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Gilmour makes FSTi debut at Deutschland Rallye

12.08.2006: Gilmour makes FSTi debut at Deutschland Rallye

FIESTA SPORTING TROPHY -OMV ADAC Rallye Deutschland
Friday August 11
 

 

Kiwi rally driver Emma Gilmour had her first taste of the Fiesta SportingTrophy International (FSTi) as OMV ADAC Rallye Deutschland got underway to variable weather conditions over eight stages held in the Mosel vineyards of the Saarland region of Germany.

Gilmour, who contests this event and next weekend’s Neste Oil Rally Finland thanks to backing from Castrol and Dream Drive Promotions Ltd, ended her first day against far more experienced Fiesta ST competitors in seventh position in the standings of the series run as part of the FIA Junior World Rally Championship.

"Wow, it’s been a big learning curve today," said the 26 year-old from Dunedin, New Zealand. "This is really my first tarmac rally and I have picked up so much over each of the stages."

Gilmour set a fifth fastest stage time in her second outing of the day, but tyre choice and contact with the Armco in the afternoon’s first stage meant Gilmour was unable to better that as she battled the wet tarmac roads.

"We took too heavy a cut in the tyres in the morning and they were shot by the end of the last stage which made it difficult," said Gilmour. "This afternoon’s first stage started really well, it was raining but I had the right tyres, then it just aquaplaned right into an Armco barrier and bent the steering.

"I had to struggle with the wheels pointing different directions for the rest of the stages. It was quite interesting wrestling the car and I had to left foot brake to try and get it to turn in. Then in one of the other stages I hit something else, but the good thing was that it seemed to straighten the wheels up a bit! It’s been a challenging day."

Sitting in the co-driver’s seat beside Gilmour is experienced competitor, John Bennie. "It has been a learning day and we’ve not attacked the way we would want due to the wrong tyre choice in the morning and bent steering in the afternoon," said the Glaswegian. "Tomorrow will be another hard day to get through."

Day two of OMV ADAV Rallye Deutschland takes place on military roads more accustomed to use by tanks with seven stages and 149km of stage distance with Saturday seeing the event move to smoother tarmac for the rally’s final four stages. After Germany the Fiesta SportingTrophy International heads straight to Finland for Neste Oil Rally Finland on August 18-20.

- Andy Stobart-

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12.08.2006 / MaP

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