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TRD Rally 2008

  1. ALL-OUT ATTACK AS TRD AIMS FOR THREEPEAT
  2. DOUBLE TROUBLE AS TRD UNLEASHES TWO S2000 COROLLAS
  3. TRD HEADS TO WA FOR SEASON OPENER
  4. SIMON EVANS - PROFILE
  5. SUE EVANS - PROFILE
  6. NEAL BATES - PROFILE
  7. CORAL TAYLOR - PROFILE
  8. TEAM PROFILES
  9. TOYOTA RACING DEVELOPMENT COROLLA SUPER 2000 SPECIFICATIONS
  10. STANDARD TOYOTA COROLLA HATCH SPECIFICATIONS
  11. SECOND WIND
  12. 2008 AUSTRALIAN RALLY CHAMPIONSHIP CALENDAR

ALL-OUT ATTACK AS TRD AIMS FOR THREEPEAT


The TRD Rally Team heads into the 2008 Australian Rally Championship (ARC) season aiming to win three consecutive drivers' and manufacturers' titles in a year that is shaping up to be one of the most competitive in recent memory.

Reigning and now two-time ARC champion Simon Evans will join three-time series winner Neal Bates in a pair of Super 2000-spec Corollas, marking the first time Toyota will run two S2000 cars in the championship.

Evans completed a clean-sweep of the 2007 ARC season, becoming the first driver to win every heat and event in a season.

The 2008 season will be the first time he has driven for the TRD Rally Team in anything but a Group N (P) Corolla - a car the team retired at the end of last season following Evans' second title victory.

"Last season was obviously a dream come true and was a just reward for everyone in the team and the tireless work they put in all season," Evans said.

"We start this year on zero points and with a new car so we won't take anything for granted.

"Sue and I will also be rallying with the S2000 Corolla for the first time. We have been really quick in testing so we are highly motivated to win our third championship.

"On paper the competition looks stronger than last year, so we are going to have to be on top of our game from the first stage of the season. We certainly won't be resting on our laurels."

Team boss Neal Bates spent the 2007 season developing the S2000 Corolla and, thanks to his and the team's ongoing efforts, he and co-driver Coral Taylor did enough to claim second overall behind the Evans duo.

Bates is excited by the prospect of running two S2000 cars and believes that although it will be a tough season, Toyota will still be the team to beat.

"I am really looking forward to the challenge. Simon has loved driving the S2000 in testing so we both cannot wait to get started," Bates said on the eve of the season.

"People look at this year and think it is going to be easy for our team, but I actually think it is going to be extremely tough.

"With Michael Guest now in a Subaru, Spencer Lowndes running full-time and Darren Windus again in the fold I think they will all be challenging us at the front."

Evans and Bates will also have increased competition from within the Toyota ranks, with two privateers running the full season in ex-TRD Group N (P) Corollas.

Queensland-based Scot Stewart Reid and Victorian young gun Glen Raymond plan to compete in all six rounds of the 2008 season.

Former Privateer Cup Champion Reid will return in the ex-Bates Corolla he bought two years ago, while Raymond acquired the TRD team's former test car in the off-season and cannot wait to compete in a frontline car.

The opening round of the 2008 Australian Rally Championship, the QUIT Forest Rally in Western Australia, runs from 5-6 April.

...ends/

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DOUBLE TROUBLE AS TRD UNLEASHES TWO S2000 COROLLAS


The TRD Rally Team is launching into the 2008 Australian Rally Championship (ARC) season with two Super 2000-spec Corollas, marking the first time the team will run two of the naturally aspirated Toyotas.

Reigning champion Simon Evans and team-mate Neal Bates will both drive the lighter weight non-turbo Corollas after Bates successfully developed the first iteration of the S2000 last season.

"It is great to finally get my hands on an S2000 Corolla," said an excited Evans.

"As much as I have had a lot of success with the old car, S2000 is the future of rallying. We have been really quick in testing, so it will be great to see how we go in competition.

"Also having two S2000 cars means twice the amount of data which will be a big help to the team in developing the car."

The switch to running two S2000 Corollas follows the retirement of the team's much-loved and very successful Group N (P) Corollas that the team developed from scratch and ran for five seasons.

"It is a very special time for the team," said Bates about the switch to S2000.

