Å koda Motorsport World Rally Team driver Janne Tuohino holds ninth place this evening but Armin Schwarz did not escape the problems although it was the failure of the alternator belt on the Fabia WRC 05 on the road section after SS3 that ended...
Škoda Motorsport World Rally Team driver Janne Tuohino holds ninth place this evening but Armin Schwarz did not escape the problems although it was the failure of the alternator belt on the Fabia WRC 05 on the road section after SS3 that ended his participation in today's leg.
He should return tomorrow in 16th place under the SupeRally system as one of four factory drivers sidelined today.
The Cyprus Rally, round six of the World Rally Championship, is notorious for its narrow, rough and twisty mountain roads and the opening day saw every one of the six manufacturer teams suffer problems at some point during a day of carnage. Amid searing temperatures of close to 30 degrees at times, average speeds on todays six stages were rarely higher than 60kph.
Tomorrow's leg features six more stages in the Troodos mountains north of Lemesos. The leg includes 109.56kms of stages in a total route of 371.22kms.
Janne Tuohino: "Today has possibly been the most difficult days rallying I have ever done! The important thing was that I escaped most of the problems that everyone else had so its not been a bad day after all. Tomorrows stages are better but my plan is still to try and stay out of trouble."
Armin Schwarz: "The car was working the same as in Sardinia and I had a good feeling with the way it was handling on these roads. Unfortunately the alternator belt came off on the road section after SS3 and without it the battery could not last very long. We tried to reach service but had to stop with about 20kms to go. We can continue tomorrow and, having seen the way things happen on this rally, who knows what the final result might be?"
Martin Muehlmeier (Head of Škoda Motorsport): "This is an incredibly difficult rally and the most important thing is not the overall performance but to try and be at the finish without any major problems. Janne achieved this today but Armin was just unlucky. However both drivers will be competing tomorrow in good positions to push for championship points if we can stay out of trouble."