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Home News Brendan and Rhianon win 'Spirit of the WRC Academy' award

Brendan and Rhianon win 'Spirit of the WRC Academy' award


M-Sport is happy to announce a new award for the FIA WRC Academy’s second season. Applauding the camaraderie of the WRC Academy crews, the 'Spirit of the FIA WRC Academy' award will honour the most sportsman-like crew, driver or co-driver on each event. Supported by Ford Racing in Europe and with control tyres from Pirelli, the 2011 edition of the WRC Academy is well known for the close-knit bonds it encourages amongst the competing crews, and the new award aims to commend this.

After treacherous conditions blighted the first round of the season at the Vodafone Rally de Portugal last month, the first ‘Spirit of the WRC Academy’ award has been presented to the brother and sister pairing of Brendan Reeves and Rhianon Smyth.

In coming to the aid of a more powerful car which had become stranded in a swollen river-crossing before the second loop of stages were cancelled due to treacherous conditions on Day 2, the Australian duo received a wealth of appreciation on the WRC Academy Facebook page. Click here to see the photo and view the comments.

Some of the comments on the pairing’s attempted rescue included Si Gears’ “Lets see this kind of sportsmanship in other motorsports,” and Amanda Candler’s “This is why you guys are such amazing role models to so many – keep it up.”

Brendan Reeves said:

“The conditions in Portugal were pretty treacherous and it could have been any one of us who became stranded. We all aided as much as we could but, unfortunately, we were still unable to move the beached [Ford Fiesta] RRC.

“The attention the photo of our [Ford] Fiesta R2 pulling Yazeed’s [Al Rajhi] car out of the river received was incredible. This was something that I never expected to be doing in a WRC event, but I guess that is why it is one of the toughest championships in the world!”

Rhianon Smyth said:

“Brendan and I have been raised to always help people when they are in need, so when we got to the river crossing there was no question that we would help out to the best of our ability. We tried to tow Yazeed’s [Al Rajhi] car fully out of the river and I spent most of the time on the phone trying to sort out what we should all do next. “Helping out others is something Brendo and I both find important and we hope that if we ever needed help, the same would be done for us.”