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23 JULY 2018


Round 3 of 6: Rally di Roma Capitale, 20-22 July
FREDRIK ÅHLIN (SWE) Position: Third
Co-driver: Joakim Sjöberg (SWE) Team: CA1 Sport Car: ŠKODA Fabia R5
“The weekend has been disappointing pace-wise, I don’t really know why but it’s just not been there. Maybe I’m not used to this kind of Tarmac and it’s been nine months since my last Tarmac rally. We were improving step-by-step but after the puncture [on Saturday] we had no spare wheel so we had to be very careful for the stones in the cuts [for the rest of the day]. We made some set-up changes [for Sunday] and used the day like a test day and in some places it was working better than in others.”
JAN ČERNÝ (CZE) Position: Fourth
Co-driver: Petr Černohorský (CZE) Team: ACCR Czech Team Car: Ford Fiesta R5
“We are in the finish and that’s important but it’s not the finish we wanted, we wanted much more. We wanted to be on the podium but this result is something like last for us so we’re not very happy. Hopefully Barum will be much better. From the first stage we didn’t have the right speed and then we had some bad luck, two punctures. And after this I couldn’t find the confidence and this made it difficult to find the right speed. For sure every kilometre you spend in the car will help for the future so to finish the day was important. Also I was not happy with my pacenotes, sometimes I was too careful in tightening corners. This we need to improve.”
Co-driver: Yaroslav Fedorov (RUS) Team: Sports Racing Technologies Car: ŠKODA Fabia R5
“On the fourth stage we hit in a slow corner the inside and lost the powersteering so we had to stop and restart the car. Then we lost the clutch but decided to start with no clutch, just full throttle so it’s damaged the gearbox. We hoped it would be okay [to get back to service] but in the last stage [on Saturday] it was broken totally. But what happened, happened. Today was good, we were in the finish and we forget about yesterday’s disappointment. We had good speed but we’ve got to be faster so we need to try another something, maybe more training because it’s not the best speed I know.”
CHRIS INGRAM (GBR) Position: Second
Co-driver: Ross Whittock (GBR) Team: Toksport WRT Car: ŠKODA Fabia R5
“We’ve improved massively. It was our first proper Tarmac rally in the car so I’m really happy and winning a stage outright is definitely a massive boost up against some proper rallying legends. The competition has been the best I’ve ever faced, not just from the local guys but Lukyanuk, Gryazin, so many fast drivers were here. I thought it was all over when we hit that rock yesterday and got the puncture because it was a really heavy impact and the steering was out after that. The boulder we hit was as big as a dog in the middle of the road. We came over a jump flat in fifth gear halfway through the stage. It’s a miracle we didn’t have the biggest crash ever. We’ve shown some really promising speed so massive thanks to the team and to the organisers for putting on such a fantastic rally.  I’m looking forward to see what the future brings in this car and with this team. We’ve got some really important points for the championship, now for a big attack in Barum.”

FABIAN KREIM (DEU) Position: First
Co-driver: Frank Christian (DEU) Team: ŠKODA AUTO Deutschland Car: ŠKODA Fabia R5
“It was a very, very tough rally for us especially on Saturday because it’s very difficult for the first time here on these hard stages. We are really happy to be here and to win. But winning wasn’t the target, it was just to get some experience, drive through this rally and get some points. Now we have won we are really happy. Like yesterday I was not really confident with my pacenotes, I have no trust what will be the pace in some corners but the times are not so bad. The set-up was not bad but not perfect but we made some changes, also to ourselves, and got more confident with the car.”
LAURENT PELLIER (FRA) Position: DNF (accident)
Co-driver: Geoffrey Combe (FRA) Team: PEUGEOT Rally Academy Car: PEUGEOT 208 T16
“I braked a little bit too late and we hit a tree. That’s the way, it’s only my second crash in five seasons. We are okay, this is the most important thing.”
RHYS YATES (GBR) Position: Fifth
Co-driver: Elliot Edmondson (GBR) Team: CA1 Sport Car: ŠKODA Fabia R5
“The stages have been good fun, even in the one when we’ve had two punctures, that one stage has ruined our rally so it’s really disappointing and frustrating. The first puncture, you kind of accept because we hit something, but the second one we don’t know where it came from but that’s rallying at the end of the day. But we’ve just tried to find our feet a little bit and the times have been okay. It’s difficult coming back after the punctures and our position on the road didn’t help with the delays. I’m not trying to make excuses but you’re going in with cold tyres and that’s not easy. There are positives to draw from it. Our expectations were not too high but a podium could have been possible without the punctures. But we’ve learned a lot from this event and the Italian stages. They are fast, flowing stages but they tighten really quick and that takes a little bit of getting used to when you are writing your own notes and committing to them straight away against guys who have done these kind of events several times so I’m pretty happy.”


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