The high-speed Rally Rzeszow – probably the most challenging round of the 2017 FIA European Rally Championship to date – was marked by hot weather, but that didn’t prevent José Suárez from posting a polished, well-paced performance to confirm the potential of the Peugeot 208T16. Together with co-driver Cándido Carrera, he combined a cool head with good speed – including one fastest stage time in ES7 – to clinch third in the U28 class in Poland.
A roll after slipping into a ditch on the event’s opening stage brought the outing of Pepe López and Borja Rozada to a premature end. They continue to hold second place in the provisional Junior U28 standings, however, and are still in the fight for the class’s 2017 crown. Their focus is now very much on their next appearance – the Czech Republic’s Barum Rally – in two weeks’ time.
Next ERC Rally: Barum Czech Rally Zlín - 25-27/08/2017
I made a tyre choice error early on. It was entirely my fault and explains why our speed wasn’t so good. We then suffered gearbox trouble but the team did a great job and provided us with a really competitive car for the following day. We were quickly on the pace on the last day and we even posted a fastest stage time. We are very happy to have finished on the podium and to have scored another good result for Peugeot Sport. It was important for our confidence to show that we have the speed to challenge for the win. We are hoping for an even stronger run in Barum Rally!
It's a shame our rally ended the way it did because we arrived in Poland with all our homework done and ready to push hard, but that’s rallying! We slipped into a ditch, hit a concrete nozzle and then rolled. I’m pleased to say we’re okay, apart from some minor bruising. It wasn’t a good result but the 2017 FIA ERC isn’t over yet and we can still win the Junior U28 championship. We want to put what happened at the weekend behind us and focus on keeping up our fight, beginning with the Barum Rally later this month.
It was a very difficult rally for the team. We all agree that Pepe López needs to put Rally Rzeszow behind him and turn over a fresh page for the Barum Rally in two weeks’ time. It promises to be a tough, fast asphalt round. We are very pleased with José Suárez’s result who made an intelligent race. It’s put him back in contention and boosted his confidence because he was keen to score a top result with the Peugeot 208T16. Rally Rzeszow showed that the car is reliable and capable of fighting at the sharp end!
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Co-driver matters video: https://www.facebook.com/peugeot.sport/videos/1584578974905939/
Peugeot 208T16 technical data: http://www.peugeot-sport.com/fr/peugeot-rally-academy-voitures/
Other Peugeot Rally Academy videos: https://www.youtube.com/user/peugeotsportofficial
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