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SUBARU RALLY TEAM USA


ARA Rally America National Championship 2019 Schedule
1 100 Acre Wood Rally March 15 – 16
2 Olympus Rally April 27 – 28
3 Oregon Trail Rall May 31 – June 2
4 New England Forest Rally July 20-21
5 Idaho Rally International June 29 – 30
6 New England Forest Rally July 19 – 20
7 Ojibwe Forests Rally August 23 – 24
8 Susquehannock Trail Performance Rally September 13 – 14

 

 

PRESS RELEASE: September 16, 2019

Seventeen-Year-Old Subaru Driver Oliver Solberg Secures Second U.S. Win at Susquehannock Trail Rally

Wellsboro, Penn. - Subaru Motorsports USA dominated a muddy and treacherous Susquehannock Trail Performance Rally, with driver Oliver Solberg going wire-to-wire to win his second event of the American Rally Association (ARA) season in only his first full season of rally. Teammate and ARA championship leader David Higgins drove to a calculated second-place finish in pursuit of his tenth U.S. rally title. Solberg and Higgins swept all 15 stage wins and have now combined to win five of the last six ARA national events in their Subaru WRX STI rally cars.

With Susquehannock Trail moving from its usual June timing to a new date in mid-September, cool and damp weather conditions made for a very different rally from previous years. Rain during the week turned the service area into ankle-deep mud and left the narrow, fast Pennsylvania roads slick and more dangerous than usual. Oliver Solberg – still a few days shy of his eighteenth birthday - and returning co-driver Aaron Johnston attacked early on Friday in their #70 WRX STI, winning the first two stages to build a quick lead over Higgins and co-driver Craig Drew. Solberg would ultimately take eight of the first day’s stages to Higgins’ two as the veteran pursued a conservative strategy to protect his championship hopes.

Saturday’s stages continued the story of the event with more damp, foggy conditions and a continued push from Solberg and Johnston for stage wins. The pair would again take the first two stages of the day before Higgins and Drew struck back with a win on Stage 13. A broken axle briefly left Solberg with only front-wheel drive on Stage 14, but he was able to complete the stage and return to service with most of his lead intact. After repairs, Solberg closed out the weekend with a win on the rally’s final stage to take the overall victory. Higgins brought his WRX STI home in second, with the Ford of third-place finisher Barry McKenna more than twelve minutes further back.

“Fantastic, finally another win since Olympus!” Solberg said after the rally. “I knew the conditions were going to be difficult so my goal was just to push hard and win as many stages as possible. It’s been a long couple of rallies but the team has done a fantastic job.”

“This weekend was very much a championship drive for us,” said Higgins. “Oliver had good pace and we knew we had a chance to lock up enough points to secure the title this weekend so made the choice to drive safely and get the job done. Now we can relax and go flat out at the last event next month, try to end the season on a high note.”

David Higgins and Oliver Solberg will go head-to-head in the final round of the ARA season at Lake Superior Performance Rally, to be held October 18-19 in Houghton, Michigan.

About Subaru Motorsports USA
Subaru Motorsports USA is managed by Vermont SportsCar and proudly supported by Subaru of America, Inc., Idemitsu Lubricants, Yokohama Tires, Method Race Wheels, DirtFish Rally School, KÜHL and RECARO. Follow the team online at www.subaru.com/motorsports.

Follow Subaru Motorsports USA on Facebook, on Instagram @subarumotorsportsusa, and on Twitter @subarums_usa.

About Subaru of America, Inc.
Subaru of America, Inc. (SOA) is a wholly owned subsidiary of Subaru Corporation of Japan. Headquartered at a zero-landfill office in Camden, N.J., the company markets and distributes Subaru vehicles, parts and accessories through a network of more than 630 retailers across the United States. All Subaru products are manufactured in zero-landfill production plants and Subaru of Indiana Automotive, Inc. is the only U.S. automobile production plant to be designated a backyard wildlife habitat by the National Wildlife Federation. SOA is guided by the Subaru Love Promise, which is the company’s vision to show love and respect to everyone, and to support its communities and customers nationwide. Over the past 20 years, SOA has donated more than $145 million to causes the Subaru family cares about, and its employees have logged more than 40,000 volunteer hours. As a company, Subaru believes it is important to do its part in making a positive impact in the world because it is the right thing to do.

 

 

PRESS RELEASE: August 26, 2019

Subaru Takes Double Podium at Ojibwe Rally as David Higgins Extends Championship Lead

Detroit Lakes, Minn - Subaru Motorsports USA finished with two WRX STI rally cars on the podium at Minnesota’s Muscatell Ojibwe Forests Rally, as David Higgins led wire-to-wire for the victory and teammate Travis Pastrana secured a third-place finish. With his third event win of the season, Higgins and co-driver Craig Drew are now well in command of the American Rally Association (ARA) championship lead as Higgins seeks his tenth U.S. rally title.

