Phil Mills

Date of birth: 30 August 1963
Place of birth: Trefeglwys, Wales
Lives: Newtown, Wales
Marital status: Lives with Helen, daughter Sioned and son Iwan
First rally: 1983
WRC debut: 1994
Hobbies: Shooting, cycling

Phil Mills is no stranger to success at the highest level, but it was his move to the Subaru World Rally Team in August 2000,
along with Petter Solberg, which established the Welshman’s role in one of the most dynamic driver partnerships in the
World Rally Championship. After numerous promising results their potential was realised in 2003, when a second consecutive
Rally GB victory secured Petter and Phil the Drivers’ and Co–Drivers’ world championship titles.

Back to basics
Twenty years before Phil clinched his first world championship, he embarked on his co–driving career from an entirely
different perspective: in the lanes around his Welsh home. He competed regularly on road rallies and success wasn’t
long in coming. After only one season in the sport he won his first class title in the Welsh Road Rally Championship. Mills
competed at club level for the remainder of the 1980s, building his experience on events across the country. Between 1988
and 1990 he found himself increasingly busy – tackling 88 rallies in two years.

Going international
The back end of the 1980s was clearly time well spent, as his international break came in the 1990 British Rally Championship
when he co–drove for Graham Middleton in the Group N category. The highlight of the year came on Mills’ home
international: the Welsh Rally, where he finished third overall. Mills switched roles for the 1993 RAC Rally, working as
co–ordinator for the Malcolm Wilson Motorsport. The Cumbrian firm was running Mohammed Bin Sulayem and it was alongside
the multiple Middle East champion that Phil gained his first international victory, on the 1994 Rally of Jordan.

British Championship success
Despite his co–ordinating work, Phil’s passion was for co–driving. When he joined Mark Higgins at Nissan in
1996, the pair were thrown into one of the most intensely competitive British Rally Championships for a number of years. They
finished second in their first season – and then managed fourth overall on the RAC Rally. Twelve months later and the
duo were celebrating their first international title as British champions. Phil continued to work at Malcolm Wilson Motorsport
– now known as M–Sport – and made his World Rally Championship debut in a World Rally Car alongside Armin
Schwarz in Corsica.

Phil and Petter a partnership is formed
Phil competed in five WRC events with Higgins during 1998, gaining more vital experience. He would need all that experience
when he joined Petter Solberg at Ford in 1999. Mills’ wealth of expertise proved a vital boost to the promising –
but inexperienced – Norwegian driver, and in their first two years together they achieved a string of excellent results
that established Petter as one of the sport’s most promising drivers for many years.

Subaru and WRC success
In August 2000, in one of the most significant transfer deals in recent seasons, the Mills/Solberg partnership announced that
it was leaving Ford to join Subaru. Phil’s steady head has been crucial in calming his exuberant driver and the duo were
richly rewarded with a perfectly controlled second place in Greece the following season. Through 2002, Petter and Phil
finished on the podium five times, and ended the season with a sensational first WRC victory in Wales – Phil’s home

"We’ll be pushing as hard as ever, you can be sure of that. There are a few things next year that will affect the results, like not having anti–deflation mousse in the tyres, so we must always attack to take advantage of such situations. Points are the goal for the first portion of next season when we are in the current car." Phil Mills

Phil Mills’ partnership with Petter Solberg is one of the longest running in the WRC, a testament to the duo’s relationship and the Welshman’s dedication, precision and absolute thoroughness towards his role. Working in one of the fastest offices in the world, Phil is no stranger to success, having won the 2003 World Rally Championship after a victory on the final rally of the year, Wales Rally GB, in his own back yard.

Phil has huge experience in rallying, from local asphalt events to the WRC, having been at the forefront of the sport for 13 years. He moved to the Subaru World Rally Team in August 2000, along with Petter, whom he joined 1999, and the 2008 season will bring their 125th WRC rally together.

One of the most dynamic driver/co–driver partnerships in the championship, Phil’s approach to rallying complements Petter’s driving style, and the two share in the same commitment to success. Once a team co–ordinator, his preparedness is outstanding. Whilst fans may believe in luck, neither drivers nor co–drivers share quite the same sentiment, and Phil leaves nothing to chance.

Alongside the hungry Petter, Phil has an equally burning desire to return to the top, and will be pushing hard in 2008 for the silverware.

Career history
2007: Fifth place, World Rally Championship
2006: Sixth place, World Rally Championship
2005: Second place, World Rally Championship
2004: Mills claimed five rally victories alongside Solberg, including his third consecutive win on Rally GB, to finish second in the World Rally Championship
2003: Following a spectacular second win in Wales, Mills was crowned World Rally Champion with Solberg
2002: Second place, World Rally Championship and a win in Wales on Rally GB
2000: Mills stayed alongside Solberg and was signed by the Subaru World Rally Team
1999: Signed by Ford World Rally Team and joined an inexperienced Solberg, co–driving for him for the first time
1998: Mills contested five WRC events alongside Higgins
1997: Mills and Higgins won their first British Rally Championship. Mills continued to work at the newly renamed M–Sport, and made his WRC debut in Corsica alongside Armin Schwarz.
1996: Mills joined Mark Higgins in the British Rally Championship, and the duo finished second in the series and achieved fourth overall on the RAC Rally
1994: Mills made his WRC debut, and alongside multiple Middle East champion Mohammed Bin Sulayem, whom Mills was working with at Malcolm Wilson Motorsport, the Welshman won his first international
event on the Rally of Jordan
1993: Mills switched roles for the RAC Rally to become team coordinator for Malcolm Wilson Motorsport. He also won the Welsh National Championship again
1992: Winner, Welsh National Championship
1990: Mills debuted in the British Rally Championship in the Group N category. He finished third on his home event
1988: With a wealth of club experience behind him, Mills stepped up his level of work in a bid to climb the ranks. He competed in 88 rallies in two years from 1988–89
1984: Mills won his class in the Welsh Road Rally Championship
1983: Mills debuted on the rally scene co–driving in road rallies around his home town

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