Press Release - February 2, 2020
Alexandre Moreau and Ian Guité Surprise at the Rallye Perce-Neige !
February 2, 2020.- Taking place in Maniwaki, in the Haute-Gatineau region of Quebec, was the inaugural event of the 2020 Canadian and Eastern Canadian rally calendars, the Rallye Perce-Neige. The fifty-fifth edition of this traditional event, contested on snowy and icy roads, held true to its reputation. Plenty of action and multiple changes on the leaderboard filled the event, ending with an Eastern Canadian Rally Championship (ECRC) victory for rookie Alexandre Moreau, co-driven by Ian Guité in a Swap Shop team Subaru WRX STI.
In only the fourth rally of his career, Alexandre Moreau won less than one year since he started competing. This huge endeavour was achieved while keeping his main adversaries a mere handful of seconds at bay throughout all the competitive stages held as part of the ECRC.
From the first morning stage right up until the nighttime competition, including the new town stage in the heart of Maniwaki, competitors in this 55th edition had to work hard to keep their vehicles on the road. In the end, the Moreau/Guité duo won by just thirteen seconds over Marc Bourassa. Co-driven by Élise Racette, winner of the 2018 Rebelle Rally-Raid, Bourassa was constantly among the leaders in his Subaru WRX STI.
Former champions Jean-Sébastien Besner and Yvan Joyal completed the ECRC podium with their new team (Test Racing), finishing ahead of OIivier Martel and Vincent Hubert (Subaru WRX STI). Originally from Maniwaki, Martel was very popular among the crowd during the town stage as well as on the forest roads. Still relatively new to the scene, he once again demonstrated the scope of his talent by finishing in the Top 4. Martel/Hubert finished ahead of Stéphane Hudon and Julien Cyr (Subaru WRX STI).
This last team completed the event a little more than two minutes ahead of the 2 wheel-drive class winners, Hans Larose and Alexandre Pesant (Volkswagen Golf GTI), who benefited from the heartbreaking abandon of Mathieu Leblanc and Éric Dubé. The team from the Gaspé region of Quebec, who were leading up until their Honda Civic suffered engine problems, eventually conceding the victory to Larose/Pesant at the end of an excellent career first Rallye Perce-Neige.
Quebeckers Jean-Luc Bergeron/Mélanie Drolet and Ontarians Jonathan and Benjamin Drake (Subaru WRX STI) completed the Top 8, after nonetheless losing time following mechanical issues which prevented them from securing a better result. Cos Willimk/Sam Roxon and the all-women team of Margaret Sharron/Jennie Holden, also in a Subaru, completed the Top 10 ECRC teams.
Also noteworthy were the Production 4WD Class winners Serge and Ariane Tousignant (Subaru WRX STI), and Jim Stevens and Brandon Pace’s win (Suzuki Swift) in Production 2 wheel-drive, as well as the retirements of Sébastien Clark/Yanick Marin (Subaru WRX STI) and Jérôme Mailloux/Philippe Poirier (Ford Focus 4WD). Both these teams were candidates for victory but were also the victims of mechanical problems.
The Eastern Canadian Rally Championship (ECRC) is comprised of nine events this season, taking place in Ontario, Quebec, and the Maritime provinces. The second round will be held on March 20th and 21st , in Murdochville, in the heart of Quebec’s Gaspé region. This is a brand new event called the Rallye des Neiges, whose quality winter roads are highly anticipated by all.
The 2020 Rallye Perce-Neige also counted towards the North American Rally Cup and the Canadian Rally Championship. Quebec team composed of Karel Carré, 2018 and 2019 Canadian champion, and Hubert Gaudreau (in a Test Racing Subaru) earned the overall victory in both championships.
For more information, please visit www.ecrc-crec.ca