Reigning BFGoodrich Motorsport Australia Off Road Champion (AORC) Mark Burrows has revealed his desire to continue racing over the next few years, as well as plans to extend the team’s operation to two cars in 2021 and beyond.
After claiming his eighth national title at last year’s Hindmarsh Shire Rainbow Desert Enduro and his first alongside his son Matthew, Burrows toyed with the idea of stepping aside at the end of 2020 and letting Matt take the reins in 2021.
However with COVID-19 preventing the 2020 season from going ahead and allowing Burrows the chance to equal Shannon Rentsch’s tally of nine Australian titles, retirement plans for the Victorian were also put on hold.
While Burrows’ delay in retirement also meant Matthew would have to wait longer to make his debut behind the wheel, the family team used the opportunity of being in lockdown to fast track their idea of having two cars competing in the AORC and start the process of building a second car.
With the new car, which Matthew is likely to be driving, expected to be ready next year, the decision means the AORC will be blessed with the presence of its current champion for years to come.
Despite the two-pronged attack prolonging Burrows’ career in the sport, Burrows confirmed to popular motorsport personality Greg Rest in an online video chat that he will eventually hang the helmet up when his youngest son is ready to race in a few years.
“Matthew navigated for me last year and now he has been doing a lot of driving and testing on our farm here in Victoria and the current car is looking good,” Burrows said.
“We have also been thinking about building a new car for a while and COVID has given us the chance to have a really hard think about it and organise some parts, so we hope to have a new car to running by mid to late 2021.
“I am going to keep driving for a few years and I will have my youngest boy Tom navigating for me. Then when he is at the age to move into the Drivers’ seat, I will step away and stay in the pits and look after them from there.
“We’re hopeful Matthew will start driving towards the end of the next year and I am really looking forward to it because off road has been my life. I have been racing since I was 16.
“For me, off road racing is a real family affair. There are quite a few families involved and when your kids come along and get involved in it, it’s makes even more interesting.”