WRC

Rally of Great Britain: MG Group N leg one summary

EVANS & JARDINE SAFELY THROUGH SIX STAGES OF RALLY GB The first MG ZR of Gwyndaf Evans was sixth in super1600 class after six stages of the Rally GB. Only the Super Special Stage at Cardiff stands between Gwyndaf and co-driver Chris Patterson ...

EVANS & JARDINE SAFELY THROUGH SIX STAGES OF RALLY GB

The first MG ZR of Gwyndaf Evans was sixth in super1600 class after six stages of the Rally GB. Only the Super Special Stage at Cardiff stands between Gwyndaf and co-driver Chris Patterson having a successful first full day in Wales. At the scheduled 45 minute service at Felindre, Gwyndaf said: "We've had a good day and pleased to be in the top six as I hoped we would. I'm pleased with the speed of the MG. We had a problem with the power steering on the last stage, which cost us a little time. But we're pleased to be here and we've only a little stage to do now. It's been a good day for MG and the crew."

Mark Blundell returned to the service area early after retiring on stage 5 of the rally due to transmission failure. As he got to grips with the car and the conditions co-driver Bob Mckenzie, correspondent for The Express, explained: "Mark's confidence was really starting to show as he completed some of his best driving in his early rally career. The stage was really going well and I was ready to write a glowing report." Mark added: "It's been a fantastic experience. Firstly to have the opportunity from MG to drive has been a dream come true and secondly I've learnt to have a great admiration for rally drivers and co-drivers, they do a great job. I've been slightly blown away by the conditions and the kind of speeds you carry in these conditions. It's really frustrating not to have made it to the end of the rally and somehow, somewhere I'd really like to have another go."

The remaining Group N car driven by Tony Jardine and Maurice Hamilton continued to run smoothly. Before setting off for the final stage at Cardiff Tony said: "That last stage was really tough because we lost the notes and the wipers. It was a little hairy so we had to calm down a little. We'll just get the car checked but overall it's going great. We also have to remember that we are now the smallest production car in the rally." Front right suspension damage was the reason for Rob Gill's early retirement from the rally on stage 3. Rob explained: "We've had a good year in the British Championship with the MG and a 100 percent finishing rate, so we were confident of finishing. We were really starting to find our feet, the car was behaving perfectly and did everything I asked. Unfortunately, we had a bit of bad luck on our side and as we've come to a fast right with a small bump and as we landed we damaged the suspension. There was just no way that we could continue. When you put into perspective that around 85 cars had been through the stage before there was a lot against us."

Gwyndaf Evans set the fastest time (2.21.8) on Super Special Stage 1 at Cardiff on Thursday evening.

-mgrg-

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Series WRC
Drivers Mark Blundell , Tony Jardine , Gwyndaf Evans , Chris Patterson