The seventh round of the ARA campaign kicked off in the resort town of Detroit Lakes with a pair of Thursday night super special stages before moving north for two days of competition in the forests. After the super specials, Higgins sat atop the field with a slim lead over his teammate. Pastrana, competing in only his second stage rally event of the year but coming off a strong showing at the previous week’s Nitro Rallycross event, was hoping to get up to pace quickly on the early stages in the Minnesota lake country.

On Friday, Higgins came out fast with the goal of building his lead against Pastrana and championship rival Barry McKenna. The defending ARA title-winner was in top form early. With Pastrana suffering a puncture on Stage 5 that dropped him to more than a minute behind his teammate, the way was clear for Higgins. By the end of the day, the Isle of Man native had built a lead of nearly a minute over McKenna’s second-place Ford and notched a perfect six stage wins. The comfortable margin would allow him to shift to a more conservative strategy on Saturday as he focused on preserving his lead.

With a first-place finish likely out of reach, Pastrana and co-driver Robbie Durant came into the second day of forest stages needing a hard push to catch McKenna for second. Unfortunately, an off on Stage 9 dropped them further back and caused front-end damage to the #199 Subaru. With his podium position hanging in the balance during Saturday morning’s 30-minute service session, the Vermont SportsCar technicians were able to replace the intercooler, radiator support, bumper, headlight and tires in time to put Pastrana back out for the second loop of stages. The five-time national champion and action sports legend responded with quick, consistent drives the rest of the way, including a pair of stage wins in the afternoon, to secure his third-place finish.

“Very glad to have win number three in the books,” Higgins said after the finish. “We built a good lead and kept the car clean, so really a great rally! From here we’ve got a solid lead going into the last two events of the year, so we’ll stay focused and try to get the job done next month in Pennsylvania.”

“What a weekend!” said Pastrana. ”We just came here to do some ‘durability testing’ and and man, the Subaru does good! David was much quicker this weekend, and we were really trading stages with Barry. We got our butts handed to us by David, but what a great time!”

David Higgins will face off against teammate Oliver Solberg at Pennsylvania’s Susquehannock Trail Performance Rally, September 13-14.

About Subaru Motorsports USA
Subaru Motorsports USA is managed by Vermont SportsCar and proudly supported by Subaru of America, Inc., Idemitsu Lubricants, Yokohama Tires, Method Race Wheels, DirtFish Rally School, KÜHL and RECARO. Follow the team online at www.subaru.com/motorsports.

Follow Subaru Motorsports USA on Facebook, on Instagram @subarumotorsportsusa, and on Twitter @subarums_usa.

About Subaru of America, Inc.
Subaru of America, Inc. (SOA) is a wholly owned subsidiary of Subaru Corporation of Japan. Headquartered at a zero-landfill office in Camden, N.J., the company markets and distributes Subaru vehicles, parts and accessories through a network of more than 630 retailers across the United States. All Subaru products are manufactured in zero-landfill production plants and Subaru of Indiana Automotive, Inc. is the only U.S. automobile production plant to be designated a backyard wildlife habitat by the National Wildlife Federation. SOA is guided by the Subaru Love Promise, which is the company’s vision to show love and respect to everyone, and to support its communities and customers nationwide. Over the past 20 years, SOA has donated more than $145 million to causes the Subaru family cares about, and its employees have logged more than 40,000 volunteer hours. As a company, Subaru believes it is important to do its part in making a positive impact in the world because it is the right thing to do.

 

 

PRESS RELEASE: April 29, 2019

Seventeen-Year-Old Oliver Solberg Earns First U.S. Victory at Olympus Rally

Subaru Motorsports USA took the top two podium positions at this weekend’s DirtFish Olympus Rally, with Swedish rally prodigy Oliver Solberg securing his first American rally victory in a blue and gold Subaru WRX STI. Solberg was fast and consistent throughout the weekend, despite having never seen the Olympus stage roads before and working with veteran co-driver Denis Giraudet for the first time. Defending ARA champion David Higgins pushed hard on Sunday but was unable to catch his teammate, finishing with a strong second-place finish.

Solberg and Giraudet came out hard on day 1 and set fastest times on six of eight stages, with Higgins and Drew in close pursuit. Sitting eleven seconds back and within striking distance of their teammates after Stage 6, Higgins was on pace for a stage win on the 18-mile Wildcat stage when he suffered a leak in a brake line. Despite being forced to complete the last six miles of the stage without brakes, Higgins lost only 27 seconds to Solberg and held onto second place at the end of the first day.

With Saturday’s tight and technical stages giving way to faster roads on Sunday, Higgins and Drew pushed hard in the morning to claw back some of the 41-second gap to Solberg. The veteran pair notched wins on the first three stages of the day, cutting the lead to fourteen seconds. With the pressure on, Solberg and Giraudet drove flat-out on the event’s final stage and delivered a decisive stage win to earn a thrilling event victory.

