23 Nov 08
Double World Superbike Champion Troy Corser made the trip up to Cumbria to test a Ford Focus RS WRC earlier this week.
The Australian rider completed approximately 28 kilometres in the Cumbrian forest of Greystoke with some expert tuition from Stobart Ford driver Matthew Wilson. Wilson then jumped behind the wheel to show the Superbike expert how the rally boys do their stuff on an alien surface to Corser’s Superbike.
Corser found the brakes, handling and launch-control of the Focus RS the most impressive part of the package and was amazed at how late such a heavy piece of kit - compared to a 162-kilogram Superbike - could brake for corners on this slippery and muddy surface. Corser also visited M-Sport after the test for a look around the facilities which have taken Ford to the top-level of the FIA World Rally Championship for Manufacturers podium.
While Corser enjoyed his opportunity to drive the Focus RS tremendously he was quite certain that bikes would remain his forte as he heads into his 16th World Superbike season next year. Wilson was also impressed by how quickly the 36-year-old got up-to-speed with the car despite this being his first outing in a WRC and in the narrow, tree-lined forest roads of Greystoke.
Wilson said: “It was great to be able to show a two-wheeled World Champion how we do things in our sport. I was really impressed with his immediate pace despite the fact he had never driven a WRC before let alone on a slippery surface like Greystoke. Troy got to grips with how to handle the Focus straight away and given some more time, and maybe less trees, I think he would have the ability to really put the foot down. It was fun taking him for a few laps in the co-driver’s seat too, I think how late the car was braking for corners really impressed him.”