Tuesday 27 November 2012

Rally - Success in France

Garry Pearson and Craig Wallace did themselves a power of good in France at the weekend on the Rally du Var.

First time out in the Italian GIMA Autosport team run Renaultsport Twingo R2 Evo, Garry and Craig finished 84th overall and 7th in the Twingo class. They were also 9th R2 car overall behind 8 French drivers and one German.

They would have finished higher but for a front puncture on the final 33 km stage and did the sensible thing by stopping to change the wheel.

As a prize for winning the British Junior Raly Championship, Garry and Craig had been offered the drive by Renaultsport and although they had some time to acclimatise to the ‘new’ car, this was their first rally in the Evo version which had 60 hp more than their own R1 Twingo and also had a sequential change gearbox for the first time.

Garry cooked the brakes during the test session and spun the car as he deployed his demon Jim Clark left foot braking techniques! He did it again on the third stage of the 12 stage event but they achieved what they set out to do, finish, and didn’t put a mark on the car.

At the finish, Garry said: "Wow, what an excellent prize! The little Twingo R2 Evo is a proper rally car and these are proper stages that you must respect. Craig had a lot of work to do too - those corners are never ending and he did a great job again. I'd also like to thank Renault and GIMA, it has made me want to move up to the R2 even more."

Twingo Renaultsport Trophy UK Manager Simon Moss commented: "The guys have done a great job here. I'm so glad that they approached it as an experience and didn't try to match the pace of some of the French regulars; it is such a specialist rally. I think Renault made the right choice to come here as the prize, I'm looking forward to next year's UK Twingo Trophy already."

Not bad for a couple of young guys who went to France not knowing how to order porridge and black pudding in French!

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