Day finish is a desired goal for any crew, but not everyone managed to reach it without “adventures”. Of course, it’s better to know all the details firsthand...
Matthieu BAUMEL, co-driver, crew number 1,
“Oh no, we definitely didn’t have a puncture. But we’ve touched the snowbank a little bit, and the tyre was slightly “pressed out” from the disk, a small problem. This is a fantastic rally, we enjoy driving on snow and ice, because it’s very different from what we usually do, and it’s cool! It’s like the same thing as in Norway or Sweden and looks like an WRC. But at a cross-country rally you usually don’t use studded snow tyres, as we do now, we really liked it”.
Tapio LAURONEN, driver, crew number 21,
“We had a flat tyre, lost two or three minutes to replace it, but everything is fine”.
Juan Pablo MONASTEROLO, co-driver, crew number 23,
“It was a difficult day; there were some problems at the second stage. We hit a snow pile and “sat down”, so we had to swing the car here and there to get out, and then I cleaned the wheels of the snow. We definitely lost more than three minutes, but it’s good that we are here [at the end of the day], because it’s always hard at the race where it’s cold outside and hot inside”.
At SS-3 Aron Domzala rolled over, and Martin Prokop stopped to give him a hand at the stage, he helped to right the Pole’s overturned car.
Boris GADASIN, driver, crew number 8,
“What happened? Say “hello” to winter! In our car the breathers have been frozen in several systems – in the power steering and in the gearbox. The car was started after the frosty night, as a result the oil cooler was torn off and the hose jumped off from the power steering. That is, everything started to leak; we connected it somehow, were late at the start of SS because of this, but were able to drive. And six kilometers later the small fire started, because the oil from the steering got to the muffler. Than it was discovered the new “magic” system that the FIA requires doesn’t work in principle. That is, you press the button, nothing works, but the “test” shows everything is ok. A “native” Russian fire extinguisher and three men, throwing snow on the car, helped it not to burn. And this alone is a plus, and everything else... The car will be ready for tomorrow, and the issue of admission is not to us”.
Martin PROKOP, driver, crew number 4,
“It was another good special stage; however we lost a lot of time because Aron Domzala literally blocked the road. We spent a lot of time with him, helping to return the car to the wheels. Probably, we lost about seven minutes. But the result is good. The good special stage, I’m really surprised. I heard that the guys are talking about a slippery surface – I didn’t think so”.
Aron DOMZALA, driver, crew number 3,
“Yes, we rolled over twice for today! You can say – it was a pretty bad day. The first time I was a bit quicker in the turn than it was necessary. There was a snowbank and we overturned, unfortunately, we blocked the road. Thanks to Yasir for helping us and Martin for the second time. Yes, it was a long day; I hope it has already come to an end”.
Konstantin ZHILTSOV, co-driver, crew number 6,
“We don’t know the results yet, but Al-Attiyah was faster for sure. For us this is a good motivation to understand what to work on next. We are at the end of the day, the car is undamaged. The day was good, without problems. There was one hard routinemoment, we lost some time, but it’s ok. At a section that was repeated twice today it was difficult enough to drive along the right trajectories, because there’s a deep rut. And if you want to go to a jump or something else – it’s just a “tram” ride, we don’t like it much. We know this race, it’s clear everyone is on equal terms. But I would like to have something different for myself”.
Yasir SAIEDAN, driver, crew number 20,
“The first stage was a little bit stressful for us, I tried to understand my car, and to the second pass, I think it was ok. I began to trust the car and SS3 was faster and better”.
Evgeny ZAGORODNYUK, co-driver, crew number 22,
“In general, it was quite an interesting day. At the 40th kilometer we “bumped” into Aron Domzala, whose car was lying on the side and was turned over by Martin Prokop. We stayed there for about two minutes and then reached the finish without any problems”.
Andrey RUDSKOY, driver, crew number 22,
“Yes, after Domzala’s roll over we quietly let Prokop go, without catching him up. I must say, Aron is a good guy; when his car was on its wheels, he immediately drove off to the snowdrift and freed the passage. Tracks are diverse in terms of surface and grip. They seem to be cleared, the snow is white, you bend the throttle and the car starts to go across the road. A section before the finish is already worn down, and if it will be used tomorrow, then it will be harsh. It can be seen that many crews went off the road and contacted the snowdrifts. We also were very close to it once”.
Alexey TITOV, driver, crew number 27,
“Everything is fine, the day went as it should – we drove well. We passed only one person, it was Aron Domzala. First we met his tail light, then the rear arch, and then him personally. There was nothing to prevent the passage, he stood on the wheels, but stood, and didn’t go”.