Points finish for Suzuki Swift Super 1600 in Spain Estonian driver Jaan Molder has scored a points finish at the penultimate round of the Junior World Rally Championship in Spain, thanks to a thrilling fightback on the final day. The Suzuki...
Points finish for Suzuki Swift Super 1600 in Spain
Estonian driver Jaan Molder has scored a points finish at the penultimate round of the Junior World Rally Championship in Spain, thanks to a thrilling fightback on the final day. The Suzuki Sport Europe driver began the last day in seventh, after being held back by a puncture on the tricky asphalt stages. He attacked the final six stages determined to make up ground, and ended the rally in sixth place, scoring three Junior World Championship points.
His team mate Michal Kosciuszko from Poland was robbed of the chance to finish on the podium by a broken throttle cable during the second day that cost him 10 minutes. Nonetheless he kept up a rapid pace, claiming a stage win on the final day, to end up just outside the points. Suzuki Rallye Junior Team Germany driver Florian Niegel was right behind him, having stopped on the opening leg of the rally when his front wheel nuts broke.
The Spanish stages provided a formidable challenge to the Junior crews, combining fast and twisty asphalt roads with plenty of loose gravel where the competitors tended to cut the corners. The final 93-kilometre day, which took in six stages, was no exception - with several traps to catch out the unwary. Despite these extremely challenging conditions, all three Suzuki Swift Super 1600s got to the finish safely in a closely-fought title battle that will go all the way down to the wire in Corsica next weekend.
News from Jaan Molder (EE) - Suzuki Swift n.32:
"I really needed to get in some more kilometres on asphalt, so this rally - my first one on asphalt all year - was extremely useful. The stages here in Spain were actually even more difficult than I expected them to be, so I'm very pleased to reach the finish with some points. It was a pity that we picked up a puncture on the longest stage of the rally yesterday but this is always a risk when you are running behind the World Rally Cars on an asphalt event. When they cut the corners they pull out lots of rocks, which can damage tyres. This rally has been a very good experience though and I am much clearer now on some ideas about set-up heading into Corsica."
News from Michal Kosciuszko (PL) - Suzuki Swift n.35:
"This was a really difficult rally and I have learnt a lot. Without the throttle cable problem I think I could have finished on the podium, even though I don't have so much experience on this type of event, so that is really encouraging for the future. Corsica will be another big adventure for me, so I can't wait to get started!"
News from Florian Niegel (D) - Suzuki Swift n.43:
"I've had a lot of fun driving the car on these stages and taken away a lot of really useful knowledge. Apart from the problem with the wheel nuts, which was just a small thing, the car itself has been perfectly reliable over all three days, which has enabled me to learn a lot. I've also improved my pace notes, and now I feel confident heading to the next round in Corsica. It is a busy schedule, but it means that you do not lose any momentum - so I'm hoping to make the most of Corsica as well."