"There is an awful lot of work when you start running a new car and although the Group N (P) was successful, reliable and strong, we believe the S2000 Corolla will be a very worthy replacement."

Three-time ARC champion Bates and his Canberra-based team have spent the off-season building Evans' S2000 Corolla and updating the rear suspension configuration on both cars.

The suspension development came as the team searched for more rear grip, a problem Bates said was the car's only real downfall in its first year.

"We have changed from multi-link to an A-arm rear suspension design," Bates said.

"It is quite a big change as we have to manufacture new rear cross-member mounts, new cross members and new hub carriers, to name just a few things.

"We ran a back-to-back test between the two suspension types and found the A-arm gave us significantly more rear grip, something that pleased us all no end."

...ends/

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TRD HEADS TO WA FOR SEASON OPENER


The TRD Rally Team will cross the Nullarbor and head to Busselton, south of Perth, for the opening round of the 2008 Australian Rally Championship - the QUIT Forest Rally - which starts on 5 April.

Reigning champion Simon Evans and three-time series winner Neal Bates will both be driving Super 2000-spec Corollas and are keen to return to competition following their more than four-month break since the last round of 2007.

Evans utterly dominated last year's Forest Rally by winning every stage, both heats as well as securing outright victory.

The now two-time champion is looking forward to debuting his new S2000 Corolla at an event he clearly enjoys.

"It will be great to get our first start in the S2000 Corolla at an event where we did so well last year," Evans said.

"Although I doubt we will replicate last year's efforts, I think we will be very fast in the S2000.

"As I spent so many years driving a non-turbo car before I joined Toyota, I am comfortable with the driving style required to get the most out of the new car.

"The roads around Busselton are very slippery. With no turbo we will have to be on the power all the time, but to me that's what rallying is all about, so I just can't wait to get started."

Team boss Bates has mixed feelings about the Western Australian event. Although he secured the S2000 Corolla's maiden podium at the event last season, it has never been one of his favourites.

"I love the drive across to Perth," Bates said. "I have no idea how many times I have driven across the Nullarbor, but it is relaxing and I always look forward to the cruise across the desert.

"Over the years I could not really say I have enjoyed the roads in Perth, but I have had reasonable success there at times. The event has grown on me and I enjoy driving there a lot more than I used to.

"In 2007 we lacked rear grip on Perth's slippery roads, so that is one reason we have gone to all the trouble to improve the suspension this year."

Apart from the two factory TRD Rally Team S2000 Corollas, two privateer Toyota teams will also be aiming to run at the front of the field in the Forest Rally.

Former Privateer Cup Champion Stewart Reid and young gun Glen Raymond will both be driving ex-TRD Group N (P) Corollas for their respective teams. Both plan to contest all six rounds of the championship.

Head to www.trd.com.au to keep up with the latest results from the 2008 QUIT Forest Rally.

...ends/

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SIMON EVANS - PROFILE


Born: 17 June 1972

Lives: Nar Nar Goon, Vic

Status: Married to Sue


Simon Evans is among the favourites of Australian motorsport. Throughout his career, Simon has established a reputation as being somewhat of a "wild child" on the Australian rally scene.

Known for his aggressive, spectacular driving style and blinding speed, Evans has now cemented his spot among Australian rallying elite by claiming back-to-back Australian Rally Championships in 2006 and 2007.

Evans toned down his aggressive approach and has driven in a measured and mature manner throughout the last two seasons.

In 2007 his performance reached a new level as he became the first driver in Australian Rally Championship history to win every heat and every round in a season, confirming his position as the best rally driver in the country.

Simon and his co-driver wife Sue joined Neal Bates' operation at the start of the 2004 championship.

In their debut season with TRD in 2004, Simon and Sue set the forests alight and took the championship battle down to the wire before finishing in third place.

Evans was actually leading the drivers' championship before a frightening crash in the Safari Rally Tasmania saw his Corolla slide into a tree stump, resulting in a broken leg for the driver.

A remarkable recovery saw a tentative Evans return to rallying just one month later, and he went on to claim third in the championship.

The Evans crew again finished third in 2005, before their breakthrough season in 2006 saw them secure a dominant title victory.

As a youngster, Simon progressed rapidly through club level to the State championship and in 1995 stepped up to the ARC in the new Corolla Cup, created by Toyota to give young drivers a chance to shine.

