25 Apr 08
Mikko Hirvonen said he had the luckiest escape of his career on the second stage of the Jordan Rally.
After completing the 20km stage The BP-Ford team leader said he wasn’t sure how he had avoided major damage to his Ford Focus RS WRC when he went off the road.
“We slid off as we went over a crest,” said Hirvonen. “We crashed over some rocks by the roadside but somehow managed to keep going and get back onto the road. The car doesn’t feel 100 per cent anymore because there is some damage to the rear suspension, but we’re lucky to be here!”
Hirvonen completed the stage 11 seconds slower than the fastest driver, Dani Sordo of the Total Citroen team, who after SS2 leads the rally by 5.4 seconds.
Suzuki World Rally Team driver Per-Gunnar Andersson retired from Friday’s competition after going off the road on SS1. Andersson eventually managed to get his damaged SX4 WRC to the end of the stage but having lost 24 minutes in the incident he drove back to the service park rather than on to SS2.