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Holder Battles it out for 3rd at Rotorua

For immediate release: Tuesday 30th May 2006

Holder Battles it out for 3rd at Rotorua

Auckland rally driver James Holder battled the elements to take 3rd place at last weekend’s Hella International Rally of Rotorua.

Braving atrocious conditions Holder and co-driver Richard Ellis fought their way to the top 3 spot after initially struggling to gain traction in the slippery conditions.

Following days of torrential rain road conditions played havoc on the entire field seeing several cars off the road on the first stage. “It was horrendous – we nearly slid off the road on the first corner!” claimed Holder. “Luckily we managed to negotiate our way through the rest of the stage relatively unscathed”.

Moving out to the world-famous Motu stage saw conditions improve little, and fords that had been bone dry during reconnaissance 3 days earlier had become small rivers.

Leg 2 on Sunday saw the rally move back towards the Rotorua lakes district with 3 stages each repeated twice. Warm, dry conditions prevailed and provided a stark contrast to the first day.

Having chosen to write their own pace notes for the event Holder admits he was slightly hesitant during their first run through and was backing off a little more than usual. But with Ellis confident calling the shots Holder’s commitment grew, and despite a puncturing 4km into the 19km Pinnacles stage which cost the pair nearly 1 and a half minutes, they felt the experience had paid off.

“I guess practice makes perfect and there was certainly some room for improvement... but given the chance to write notes we’d definitely do it again. It allowed us to streamline the notes and remove some of the unnecessary detail.”

Lifting his standing to 3rd in the Junior driver’s championship and moving upto 4th = in the Kiwi 2 class, Holder was pleased with how the weekend went.

Round 3 of the New Zealand Rally Championship is the Rally of Whangarei on June 30th – July 2nd.

The team would like acknowledge the valued support of Monit Rally Computers, Ellis Law, Attentive Design, Bendon Man, Amberley Kitchens, CST Nexia, Alexander Group, Toyotaz Galore, CPS, Jamex, MSC and


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