Simon was almost unbeatable in the one-make series, and totally dominated the first two seasons. Toyota rewarded him with a drive in the Rally of Canberra in a Group N Celica GT-Four prepared by Neal Bates Motorsport, which started a lasting friendship with Neal Bates and Coral Taylor.

After Sue joined Simon as co-driver, the pair then went on to a factory Formula 2 drive with Volkswagen, winning the class in the 1999 Australian Rally Championship and the 2000 Asia-Pacific Championship.

With the loss of factory support for 2001, Simon's father, Peter, stepped in and provided the first of a series of Impreza WRXs that they ran privately, but always very quickly.

The Evans duo often topped the stage times, but bad luck had prevented them from winning an ARC round until the 2003 NGK Rally of Melbourne - where they climbed the podium to wild acclaim from the home fans.

ACHIEVEMENTS
1995 1st Toyota Corolla Cup - Australian Rally Championship

1996 1st Toyota Corolla Cup - Australian Rally Championship

1999 1st Formula 2 Class - Australian Rally Championship (VW Golf F2)

2000 1st Formula 2 Class - Asia-Pacific Rally Championship (VW Golf F2)

2002 2nd Privateers Cup - Australian Rally Championship (Subaru Impreza WRX)

2003 2nd Privateers Cup - Australian Rally Championship (Subaru Impreza WRX)

2004 3rd Australian Rally Championship (Toyota Corolla Group N (Prototype))

2005 3rd Australian Rally Championship (Toyota Corolla Group N (Prototype))

2006 1st Australian Rally Championship (Toyota Corolla Group N (Prototype))

2007 1st Australian Rally Championship (Toyota Corolla Group N (Prototype))


Q&A
MY FAVOURITE RALLY IS...
Coates Rally Queensland

THE THING I LOVE MOST ABOUT RALLYING IS...
Scaring myself silly

IF I COULD CHANGE ANYTHING IN RALLYING IT WOULD BE...
More events - tarmac and snow

MY CO-DRIVER IS...
Small

MY FIRST CAR WAS A...
Datsun 1000

MY CURRENT CAR IS A...
Toyota HiLux SR5

WHEN I AM NOT RALLYING I...
Work as a concreter

WHEN PEOPLE MEET ME THEY ARE MOST SURPRISED BY...
My big nose

IF I COULD BE ANYONE FOR A DAY IT WOULD BE...
Australian WRC driver Chris Atkinson

MY ULTIMTE ADVENTURE WOULD BE...
Baja 1000

MY FAVOURITE PLACE TO TRAVEL IS...
Theme parks on the Gold Coast

...ends/

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SUE EVANS - PROFILE


Born: 20 June 1972

Lives: Nar Nar Goon, Vic

Status: Married to Simon

In partnership with her husband, Sue Evans forms one half of one of the most popular and fastest rally crews in the country.

Simon and Sue, who were born just three days apart, were high school sweethearts in Pakenham just beyond the Melbourne suburban fringe and married in 1995 at the age of 23.

They had become friends through having adjoining lockers at school - although Sue says she hated him at first because he always dropped things on her head. They also had a shared background in motorsport.

Sue's father raced speedway and Simon's father was into rallying, so it was no surprise that the two 19-year-olds ventured into the sport in 1991 - both as drivers initially.

Sue, however, crashed her Datsun on her very first event and, as Simon showed ability honed from driving since the age of eight, decided to sit back and support her man from the sidelines.

Sue became Simon's co-driver in 1999 and - despite a tense start when Sue was rendered speechless for the first four stages of their first event together - they enjoyed a giant-killing couple of seasons with Formula 2 class victories in a Volkswagen Golf in the ARC and the Asia-Pacific championships.

After Volkswagen withdrew from rallying, Simon and Sue ran privateer Subaru Impreza WRXs, culminating in a hugely popular victory in their home event at the NGK Rally of Melbourne in 2003.

Having had to endure financial torture to keep competing, including selling the family home and Sue's car, the Evans' welcomed the move to the factory Toyota team. They made an immediate impact, winning their first event in WA and leading the championship until mid-season when Simon crashed heavily in Tasmania and broke his leg.

However, the pair rebounded well and in 2006 they secured their first championship at their home event, the NGK Rally of Melbourne. The duo's undoubted potential had finally begun to be been realised.

