Nabila Tejpar will step up to R5 machinery with a four round British Rally Championship programme in a Proton Iriz beginning with the West Cork Rally.
Tejpar, a two-time British Ladies Rally champion, moves up from the Peugeot 208 R2 she’s driven in both Britain and around Europe in recent seasons to tackle four asphalt rounds of the 2020 BRC in the Mellors Elliot Motorsport prepared car.
The 26-year-old who will have experienced Portuguese co-driver Hugo Magalhães alongside her said on the news: “I’m excited to announce that I`ll be contesting selected rounds of the British Rally Championship in a Proton Iriz R5 this season, concentrating on the asphalt events which include West Cork, Clacton, Ypres and Ulster.”
“This really is a dream come true for me and I can’t thank all my backers and supporters for all their help in getting me this far. Of course, this is a massive step up in my career and I don’t expect it to be easy by any means but to have a programme with an R5 means so much to me.”
After making her rallying debut in 2015, Tejpar went on to compete in the BRC for the next two years and claimed the Ladies title in 2017 before a switch to European competition saw her enter the Peugeot Iberica Cup and most recently she battled for the Ladies Trophy in the FIA European Rally Championship.
She went on to add about the challenge of making her R5 debut: “I had the opportunity to drive the Proton on a demonstration event last year in Germany and couldn’t believe how quickly I bedded into it.”
“It felt very natural and controllable and, in a way, easier than the Peugeot to drive. Of course, I know the speeds and commitment is going to need to be much higher but I`m hoping to use all my experiences to settle in progressively throughout the year.”
“I`ve given myself realistic targets and that will be my main aim on each round. I won’t be looking for top results at this stage but getting the miles under my belt will be a priority. I can’t tell you how excited I am for the year ahead; it’s all I have ever dreamed of”.
Tejpar will make her first appearance in the car on the West Cork Rally, which takes place on March 14/15.