Appleby and co-driver Peter Burrey, driving a Lamborghini Gallardo, finished about 13 minutes behind the winning team, the Tasmanian uncle-nephew duo of Jason and John White, driving a Nissan Skyline.
'The car has got a fair bit more potential than I have,' Appleby told The Weekend Australian (newspaper) in an interview Saturday, a day before the rally ended.
'I don't know how these guys do it. They are so quick. I get out and whip around a stage and think I was quick, and in a three-minute stage the good guys can be 15 seconds ahead of me.'
Lamborghini officials gave Appleby the driver's seat in its second car when, during a visit to the Lamborghini showroom in Melbourne three months ago, he jokingly suggested he was the ideal driver for them.
Appleby, who first announced his intention to drive in the rally during the Masters Tournament, moved from the middle of the pack on the opening day into the top 30 in a field of more than 100 cars in the modern class.
'It is a team with two Lamborghinis rigged up to race, which is more than a million dollars worth of cars,' Appleby said. 'It was a trusting move on their part.'
Appleby, who has his own Lamborghini Gallardo and several other luxury cars in a garage at his Florida home, said he won't be making any full-time moves to racing -- it's too expensive.
'Motorsport's not cheap,' he said. 'In golf, eventually your talent drags you through. But in motorsport, you can have talent, but if you don't have a checkbook with you, it doesn't always work.'
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