17 May 08
The Suzuki World Rally Team is hoping to get Toni Gardemeister back on the stages of Rally Italy on Sunday as a Superally entrant.
Gardemeister was forced to retire from ninth today after rear suspension problems stopped his SX4 WRC on SS11. He made a temporary repair, but the team decided that it would be safer to withdraw him from the day in order to allow him to re-start tomorrow.
The cause of Gardemeister’s problem will be analysed once the car returns to service at the harbour side in Olbia this evening and it is hoped that he will re-start the rally tomorrow.
I’m not really sure what happened but the problem badly affected the handling of the car,” said Gardemeister. “It was a pity, as up until then we had encountered no problems at all and enjoyed another really good day. When the car is reliable, it can be very effective. We have been deliberately careful not to take any risks today, and I certainly haven’t been pushing to the maximum. We’ll see what we can do tomorrow, but this rally has been really important for us so far, as it was vital to achieve a basic level of reliability in order to move forwards.”