Subaru Closes 2016 Rally America National Championship with Dominating Win
Another day, another rally win for Subaru. For as long as I have been old enough to understand anything about competitive racing, Subaru and rallying have seemed to go together like auxiliary ports go with audio devices (unless you’re too
cool stupid for that and are named Apple).
Subaru became famous for its rallying chops in the 1990s and some two decades later, that hasn’t changed. Just last weekend, Subaru drivers David Higgins and Travis Pastrana closed out the 2016 Rally America National Championship with a 1-2 finish at the Lake Superior Performance Rally in Michigan in dominating fashion.
After winning four of the previous five rounds in the championship, Higgins had already secured a mathematical lock on overall victory before heading to Lake Superior. One would think he might have taken it easy in the last round and cruised to the finish line, but that’s probably not the kind of mindset that led him to five championship wins between 2011 and 2015; instead, he went all-out and defeated teammate and former champion Travis Pastrana by a significant margin—and the rest of the field along with him, as Pastrana was running second overall.
Since the Rally America National Championship was created in 2005, the Subaru Impreza WRX STI has won all but one of the championships, and all but one of those have been won either by Higgins or Pastrana. That kind of domination is just about unseen in all other areas of motorsport, to the point that today, most manufacturers don’t even bother directly competing with Subaru anymore and simply branch off in other divisions (such as Ford and Toyota in the 2WD class).
Rally America will return next year and Pastrana is looking to bring the fight back to his teammate. The question is—will anyone bring the fight to Subaru?