Twenty-year-old Auckland based co-driver Kieran Anstis has successfully completed the first Rally New Zealand Co-Drivers Academy in Auckland. The academy is an investment from Rally New Zealand to help develop local New Zealand Co Driving Talent. Run over three days, six up and coming co-drivers from across New Zealand have been mentored by professional international co-drivers Alex and Rhiannon Gelsomino.

“When I saw the academy announced a few months ago I sent in my application straight away,” commented Anstis. “To have the opportunity to learn from two of the best co drivers in the world was such a huge opportunity to help me take the next step in my co driving career.”

Over the three days Anstis and the five other participants were taken through every aspect of what is required of a professional co-driver.

“Even after the first hour in the classroom with Alex and Rhiannon I had a variety of new skills and ideas to apply to my co-driving that will help me advance to a professional level. Over the three days we covered topics from rules and regulations, rally CV’s, recce and writing and adapting pace notes for different drivers. Primarily we learnt how to get more speed out of our drivers and perform at a professional WRC level”

“The abundance of skills I have learnt over the past few days has completely changed me as a co-driver and given me a huge box of new tools and techniques to use. My number one goal is to reach the WRC and gaining this new knowledge is going to be a big help in achieving this goal,” said Anstis.

Anstis’s focus now shifts to next weekend’s Catlins Rally With Tony Quinn followed by Rally Coromandel later in the month with Matt Jensen in the NZKW Evo 9.