Kris Meeke

Kris misses out after strong Monte start

Friday, 23rd January 2015 - by Site Admin
Kris misses out after strong Monte start

Kris has been forced out of a strong position on the first full day of the opening round of the 2015 World Rally Championship, Rallye Monte Carlo.

The Northern Irishman and co-driver Paul Nagle started strongly on yesterday evening’s first two stages, easing themselves into a solid top-10 position and concentrating on maintaining a comfortable pace instead of looking at the times of those around them.

They started this morning’s third test in sixth overall, just under a minute behind the overnight leader, team-mate and nine-times world champion Sebastien Loeb.

Today’s stages brought a mix of icy roads, occasional snow and frequent mud and gravel being pulled out by the leading crews for those running further down the order. It was a typically tricky mix on the mountain tests, and Kris once again focused on a steady approach.

This tactic had moved Kris up to a promising fourth place overall going into the last of today’s six stages. However, he was caught out by some of the mud on the road – and his DS 3 WRC banged a wheel into a ditch. It suffered terminal suspension damage and could go no further, forcing Kris into a disappointing retirement. He will rejoin the rally tomorrow to gain further experience and potentially challenge for manufacturer’s points – but a repeat of last year’s sensational podium finish looks impossible now.

Kris said, ‘It wasn’t the trickiest place; I was caught out on some mud on a fast-left. We went sideways up the road, I corrected it and then I banged a wheel in a ditch on the left. I was pushed out of the snowbank and continued up the road, but something was broken.’

Remember that you can ask Kris questions about the Rallye Monte Carlo directly via Twitter, and he’ll answer three of the best queries on Monday morning. Tweet him at @krismeeke and don’t forget to use the hashtag #KMrally.