Unforgiving Swedish snowbanks cost Breen and Nagle dear – crew OK- but bitterly disappointing opening leg for Irish crew
What is next for Craig Breen and Paul Nagle after this morning’s dramas?
Craig Breen and Paul Nagle are out of Rally Sweden (for today anyway) after two off-road excursions on the event’s second stage.
About 4km into the first running of the 27.81km Kamsjön stage their Ford Puma collected a snowbank.
They lost around 30 seconds executing a multi-point turn to extract their Ford Puma from the bank.
Once they got going they were concerned about two consequences of the incident. They were worried that a build-up of snow could block the air inducts and overheat the engine with Paul watching the temperature gauges as well as calling notes for the rest of the test.
The windscreen washer pump had also managed to jam itself in the on position – and the water spray was causing visibility issues for the crew.
Later on in the stage, they came across a fast, downhill bumpy section that fired the car off the road and into deep snow.
One of the crew could be heard saying: “We are not getting out of this one,” as the car burst through the bank.
Both crew members are out of the car and they are both ok.
Their main priority now is to get the car out of the stage and back to the Umea service park and repair whatever damage maybe inflicted to the Puma.
They will then half to present the car to event scrutineers before re-joining under Super Rally rules.
That’s provided there is no structural damage to the car and that M-Sport will want them to re-join.
They will most likely be first on the road for the Saturday section – nobody wants to be first on the road on the snow!
Power-stage points are their only realistic hope of World Rally Championship points now.
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