Alpine Cup International Hillclimb, which at 29km is the world’s longest hillclimb event.

Auto Corsa Group has signed a three-year deal with the Hotham Resort Management Board to deliver the two events.

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