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Old 04-22-2004, 02:40 PM   #1
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Default McRae linked to Subaru for Rally GB

McRae linked to Subaru for Rally GB

Former world champion Colin McRae is set to return to the World Rally Championship in a privateer Subaru Impreza WRC2004 on this year’s Rally GB, according to a story in this week’s Autosport magazine.

McRae was dropped by Citroen at the end of 2003, and was beaten in the race to fill Richard Burns’ seat at Subaru by young Finn Mikko Hirvonen. The Scot spent January competing in the Paris-Dakar endurance event, and will race at Le Mans with a Prodrive-run Ferrari 360 in June.

He is keen to contest his home round of the WRC, though, and has been in talks with Subaru and privateer team RED Motorsport to drive one of this year’s cars on the event. The outfit has long links with the McRae family, and Colin’s brother, Alister, currently drives for them in the Production class. Colin won his drivers' title with Subaru in 1995, and last competed with the outfit on Rally GB in 1998.

“There is something in the pipeline,” he said. “I’m enjoying my time off. There’s a chance that I might be doing something, but that’s all there is to say at the moment.”

RED Motorsport boss Neil Gatt said he be delighted to run a big-name star, such as McRae, at the top level of the sport as part of his long-term goals for the team. Subaru team principal David Lapworth also admitted the prospect of seeing McRae back on Rally GB was enticing, but there remain questions over the availability of this year’s WRC2004 cars – which McRae would certainly want to drive – for Rally GB in its earlier, September date.

“It’s not impossible,” he said. “But at the same time, the 2004 cars don’t become available for customers until October or November. We have talked about what Colin might be doing – he’s been around Prodrive because of his involvement with the Ferrari programme – and rallying is a natural progression of any conversation.”
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