Not content with winning one title, Sue and Simon clinched back-to-back titles by creating Australian Rally Championship history in 2007, becoming the first co-driver and driver to win every heat and every round in a season.

Simon and Sue have two children: son Jackson, 12, and nine-year-old daughter Eden.

ACHIEVEMENTS
1999 1st Formula 2 Class - Australian Rally Championship (VW Golf F2)

2000 1st Formula 2 Class - Asia-Pacific Rally Championship (VW Golf F2)

2002 2nd Privateers Cup - Australian Rally Championship (Subaru Impreza WRX)

2003 2nd Privateers Cup - Australian Rally Championship (Subaru Impreza WRX)

2004 3rd Australian Rally Championship (Toyota Corolla Group N (Prototype))

2005 3rd Australian Rally Championship (Toyota Corolla Group N (Prototype))

2006 1st Australian Rally Championship (Toyota Corolla Group N (Prototype))

2007 1st Australian Rally Championship (Toyota Corolla Group N (Prototype))


Q&A

FAVOURITE RALLY
NGK Rally of Melbourne

THE THING I LOVE MOST ABOUT RALLYING IS...
The adrenalin rush

IF I COULD CHANGE ANYTHING IN RALLYING IT WOULD BE...
To make the events longer

MY DRIVER IS...
Adorable, like a bald Humphrey B. Bear

MY FIRST CAR WAS A...
Datsun 1200

MY CURRENT CAR IS A...
Toyota Kluger Grande

WHEN I AM NOT RALLYING I...
Hang with my kids

WHEN PEOPLE MEET ME THEY ARE MOST SURPRISED BY...
How short I am

IF I COULD BE ANYONE FOR A DAY IT WOULD BE...
Angelina Jolie

MY ULTIMTE ADVENTURE WOULD BE...
To go into the pyramids

MY FAVOURITE PLACE TO TRAVEL IS...
Coffs Harbour

...ends/

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NEAL BATES - PROFILE


Born: 19 March 1965

Lives: Royalla, NSW

Status: Married to Jane

Triple Australian rally champion Neal Bates is one of the most successful and popular drivers in the sport's history and has been an ambassador for Toyota for more than 15 years.

Bates and co-driver Coral Taylor were the first crew to win three successive Australian Rally Championships, driving Toyota Celicas to victory in 1993, '94 and '95.

In 2006 and 2007 the duo placed second overall in the championship behind team-mates Simon and Sue Evans.

Bates and Taylor's second place in 2007 was a remarkable achievement, given they spent the season developing the team's new S2000 Corolla. They became the first crew in the history of the Australian Rally Championship to win stages and finish on the podium in an S2000 car.

Bates was something of a prodigy when he first stepped into a rally car at the age of 18 in 1984 and caught the eye of Toyota Australia with his exploits in an early-model Celica. He was invited to take part in the 1989 Toyota Star Search circuit racing program and, despite limited bitumen experience, won his class at Bathurst driving a works Corolla. When Toyota decided to run a new Celica GT-Four in rallying, Bates was the natural choice as driver.

Together, Bates and Taylor tackled the ARC with a succession of Celica and Corolla rally cars, until new rules forced them out for a season to produce a new car.

The successful partnership was restored in 2003 with the formation of Toyota Team Racing (now TRD), running a pair of Corolla Sportivos under the new Group N (Prototype) regulations. Developing the new cars as he went, Neal finished the championship in eighth place and improved to sixth in 2004 and 2005.

Neal's talents have been recognised internationally by Toyota Team Europe (TTE), which gave him the opportunity to compete in some local region rounds of the World Rally Championship. He competed in his first International Rally with TTE in 1991 at Rally Australia and in 1996 finished an amazing sixth outright in the New Zealand WRC round.

A natural all-rounder, Neal has performed well when given a chance to compete on the blacktop and has contested the Bathurst 1000 eleven times, finishing in the top 10 twice. He also won the 1995 Targa Tasmania outright driving a Toyota Celica GT-Four and scored three successive class wins with a Lexus IS200 in 1999, 2000 and 2001.

He is set for another tilt at Targa in 2008, where he and Taylor will again team up, this time behind the wheel of a specially prepared TRD Aurion.

