Friday | 11 Mar 2016

Camilli’s relief at Mexico result

Gravel rookie Eric Camilli has outlined his delight at achieving his maiden World Rally Car finish at Rally Guanajuato Mexico last weekend.

After a torrid start to his first year in the WRC’s headline category when he crashed out of both Rallye Monte-Carlo and Rally Sweden, the Frenchman finally made the finish in Mexico on his gravel debut in a World Rally Car and only his eighth dirt rally ever.

“It wasn’t easy, but I knew that it wouldn’t be easy,” said the M-Sport driver, who steered his Ford Fiesta RS to 16th in the mountains above León. A puncture and gearshift issues in the first full day’s competition were followed by retirement 24 hours later when he broke the steering after hitting a rock.

“We had some problems with the car but it’s like that in Mexico and it’s the same every year for all cars. On Saturday I hit the same rock that Jari-Matti Latvala hit just before me, but thanks to the team who fixed the car so it was possible to continue on the final day. I was so happy to be at the finish,” he told

Camilli’s retirement meant he was first in the start order in Sunday’s final leg and faced the worst of the slippery gravel roads. “I gained a lot of experience from opening the road, it was a great thing for the future.

“Driving a World Rally Car on gravel was the biggest thing I learned from the weekend. It’s still very new for me and I don’t know the rhythm to have all the time,” he explained.

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