It was an emotional moment for the whole Solberg family, with Oliver’s legendary father Petter – the 2003 World Rally Champion with Subaru – and mother Pernilla looking on.

“Winning my first event for Subaru is an amazing feeling,” said Oliver Solberg. “This is my first time at the Olympus Rally and I’m working with a new co-driver, plus I was first on the road all weekend which meant the surface was very loose. But the Saturday stages gave us a lot of confidence, and Denis and I pushed as hard as we could on the last stage today to hold on for the win.”

“When we got to the end of the last stage, it was like a dream had come true for me. My mom was first to the car and then dad… you know we have all worked hard for this and I have a lot to thank those guys for. Us Solbergs, we’re an emotional family and this was an incredible, incredible moment for us all.”

For Higgins and Drew, a second consecutive podium finish earns vital championship points – but without a rally win through two events, the pair is in an unfamiliar position.

“The brake issue on Saturday was a bit of frustration for us,” Higgins said. “We had good speed on that stage and losing so much time meant we had a very hard job ahead of us on Sunday trying to drive from behind. The stage wins show we’ve got the speed to get back to winning form – just waiting on some luck. For now we’ll focus on the championship fight and make sure we’re putting together a solid weekend every time we’re in the car.”

Higgins and Drew will team up with Travis Pastrana and co-driver Robbie Durant at May’s Oregon Trail Rally, while Solberg is scheduled to return in June at Idaho Rally International.

 

 

 

 

PRESS RELEASE: February 14, 2019

Subaru Motorsports USA Reveals Full 2019 Lineup; Oliver Solberg to Compete in Six US Rounds

The names Solberg and Subaru are united once again in 2019, as Oliver Solberg—son of former Subaru World Rally Team driver and FIA World Rally Champion Petter Solberg—will join Subaru Motorsports USA for the team’s 2019 stage rally efforts.

Partnering with David Higgins and Craig Drew, who will once again run a full program in search of Higgins’ 10th United States rallying title, Solberg and co-driver Aaron Johnston will run six of the eight rounds that Subaru Motorsports USA will contest this season. The other two will go to Travis Pastrana and Robbie Durant, who have competed in a limited schedule together since earning a championship in 2017.

“I don’t think anybody could begin to understand what a big deal this is for me,” Solberg said in a Subaru release. “I was two years old when my father was World Rally Champion and remember so well how proud I was of dad wearing blue and yellow and driving a car of the same color. I even still today have the Subaru bed sheets.

“For me to have the chance to wear the same colors and drive under the same name is something unbelievable. I have to say a very big thank you to Subaru Motorsports USA for this opportunity.”

2018 was a successful season for the team in its final season under the Subaru Rally Team USA banner, before returning to Subaru’s classic WRC blue and yellow colors in an offseason rebrand. The team won all seven of its events, with Higgins and Drew taking four and Patrik Sandell and Per Almkvist going a perfect three-for-three in a limited program.

Solberg and Johnston will run at Rally in the 100 Acre Wood, Olympus Rally, Idaho Rally, New England Forest Rally, Susquehannock Trail Performance Rally, and Lake Superior Performance Rally in 2019. Pastrana and Durant will compete at Oregon Trail Rally and Ojibwe Forests Rally. Higgins and Drew will run in all eight of the aforementioned events.

The announcement sets up an intense Open 4WD battle at 100 Acre Wood next month. Aside from Subaru Motorsports USA, Open 4WD entries from Sno*Drift-winning Fetela Rally Team (Piotr Fetela/Dominik Jozwiak), McKenna Motorsport (Barry McKenna/Leon Jordan), and PMR Motorsport (Pat Moro/Ole Holter) are among those expected to fight for the podium.

 

 

 

Ride shotgun with Subaru Team Driver Travis Pastrana as he attempts to set a new record at the Mt. Washington Hill Climb.
It's a race against the clock up the tallest peak in the Northeast with high winds, steep cliffs, and speeds of up to 115 mph.

 

 

About Subaru Rally Team USA
Subaru Rally Team USA is managed by Vermont SportsCar and proudly supported by Subaru of America, Inc., Subaru Tecnica International (STI), Method Race Wheels, DirtFish Rally School, DMACK Tires, and PIAA. Follow the team online at www.subaru.com/rally

About Subaru of America, Inc.
Subaru of America, Inc. is a wholly owned subsidiary of Fuji Heavy Industries Ltd. of Japan. Headquartered at a zero-landfill office in Cherry Hill, N.J., the company markets and distributes Subaru vehicles, parts and accessories through a network of more than 600 retailers across the United States. All Subaru products are manufactured in zero-landfill production plants and Subaru of Indiana Automotive Inc. is the only U.S. automobile production plant to be designated a backyard wildlife habitat by the National Wildlife Federation. For additional information visit media.subaru.com.

 

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