Janne Tuohino claimed a hard-fought manufacturers points-scoring finish on his first visit to Sardinia with the Å koda Fabia WRC 05. His overall position was compromised by a problem with the automatic gearshift system during the first three ...
Janne Tuohino claimed a hard-fought manufacturers points-scoring finish on his first visit to Sardinia with the Škoda Fabia WRC 05.
His overall position was compromised by a problem with the automatic gearshift system during the first three stages of the event that led to him having to run first on the road throughout Saturday and third on Sunday.
A thick layer of loose gravel ensured that he was unable to match his rivals times for the last two days but he ended the fifth round of the WRC in 13th place.
Armin Schwarz was excluded by the stewards on Saturday evening after it was discovered that he had been handed a bottle of oil outside of a permitted service zone. The mistake occurred during a confused first service of the day after Armins Fabia WRC 05 had needed some last minute work to prevent a possible transmission problem.
The team decided not to appeal the stewards decision. On Friday Armin had run as high as sixth on a day when he was able to demonstrate the agility of the Fabia WRC 05 on Sardinias tight and twisty stages.
After what has proved to be one of the toughest events in the 16-round calendar, the WRC now moves to Europes eastern Mediterranean area for the next three gravel rounds. Next on the schedule is the slowest round of the season, the Cyprus Rally (May 13-15) where once again Armin Schwarz and Janne Tuohino will drive the Fabia WRC 05.
Janne Tuohino: "I lost my chance of a good result in the first few stages of this rally and once we had to run first on the road for Saturday I could only try to be at the finish. We have come away from Sardinia with a point for the team but we all know that it could have been better because the Fabia has been improved a lot in our recent testing."
Martin Muehlmeier (Head of Škoda Motorsport): "We are very sorry for what happened to Armin. It was a simple mistake that brought us no performance advantage at all, but the regulation is clear and so is the penalty for breaching the regulation."