Jok 160X600

WRC – Experience gained, potential shown

M-Sport Ford World Rally Team’s three EcoBoost-powered Ford Fiesta WRCs all encountered challenges at this weekend’s Rallye Monte-Carlo, but Teemu Suninen and Pontus Tidemand completed the notoriously difficult event to gain good experience for the future.

Despite their issues, both youngsters showed flashes of speed that bodes well for the future – a brave tyre choice rewarding Suninen with the fourth fastest time on SS7 whilst Tidemand was the fastest man through a number of split sections.

Suninen also secured a championship point for the fifth fastest time through the Power Stage – bettering that of both Loeb and Latvala who were pushing for position – and the team will take their potential forward to next month’s Rally Sweden.

Team Principal, Richard Millener, said: « This isn’t the rally we wanted, but we need to look to the positives and come back stronger in Sweden. We know that we have a competitive car and that we were capable of more this weekend – all three crews showing their potential with some competitive stage and split times. Elfyn had the pace to go for a strong result, and Teemu and Pontus both made a lot of progress and got some good experience under the belts – something that is vital to doing well at this notoriously difficult event. »

Teemu Suninen (11th) said: « It’s a shame that we went off on the first stage because the rest of the rally has been really good. But we got a lot of good experience and I had some pace on the snow sections. The more we learnt, the more we were able to build our pace and I was happy to get a Power Stage point today – beating Latvala and Loeb who were both fighting for position. »

Pontus Tidemand (20th) said: « This car is amazing to drive and I have had a lot of fun this weekend. I’ve learnt a lot and need to thank the team and my route note crew for a really good job. We’ll analyse where we were good and where we weren’t quite so good. On the slippery sections we set some really fast splits, but on the dry Tarmac we weren’t on the pace and I need more time behind the wheel to use the full potential of the car.  But it was good to get the kilometres and the experience. And we’ll have a good test before Rally Sweden where I hope to show another improvement. »

Greensmith wins in Monte

M-Sport Ford World Rally Team’s Gus Greensmith and Elliott Edmondson have taken their maiden victory at this weekend’s Rallye Monte-Carlo.

Delivering an impressive performance behind the wheel of their EcoBoost-powered Ford Fiesta R5, the Brits secured the win in the WRC 2 Pro and RC2 classes, as well as a notable seventh place in the overall standings.

Demonstrating the progress he has made over the past twelve months, Greensmith’s inspired drive paired his customary speed with the control and consistency needed to tame the stages of this notoriously difficult event.

The pairing’s flawless performance also demonstrated the power and performance of M-Sport and Ford’s most successful global rally car – the Fiesta R5 continuing to win stages, rallies and championships six years after its debut.

Rewarded with a career-best result at one of the world’s most iconic events, Greensmith will be spurred on by the taste of victory – not least when he takes to the top-specification Fiesta at Rally de Portugal and when he gets his hands on the all-new Fiesta R5 later this summer.

Team Principal, Richard Millener, said: « Congratulations to Gus and Elliott. We knew Gus’ first victory wasn’t far away, but to claim it on an event as difficult as this with the experience he has just shows how far he has come. The partnership between him and Elliott is working really well and they didn’t put a foot wrong all weekend. It was a very impressive, mature drive and they can both be extremely proud of this milestone achievement on their first step up to WRC 2 Pro. The Fiesta R5 is our most successful global rally car and it’s still winning rallies and championships around the world. What we have achieved here with Gus – in a car that is effectively six years old – bodes extremely well for the future. Gus will certainly be hungry for more victories this year, and I see no reason why he can’t achieve that; especially when we debut the new car this summer. »

Gus Greensmith said: « I’m pretty sure this is the best day of my life so far! It took us a while to get here, but it’s an amazing feeling and there are so many people I need to thank. It was almost a perfect rally from beginning to end and we did everything we needed to do. When we needed to push and build a gap, we did. And when we needed to control it, we did. It’s definitely been my best ever performance behind the wheel, and now I’m just looking forward to a beer and letting it all sink in! »

Elliott Edmondson said: « It’s been a brilliant rally back with Gus and we couldn’t have asked for any more. Monte is always a challenge so I can’t say it was easy, but we managed the whole weekend really well. We showed speed when we had to, and were more cautious when we could afford to be. We couldn’t have asked for a better start and here’s hoping for more good results as the season continues! »

Press release Ford M-Sport


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