ACHIEVEMENTS
1989 1st Toyota Star Search

1989 1st in Class - Bathurst 1000 (Toyota Corolla)

1991 1st in Class - Bathurst 12 Hour (Toyota Celica SX)

1992 1st in Class - Bathurst 12 Hour (Toyota MR2)

1993 1st Australian Rally Championship (Toyota Celica GT-Four ST185)

1993 1st in Class - Bathurst 12 Hour (Toyota MR2)

1994 1st Australian Rally Championship (Toyota Celica GT-Four ST185 & Celica GT-Four ST205)

1994 1st in Class - Bathurst 12 Hour (Toyota MR2)

1995 1st Australian Rally Championship (Toyota Celica GT-Four ST205)

1995 1st Outright - Targa Tasmania (Toyota Celica GT-Four)

1996 2nd Australian Rally Championship (Toyota Celica GT-Four ST205)

1997 3rd Australian Rally Championship (Toyota Celica GT-Four ST205 & Toyota Corolla WRC)

1998 2nd Australian Rally Championship (Toyota Corolla WRC)

1999 2nd Australian Rally Championship (Toyota Corolla WRC)

1999 1st in Class - Targa Tasmania (Lexus IS200)

2000 2nd Australian Rally Championship (Toyota Corolla WRC)

2000 1st in Class - Targa Tasmania (Lexus IS200)

2001 2nd Australian Rally Championship (Toyota Corolla WRC)

2001 1st in Class - Targa Tasmania (Lexus IS200)

2006 1st in Class - Bathurst 12 Hour (Toyota Celica)

2006 2nd Australian Rally Championship [Toyota Corolla Group N (Prototype)]

2007 1st in Class - Bathurst 12 Hour (Toyota Celica)

2007 2nd Australian Rally Championship (Toyota Corolla Super 2000)


Q&A

FAVOURITE RALLY...
NGK Rally of Melbourne

THE THING I LOVE MOST ABOUT RALLYING IS...
Sliding a car through a corner: nothing beats sideways action

IF I COULD CHANGE ANYTHING IN RALLYING IT WOULD BE...
Adding another 10 manufacturers

MY CO-DRIVER IS...
A chatterbox

MY FIRST CAR WAS A...
Datsun 1500 ute

MY CURRENT CAR IS A...
Toyota LC200 Turbo Diesel

WHEN I AM NOT RALLYING I...
Love water-skiing

WHEN PEOPLE MEET ME THEY ARE MOST SURPRISED BY...
The fact I am an ordinary, down-to-earth person

IF I COULD BE ANYONE FOR A DAY IT WOULD BE...
Sebastian Loeb

MY ULTIMTE ADVENTURE WOULD BE...
Trek across the North Pole

MY FAVOURITE PLACE TO TRAVEL IS...
Australia

...ends/

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CORAL TAYLOR - PROFILE


Born: 20 February 1961

Lives: Arcadia, NSW

Status: Married to Mark

Coral Taylor is one of the most successful women in the history of Australian motorsport.

The daughter of rally veteran Norm Fritter, she made her motorsport debut at the age of 18 as co-driver for her father in the gruelling 1979 Repco Round Australia Trial, sparking a passion that has not waned since.

She won her first rally as a co-driver for Peter Glennie in 1986 and began her association with Toyota in 1993, where she teamed up with Neal Bates to rewrite the local record books.

The two won the Australian Rally Championship at their first attempt and then backed up to win the next two years, becoming the first pairing in Australian rally history to have won three consecutive rally championships.

It was a dream start to her new career with Toyota.

Coral and Neal went on to win several individual rallies in the following six years, finishing runners-up in the championship five times.

A change in the rules in 2001 forced them out of the ARC for a year while the team built a new car, but the pair returned in 2003 and finished sixth in the 2004 and 2005 championships.

The 2006 season saw Neal and Coral return to the winner's circle at the Capital Rally on the way to finishing the season second in the standings.

In 2007 Coral and Neal started a new chapter in the ARC by developing a new Super 2000-spec Corolla, remarkably finishing second in the championship and becoming the first crew to win stages and finish on the podium in an S2000 car.

Their successful partnership has not been restricted to the gravel.

They have also tasted success on the bitumen in the Targa Tasmania road race, taking outright victory in 1995 with a Toyota Celica GT-Four and following up with three successive class wins from 1999 to 2001 in a Lexus IS200.

The pair will head back to Targa in 2008 with a race version of Toyota's new TRD Aurion performance car.

