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We hang out with 2-Time Paris-Dakkar Rally Champ Hiroshi Masuoka

Two-time Paris-Dakar Champion, Mitsubishi Rally Driver, and Japanese Driving Legend Hiroshi Masuoka showed participants at the Mitsubishi 4×4 Camp in Tarlac his smooth driving style on the circuit and on the dirt.

He took some time to sign autographs on the media participants’ caps, shirts, jackets and on scale model Mitsubishi models. Arlan Reyes of Mitsubishi Motors Philippines arrange some time for Masuoka-san to sign the driver’s side sun visor of our 1991 Mitsubishi Galant GTI project car and pose for some photos.

Masuoka was pleased with the condition of our 25-year-old GTI and he told us to continue our restoration projects. Despite his successes in racing and his legendary status among Japanese drivers, Masuoka-san is very approachable, kind, and soft-spoken. He’s also a car enthusiast of the first order.

Some of our colleagues among the media participants who saw our light banter with the Japanese rally great kidded us that the value of our two-owner 164,500-kilometer GTI has gone higher because of Masuoka-san’s signature on the visor.

We’re just thrilled to shake the hand of this 2-time Paris-Dakar winner and we hope that some of his driving skills rub off on us!

Domo Arigato Gozaimas, Hiroshi Masuoka!

Domo Arigato Gozaimas, Mitsubishi Motors Philippines!


Words by Lester Dizon Photos by Author and Earl Manalansan