Travis Pastrana Pre-thoughts

Obviously, Rally Mexico hasn’t even gotten under way, but I’m pretty excited to see what Travis Pastrana can do. He won the first rally on the Rally America calendar and was runner-up in the second. Travis is having a good season so far, so if he’s on his rhythm in Mexico, he could finish well.

A win is out of the question, though–we’ve got reigning champion (and Nicest Man in Rally) Nasser al-Attiyah, former WRC works driver Kristian Sohlberg (codriven by Risto Pietilainen, while Harri Rovanpera sells his jet skis), Fumio Nutahara, former PWRC champ Toshi Arai, Mirco Baldacci, Lescek Kuzaj (whatta great name), former WRC Red Bull Skoda driver Andreas Aigner, and British Rally champ Mark Higgins. Tough field. But who knows? Punctures could decide the whole thing.

But he’ll have to impress someone, because I’m sure lots of these guys would love a WRC seat just as much as Travis does. So if they are still doing the PWRC, Travis is going to have to stand out. Although he’s got star power, good sponsors, and street cred going for him. And he’s American. Americans are like the Yangtze river dolphin as far as world rally is concerned (e.g. rare if not extinct).
On a side note, Ken Block is entering Rally Mexico too (and Rally New Zealand later on). Good for him. He’ll have fun. But honestly, I think it’s Travis that’s got the talent.
To sum it up, Travis just needs to show where he compares against the seasoned pros on the world scene. I’m rooting for him, though. And the last time I wished him luck, he ended up stealing the show at the Race of Champions (direct cause and effect, I’m sure). So–good luck, Travis!

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March 7, 2007. Auto Racing, Motorsport, Rally, Rallying, Subaru, Thoughts, WRC.

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