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2017 Rally Argentina – Part 5

Having led the event for two full days, Elfyn Evans and Daniel Barritt were deprived of a maiden FIA World Rally Championship victory by the smallest of margins today – missing out on the win by a mere 0.7 seconds.

Starting the day with an 11.5 second advantage, Evans was in a relaxed and confident mood but the rally god’s were to have other ideas.

Encountering a brake issue through the opening speed test, the Welshman did well to lose just 2.5 seconds to a chasing Thierry Neuville. On the second stage however, an ALS issue would see his nine second advantage transformed to just 0.6 seconds.

The Power Stage would decide the outcome of the rally and Evans wasn’t going to give up without a fight. Pushing hard behind the wheel of his DMACK-shod Fiesta, the Welshman gave it everything and was 3.1 seconds up on Neuville at the mid-point split.

But as the dramatic stage continued, Evans started to lose traction in the rear and had to forgo victory by the smallest and cruellest of margins.

Despite the initial disappointment, Evans will take confidence from this weekend’s event. When everything was working well, the Welshman was untouchable and secured more stage victories than any other driver.

FINAL RESULT: 2nd Position
Stage Performances:

SS1: =2nd (+0.9)
SS2: 1st
SS3: 1st
SS4: 1st
SS5: 1st
SS6: 1st
SS7: =1st
SS8: 2nd (+4.0)
SS9: 4th (+1.9)
SS10: 1st
SS11: 6th (+6.2)
SS12: 8th (+14.0)
SS13: 4th (+3.2)
SS14: 6th (+15.1)
SS15: 6th (+18.9)
SS16: 3rd (+3.8)
SS17: 2nd (+8.4)
SS18: 2nd (+1.3)

Elfyn said:

We’ve got mixed emotions at the end of this one. It’s obviously disappointing to have missed out on victory by such a fine margin but it was definitely a rally of two halves.

Thierry had his own problems on Friday whilst we had a really good day and were able to establish a fairly reasonable lead. But it was a case of role reversal over the next two days.

Thierry drove really well and no one can take that away from him, but we had a fair amount of problems – some self-inflicted and some not. To be honest, we didn’t have a clean run since the opening stage on Saturday morning so it was a big push to keep the battle so close.

It’s a long story and I could probably write a list as long as my arm for why we didn’t manage to make it stick this weekend – but all credit to Thierry. He’s driven really well and from our side there are still a lot of positives that we can take away. When everything was working well, our speed was really strong. We just need to make sure that we learn from this weekend and come back stronger.

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27th - 30th April 2017


2017, Race Photos