RAC Rally: Skoda's challenge

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The Independent Online
The wind of change blowing through the RAC Rally is about to carry away a star assured a permanent place in the annals of the event. But not before one more breath of its fresh air.

The Skoda Felicia, third last year for Stig Blomqvist, is in the Swede's hands for a farewell outing before giving way to the Octavia.

Skoda have collected 25 class wins in 25 years on the RAC alone. Blomqvist is intent on maintaining the success rate, giving the Felicia a suitable send-off.

He said: "It would be great to end the Felicia's career with another class victory. Last year we won not only our class but also overall Formula Two honours. That was a bit special."

Showroom versions of the Czech car will be driven by RAC Rally debutants, Melissa Heijink and Anna Tait, winners of the Skoda-backed LadyQuest competition. Tait said: "Melissa and I believe that we're up to the job. It won't just be Stig's performance we'll be celebrating at the finish."