As well as being co-driver for Neal, Coral is intimately involved in the daily running of the team as team logistics manager.

Well organised, methodical and a stickler for accuracy, she is responsible for the year-round coordination of the rally team's complex logistics, making sure everything and everyone is where they should be at any given minute all around the country.

Rallying in the Taylor household has also extended to the next generation, with daughter Molly winning the F16 division of the ARC in 2007 - her first full season in the championship.

ACHIEVEMENTS
1993 1st Australian Rally Championship (Toyota Celica GT-Four ST185)

1994 1st Australian Rally Championship (Toyota Celica GT-Four ST185 & Celica GT-Four ST205)

1995 1st Australian Rally Championship (Toyota Celica GT-Four ST205)

1995 1st Outright - Targa Tasmania (Toyota Celica GT-Four)

1996 2nd Australian Rally Championship (Toyota Celica GT-Four ST205)

1997 3rd Australian Rally Championship (Toyota Celica GT-Four ST205 & Toyota Corolla WRC)

1998 2nd Australian Rally Championship (Toyota Corolla WRC)

1999 2nd Australian Rally Championship (Toyota Corolla WRC)

1999 1st in Class - Targa Tasmania (Lexus IS200)

2000 2nd Australian Rally Championship (Toyota Corolla WRC)

2000 1st in Class - Targa Tasmania (Lexus IS200)

2001 2nd Australian Rally Championship (Toyota Corolla WRC)

2001 1st in Class - Targa Tasmania (Lexus IS200)

2006 2nd Australian Rally Championship (Toyota Corolla Group N (Prototype))

2007 2nd Australian Rally Championship (Toyota Corolla Super 2000)

Q&A

MY FAVOURITE RALLY IS...
Rally SA

THE THING I LOVE MOST ABOUT RALLYING IS...
The competition and the friendship

IF I COULD CHANGE ANYTHING ABOUT RALLYING IT WOULD BE...
The profile

MY DRIVER IS...
A lousy dancer, but at least he can drive

MY FIRST CAR WAS A...
Datsun 1200 Coupe

MY CURRENT CAR IS A...
Toyota LC200 Turbo Diesel

WHEN I AM NOT RALLYING I...
Like to go water-skiing

WHEN PEOPLE MEET ME THEY ARE MOST SURPRISED BY...
The fact that I drive the truck

IF I COULD BE ANYONE FOR A DAY IT WOULD BE...
Daniel Elena in Rally Finland

MY ULTIMTE ADVENTURE WOULD BE...
To drive a truck across America

MY FAVOURITE PLACE TO TRAVEL IS...
Europe (but it's been 25 years since I've been there)

...ends/

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TEAM PROFILES


The TRD Rally Team goes to every event with a crew of specialist technicians and engineers, people with years of experience at the peak of domestic and international motorsport.

The TRD crew comprises a total of 20 people at each event, which includes the team's seven full-time personnel.

Darryl Bush, who has been Neal Bates' right-hand man since they started rallying together more than 25 years ago, oversees the whole operation as team manager while each individual car is overseen by a car controller and four mechanics.

Although Coral Taylor spends rally weekend telling Neal Bates where to go as his co-driver, for every other day of the year she tells everyone else in the team where to go as the team logistics manager, looking after the daily running of the personnel.

Geoff Forshaw is the car controller for the Evans/Evans Corolla and is assisted by Mark Linstead, Matthew Hendry, Steve Millar and Russell Manuel.

Anthony Caldwell looks after the Bates/Taylor Corolla, with assistance from Trent Exposito, Lorin Coutts-Smith, David Colton and Aleks Laic.

Fuel and water for all three cars is handled by Brien Dunbar and Stephen Jones, while Steve Millar is in charge of panel work.

DARRYL BUSH - TEAM MANAGER
Darryl Bush has been working closely with Neal Bates for almost a quarter of a century, making it possibly the most enduring partnership in Australian rallying. They met in 1981, when Bates was a 16-year-old apprentice mechanic and Bush was his master in Canberra.

Bush, now a 47-year-old father of three, is fiercely competitive and may have been a leading enduro motorcycle racer had it not been for a chronic back complaint. He was on the verge of challenging for national honours when a pinched nerve that had caused his left leg muscles to wither away finally forced him to give up all physical activity.

