There are few more iconic driver-car pairings in rally than Colin McRae and the Subaru Impreza. Images of the driver getting all sorts of sideways in the blue-and-yellow Imprezas sponsored by 555 Cigarettes are burned into many race fan’s memory. Seeing one of his cars out today, tearing up a Welsh rally stage as it was meant to, is such a treat.
Sadly, Colin isn’t with us anymore, but Max Girardo, the classic car seller who owns this 1997 Impreza WRC, got some worthy racers to drive it. Colin’s father, Jimmy, his brother, Alister, and his 15-year-old nephew, Max are all on hand, and sitting right-seat is Colin’s longtime co-driver, Nicky Grist. Girardo pits the three generations of McRae against one another to see who’s quickest on the stage. To us, the race is fun, but we’re really just thrilled to see beautiful footage of the Impreza doing its thing.
Girardo told Carfection‘s Henry Catchpole a few months back that McRae used this particular chassis in three 1997 rallies—Safari, which he won, Argentina, which he placed second in, and Indonesia, where he crashed out. McRae just missed getting his second world title in 1997, losing out to Tommi Mäkinen by just one point, but he did help get Subaru get the constructor’s title.
There are risks with watching this video, though. You may go down a YouTube Colin McRae rabbit hole after viewing, or you may find yourself looking for Subarus on Craigslist. Or in the case of this reporter, you may do both.
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