Antoine L’Estage and Nathalie Richard will be in the hunt for a rally record on Friday night, September 5th when they take the start of the Rallye Defi Ste-Agathe, the fourth round of the Canadian Rally Championship. In their Royal Group Yokohama Hyundai Tiburon the duo will attempt to win this competition for the fourth year in a row and equal the record set by L’Estage’s mentor and rally legend, John Buffum. With three rounds remaining in this year’s competition calendar, the reigning Canadian and North American Champions are fighting to earn their titles for a third consecutive year.

“This is our home event,” admits Antoine. “In the past few years competing at this rally, we have really been able to perfect the notes we have for stages run in the past but there will also be new roads used this year in Ripon and St-Sixte. I expect a tough battle but one thing for sure is that our goal is to finish at the top of the podium. As for John Buffum’s record, it would be an honour to equal this one. He’s done so much in this sport in the past 40 years and I’m a long way from equaling reputation. Since his implication in our team several years ago, we have become one of the teams to beat in North America – he has so much experience and so much knowledge, it’s hard not to improve with the support he has given us.”

Two days of competition

For Antoine and Nathalie, the Defi rally consists of three days of work starting with Thursday’s route reconnaissance at normal speeds. “It consists of creating pacenotes for the new stages and verifying our existing pacenotes for the older stages,” adds Nathalie, multi-time co-driving champion. “Reconnaissance allows us to make necessary adjustments to our notes and gives us a chance to confirm our tire choices for each section of the event.”

After technical inspection, there will be five competitive stages around Ste-Agathe on Friday night before heading to the Petite-Nation region for more competition in Montpellier, Duhamel, Ripon and St-Sixte. “Saturday is a very long day with lots of competitive kilometers,” explains L’Estage. “We can’t make any silly mistakes on Friday night that would affect our car’s performance on Saturday. This rally is also the event where we have the most sponsors, family, and friends present in addition to the thousands of spectators throughout the stages. They increase our adrenaline supply and we want to give them a good show.”

Around forty teams will take the start of the Rallye Defi. More information can be found by visiting the official website at

Antoine L’Estage and Nathalie Richard compete in the Canadian Rally Championship with the proud support of: Hyundai Canada, Royal Group, Yokohama Tires, Energie Cardio, Libra Racing, OMP Racewear, VP Racing Fuels, and MBF Racing. You can also visit the team’s site Coyote Rallye for more specific information on the team or as a general rally reference.



Powered by Facebook Comments