Rhys Millen at the end of SS1, 11 November 2012
Silver Fern Rally New Zealand

epay Silver Fern Rally organisers have received a welcome boost to their entry list with the inclusion of reigning 2012 Pikes Peak Hill Climb Champion and world record holder Rhys Millen.

Millen, son of former triple New Zealand Rally Champion Rod Millen (1975-7), will bring with him from the USA his new Historic class Group B Mazda RX7 to compete in November’s week long international marathon rally event.

Rally Chairman Gary Smith said “It’ll be fantastic to have Millen at our event, and we’d like to thank DMACK Tyres who though already an event sponsor, brokered a deal to get Millen here. It’s been pretty much a last minute thing but seeing him here racing on gravel will sure help the profile of the event.”

Speaking from his base in the US, Rhys Millen said, “The epay Silver Fern event is something we have been looking at for a couple of years now, and it has finally all come together. Apart from a few runs up dad’s Coromandel driveway for the Leadfoot Festival, I’ve never rallied on gravel in New Zealand before – it’ll be great.”

He added “It’ll also be nice to have the extended Millen family there to support me as well, but hey, we are not just be coming here to make up numbers, this is a serious attempt at winning the event.”

DMACK Tyres New Zealand spokesperson Grenville Barker said at the announcement “DMACK Tyres are especially pleased to be able to support Millen’s entry into this year’s epay Silver Fern Rally. We are well aware of his winning World Record time up the famous Pikes Peak earlier this year, so it will really be something to see him compete here in New Zealand, and on gravel in this spectacular event.

Millen’s team have recently purchased the car from Belgium and have already had it fully prepared ready for the event, and it is booked to leave the US by sea in October.

Millen who is widely known for his Drifting and Rallycross exploits, in recent times began his competition on the rally circuit not long after moving to the USA in 1992. Today along with his motorsport tuning business in LA, he is also heavily involved with stunt car work, and is a regular around the Hollywood movie sets.

Currently third in this year’s Formula Drift Pro Championship, Millen’s successes began in the 1990’s with class wins at Pikes Peak, before becoming 2002 SCCA Wild West Pro Rally Champion. He was also 2008 Red Bull World Drifting Champion and in 2011 finished third overall in the Global Rallycross championships.

The epay Silver Fern Rally 2012 will start from Auckland’s Botany Town Centre on the afternoon of Saturday November 10th with the drivers and cars then taking on over 1000km’s of competitive high speed rally stages stopping overnight in Rotorua, Gisborne, Napier, Feilding, Ohakune and Taupo before finishing at Hamilton’s Claudeland’s Events Centre on November 17th.

Paul Smith, epay Silver Fern Rally 2012

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