Darryl had never really wanted to be anything other than a mechanic, having been surrounded by all things mechanical since he was a kid growing up in Queanbeyan, and then Canberra. He and Bates shared a love of rallying, so they hit it off straight away and made the most of their abilities - Bush with the tools and Bates with a steering wheel.

When Toyota decided to back Bates, Darryl tried to combine running his own business with preparing the rally cars, but he finally went full-time in 1993. There was immediate success as Darryl helped Neal to three consecutive Australian Rally Championships and a run of top-three finishes every year for 11 successive seasons (1991 to 2001).

"Neal is exceptionally good to work for," said Bush. "He has a good mechanical understanding, so it's easy to explain things to him, and he is very logical. There is no ego attached with Neal.

"TRD is a great team to be a part of. From the mechanics to the drivers, they all love what they do, enjoy each other's company and are among the best at what they do in Australia."

Darryl's ability was recognised by the Toyota factory team when he was asked to join them for five Word Rally Championship events in 1997-98, including the legendary Monte Carlo Rally and East African Safari, but he had no interest in living away from Australia.

He became crew chief in 2000 and was therefore responsible for the enormous challenge of developing the Corollas for the Group N (Prototype) regulations.
"It sure beats being a garage mechanic changing oil every day. Rallying keeps your brain ticking and you get involved in all the ins and outs of a car at every level."

GEOFF FORSHAW - CAR CONTROLLER (CAR #1)
Eight years ago Geoff Forshaw was heading a $17 million project at Stadium Australia leading a team of 54 electricians in a mad panic to get the main stadium ready for the 2000 Sydney Olympics. By the time of the opening ceremony, the unrelenting pressure had taken its toll and he welcomed a change of pace to the high-speed world of rallying!

After 15 years as an electrician, Neal Bates offered Geoff a full-time job working for the rally team and Geoff now commutes between his home in the Blue Mountains west of Sydney and the team's workshop in Canberra during the week.

Forshaw had been a regular and successful racing driver since he was 18 and even ran a general automotive workshop in the Blue Mountains in the early 1990s. He met Bates when he prepared a Toyota Supra Turbo for the 1992 Bathurst 12 Hour production car race and shared the driving (they qualified third, but retired).

An immediate friendship grew between the co-drivers and for five years Geoff worked with the rally crew on the weekends before joining full-time. He built all the Group N (P) Corolla engines as well as looking after the tricky electricals and electronics, including the engine mapping - a vital area of modern car development that has changed the face of motorsport in the last decade.

"I love the job because it's very challenging," said Forshaw. "And it's been particularly challenging with the Corollas because we had to build the Group N (P) cars from scratch to a new set of regulations that no-one had ever used before.

"Now we are in our second season with the Super 2000 Corolla - a car that no-one has ever built before, either."

ANTHONY CALDWELL - CAR CONTROLLER (CAR #2)
A full-time member of the TRD crew since 2005, Anthony Caldwell is the car controller on car number two - the S2000 Corolla of Neal Bates and Coral Taylor.

Anthony is a well-travelled 35-year-old Canberra native with a long history in rallying, including many years competing as a co-driver, winning the NSW round of the ARN Junior Challenge.

Anthony also has connections with Neal Bates Automotive dating back to 1995 when he helped prepare Rick Bates' Group A Toyota Celica GT-Four rally car.

Since then, he has spent about seven years as head mechanic for Martin Lintott, building and preparing a series of Mitsubishi Lancer and Subaru Impreza ARC cars. He spent 2004 in Tasmania at Les Walkden Racing in charge of Ed Ordynski's car, before joining Neal Bates' team.

In 2005, Anthony was the car controller for the third Toyota Team Racing (now TRD) Corolla, campaigned by Ben Barker and Damian Long. Anthony stayed with the team when TRD cut back to two cars for 2006.

"I'm absolutely looking forward to helping make these Corollas go really well," Anthony said, "and you couldn't get a better crew to work with. They are a great bunch of guys."

