Subaru and Brandon Semenuk have won every single round of this year’s American Rally Association National season so far, but the returning Tom Williams hopes he can be the man to end their winning streak on this weekend’s Southern Ohio Forest Rally.
Williams missed the last ARA round, Oregon Trail Rally, as his Ford Fiesta Rally2 was being repaired following a final stage crash on the Olympus Rally.
Instead, the former Junior WRC driver competed in Wales and won the Plains Rally; his first ever outright rally win.
That performance, plus the more technical nature of the Ohio stages, gives Williams confidence that he can challenge reigning champion Semenuk on his ARA return.
“I’ve never done this rally before and everyone always told me to do it, but unfortunately it’s never quite worked with the budget as it follows Oregon quite quickly and it just never worked out for us. Luckily this year it has worked in the reverse way,” Williams told DirtFish.
“I’ve been looking through the onboards and it is super twisty and technical – almost not American! They look like great stages and America’s Best, the stage John Buffum said was the best stage in America, that looks really good.
“I’m really looking forward to it as this tight and technical nature gives us the biggest chance so far this year to compete against the factory Subaru team that have been going really quickly.
“The aim is to challenge Subaru and carry on our progression against them where we left off at the end of the Olympus Rally before our crash.. I’m not focused on the class win, I want to see what we can do against Subaru.”
Williams enjoyed his trip back home to the UK last month where “it was nice to see we were roughly where we need to be” and is planning more events outside America for the rest of the year.
“We’re not focused on the championship in ARA as the rules haven’t really worked out, so we’re focused on picking and choosing rallies now and Ohio is an event where we could have an advantage on,” Williams explained.
“We definitely have some events in mind, and they’re all over the place. But I won’t say what they are just yet!”