As was to be feared, Patrik Sandell’s high-speed crash this morning has decisive negative repercussions: Both the Skoda Fabia S2000’s car body and its engine are badly damaged. Thus BRR’s decision was rather obvious – resuming the event under SupeRally regulations was out of the question. This year’s Rally Portugal is hence already history for the Red Bull Rally Team!
Patrik Sandell: “I’m terribly sorry – especially for the entire team. Obviously it’s my sole responsibility. I simply had a mistake in my pacenotes, that’s why I lost the line in a left-hand corner halfway through the second stage, causing me to miss the entry of the following corner – and then it had already happened. A small, stupid mistake with grave consequences – unfortunately. Because I was nowhere near the limit, just wanting to approach the event calmly.”
Team boss Raimund Baumschlager: “Perhaps we might have been able to mend the bodwork. But crucially the engine had continued to rev after the roll – without any motor oil. But that’s rallying. When you go fast, things like these can always happen, as the other retirements of the opening day go to show as well. It’s just a shame because we would have scored good points again, for sure.”