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Willing and very Abel

PUBLISHED: 11:21 19 November 2008 | UPDATED: 15:58 02 June 2010

TITLE-WINNING 4x4 driver Chris Abel has so impressed the driving world that he has secured two new sponsors who will enable him to build a completely new car.

TITLE-WINNING 4x4 driver Chris Abel has so impressed the driving world that he has secured two new sponsors who will enable him to build a completely new car.

Chris, 25, from Watton, was offered sponsorship to the tune of £25,000 after blitzing the field in the All Wheel Drive Club Howlin' Wolf Challenge, arguably the toughest competition for 4x4 drivers in the country.

He won seven out of the eight rounds, the final race taking place in Brighton, with co-driver Simon Wilkinson from Corby, in a modified 1990 Range Rover.

Previously Chris had funded much of the cost of racing himself, with some sponsorship from the family firm Abel Homes where he is construction manager, and a winch company called Gigglepin 4x4.

But having witnessed his success this year he was approached by Belgian company D&G Tuning and American firm Twisted Customs who are providing him with £20,000 worth of new axles and a £5000 chassis.

“The new car will be completely custom built and there will be nothing else like it,” said Chris.

“The companies saw how I was doing this year and came to me to offer their sponsorship, which is great because you don't always get prize money and it is an expensive hobby.”

Chris was particularly pleased that he and Simon managed to win the final race because he was suffering from the flu.

He said: “I was really ill on Friday and not too great on Saturday but I got up early on Sunday and went straight down to Brighton to compete.

“I was completely knackered afterwards because we were competing for six hours. I'm now getting back to work and concentrating on building the new car.”

The pair will receive their challenge trophy at the club's dinner dance in January.

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