Toyota Rally RAV4 is Unbeaten in American Rally Association Competition
Plano, Texas, August 22, 2017— Fresh off an American Rally Association 2WD class championship-clinching victory at the New England Forest Rally, Ryan Millen and Rally RAV4 head to Minnesota’s Ojibwe Forests Rally chasing a rare perfect season.
“I had a dream the other day that we went six for six,” Millen said of his ambition to close out the six race season on a high note. “It’s on my mind. It’s in my dreams.”
Remaining undefeated in the 2WD category isn’t the only goal Millen and Toyota are chasing. With a strong performance and a little help from competitors, the Rally RAV4 could end up on the overall podium for the season, claiming third ahead of many cars in the much faster 4WD class.
As for the rally itself, the challenge provided by Ojibwe Forests is unique. Most of the rally’s 153 miles are over roads Millen has never seen before, and a good chunk of them will be at night.
Millen thinks the RAV4’s engine and transmission combination provides a natural advantage at Ojibwe, thanks to the sand and clay base over which the rally is run.
When it gets slippery, Ryan said, “the automatic transmission makes it easier to drive, and not having a turbocharger makes it really easy to control the wheelspin better. Sometimes manuals can make things more complicated. The RAV4 just lets us power through.”
Co-driver Rhianon Gelsomino thinks the biggest obstacle at the rally might be maintaining motivation, with the championship already clinched.
She said, “I’ve been doing this many years, and have been in this position a few times. It’s a matter of setting a new focus for Ryan. We’re trying to go six for six on the year. A perfect season is great for not only us but also Toyota.”