Team MRF Tyre’s Gaurav Gill made a successful World Rally Championship-2 debut last weekend, finishing 12th in Rally Italy.
Gill started the round with the 10th fastest time in Thursday’s shakedown, before carrying on the strong pace into Friday morning.
However, towards the end of SS5, Gill landed nose-first at a jump section, heavily damaging the frontal part of his Ford Fiesta R5. The incident forced him to sit out of the Friday afternoon loop.
“The car had been going well and I was finding a rhythm,” he said. “Over one jump in the stage the car landed heavily on the nose and we had to pull off to the side.”
Fortunately, M-Sport - the reigning WRC championships who have been assigned by MRF for actual running of the steam - managed to get his car repaired in time for Saturday.
And Gill was quickly back on form, setting the fourth fastest time in SS13. In fact, the New Delhi native consistently finished inside the top 10 on Saturday and Sunday, eventually finishing 12th in the WRC2 class.
He ended just an hour behind winner Jan Kopecky, despite losing a huge chunk of time on Friday.
“It was a tough event - this is the toughest of the WRC events across the season and the MRF Tyres performed well on the rough roads,” Gill said
“I am very happy with where we sit after our first event. We took fourth in our category on stage 13 and today we continued to set very good times.
“The conditions today were very hot, much warmer than over the rest of the weekend but the roads were a little smoother.
“It is great to make it to this point and I am looking forward to getting back behind the wheel of the MRF Tyres Ford Fiesta R5 at our next WRC event.”
Gill and MRF will next be seen in action in Rally Finland in July as part of a partial four-rally campaign in the WRC-supporting class.
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