Published: February 18th 2016.
Mount Compass race driver Guy Tyler has secured the opportunity of a lifetime to race in the Junior British Rally Championships (JBRC) — and has sold his own rally car to help fund it.
The 25-year-old grew up on a local dairy farm but dreamt of swapping tractors for something much faster.
“Ever since I was young I knew what I wanted to do was become a racing car driver,” Tyler said.
“I just worked as much as I could to get the money to do what I wanted to do.”
Tyler was initially offered a position in the seven-round JBRC but was unable to raise the £50,000 fee.
“The Junior British Rally Championships has a cut-off age of 26, and I am 26 this year, so really this was my only opportunity.”
He jumped at a secondary offer to drive in a smaller, five-round series for £30,000.
The offer arrived on Christmas Day morning and Tyler, his partner Evangeline McAllan and his navigator Steve Fisher quickly scrambled to raise the money.
One of the first decisions Tyler made was to sell his Evo 5 rally car.
“We won three of the five events we contested in it, so that was really hard letting it go,” he said.
A delivery driver by day, Tyler said he even had to sell his personal vehicle to help fund the trip.
Collectively, the three have so far raised more than $70,000 to cover the drive and associated living costs but estimate they still need about $13,000.
They have launched a crowdfunding campaign with the hope of attracting local sponsors.
JBRC opens doors to World Rally circuit
Tyler has been on a steady rise through the rally ranks in recent years.
He was selected for the CAMS Young Driver Development Camp at the Australian Institute of Sport in 2012.
Last year he won the Southern Rally, Walky 100, Scouts SA Rally and was the overall South Australian rally champion.
The opportunity to race in the JBRC has come at the perfect time for him.
“I’ve been trying everything to try and get something happening here in Australia and it’s just not happening, so this is huge,” he said.
“Ultimately it looks like we are just paying a lot of money to drive a car over there, but I believe that anything could happen.”
Tyler hopes to finish in the top three of the JBRC and use the winnings to enter the World Junior Rally Championships.
“People have been picked up from that series to drive in World Rally cars and be paid for it, and that is my ultimate dream,” he said.
Team Tyler will leave Australia on February 27.