“To go out finish 16th overall and first in class on the RAC was a cracking result against only four-wheel-drive cars.”
Ten years later, Burns was famously crowned WRC champion after a final-rally showdown with Colin McRae at the same location.
The former would become the first ever English world rally champion, but immediately left his Subaru team for the Peugeot works effort, ten years after his previous Pug appearance – a connection which wasn’t lost on Burns.
“I guess it’s always been a little bit of a dream of mine to go back there,” he told Autosport in the midst of the switch. “I started in a small way with Peugeot in 1991.”
Midghall further explains the importance of the 309 to Burns: “Richard looked to ‘re-buy’ a number of different cars from his career when he signed for Subaru in ’99,” he says. “So he bought the Subaru Legacy and various other cars.
“The 309 was quite high on his list of those he wanted to have and he managed to acquire the car.”