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The Asia-Pacific Rally Championship (APRC) is an international rally championship organized by the FIA encompassing rounds in Asia and Oceania. Group N cars dominated the championship for many years but in recent years cars built to R5 and S2000 regulations have tended to be the frontrunners.

Asia-Pacific Rally Championship
CategoryGroup N
S2000
CountryAsia
Oceania
Inaugural season1988
Drivers' championIndia Gaurav Gill
Teams' championCzech Republic Team MRF Škoda
Makes' championCzech Republic Škoda
Official websitefiaaprc.com
Motorsport current event.svg Current season

The championship was first held in 1988, created out of the successful expansion of the World Rally Championship into Asia and linking with the debut of Rally Australia and won by Japan's Kenjiro Shinozuka in a Mitsubishi Galant VR-4. Initially the championship had strong support from World Rally Championship teams, aided by more than half the calendar being WRC rallies and by Japanese manufacturers backing half of the front runners with Mazda, Toyota, Mitsubishi and Subaru all running front running teams. Toyota's double World Rally Champion Carlos Sainz won the championship in 1990, Juha Kankkunen, Didier Auriol, Colin McRae, Tommi Makinen, Richard Burns, Richard Burns and Ari Vatanen all won rallies. Several WRC teams used the championship as a junior development squad. By the late 1990s, the big teams were dropping away from the championship, or were running drivers from the region. The 2000 Rally New Zealand was the last joint WRC/APRC event and the WRC teams and manufacturers left and regional teams, like Subaru's New Zealand based team and regional manufacturers like Proton were sharing the wins with privately run teams.

The shift to Group N and away from WRC regulations assisted as only Subaru and Mitsubishi had eligible cars for Group N. By the mid-2000s the teams were all privateers. The growth of Super 2000 regulations saw manufacturer teams return led by Proton.

In recent years (since 2013) Skoda have used the championship to develop young European-based drivers, with Esapekka Lappi, Jan Kopecký, Pontus Tidemand and Ole Christian Veiby all going on to compete at WRC WRC-2 level.

The championship has also been a proving ground for regional talent, even when World Rally teams were competing regional drivers from Japan, Australia and New Zealand. Malaysian driver Karamjit Singh brought the first victory for a driver from one of the emerging APRC nations with Jean-Louis Leyraud from the French pacific island of New Caledonia and India's Gaurav Gill followed. The occasional European driver has moved into the region to find a cheaper series to compete in instead of the expensive European Rally Championship, like Jussi Valimaki.

Reflecting its roots as a subsidiary of the World Rally Championship it had class championships within the main championship for Group N cars and naturally aspirated Two Litre cars. In ore modern times the sub-classes have been split geographically rather than technically, allowing competitors to compete for smaller portions of the series to bolster flagging entry numbers. The championships created were the Asia Cup, taking in Asian continent events in Japan, Indonesia, Malaysia and China with Thailand joining in 2003. The Pacific Cup takes in Oceania events in Australia, New Zealand and New Caledonia.

By taking victory at the 2009 Indonesian Rally, Australian Cody Crocker became the most successful driver in APRC history, winning his fourth consecutive title, all in Subarus. A trio of drivers have won three APRC titles; New Zealander Possum Bourne, Kenneth Eriksson of Sweden, and Malaysia's Karamjit Singh.

The championship presently has events in New Zealand, Australia, Malaysia, Japan, China and India. In the past the championship has run events in New Caledonia, Thailand and Indonesia.

