Goodwood, Chichester, U.K. – Subaru Motorsports USA driver Travis Pastrana took second place overall in a tightly contested Hillclimb Shootout at the 2021 Goodwood Festival of Speed. Driving the Airslayer STI—the 862-horsepower carbon-bodied machine first introduced to the world in Gymkhana 2020— in its competition debut, the Maryland native and current American Rally Association points leader was first in qualifying on Saturday afternoon and wrapped up a podium finish with a super-committed drive on Shootout Sunday.
“What a week here at Goodwood!” said Pastrana after the final run. “The car has gotten faster and faster all weekend with setup tweaks in practice and we knew it was going to be a fight to have a chance at the win. Would have liked to have P1 but it was still a blast to finally put the Airslayer STI through its paces! Now it’s on to Mt. Washington where we’ll really be able to let the car stretch its legs and go for the record.”
The four-day format of the Festival of Speed, the world’s largest automotive festival, draws all eyes to the Shootout over the weekend. Qualifying ramps up on Saturday to set the running order for Sunday, and the final occupies the prime slot on the afternoon of the Festival’s last day. Light rains on Saturday meant a damp course for the qualifying round. The Airslayer STI’s rally roots and all-wheel drive showed through, with Pastrana’s :48.10 delivering the top slot overnight against a field of racing prototypes and the latest GT-class machines.
Pastrana’s final run on Sunday provided plenty of drama to match the moment. After a hard launch, in signature style, Pastrana threw a quick thumbs-up to the crowd on the main straight while in full attack mode. Sliding the car sideways through the corner named “The Wall” in honor of the flint barrier on the inside, Pastrana could be seen on the in-car video feed egging his machine on through the finish. The final time of :46.20 was his fastest run of the weekend.
The Airslayer STI will return to competition August 12-15 at the Subaru Mt. Washington Hillclimb, where Pastrana aims to break his overall record of 5:44.72 up the treacherous 7.6-mile Auto Road. The tallest mountain on the East Coast of the United States, Mt. Washington is famed for its unforgiving and unpredictable weather and the narrow, twisting and uneven road surface that combines tarmac and an unpaved gravel section, making it the ultimate all-conditions test of driver and car.
Subaru Motorsports USA will return to the rally stages July 30-31 at New England Forest Rally, with Pastrana and co-driver Rhianon Gelsomino aiming for a fourth win of the season to extend their championship lead.