Tasmanian brothers Waylon and Jobe Sims have been named the inaugural winners of the Kumho Tyre Spirit of the Rally Award following a gritty and determined effort in their maiden start at a round of the Australian Rally Championship, the National Capital Rally in Canberra.

The brothers, 22 year old Waylon behind the wheel and 18 year old Jobe as co-driver, encountered more than their fair share of teething problems with the new Peugeot 207 G2 car, many of which would have stopped most before they even started.

The Peugeot 207 was built in the family's Ulverstone workshops in North Western Tasmania over 18 months with the car only being completed a few weeks before its debut in Canberra. However, despite being ready the car blew an engine in testing just days before having to depart for the trip to Canberra.

A massive scramble with the team working around the clock saw a new engine built and fitted to the car with just 30 minutes to spare before having to leave to board the ferry to the mainland.

Once there the new car broke a driveshaft during the Saturday leg and then another on day two due to the lack of setup time prior to the start of the rally.

However despite the pitfalls and challenges they kept fighting on to get their new rally car to the finish of their first ARC round.

The Kumho Tyre Spirit of the Rally has been initiated this year to reward those who display the great qualities of sportsmanship, grit, determination, fair play and absolute spirit that typify all that is good about rallying.

The all-new Peugeot, which the Sims family built in their Tasmanian workshops, truly tested the resolve of the young debutants and their determination and resilience has now been rewarded.

The Spirit of the Rally award had special significance at the presentation in Canberra with 1981 World Rally Champion and legend of the sport Ari Vatanen presenting the award to the Sims Brothers.

According to Jobe Simms, the Kumho Tyre Spirit of the Rally Award was reward for the effort the entire team put into not just getting to the opening round but persisting and overcoming all the problems thrown up over the weekend.

"It is fantastic to win the first ever Kumho Spirit of the Rally Award on our first ever ARC outing but even more fantastic to have Ari Vatanen present it to us," said Waylon.

" Our background is in tarmac rallying and we wanted to give gravel rallying a go this year, it is much tougher and it is a steep learning curve but it is going to be a great experience," he added.

According to David Basha, national sales and marketing manager for Kumho Tyre Australia, the Sims Brothers are worth winners of the Spirit of the Rally Award and it really underlines that the most important ingredients in the sport of rallying are the people.

"It is really important we recognise the true spirit of the sport because despite all of the expensive rally cars, the stacks of tyres and the impressive transporters, the sport would not happen without the people and it was really terrific that Ari Vatanen could present the inaugural award because that is a philosophy that he shares," said David Basha.

Kumho Tyre will choose a recipient of the Kumho Tyre Spirit of the Rally Award at all rounds of the ARC this year using the same criteria to select the most deserving people.

Kumho Tyre has been the official tyre supplier to the East Coast Bullbars Australian Rally Championship since 2010 and has signed on to provide the rubber for the demanding championship until the end of the 2016 season.

Since its inception in 1960, Kumho Tyre has been a model of steady growth amid dramatic changes of business landscape. Driven by innovation in management and technical development Kumho has become one of the top ten tyre companies in the world.

Over the past half-century Kumho Tyre has built the foundation for a sustainable company, which has thrived through a full range of business environments.

Kumho has succeeded in the development of superior tyres for all vehicles including high performance passenger cars, sports utilities and 4x4s as well as trucks, buses, mining and even aircraft.

Kumho produces more than 68 million tyres annually with a massive research and development program that comprises of proving grounds in South Korea, China, Europe and North America. Kumho leads the world with the latest in tyre technology, safety and performance.

In Australia Kumho markets an extensive range of tyres for cars, 4WDs, light commercials, trucks and buses with a network centred around five state locations with the ability to distribute tyres to retailers across all areas of Australia.

For further media information contact:

Tom Worsley
Thomson PR
Ph 0400 454 731