Neuville handed suspended event ban, fine for WRC Estonia speeding

Thierry Neuville has been issued a suspended one event World Rally Championship ban and a fine for “driving at excessive speed” on a road section at Rally Estonia.

The Hyundai Motorsport driver finished the event third behind breakthrough winner Toyota's Kalle Rovanpera and Hyundai's Craig Breen.

However, officials have since handed the Belgian and co-driver Martijn Wydaeghe a €2,500 fine and a suspended one event ban after being clocked at a speed of 190 km/h in a 90km/h road section.

It proved to be an eventful final day for Neuville who suffered a starter motor issue on his i20 twice that resulted in being late to the penultimate stage and a 10s penalty.

This issue contributed to the breach of regulations as Hyundai told stewards at a hearing that "due to some technical problems on their car, they were approaching TC23 [Time check] late.

"As they were fighting for a podium position in the classification they could not avoid overspeeding in order not to be late at TC23."

The team added that during a post event hearing that "at that moment the road was clear of traffic" when the pair were travelling to the time check.

However, officials have slapped the sanction on the pair citing that the event ban would come into force "if, within the 2021 FIA WRC season, Neuville commits any speeding offence exceeding 30% or more of the applicable speed limit."

Thierry Neuville, Martijn Wydaeghe, Hyundai Motorsport Hyundai i20 Coupe WRC

Thierry Neuville, Martijn Wydaeghe, Hyundai Motorsport Hyundai i20 Coupe WRC

Photo by: Austral / Hyundai Motorsport

The stewards report continued: "Excessive speed represents a serious breach of the above-mentioned articles of the FIA International Sporting Code.

Read Also:

"In this case the speed recorded was more than 100% over the speed limit, and the absence of traffic cannot be taken into consideration to claim mitigating circumstances."

The news comes as a further blow to Neuville who had been battling intermittent pain in his right eye on Sunday that meant co-driver Wydaeghe had to drive some road sections to provide respite.

"Still the rally was tough as technical issues brought a lot of stress in the car as twice the car wouldn't start and we were late to TC two stages before the finish," said Neuville in the post event press conference held before sanctions were issued.

"I'm struggling with a lot of pain in my right eye since this morning and it is getting a little bit better even Martijn was driving on the road section because I could not see anything.

"I didn't feel well all day but at the end the job is done."

Neuville sits third in the WRC standings 52 points behind Toyota's Sebastien Ogier.

shares
comments

Related video

Estonia WRC: Rovanpera becomes youngest-ever rally winner
Previous article

Estonia WRC: Rovanpera becomes youngest-ever rally winner

Next article

Harri Rovanpera "unsure how heart is working" after son's WRC win

Harri Rovanpera "unsure how heart is working" after son's WRC win
Load comments
How WRC legend Ogier will be remembered by his peers Prime

How WRC legend Ogier will be remembered by his peers

After winning his eighth WRC title, Sebastien Ogier has drawn the curtain on his full-time rallying career. To understand Ogier's legacy, many of his former rivals, team-mates and colleagues have shared their thoughts on a vastly successful career

WRC
Nov 26, 2021
Ranking lost WRC legend Richard Burns' 10 best rallies Prime

Ranking lost WRC legend Richard Burns' 10 best rallies

Richard Burns was a determined driver who took on the best rally drivers in the world during a boom period in the early 2000s, and beat them. On the 20th anniversary of his crowning glory in winning the 2001 WRC title, and 16 years on from his death on the same date, we pick out his 10 greatest drives

WRC
Nov 25, 2021
The internal focus that made Burns a legendary world rally champion Prime

The internal focus that made Burns a legendary world rally champion

At the turn of the millennium, WRC was full to the brim with rallying's great and good - and 20 years ago on this day, Richard Burns became England's first world rally champion. Although Burns' natural talent drove him to the top, his steely determination and mental strength was the key attribute behind his title-winning form

WRC
Nov 25, 2021
How Ogier emerged from Loeb's shadow to form his own WRC legend Prime

How Ogier emerged from Loeb's shadow to form his own WRC legend

OPINION: Adding an eighth WRC title to his name, Sebastien Ogier has bowed out from full-time rallying in style. Having been compared throughout his career with nine-time champion Sebastien Loeb, Ogier has convincingly demonstrated that he can stand on his own as one of the greatest rally drivers in history

WRC
Nov 22, 2021
How confronting self-doubt drove Ogier to become a WRC legend Prime

How confronting self-doubt drove Ogier to become a WRC legend

This weekend's Rally Monza marks the end of an era in the World Rally Championship, as Sebastien Ogier prepares to bring down the curtain on his full-time career with an eighth title. For all his enduring success, the Toyota driver reveals in an exclusive interview that lingering insecurities have compelled his quest for perfection

WRC
Nov 18, 2021
The third generation McRae on his way to the WRC Prime

The third generation McRae on his way to the WRC

The McRae family name is steeped in rallying history, with eight British titles between Jimmy, Colin and Alister - plus the small matter of the 1995 WRC title too. Next on the conveyor of talent is Alister's 17-year-old Max McRae, who’s setting out in Australia to conquer the world of rallying and return the famous name to the WRC...

WRC
Nov 12, 2021
Inside Hyundai’s radical approach to prepare for the WRC hybrid era Prime

Inside Hyundai’s radical approach to prepare for the WRC hybrid era

As the World Rally Championship undergoes its biggest shift in regulations for a generation, teams are taking radical measures to prepare for its new era. Hyundai's unique approach involved conducting a private 1500km rally in Italy and Motorsport.com went to see how the team is preparing for 2022

WRC
Nov 4, 2021
How Neuville stole the show from Ogier vs Evans slugfest in Spain Prime

How Neuville stole the show from Ogier vs Evans slugfest in Spain

While all pre-event chat focused on the two World Rally Championship title fighters, their closest challenger charged into the spotlight on Rally Spain. Thierry Neuville's star turn and another strong drive from Elfyn Evans in his fight with Sebastien Ogier made for an intriguing event as the 2021 campaign nears its crunch point

WRC
Oct 18, 2021