Instructive asphalt experience for the ADAC Opel Rallye Junior Team

Saturday, May 4, 2019

 

  • Demanding second round of the European Junior Rally Championship on Gran Canaria
  • The young Luxembourgish Grégoire Munster celebrates his best JERC result with rank 4
  • Team mate Elias Lundberg (Sweden) throws back a puncture shortly before the end of the race

 

Rüsselsheim/Munich/Las Palmas. For the first time since the Azores Rally in 2015, no Opel driver has clinched a podium position in a round of the European Junior Rally Championship. At the Rally Islas Canarias El Corte Inglés, the second round of the FIA ERC3 Junior Championship 2019, Grégoire Munster (20, Luxembourg) and Elias Lundberg (21, Sweden) in the ADAM R2 of the ADAC Opel Rallye Junior Team finished 4th and 9th after an eventful competition.

 

Both Opel Junior crews increased continuously in the course of the demanding asphalt rally on the third largest of the Canary Islands. Munster and co-driver Louis Louka were ranked in the top 3 of a special stage several times and narrowly missed their first jump on a European Championship podium at the end. Lundberg and Co David Arhusiander had already worked their way up from tenth place after the first day to sixth place when a puncture in the penultimate special stage (SS15) cost them about three minutes and threw them back to ninth place.

 

Munster was satisfied with his first top result in this year's extremely strong Junior European Championship: "The rally started difficult for us with a puncture in qualifying. The pace of the leading group was impressive. But in the course of the rally we found our rhythm and understood better and better how to be fast on this extremely grippy surface without overstraining the tyres and brakes. The asphalt here was quite different from the slippery tracks we know from the Belgian Championship. The tyre management really wasn't easy, but on the whole we didn't do our thing badly, I think".

 

Colleague Lundberg had to pay tribute to his lack of experience on asphalt at Gran Canaria. "On this kind of track you have to drive like on the circuit, clean and always within the limits of the tyre. Especially on the first day, I was often too aggressive, and that takes time on such tests. In addition, David and I found out during the rally that our writing down was not optimal. I lacked full confidence in his announcements. After all, we increased our speed considerably on day two. However, I wouldn't have needed the puncture on the penultimate stage anymore. We've learned a lot and want to try to do better at our next asphalt rally".

 

Opel Motorsport Director Jörg Schrott pragmatically assessed the performances of his protégés: "The performance level in the FIA ERC3 Junior is very high this year. The top has set an impressive pace here. Our young drivers have to learn to keep up at this high level. And that's what they do. Both have improved considerably in the course of the rally. Now it's time to learn from our mistakes and get closer to the top bit by bit".

 

The crews of the two ADAM R2s privately fielded by Stengg Motorsport were in for a treat of joy and sorrow. Simon Wagner/Gerald Winter finished fifth behind Munster, while Roland Stengg/Alessandra Baumann tore off a wheel in SS6 and were unable to finish the second leg due to a damaged suspension.

 

The next round of the FIA ERC3 Junior Championship will take place from 24 to 26 May as part of the rally Liepāja around the Latvian port of the same name. The Opel juniors and their rivals can expect a demanding gravel competition there.

 

 

Stand FIA ERC3 Junior after 2 of 6 runs:

1. Llarena 68 points. 2. Antunes 45. 3. Francheschi 39. 4. Furuseth 35. 5. Lundberg 26. 6. Munster 23. 7. Wagner 18. 8. Cais 16. 9. Talas 10. 10. Grigorov and Rokland, each 8.

 

position:absolute
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Reproduced by courtesy of Opel Motorsport.

Picture Copyright: Opel Motorsport www.opel-motorsport.com

 

 

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