Team GRX’s Emil Lindholm and Mikael Korhonen finished sixth in the second competition of the European Rally Championship Series, Liepaja Rally, in Latvia. Sweden's Oliver Solberg won the rally.
Emil Lindholm, who started the final day of European Rally Championship competition Liepaja Rally from sixth place, lost his pursuit of the top positions when his Škoda Fabia R5 Evo slid off the road after a big jump. The TGS Worldwide’s driver lost about half a minute of extra time in the situation but was able to continue the rally and drove to the finish line finishing off in sixth place.
“This closing day didn't start very well for us. It was that sort of a spot where you drive all out over the jump. We flew with the left corner first to the ground and the car went spinning. I tried to correct the slide with a steering motion but we had so much speed that in the end I had to turn the car with the handbrake so we wouldn’t end up going in to the field sideways”, Lindholm tells.
“We lost so much time in the situation that we decided to drive the rest of the special stages just thinking about finishing the rally. Overall this was a difficult competition for us. After a situation like that in the first special stage of the morning we felt like we can’t win in any aspect anymore”, Lindholm says.
“This was challenging rally for us. The pace was really fast and the roads were narrow and slippery. There may be equally fast sections in Finland but here they are driven like that the whole time. From this weekend’s mistakes all of them were our own”, Lindholm admits.
The three rallies with MRF Tyres, driven on three different road surfaces, left Lindholm with a very positive image of the Indian manufacturer’s rally tyres.
“The reliability and durability of MRF rally tyre’s on different road surfaces are few of the strong qualities our tyres have. We didn’t have a single blowout on our strong and sustainable tyre. There is a really strong focus on tyre development. During the fall we will be able to drive with the tyre’s new development versions”.
“We did have some good pace through the weekend. Taking a second on a stage is encouraging and like Craig (Breen), the development of the MRF Tyres is going in the right direction”.
Emil Lindholm’s and Mikael Korhonen’s season will continue in three weeks with The Finnish Rally Championship competition driven in Kouvola. The last two crucial rallies of the season will be driven from the situation where Lindholm is sharing the number one position in the SM1 class with Teemu Asunmaa. SM O.K. Auto-rally is driven 4th to 5th of September.
Final results, European Rally Championship Liepaja-Rally, Latvia:
1. Oliver Solberg (SWE) – Aaron Johnston (IRL) VW Polo GTI R5 1:27:23,0
2. Mads Östberg – Torstein Eriksen (NOR) Citroen C3 R5 + 20,1
3. Aleksei Lukyanuk – Dimitri Eremeev (RUS) Citroen C3 R5 + 37,2
4. Eerik Pietarinen – Antti Linnaketo (FIN) Škoda Fabia R5 Evo + 1:34,1
5. Craig Breen – Paul Nagle (IRL) Hyundai i20 R5 + 1:51,3
6. Emil Lindholm – Mikael Korhonen (FIN) Škoda Fabia R5 Evo + 1:53,1