Contents

List of eventsEdit

Sourced from:[1][2]

APRC ChampionsEdit

[3]

Season Champion Car
1988   Kenjiro Shinozuka Mitsubishi Galant VR-4
1989   Rod Millen Mazda 323 4WD
1990   Carlos Sainz Toyota Celica GT-Four ST165
1991   Ross Dunkerton Mitsubishi Galant VR-4
1992   Ross Dunkerton Mitsubishi Galant VR-4
1993   Possum Bourne Subaru Legacy RS
1994   Possum Bourne Subaru Impreza 555
1995   Kenneth Eriksson Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution III
1996   Kenneth Eriksson Subaru Impreza 555
1997   Kenneth Eriksson Subaru Impreza WRC
1998   Yoshio Fujimoto Toyota Corolla WRC
1999   Katsuhiko Taguchi Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution VI
2000   Possum Bourne Subaru Impreza WRX
2001   Karamjit Singh Proton Pert
2002   Karamjit Singh Proton Pert
2003   Armin Kremer Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution VII
2004   Karamjit Singh Proton Pert
2005   Jussi Välimäki Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution VIII
2006   Cody Crocker Subaru Impreza WRX STI
2007   Cody Crocker Subaru Impreza WRX STI
2008   Cody Crocker Subaru Impreza WRX STI
2009   Cody Crocker Subaru Impreza WRX STI
2010   Katsuhiko Taguchi Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution X
2011   Alister McRae Proton Satria Neo S2000
2012   Chris Atkinson Škoda Fabia S2000
2013   Gaurav Gill Škoda Fabia S2000
2014   Jan Kopecký Škoda Fabia S2000
2015   Pontus Tidemand Škoda Fabia S2000
2016   Gaurav Gill Škoda Fabia R5
2017   Gaurav Gill Škoda Fabia R5
2018   Yuya Sumiyama Škoda Fabia R5

Asia CupEdit

Season Champion Car
2008   Cody Crocker Subaru Impreza WRX STI
2009   Cody Crocker Subaru Impreza WRX STI
2010   Yuya Sumiyama Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution X
2011   Alister McRae Proton Satria Neo S2000
2012   Yuya Sumiyama Subaru Impreza WRX STi
2013   Michael Young Toyota Vitz
2014   Yuya Sumiyama Subaru Impreza WRX STi
2015   Hitoshi Takayama Subaru Impreza WRX STi
2016   Gaurav Gill Škoda Fabia R5
2017   Gaurav Gill Škoda Fabia R5
2018

Pacific CupEdit

Season Champion Car
2008   Dean Herridge Subaru Impreza WRX STI
2009   Hayden Paddon Subaru Impreza WRX STI
2010   Brendan Reeves Subaru Impreza WRX STI
2011   Chris Atkinson Proton Satria Neo S2000
2012   Chris Atkinson Škoda Fabia S2000
2013   Simon Knowles Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution IX
2014   Jan Kopecký Škoda Fabia S2000
2015   Pontus Tidemand Škoda Fabia S2000
2016   Fabian Kreim Škoda Fabia R5
2017   Ole Christian Veiby Škoda Fabia R5
2018

Group NEdit

Season Champion Car
1996   Yoshihiro Kataoka Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution III
1997   Karamjit Singh Proton Wira
1998   Michael Guest Subaru Impreza WRX
1999   Katsuhiko Taguchi Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution VI
2000   Karamjit Singh Proton Pert
2001   Karamjit Singh Proton Pert
2002   Nico Caldarola Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution VII
2003   Armin Kremer Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution VII

2 LitreEdit

Season Champion Car
1996   Nobuhiro Tajima Suzuki Baleno
Suzuki Swift
1997   Nobuhiro Tajima Suzuki Baleno
1998   Nobuhiro Tajima Suzuki Baleno
1999   Kenneth Eriksson
  Alister McRae
Hyundai Coupe
Hyundai Coupe
2000   Simon Evans Volkswagen Golf
2001   Nobuhiro Tajima Suzuki Ignis
2002   Nobuhiro Tajima Suzuki Ignis

ManufacturersEdit

Season Manufacturer
1996 Mitsubishi
1997 Subaru
1998 Toyota
1999 Mitsubishi
2000 Subaru
2001 Mitsubishi
2002 Proton
2003 Mitsubishi
2004 Proton
2005 Mitsubishi
2006 Subaru
2007 Subaru
2008 Subaru
2009 Subaru
2010 Mitsubishi
2011 Proton
2012 Škoda
2013 Škoda
2014 Škoda
2015 Škoda
2016 Škoda
2017 Škoda
2018 Škoda

ReferencesEdit

External linksEdit