WRC

P-WRC: Wales Rally GB: Red Bull leg 1 summary

Gassner Jr continues his learning curve in Britain Red Bull Rallye Team driver Hermann Gassner Jr has been forced to retire from the opening day of the Rally Great Britain on the final stage because of a transmission problem. Before then, he had...

Gassner Jr continues his learning curve in Britain

Red Bull Rallye Team driver Hermann Gassner Jr has been forced to retire from the opening day of the Rally Great Britain on the final stage because of a transmission problem. Before then, he had been running consistently in the top 10 of the conventional Group N cars after an extremely tricky first day in Wales: the final round of the World Rally Championship this year.

The young German is contesting a limited World Championship programme this year at the wheel of a Group N Mitsubishi Lancer Evo IX: a car that is older and less advanced than many of the machines used by his rivals. Nonetheless, the objective for Gassner Jr is simply to learn the World Championship events and avoid making any mistakes: a goal that he achieved comfortably throughout day one in Britain.

Although Gassner Jr has rallied in Britain before, it was the first time that he had seen conditions quite like these, including rain, fog and mud. Throughout the day's six stages, consisting of two loops of three speed tests with midday service in the small town of Builth Wells, Gassner Jr and his co-driver Kathi Wustenhagen drove at a sensible pace that was aimed squarely at bringing their Red Bull-backed car safely to the finish. Unfortunately, in the final 27.88-kilometre stage of the day (Myherin) the car stopped after making a promising start. Gassner Jr should be able to re-join the rally tomorrow under the Super Rally system, with a penalty of five minutes for the stage he missed.

BRR team principal Raimund Baumschlager, who runs the young German's car, commented: "At the moment we're not entirely sure what caused the problem: all we know is that the car stopped on the last stage. I guess today hasn't been our day, but unfortunately motorsport can sometimes be like this, so all we can do now is fix Hermann's car to make sure that he is out again tomorrow and learns as much as possible. At least he completed most of the stages today, and from what we could see he was doing a very good job."

Gassner Jr concluded: "Rally Great Britain is an event that I love, so even though the weather conditions are really difficult and the roads are slippery, I'm very much looking forward to being out in the car again tomorrow. I'm pleased with the progress that we made today, and it's clear that our pace notes are good, so I'm sure that we can continue this good work now."

Saturday's second day is made up of nine stages covering a competitive distance of 138.56 kilometres. The first stage starts at 0903 local time tomorrow.

-source: red bull

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Series WRC
Drivers Raimund Baumschlager