...ends/

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TOYOTA RACING DEVELOPMENT COROLLA SUPER 2000 SPECIFICATIONS


Engine type: Naturally aspirated with 64mm throttle body
Designation: 3S-GE Breakthrough Engine Advanced Mechanisms (BEAMS)
Configuration: Four-cylinder, in-line, transverse location
Valve mechanism: Twin cam multi-valve
Fuel system: Sequential multi-point injection
Displacement: 2.0-litre
Bore x stroke (mm): 86 x 86
Compression ratio: 13:1
Max power: 190kW
Max torque: 240Nm
Driveline type: Constant four-wheel drive with front, rear and centre limited-slip differentials (LSD)
Gearbox: SADEV six-speed sequential
Steering system: Power-assisted rack and pinion
Front brakes: AP Racing 300mm diameter ventilated discs with aluminium four-piston calipers
Rear brakes: AP Racing 300mm diameter ventilated discs with aluminium four-piston calipers
Front suspension: Independent MacPherson strut with coil springs, double-acting gas-filled dampers and anti-roll bar
Rear suspension: Independent MacPherson strut with coil springs, double-acting gas-filled dampers and anti-roll bar
Wheels: 15 x 6.5in
Tyres: Michelin
Dimensions: Minimum dry weight: 1200kg
Overall length: 4175mm
Width: 1800mm
Height: 1515mm
Wheelbase: 2576mm
Front track: 1600mm
Rear track: 1600mm

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STANDARD TOYOTA COROLLA HATCH SPECIFICATIONS


Model:

Levin ZR

Engine type:

Naturally aspirated

Designation:

2ZR-FE

Configuration:

Four-cylinder, in-line

Valve mechanism:

DOHC

Fuel system:

Electronic multi-point port fuel injection

Displacement:

1798cc

Bore x stroke (mm):

80.5 x 88.3

Compression ratio:

10.0:1

Max power:

100kW

Max torque:

175Nm

Driveline type:

Front-wheel drive with front differential

Gearbox:

Six speed manual

Steering system:

Power-assisted rack and pinion

Front brakes:

275mm diameter ventilated discs, single piston sliding calipers

Rear brakes:

259mm diameter solid discs, single piston sliding calipers

Front suspension:

Independent, MacPherson struts, lower L-arms, gas dampers and off set coil springs and front anti-roll bar.

Rear suspension:

Semi-independent trailing torsion beam, coil springs and gas damper units

Wheels:

16 x 6.5in

Dimensions:

Overall length: 4220mm

Width: 1760mm

Height: 1515mm

Wheelbase: 2600mm

Front track: 1525mm

Rear track: 1525mm


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SECOND WIND


Leading privateer entries Stewart Reid and Glen Raymond will contest the 2008 Australian Rally Championship season in ex-TRD Rally Team Group N (P) Corollas, ensuring the cars that secured Toyota two manufacturers' titles remain in competition.

Experienced hand and former Privateer Cup Champion Reid is confirmed for a full tilt on the season driving his ex-Neal Bates Group N (P) Corolla - the same car he steered to sixth in Heat Two at last year's final event in Melbourne.

"I still firmly believe the Corolla is the best and most fun car I've ever driven," said the Queensland-based Scot.

"The technical support from TRD is without doubt second to none and I'm looking forward to building on that support from here on."

Raymond, who trains at the Australian Institute of Sport, is looking forward to his first event in the Corolla after acquiring the TRD Rally Team's ex-test car in the off-season.

"It is awesome," Raymond enthused. "The Corolla shows the difference between a hobby car and a purpose-built car. It is that good.

"We have done some testing in the off-season with the guys at TRD in Canberra that went really well. It is set up really well too, so it is going to be exciting to be running such a competitive car.

"The older cars we have run in previous years have meant a strong result was always an uphill struggle, so everyone at the team is highly-motivated for the season ahead.

"Now I have something that I know will hold together, and we can be contenders once we have adapted to the new cars."

During five full seasons of competition with the TRD Rally Team, Group N (P) Corollas secured 11 outright victories, 21 heat wins and 29 podium finishes - and took Simon Evans to back-to-back titles in 2006 and 2007.

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2008 AUSTRALIAN RALLY CHAMPIONSHIP CALENDAR


Round 1 - QUIT Forest Rally WA: 5-6 April
Round 2 - Rally of Canberra ACT: 10-11 May*
Round 3 - Coates Rally Queensland: 21-22 June
Round 4 - Toyota Rally SA: 26-27 July
Round 5 - Great Lakes Rally NSW: 20-21 September
Round 6 - NGK Rally of Melbourne Vic: 18-19 October

*Rally of Canberra is a joint ARC and FIA Asia-Pacific Rally Championship event

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