Gaurav Gill has something that cannot be taught: speed. He now needs something that comes with experience.
“Gill need to be more consistent,” said the man who sits next to him when he speeds his Mitsubishi Evo 10 at close to 100 kmph through roads not fit for driving. Glen MacNeall, who won the co-driver's title at the Asia Pacific Rally Championship on Sunday, has no doubt Gill can achieve that with time. “If you look at the season, Gill made a few small mistakes and paid dearly. But importantly, he did not repeat the same mistakes,” MacNeall said a day after he and Gill crashed out of the final round of the APRC here.
The crash ruined Gill's chances of winning the APRC title, which went to his MRF teammate Katsuhiko Taguchi, who also crashed out on Saturday. MacNeall still won the APRC co-drivers' title, edging out Taguchi's co-driver Chris Murphy who had missed a round earlier in the season. Proton R3 Malaysia's Alister MaRae and co-driver Bill Hayes won the China Rally on Sunday.
MacNeall, 38, has been rallying since 1991 and has been involved with motorsports for longer because he was born in a family of rally enthusiasts. With stints in the World Rally Championship, MacNeall knows what he is talking about.
“Gill's got speed and speed is something that cannot be taught,” MacNeall added.
Speed is a word that is repeated often when Gill's driving is discussed. “He has been consistently faster than all other drivers in all the rounds,” said MRF team director Lane Heenan. “Gill's aggressive,” said Taguchi.All the aggression and speed were not good enough to help Gill win the title though.
Heenan was asked what a rally driver needed to be successful and he said: “They've got to ensure they are comfortable, not put themselves under too much pressure.”
Taguchi seems to do that well. The Japanese, who says rallying is “far more fun than chasing women”, won his second APRC title after a gap of 11 years.